More young people living with parents to ‘delay adulthood’


Young Australians are staying at home for much longer, according to a new survey, and it’s not just the economy that’s forcing them to do so.

ABOVE VIDEO: HILDA 2018's bleak report on young people and housing.

More young people in Australia are living with their parents well into their 20s, according to a new report.

Melbourne University’s HILDA (Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia) has shown the number of young people sleeping in their childhood bedroom has jumped about five per cent in over a decade, and that number is rising.

In 2001, 47.2 per cent of men aged 18 to 29 and 36.5 per cent of women in the same age bracket were living with their parents.

That number jumped a 54.6 per cent of men in 2017 and a huge leap to 53.9 per cent for women.

One of the report’s authors, Professor Roger Wilinks, says that this rise could be connected to a more competitive and restrictive workforce.

“The labour market has been deteriorating for young people. They need to have higher education qualification to get a job so more and more are staying in education longer,” Professor Wilkins told The Feed.

While young people are more intensely preparing themselves for the workforce, Professor Wilkins says they could also have an ulterior motive.

Going into education does delay adulthood and give you more leisure. While there are economic factors the element of this ‘delayed adulthood’ also factors in.

The HILDA report has been running since 2001, with approximately 17 000 Australians interviewed yearly on issues from family structures and income to health and lifestyle. 

It also showed that not only are more young people living at home, more young people are leaving home later.

Average age for young women to fly the coop today is 24.2 years old, compared to 22.1 in 2001.

For men the average rose only slightly from 23.1 in 2001 to 23.5 in 2017.

Despite the stereotype of young people leeching off their parents, they survey found that just 7 per cent of young people living at home are unemployed - compared to 6.4 per cent of all young people.

Professor Wilkins suspects that young people are spending longer studying and working casually for a very simple reason - they have the time.

“I would link it back to improved life expectancy, “I'm going to start adulthood later because I’m going to have to finish it later,” he said.

It’s rational to try and have more leisure time when you can enjoy it more 

Lastly, while young people’s employment prospects are being improved by staying at home longer - the same thing can’t be said for their love lives.

Seventy-six per cent of young people living at home said they were single - a rate 20 per cent higher than the general population of young people.

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