Words to remember: Multigenerational Household

From the Record:

Area economy still keeping adult children tied to mom and dad

They could never afford their own home but their daughter changed the picture recently, clearing that financial obstacle and allowing them to all live together in one common residence in West Milford.

“It’s a wonderful thing because mom and dad never owned a house before and now they’re all under one roof,” said Karen Wiedmann, broker associate with Re/Max Country Realty, West Milford.

Yet in this tumultuous economy their story is not unique. Several Suburban Trends area sales agents say they too know of experiences where multiple generations live together and often shoulder together the high cost of living in New Jersey.

Walter Molony, public affairs spokesman for the National Association of Realtors (NAR), calls this a “temporary phenomenon” that created “a lot of uncomfortable living situations” from 2008 through 2011 as the floundering economy forced adult children to stay with parents or move in with a lot of roommates.

The real estate industry considers this a pent-up demand for housing, amounting to just shy of 2 million households a year. But it is a demand that Molony expects will begin to be addressed as the real estate market emerges from its “rut of the previous four years.”

Beyond economics, there is also a cultural influence that leads extended families to share their living space. Those who emigrated from countries where multi-generational housing is more common are not likely to change their habits with economic recovery.

Though Molony anticipates that pent-up demand will help to boost the growth of home sales, for right now, northern New Jersey sales agents continue to work with clients looking for expanded family housing.

“I’m seeing people divorcing and migrating back to their parents’ residences,” said Robert Burr, sales agent with Realty Executives in West Milford.

Then there is the trend of young adults never leaving their parents’ home, or moving back after a bout of independence cut short by housing costs, a trend Wiedmann said she definitely encounters.

According to the Pew Research Center, by 2009, some 51.4 million Americans were living in multi-generational households, or about 16.7 percent of the population, said Steve Melman, director of Economic Services for the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB).

“That is up from the low of 12.1 percent of the population in 1980,” he said.

“The drivers are economic and cultural. Many college students have returned home, but so have unemployed relatives.… The economic strategy works…. Among the unemployed, the 2009 poverty rate was 17.5 percent of those living in multi-generational households, but 30.3 percent for unemployed persons not living in those larger households,” said Melman.

According to Halpin, the number of households headed by someone under 25 years old has fallen steadily over the last four years in New Jersey, supporting the contention that more young adults are remaining in the family nest.

She reports there were 74,466 households headed by someone under 25 years in 2007 in New Jersey, 63,324 in 2010, and 58,700 in 2011.

The Great Recession seems to have taken the greatest toll on households headed by those under 25 years of age, accounting for the biggest demographic change from 2007 to 2010.

This entry was posted in Economics, Housing Recovery, New Development, New Jersey Real Estate. Bookmark the permalink.

55 Responses to Words to remember: Multigenerational Household

  1. 1993 House Buyer says:

    Our future?:

    ZARAGOZA, Spain — Dolores Fernández Mora, 76, and her husband, Mariano Blesa Julvé, 75, once thought they would end their days in relative comfort, their house paid off and a solid pension of about $1,645 a month. Perhaps they would travel a bit.

    Times Topic: European Debt Crisis
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    .Instead, they are supporting their unemployed 48-year-old daughter and two of her unemployed adult sons who now live with them in their tiny two-bedroom home here in northern Spain. They have taken over their daughter’s debts. Sometimes there is hardly money for food.

    “While she isn’t working, I don’t have new teeth, and that is that,” said Ms. Fernández, who, seated in her living room recently, showed off the gaps in her smile.

    As the effects of years of recession pile up here, more and more Spanish families — with unemployment checks running out and stuck with mortgages they cannot pay — are leaning hard on their elderly relatives. And there is little relief in sight.

    Spain’s latest round of austerity measures appears to have done little to restore investor confidence. And new employment statistics released Friday showed that the jobless rate had risen to a record 25 percent.

