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Census Bureau Releases New Estimates On Living Arrangements

Newly released estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau’s annual America’s Families and Living Arrangements report show that the number of parents with children under age 18 and living at home declined by about 3 million over the past decade, dropping from about 66.1 million parents in 2010 to 63.1 million in 2020.

The living arrangements of parents changed less over the past 10 years. In 2020, 78 percent of parents living with children were married, compared to 77 percent in 2010. Adults living with an unmarried, cohabiting partner made up 7 percent of parents with coresident children under 18 in both 2010 and 2020. Finally, parents living without a partner accounted for 16 percent of parents in 2010 and 15 percent of parents in 2020.

Living arrangements differ between fathers and mothers. In 2020, 70 percent of mothers and 87 percent of fathers living with children under 18 were married. It was more common for mothers, however, to live without a partner — 23 percent of mothers and only 6 percent of fathers were living without a partner.

Other highlights of the report include:


There are 36.2 million one-person households, which is 28 percent of all households. In 1960, single-person households represented only 13 percent of all households.


The number of families with their own children under 18 in the household declined from 2000 to 2020. In 2020, 40 percent of all families lived with their own children under 18, compared to 44 percent in 2010 and 48 percent in 2000.


In 2020, 33 percent of adults ages 15 and over had never been married, up from 23 percent in 1950.

The estimated median age to marry for the first time is 30.5 for men and 28.1 for women, up from ages 23.7 and 20.5, respectively, in 1947.

One-quarter (25 percent) of children under age 15 living in married-couple families had a stay-at-home mother, compared to only 1 percent with a stay-at-home father.

Living Arrangements

More than half (58 percent) of adults ages 18 to 24 lived in their parental home, up from 55 percent in 2019. The increase was seen for both men (56 percent in 2019 to 60 percent in 2020) and women (53 percent in 2019 and 56 percent in 2020). Estimates for men have not been that high since 2016, and for women, this is the highest percentage living in their parents’ home since these data were first collected in 1960. It is important to note that the COVID-19 pandemic may have impacted this year’s estimate. Colleges and universities sent students home in the spring of 2020 when Current Population Survey Annual Social and Economic Supplement (CPS ASEC) data were collected. However, college students who live in on-campus student housing are counted as living in their parents’ home in CPS, regardless of the year.

These statistics come from the 2020 CPS ASEC, which has collected statistics on families for more than 60 years. The data show characteristics of households, living arrangements, married/unmarried couples, and children.

For more data on families and living arrangements, visit Families and Living Arrangements at