Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Multi-Gen Households

Carl Fox: I don't get it. You get a scholarship to NYU. You made thirty five thousand your first year and fifty grand last year. Where does it all go?
Bud Fox: 50K does not get you to first base in the Big Apple, Dad, not anymore. Look, I pay 40% in taxes. I got rent of $15,000. I got school loans, car loans, food, park my car costs me 3 bills a month. I need good suits, that's $500 a pop, shoes...
Carl Fox: So come on home and live rent free instead of that cockroach infested place you live in. Fifty thousand dollars. You know I made $37,000 last year and that was before taxes. Jesus Christ, the whole world's off its rocker.
Bud Fox: It's Queen's, Dad. And a 5% mortgage and you rent the top room. I gotta live in Manhattan to be a player, Dad. There's no nobility in poverty anymore, you know. One day you're gonna be proud of me, you'll see.
Carl Fox: It's yourself you gotta be proud of, Huckleberry. How much you need?
Bud Fox: Can you spare three hundred? Pay you back next month, promise.
--Wall Street

Article posits that high debt, under/unemployment, and helicopter parents are encouraging large numbers of young adults to live at home with their parents. While these factors certainly play roles, the article ignores the possibility that more people realize socio-economic value by operating multi-generational households.

For instance, older generations can teach and care for youth. Younger generations can care for aging parents and grandparents. Young adults can save and build capital to degrees that would not be possible if they were out on their own.

The social stigma about adults living at home with parents has not always existed. It was not long ago when three generations commonly lived under the same roof. Of course, it was often the case that young adult children would move out and aging parents or grandparents would move in.

Regardless, perhaps the stigma associated with multi-gen households is once again cycling lower.

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