Thousands more Millennials living at home, latest census figures reveal

Melissa IariaNCA NewsWire
Not Supplied
Camera IconNot Supplied Credit: istock

The number of Millennials living at home has soared by thousands amid the pandemic, insecure work and an increasingly unaffordable rental market.

The 2021 census revealed the number of non dependent children, aged 25-34, living at home has surged, Australian Bureau of Statistics figures show.

The number of male children in this age group who were living at home rose to 280,133 – a 17 per cent hike since the 2016 Census.

Numbers of women aged 25-34 living at home also rose to 176, 413 – an increase of 14 per cent.

University of Melbourne sociology lecturer Dr Brendan Churchill said Covid-19 was probably the biggest factor behind the shift.

“There was a significant number of young people who had to leave their rental and return back home during the pandemic; it’s quite possible that these young people have stayed there,” he said.

Camera IconThe pandemic was likely the biggest factor behind the shift. Photo: NCA NewsWire/David Crosling Credit: News Corp Australia

Furthermore, if the pandemic resulted in people’s savings taking a hit, it may have prevented their return to the rental market or a place of their own.

The “general declining fortune of young people” in the labour market was another huge factor, Dr Churchill said.

“Full-time, secure, well paying jobs with benefits are drying up for young people,” he said.

“The youth labour market is not what it was; it’s been degrading and declining in the last few decades, and young people are having trouble getting those types of jobs that pay well, and give them good income security to be able to move out of home.

“I think all of this is kind of conspiring together to make it harder for young people to leave the parental home.

“People are staying at home longer because it’s simply affordable.”

House model with australian dollar banknotes on table
Camera IconYoung adults are living back at home because it is affordable. Credit: istock

The figures were similar for non-dependent men in the 35-44 age group, with 97,131 living at home, an increase of 12 per cent.

For women in the same age group, 47,491 lived at home, up 13 per cent.

Along with job insecurity and the pandemic, the increase in rental prices also made it hard for people to find an affordable property suited to their needs, Dr Churchill said.

“It’s just easier for young people; it’s more affordable, it’s a home you know and if you have needs, it’s quite likely that your family’s already accommodated for those things. So I think that’s really indicative of how poor the housing market is at the moment.”

For the 44-54 age bracket, the number of non dependent men living at home went up by 15 per cent, while for women it rose 14 per cent.

While in the 55-64 cohort, there was a 23 per cent increase for men and 22 per cent increase for women who were living at home.

Non-dependent children refer to natural, adopted, step or foster children of a couple or lone parent usually living in the household. They also have no identified partner or child of their own usually living in the household.

Savings money for new house.
Camera IconThousands more young adults are living at home, the census data shows. Credit: Supplied

The latest census data also revealed the number of Millennials (25-39 years old) has caught up to Baby Boomers (55-74 years old) as the largest generational group in Australia.

In the 1966 Census, nearly two in every five people (38.5 per cent) were Baby Boomers.

Baby Boomers and Millennials each have over 5.4 million people, with only 5,662 more Baby Boomers than Millennials counted on August 10, 2021.

Over the last 10 years, the Millennials have increased from 20.4 per cent of the population in 2011 to 21.5 per cent in 2021. Baby Boomers, meanwhile, have decreased from 25.4 per cent in 2011 to 21.5 per cent in 2021.

Millennials are of working age and are upskilling, representing 40 per cent of people attending vocational education, including TAFE, and 48 per cent of people currently serving in the regular service of the Australian Defence Force.

Originally published as Thousands more Millennials living at home, latest census figures reveal

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