Category: Growing Families infographic

When Adult Children Move Back Home

If you find your empty nest filling back up, follow these tips to ensure a harmonious living situation for you and your adult child.


You probably hadn’t planned for this, but your empty nest days are behind you – at least for a while. You raised your children and then adjusted to a quieter life once they left the house. When adult children decide to move back home, it may create new challenges for everyone in the household.

Millennials living with parents is not uncommon, with their earnings lagging far behind what their baby boomer moms’ and dads’ income was when they were the same age. Their stays can vary from months to years. For better or worse, it won’t last forever – even if you’re enjoying the quality time together – but it’s advisable to set some ground rules while you have those boomerang kids under your roof.

Sure, you all made it through their first 18 years or so together. But things are different now. It may be your house, but they aren’t under your supervision anymore, so it’s best to have a frank discussion about the details of this arrangement.

Parents supporting adult children may want to discuss issues like whether kids will be paying any rent, who is responsible for other bills like utilities or groceries, and if they’ll contribute by assisting with household maintenance and chores. In addition, consider whether there’s a goal in mind for when they’ll move out. Parents should review their own finances, of course, and they may even offer their kids some guidance on budgeting and how to save money.


  • More Than One-Third of Young Adults Live at Home, U.S. Census Bureau, 2015.
  • It’s Becoming More Common for Young Adults to Live at Home – And for Longer Stretches, Pew Research Center, 2017.
  • Financial Health of Young America: Measuring Generational Declines Between Baby Boomers & Millennials, Young Invincibles, 2017.
  • Parents and Their Grown Kids: Harmony, Support, and (Occasional) Conflict, The Clark University Poll of Parents and Emerging Adults, 2013.

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