A record 32 million American adults were living with their parents or grandparents in April, according to the latest American Community Survey from the U.S. Census Bureau, an increase of 9.7 percent over a year ago. The data, analyzed by Zillow researchers, showed that 2.7 million adults moved back home in March and April, and that about 2.2 million of them were aged 18 to 25 — also known as Generation Z.
The trend began well before the pandemic for what has been called the “boomerang generation,” and these returning adult children and their parents have been known to clash as they face the challenges of navigating their new adult relationships.
Landlords, however, have a problem that family meetings can’t solve: lost rent. Gen Zers who returned to their childhood bedrooms in March and April represent lost rental revenue of $726 million a month, the survey shows.
While that figure is only 1.4 percent of the total U.S. rental market, losses affect some landlords and areas disproportionately. This week’s chart, drawn from data provided by Zillow, shows the cities with the greatest dollar losses (New York topped the list, along with other large, expensive cities), as well as those with the greatest share of the market affected (overwhelmingly, college towns). Should at-home learning continue in the fall, college-town landlords and their local economies will suffer further.