The number of 20-34 year olds living at home is at its highest since 1996

Upward trend: The number of young adults aged 20-34 living with their parents is increasing. Source: George Willoughby

By George Willoughby

2019 saw the highest estimated number of young adults aged 20-34 still living with their parents.

Latest figures from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) show that the number of young adults aged 20-34 living with their parents is at a 20-year high.

This means whether by choice or by other factors, young adults are struggling to get on the housing ladder. Housing prices in the United Kingdom have been rising every year, and these latest findings reveal that it is impacting the younger demographic. Since 2009, the average house price in the UK has increased by 48%.

The percentage of young adults aged 20-34 living with their parents in 2009 was 23%. Comparing this to 2019, the figure rose to 27%.

What is very important to consider with these figures released by the ONS is that they are estimates. The Labour Force Survey conducted the research and each year the number of respondents varied. The total figures were not representative of the entire 20-34 population, but they supplied useful insight into the current housing trends.

Out of the respondents in 1999, a total of 2,383 people aged 20-34 were living with their parents. In 2019, this increased by 46% with 3,487 respondents living with their parents.

The number of young adults aged 20-34 living with their parents has been growing. As the graph demonstrates, it is becoming increasingly more common for men and women aged 20-34 to be living with their parents.

Whilst the figures show a large increase from 20 years ago, compared to last year, the number of young adults living with their parents was similar. 2018 saw only 135 fewer men and women still living with their parents at the ages of 20-34.

Also, from 2014 to 2016, the total number of respondents who were living with their parents actually decreased from 3,303 to 3,288. Only in the last few years has the trend since reversed.

According to figures from the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA), Cardiff University’s employment after leaving was among the best. The number of graduates securing a job or further education after graduating was 95.7%. However, despite these statistics, as the ONS findings show, young adults are still finding it difficult to move out from their parents’ houses.

Cardiff’s employment figures will vary with other universities, but, even with a job to the age of 34, there is a growing number of young adults still living with their parents. 

Speaking to Gair Rhydd, Hannah Priest, a third year JOMEC student, said: “After university, I am planning to go travelling but when I come back, I’ll definitely have to move back home with my parents because rent is way too expensive.

“Hopefully, I’ll then get a graduate job and live in my parents’ home as I try to save money up for my own place.”

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