The Multi-Generational Home
By George Anderson
It is becoming increasingly common to find households in the U.S. where grandparents are caring for grandchildren or where three generations -grandparent(s), parent(s) and children – are living under one roof.
According to a report from the United States Census Bureau, the number of households with three generations in residence grew by 38 percent from three million in 1990 to 4.2 million in 2000. Approximately four percent of households in the U.S. are multigenerational.
Many in this situation are similar to Jessica Lawrence, a mother of two profiled in a recent article in The Christian Science Monitor. Ms. Lawrence found she couldn’t make it on her own with the pay she earned from her retail job so she moved herself and her kids in with her parents.
“I put it off to the point where I couldn’t keep going anymore,” Ms. Lawrence said.
A grandparent, according to the Census Bureau, heads nearly two out of every three multi-generational households.
Moderator’s Comment: Will we continue to see multi-generational homes grow? What challenges and/or opportunities does this represent for retailers as
both merchants and employers?
The other third of households, those headed by children, are expected to continue growing, as well. The trend of child as care-giver for elderly parents
is well documented. –
George Anderson – Moderator