A new report from Vancity breaks down where millennial money is going, and shows that living at home doesn’t mean reckless spending.
Sixty-one per cent of people living in Metro Vancouver, age 19 to 35, are rooming with mom and dad and one-third of them are saving over half their earnings.
But even with that, 57 per cent said they can’t afford rent.
The report, titled ‘Arrested Development: The impact of affordability on millennial living,’ shows survey results from over 400 people within the millennial age range, as well as parents.
Vancity spokesperson William Azaroff says the ‘self-indulgent’ stigma around young people isn’t reflective of their financial reality.
“There’s a reputation out there that millennials are spending a lot of money on sort of personal indulgence, alcohol, or luxury items. Actually we find that they spend a lot less of their money on things like that than previous generations.”
Housing unaffordability is a particular problem in Metro Vancouver, where 47 per cent of people age 25 to 35 still live at home compared to 42 per cent elsewhere in Canada.
A disconnect between parents and millennials
According to Azaroff, the data also shows that parents don’t seem to agree with the economic reasons their kids haven’t left the nest.
Sixty per cent of millennials say they’re putting cash away for housing, but almost half their parents didn’t believe it.
“Millennials are taking the situation seriously and saving, and that potentially this whole blockage of people being able to get on their own is creating a divide with the parental generation who maybe are looking to downsize or move on with their own lives.”
Another 29 per cent of millennials said in the survey they were staying home for cultural reasons, but only 2 per cent of their parents believed that to be true.
The Vancity report made a series of comparisons between today’s millennials, and Generation X.
More notable stats
- Twenty-seven per cent of millennials living at home say they’ve delayed marriage or a relationship because of their situation.
- By percentage, Canadian millennials spend more on shelter than any other category, with the exception of people over age 75.
- One-third of millennials living at home believe it’ll take them more than three years of saving to be able to leave.
- A quarter of B.C. millennials who live at home say they make between $3,000 and $5,000 per month.
- In 2011, 42.3 per cent of Vancouver residents age 20-29 lived at home, compared to 26.9% three decades earlier.