More adults will end up staying with parents if UK property prices continue to rise

The number of adults aged 25 to 34 living with their parents in the UK could be set to grow if property prices keep rising, according to a new study.

The number of adults in this age group living with parents has risen by 37% over a 10 year period, increasing from 903,000 to 1.23 million, an additional 331,000 people, the analysis from Aviva Insurance shows.

The reports suggests that if this growth pattern continues at the same rate over the next decade, the UK could see a further 452,000 people aged 25 to 34 living with parents. The number living with parents has also grown considerably during this period, from 2.2 million to 2.9 million, an increase of 29%.

This growing trend of multi-generational living corresponds with a 45% increase in house prices for first time buyer homes. Figures from the Office of National Statistics show the cost of the average first UK home has risen from £146,000 to £211,000 over the same period.

The findings are supported by a separate study carried out by Aviva, examining the attitudes of 500 people aged 16 to 34 who live with their parents which found that respondents expected to be 28 years of age on average before they moved out.

It also found that although one in 12, or 8%, said didn’t ever expect to leave their current home, the proportion of respondents who expected never to move out of the parental home rose to 13% amongst those aged 25 to 29 and 18% amongst people aged 30 to 34.

The research found home buying is regarded as a major challenge. A third of people aged 16 to 34 said they didn’t expect to ever own a home, and 21% predicted they’d only own a home if and when they inherited one. Of those who felt they would own a property one day, the age of 31 was the average at which they expected to get on the housing ladder.

Some 47% of those living with parents said they were ‘very happy’, while just 16% said they were unhappy with their circumstances. However the number of discontented increases with age. For adults aged 30 to 34 still living with parents, the number of ‘very happy’ falls to 31%, while ‘unhappy’ rises to 28%.

There is also an expectation, and a seeming acceptance, of the situation, as 59% of adults living with parents say they expected their domestic arrangements. That said, the proportion of people who are surprised to be living with parents grows with age as 35% of people aged 30 to 34 said they did not expect their living circumstances.

When it comes to reasons for living with parents, financial reasons were top with 62% saying that they can’t afford to move out, while 48% saying they live with their family to save money.

But there are other practical reasons. Some 24% say they like being looked after, 14% say they are actually looking after their parents and 10% say they are ‘scared’ to move out.

‘The challenges of getting on the property ladder are well publicised, but it’s startling to see that one in three adults who live with parents expect never to own a property and further fifth believe the only way they will own a home is by inheriting one,’ said Lindsey Rix, managing director for personal lines at Aviva UK General Insurance.

‘If house prices continue to rise at their current rate, we can expect the proportion of adult children living with parents to grow even further,’ she added.