The housing crisis and labour market are forcing more Canadian young adults to live with their parents than in decades past, and a B.C. researcher is looking to learn more about how that translates into dynamics in the household.
The latest Statistics Canada census data released this year found that about 35 per cent of young adults between 20 and 34 are living with at least one of their parents.
In the U.S., according to UBC sociology researcher Umay Kader, that stat increased to closer to 50 per cent during the pandemic – a record-high number.
“Interestingly, men are living with their parents longer than women do. This is a statistic valid in Canada, the U.S. and other western countries as well,” she said in a news release.
Kader will be working to understand the story behind the statistics and the dynamics at play in the household, by conducting 50 interviews with both the young adults aged 25 to 34 and their parents.
“How do these people navigate this common living space with their parents? How do they make household decisions together—about household chores, division of labour, who does what and when? What kind of conflicts do they have? How do they resolve those conflicts?”
Some of the other aspects Kader will be playing close attention to include how young adults socialize and navigate having guests over in their parent’s home.
“Do they let their parents know in advance? Do they invite friends, significant others, sexual or romantic partners? We don’t really know much yet about how they navigate that family space together.”
Kader said she hopes the study will be able to inform politicians and policy makers on the challenges and opportunities that young people face in today’s world.
”Family services, community and social groups, non-governmental and civil society organizations can become better informed about the ways they can help these people and their parents navigate this situation.”