The share of young women living at home with their parents or other relatives has reached its highest level since the 1940s, in part due to rising student loan debt, a Pew Research Center analysis found.
Some 36.4 percent of women aged 18 to 34 resided with family in 2014, predominately in a home with mom, dad or both, according to an analysis of Census Bureau data. In the 1940s, 36.2 percent of young women lived with parents or other relatives.
Unlike the 1940s, however, millennial women are not staying home out of societal norms or social acceptance. High student debt loads, high rent and cultural shifts, including delaying marriage, lends to millennial women staying home longer, said Richard Fry, a Pew Research Center economist.
“Some of what’s happening is probably economics, because the great recession really hit young adults hard,” Fry said. “But I’m still struggling with the economic explanation, since the labor market for young adults has improved in the last five years, and yet the percentage living with their family is still going up. It seems to be somewhat decoupled from economics.”