    Pensions for the elderly are among the few benefits that have not been slashed, though they have been frozen since last year. The Spanish are known for their strong family networks, and most grandparents are eager to help, unwilling to admit to outsiders what is going on, experts say. But those who work with older people say it has not been easy. Many struggle to feed three generations now, their homes overcrowded and the tensions of the situation sometimes turning their lives to misery.

  2. Mike says:

    Good Morning New Jersey

  3. grim says:

    From Bloomberg:

    Listings of Homes for Sale Drop as U.S. Housing Recovers

    The number of homes listed for sale in the U.S. fell 18 percent last month from a year earlier, and the time they stayed on the market dropped 11 percent, signs of a strengthening housing market, according to Realtor.com data.

    There were 1.8 million homes for sale in September, down from 2.2 million a year earlier and more than 40 percent below the September 2007 peak of 3.1 million, according to the National Association of Realtors’ website. Properties on the market last month had been listed for an average of 95 days, down from 107 days a year earlier, Realtor.com said today.

  4. Ernest Money says:

    All the ancient plagues will be visited upon us.

    Doom is nigh.

  5. grim says:

    From the WSJ:

    Buyers Back After Foreclosure

    Millions of families lost their homes to foreclosure after the housing crash hit six years ago. Now, some of those families are back in the housing market. Call them the “boomerang” buyers.

    It is difficult to quantify the exact number of boomerang buyers, but real-estate agents, mortgage brokers and home builders all say a significant number of new buyers are families and individuals who went through foreclosure as recently as three years ago, the time period that buyers who defaulted on a mortgage must typically wait before becoming eligible for a mortgage backed by the Federal Housing Administration.

    On a recent conference call with investors, Stuart Miller, chief executive of Miami-based home builder Lennar Corp., said the company was seeing more people “coming out of the penalty box.” At Cornerstone Communities, a San Diego home builder, roughly 20 of the 110 closings they have had this year came from buyers who have been through a foreclosure or short sale, estimates Ure Kretowicz, the company’s chief executive.

  6. grim says:

    Typical boomerang buyers are people like April Del Rosario, who purchased her first home in 2006 when she was 24 years old. Newly married and unsure of what terms such as adjustable-rate mortgage meant, Ms. Del Rosario and her husband paid $315,000 for a two-bedroom condominium in San Diego’s Mission Valley area, a location they picked because it was central to their jobs. The $2,600 monthly mortgage payment was already a struggle, but when the mortgage rate was adjusted higher and Ms. Del Rosario became pregnant, the couple was overwhelmed. They lost the home to foreclosure in 2009.

    “We were really young and stupid,” she says. “All of a sudden, our already really expensive mortgage was going to go up. I was pregnant and everything was just bad timing on our part.”

    Three years later, the couple is back in the market. The Del Rosarios were recently approved for a loan for a $280,000 home in Chula Vista, south of San Diego, which, when it is completed in January, will have three bedrooms and a two-car garage. Instead of proximity to work, they picked the location based on its school district and their desire to live there a long time. And while they now must pay $300 a month in mortgage insurance, the family’s income has grown, and their total mortgage payment is still a little lower than before, around $2,400. “We’re trying to be really conservative. We just want to have a nice place for our son,” she says.

  7. grim says:

    5 – I thought it pretty much boiled down to the one-two punch: First, borrowing to fund operating expenses, second, borrowing for debt service.

  8. grim says:

    You know Gov., sometimes just talking about something isn’t enough…

    From the WSJ:

    N.J. Lags on Sales Tax

    A new analysis set to be released this week shows New Jersey is one of only nine states in the U.S. that saw a decline in sales-tax revenue this spring, a sign that consumers are holding back spending as the state’s economy struggles to recover.

    New Jersey collected $2.3 billion in sales tax from April through June, a drop of 8% over the same period last year, according to the nonpartisan Rockefeller Institute of Government, the research policy arm of the State University of New York-Albany, which studies tax-collection data nationwide. It was among the largest second-quarter fall-offs in the country when measured in dollars, the analysis found.

