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Multigenerational living on the rise



All together now, and it’s not all bad

Multigenerational living on the rise


As we enter the eighth month of the COVID-19 pandemic, you are likely wondering what a “post pandemic” world may look like and hoping some change could be positive.

Luckily, according to CityToday, out of India, one very likely permanent change will be an increase in multigenerational living, and that could actually be beneficial to families, particularly those with elders. Moving in with elder parents or having them move in with “nuclear families” could very well reverse the trend of chronic loneliness, which has reached epidemic proportions worldwide.

READ MORE: The Sandwich Generation

Even before the pandemic, multigenerational living was a trend. Due to economics, more young people are choosing to live at home with their parents, during and after college. Even young couples have been moving in with in-laws. With rising rents and stagnant wages, urban life is becoming more unsustainable for many, all across the globe. The answer: rural life, the suburbs, and togetherness.

According to the article: “Already all over the world, even in developed countries, which treated individual independence and space as sacred, families are moving in or close together.”

In India, many urban working couples have moved back to parents’ homes, especially if one or both were able to work remotely. The trade-off isn’t only financial, but also involves sharing of responsibilities for childcare and other duties with grandparents. Circumstances are similar in the U.S.

READ MORE: Kids returning home in droves

According to a report from Generations United, today more than 51.4 million Americans of all ages – or about one in six – live in multigenerational households, a more than 10% increase since the start of the Great Recession in 2007. Some multigenerational families choose to live together; others form because of the widespread impact of the nation’s economic downturn and uncertain recovery.

Although the cutting-edge tech of remote learning and working is part of the current picture, multigenerational living is a throwback of sorts. The notion of striking out on one’s own and living apart from one’s kin, creating a “nuclear family,” is a relatively new one. For millennia, it was assumed that an extended family – or a village of sorts – would help with the children. Elders would enjoy a sense of belonging, of value in this respect. When the elders eventually ailed, everyone would take part in their care.

Based on the growth of generational families living together, Generations United suggests that lawmakers look at the following:

  • Exploring innovative housing options for multigenerational families
  • Improving supports and services for caregivers
  • Protecting and preserving the Affordable Care Act (ACA))
  • Strengthening Social Security and protecting benefits for all generations

Every research company is sharing the same message: One in five Americans now live in a multigenerational household, according to the Pew Research Center. As quarantine and social-distancing impacts continue, the number of families choosing multigenerational living is poised to grow. As a result of these new directions this may be the best time for families to envision work and home space in a new light. More bathrooms. Bigger kitchens. Add on space. Check out ideas on home improvements for multigenerational families.

This set-up is on the rebound, and it may be one of the bigger blessings-in-disguise we’ve ever seen.



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