- Posted By: Lisa M. Rawleigh
- Written by: Pew Research Center.
The number of Americans living in multi-generational households grew more than five times as sharply as the overall population increased from 2007 to 2009, the years that spanned the Great Recession, this according to a report released by the Pew Research Center. The largest increase was among adults ages 25 to 34 who live with their parents.
In 2009, a record 51.4 million Americans lived in a multi-generational household. These households included one-in-six Americans (16.7 percent) and more than one-in-five adults ages 25 to 34.
The population living in households with more than three family generations is relatively small—about 662,000 in 2009. But the number of residents in these households increased the most—17.4 percent— from 2007 to 2009.
During this period, the sharpest growth in the multi-generational household population was among Hispanics (17.6 percent) and Americans of two or more races (24.4 percent). The black population in these households grew by 8.7percent from 2007 to 2009, the non-Hispanic white population by 8.5 percent and the Asian population by 7.3 percent.
The most likely groups to live in multi-generational households are Asians (25.8 percent in 2009), blacks (23.7 percent) and Hispanics (23.4 percent). The share living in multi-generational households is notably lower for non-Hispanic whites (13.1 percent) and mixed-race Americans (17.9 percent).
In terms of numbers, more whites (26 million in 2009) live in multi-generational households than do members of any minority group. But whites account for only half the residents of the nation’s multi-generational households, compared with 65 percent of the overall population.
Hispanics account for the next largest number of residents of multi-generational households—11.3 million people in 2009. Among Hispanics, the three-generation family is the most common multi-generational type—58.7 percent of multi-generational household residents in 2009 lived in a three-generation household, and the number grew 20.7percent from 2007 to 2009.
Among Hispanics living in multi-generational households, nearly four-in-ten (39 percent in 2009) are the grown child of the head of the household (or someone in that same adult-child generation), a higher share than for other race or ethnic groups. That share rose by 2.1 percentage points from 2007 to 2009, a higher increase than for other groups.
Source: Pew Research Center, “Fighting Poverty in a Bad Economy, Americans Move in with Relatives”, October 3, 2010.