    “This is pretty bad news,” said Lucy Dadayan, the institute’s senior policy analyst. “The decline in sales tax collections is worrisome for the fiscal health of the state.”

    Sales tax is the most important levy in New Jersey after income tax, accounting for about a third of total collections. Revenues have become an increasingly political issue there as Gov. Chris Christie has banked on a surge in tax collections to fulfill a pledge to reduce property taxes for residents.

    A spokesman for Mr. Christie declined to comment. But during a town hall appearance in Mount Laurel on Thursday, Mr. Christie acknowledged that sales tax numbers have fallen recently. He again urged the state Legislature to pass his tax-cut proposal, which he said would spur residents to open their wallets.

    “They are not spending money because they don’t have any,” Mr. Christie said. “What this administration is about is spending less of your money in Trenton.”

  9. Brian says:

    4.Ernest Money says:
    October 15, 2012 at 7:15 am
    All the ancient plagues will be visited upon us.

    Plague number one?……….


    Doom is nigh.

    Invasive weed shows up adjacent to Sparta home
    Posted: Oct 13, 2012 11:40 PM EDT
    Updated: Oct 14, 2012 12:33 AM EDT

    Photo by Daniel Freel/New Jersey Herald – Tina Bachmann explains how an invasive weed has taken over a wooded area next to her Sparta home and has grown over a wire fence that marks the edge of her property.By JESSICA MASULLI REYES


    SPARTA — It is a nightmare of a weed, blanketing forests and houses in its path with dense, rapidly growing vines covered in thorns, and it has just made its way to Sparta.

    The state Department of Agriculture’s Division of Plant Industry has confirmed that the third and largest case in Sussex County of the mile-a-minute weed has been found covering an empty lot off Davis Road in Sparta.

    “Mile-a-minute is exploding,” said Mark Mayer, the state’s supervising entomologist. “I expect to see a lot more of it up in Sussex County in the coming years.”

    Tina Bachmann, neighbor to that empty lot, noticed in September that a weed was crawling rather quickly up over her stone fence. When she touched it, the thorns, like those on a rose, pricked her hands.

    She looked past the fence to the property for sale next door and saw something she never expected. From the trees to the forest floor, everything was covered in lumpy, winding vines with triangular leaves, bright blue berries and thorns.

    Mayer and others worry about this weed, since as Bachmann saw firsthand, it climbs over houses, shrubs, trees, fences, forest floors, native plants and anything else in its path quickly. It uses the ability to attach to other plants to climb higher toward the sunlight.

    “It starts as an annual plant in the spring, and by the end of the year it can be two stories high growing up over trees and houses,” Mayer said. “It’s a very nasty, invasive species. It can grow six inches a day under optimum conditions.”

    If not contained or destroyed, it out-competes and kills native species by blocking sunlight, especially in forested areas, roadsides, drainage ditches and in recreational areas, the Department of Agriculture’s report stated. Thus, animals are left without a food source.

    Bachmann said her house once neighbored a wooded property that had well-groomed trails winding through it, but that has now changed.

    “It was really pretty before it was covered,” Bachmann said.

    After finding patches of the vines in her fenced-in garden next to her pool, she called the state. Mayer came out to see it immediately.

    “Mrs. Bachmann did a good job,” Mayer said. “Most of the time when we find things it is the general citizenry that is our eyes and ears; they let us know where this stuff is.”

    Mayer keeps tabs on mile-a-minute throughout the state because of its invasive nature. The weed, formally known as Persicaria perfoliata, is a vine native to eastern Asia.

    In the 1930s, the weed was introduced to the United States from Japan at a plant nursery in York County, Pa., and a garden in Prince George’s County in Maryland, according to a report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. It was eradicated at the garden, but became established and spread from the Pennsylvania site.

    From that site, it has spread in all directions for about 300 miles, the report said. It now can be found in Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Virginia, Washington D.C., West Virginia and New Jersey.

