As boomers live longer and with decreased fertility rates, fewer than half of Americans have a child under the age of 18 living at home, according to new Census Bureau findings.
“In 2008, not only were baby boomers old enough that most of their children were 18 and over, but they were having fewer kids than their parents, as well,” says Rose Kreider, family demographer at the U.S. Census Bureau.
The percentage of households with children 18 and under living at home peaked at 57 percent in the early 1960s when boomers were young. By 2008 the percentage declined to 46 percent.
The reason in part can be attributed to the longevity of boomers. The average number of years remaining in life after age 30, according to the Census Bureau, increased about three years. As adults live longer, a larger proportion of married couple households will be those who are older and either childless, or whose adult children live elsewhere. Furthermore, the percentage of women age 40 to 44 who were childless increased from 10 percent in 1976 to 20 percent in 2006.