Almost two million young working adults still living with Mum and Dad

29 July 2014

Clipped Wing Generation Sarah

Despite working, 48% of 20 to 34 year olds who live with their parents do so because they can’t afford to rent or buy their own home.

New research from Shelter found that a lack of affordable housing was the single biggest reason that so many young adults are unable to fly the nest. Currently a quarter of all 20 to 34 year old working adults in England – 1.97 million people – are living with their parents.

Several areas of the country see a much higher proportion of young working adults living with their parents. Hotspots for the ‘clipped wing generation’ include Castle Point in Essex where 45% of working 20-34 year olds live with their parents; Knowsley in Merseyside where it’s 42%; and Solihull where the figure is 38%.

According to our polling, over half of working young adults worry that living in the family home is holding them back from leading an independent life.

Sarah has a good job, but has lived with her parents in the family home in Croydon on and off for the past ten years as she tries to save for a deposit. 'If I move out noe the reality is I'll be stuck paying expensive rents for the rest of my life. I know I'm lucky to have a job and somewhere to live, but the thought that I'm going to be living like a teenager into my late 30s or even 40s is really disheartening.'

The latest government figures show average house prices for first-time buyers in the UK have risen by 11.3% in a year.

Campbell Robb, chief executive of Shelter, said: ‘The ‘clipped wing generation’ are finding themselves with no choice but to remain living with mum and dad well into adulthood.  And those who aren’t lucky enough to have this option instead face a lifetime of unstable, expensive private renting.

‘The government knows that the only way to turn the tide of the housing shortage is to fill the gap between the homes we have and the homes we need. Bolder action is needed to meet the demand for affordable homes and not inflate prices further. Politicians of all parties must now put stable homes for the next generation at the top of the agenda.’