    “Up until about 2004, we didn’t see much of it in (New Jersey), but we are seeing more and more,” Mayer said. “It is going to become more common.”

    In New Jersey, hotspots, or areas where large numbers of mile-a-minute weed have popped up, are in Warren, Bergen, Union, Glouster, Mercer and Hunterdon counties, Mayer said, adding that it has reached almost every county.

    Sussex County has fared better than others with only two other known sites at Flatbrook-Roy Wildlife Management Area in Walpack and at the Delaware Water Gap Recreational Area. The third and largest site in Sussex County has now been confirmed next to Bachmann’s house in Sparta.

    It cannot be eradicated with a simple single herbicide application or pulling of seedlings. Bachmann halted the spread over her stone fence with a herbicide spray and some pulling, but the larger patch next door will have to be eradicated with a small but mighty insect– a weevil.

    The larva of the weevil causes damage to the mile-a-minute weed by boring into the plant’s stem, the report stated. These weevils have been released in New Jersey, first in Gloucester, Mercer and Salem counties and then farther north.

    “The only thing they feed on is mile-a-minute, and since mile-a-minute has established itself in North America, as a state agency we try to knock that weed down to a tolerable level,” Mayer said.

    At the site in Sparta, Mayer did find some weevils, but said more may need to be added next year. He has seen that the weevils reduce mile-a-minute significantly, but it takes several years.

    With the first frost arriving, the mile-a-minute in Sparta will likely die, before coming back even stronger and more extensive next spring.

    “The mile-a-minute will die at first frost, but the seeds will still be there,” Mayer said. “Mile-a-minute keeps spreading, and the weevils will rush to keep up with it until a balance is reached.”

    Bachmann worries that a mountain behind her house could be easily overtaken by the fast-moving weed. She hopes the weevils will fend off the weed from growing more into her own yard and onto the mountain.

    “I just want people to be aware of what’s out there, since this is new (in Sparta),” she said.

    Mayer said that while the weevils will help balance the growth of the weed, mile-a-minute is likely to take hold in other areas. He likened it to kudzu, a native Japanese vine that has “taken over the South,” covering millions of acres.

    “Mile-a-minute is the kudzu of the Northeast,” he said. “It will probably get worse before it gets better.”

  10. Mike says:

    6 Something is definetly wrong with the system

  11. grim says:

    Don’t rehash one post later…

  12. Essex says:

    8. Life pretty short, but there is always room to improve I guess. Less borrowing? Paying in cash? Sitting tight when you could go to Aspen. I dunno.

  13. JJ's B.S says:

    New York Federal Reserve Bank President William Dudley Monday declared his support for aggressive monetary policy in the current economic environment, and said he does not expect the central bank to take its foot off the accelerator until it is confident the economic recovery is “securely established.”

  14. cobbler says:

    grim [9]
    You get into the current tax collection situation (sales tax collections down, income tax collections up but proportionately less) when a few people at the top of pay distribution get a raise, and a bunch of middle- or lower incomes lose their jobs. Because NJ income tax is highly progressive, there is much more extra tax collected when someone’s pay goes from 500K to 550K, then lost when someone making 50K becomes unemployed. Action on the sales tax side is obviously different – unemployed guy almost stops buying taxable stuff, and the 550K family either invests or saves extra money, or spends it largely outside of the state. Good correlation with NJ UE increase, actually.

  15. grim says:

    Nice print in retail sales this morning, up 1.1, 0.7 expected. Maybe that translates into a couple more sales tax dollars for NJ.

  16. Ernest Money says:

    Translated: “we will not take the foot off yhe accelerator until we hit a bridge abutment at 140 mph and the Amerikan taxpayer has been bled dry and positioned as the only guarantor for the unpayable debt of big banks.”

    “New York Federal Reserve Bank President William Dudley Monday declared his support for aggressive monetary policy in the current economic environment, and said he does not expect the central bank to take its foot off the accelerator until it is confident the economic recovery is “securely established.”

