By Hope Yen, Associated Press Writer
WASHINGTON (AP) — Faced with limited job options, many young adults are turning to an old standby to weather the recession: moving back in with mom and dad.
Nearly 1 in 7 parents with grown children say they had a "boomerang kid" move back home in the past year, according to a study released Tuesday by the Pew Research Center. In a turnabout in the rite of passage in which a college graduate finds a job and an apartment, many are returning to their parents' empty nests because of tight finances or as they pursue an advanced degree.
"The journey home for Thanksgiving won't be quite so far this year for many adults," said researchers Wendy Wang and Rich Morin, who wrote the report. "Instead of traveling across country or across town, many grown sons or daughters will be coming to dinner from their old bedroom down the hall."
Pew's survey and analysis of government data found that the share of adults 18 to 29 who lived alone declined from 7.9% in 2007 to 7.3% this year. Drops of that magnitude were also seen during or immediately after the recessions of 1982 and 2001.
Roughly one-third, or 35%, of boomerang kids said they had lived independently at some point in their lives but had to move back in with their parents. About half of the grown children worked full- or part-time, while 25% were unemployed and 20% were full-time students.
The findings are the latest to highlight the sweeping social impact of a recession that began in December 2007. The effects have included declining immigration and U.S. migration between states, as well as increased carpools, use of public transit and "doubling up" of families in single-residence homes.
Data released earlier this year showed that older Americans will make up virtually all of the growth in the U.S. work force in the coming years as a nearly unprecedented number hold onto jobs and younger people decide to stay in school.