    The biggest daylight robbery in history continues.

  17. Comrade Nom Deplume in PA says:

    Here’s something on my Xmas reading list:


    [15] cobber,

    Those are fair assumptions. Whether that actually occurred or not has to be studied, but it is a valid starting point.

  18. Comrade Nom Deplume in PA says:


    When I lived in Phila and later in NJ, 2-3 times each year, usually in spring and fall, I would rip out vines by the truckload. In every case, they were invading from the neighbor’s properties, so I could never really eradicate it.

  19. Comrade Nom Deplume in PA says:

    IRS Comm’r Shulman’s term ends right after the election. Interestingly, Steven Miller, the guy pegged to succeed him on an acting basis is the head of enforcement and a career IRS guy. But as far back as last year, the suggestion was floated that he could be carrying the administration’s water by going after conservative 501(c) groups if asked.


  20. Comrade Nom Deplume in PA says:

    [20] redux

    Ugh, meant to say summer, not year. Last summer. Friggin k-cup coffee not strong enough.

  21. Anon E. Moose says:

    Arlen Specter dead at 82. Abe Vigoda lives.

  22. DL says:

    23: where’s the justice in that? I met Spector in Sarajevo in 1997. He had a bunch of 20something staffers in his wake and he verbally abused and demeaned them in public. Most recently he was rated one of the worst members of Congress to work for in a poll of Congressional staffers.

  23. JJ's B.S says:

    Former professional wrestler Terry Bollea, better known as Hulk Hogan, filed a federal lawsuit Monday against a disc jockey, his ex-wife and a New York-based media group over the release of a sex tape featuring him, the Associated Press reports. Hogan claims that the taping of his tryst with the former spouse of Bubba “The Love Sponge” Clem was illegal and done without his consent. The video of him with Heather Clem was then leaked to Gawker.com, which posted parts of it. He has also sent a cease-and-desist letter to Gawker, which has so far ignored it, the wire service noted.

  24. Libtard in the City says:

    Place is dead today.

  25. Comrade Nom Deplume in PA says:

    [22] moose,

    I watched coverage last night and loved how the media all portrayed him as a maverick moderate. I recall in the 80’s that the left absolutely hated him and considered him a right wing nut job.

    Of course, the truth was that Benedict Arlen had a wetter finger than John Kerry from testing the prevailing winds.

  26. Comrade Nom Deplume in PA says:

    Just saw a commercial made by the owner of Interactive Brokers. Not a party commercial. Really hard hitting.


    I know some eastern europeans that grew up in soviet satellite countries or in the USSR itself. This pretty much parrots their views, which are quite unvarnished. I also heard these views expressed by them long before Obama ever came on the scene so it isn’t really an anti-Obama message, per se.

  27. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    Has anybody seen a colder set of bats than the Yankees? At least the Pats lost.

  28. cobbler says:

    nom [27]
    I think Mr. Peterffi should be ashamed of himself, knowing well that Hungarian Social Democrats (whose ideology was similar to what inspired the current systems in Holland, Denmark, etc. – and which is the limit of what liberals here may strive for) were the leaders of both the uprising of 1956 (that many of them paid for with their lives) and the eventual downfall of Communism in 1989.

  29. Ernest Money says:

    lib (25)-

    Everybody’s watching the Hulk Hogan s#x tape.

    “Place is dead today.”

  30. Ernest Money says:

    Specter was a hardass Philly lawyer, an opportunist and a “moderate” only when appearing to be moderate moved the ball for the narrow self-interest du jour.

    Doubtful he was the worst guy in Clowngress, but he was no brilliant leader.

  31. Ernest Money says:

    Specter also tried to dismember Anita Hill in testimony.

  32. Libtard in the City says:

    I was wondering if perhaps the apocalypse you’ve been predicting actually occurred.

    Begin the great procreation!!!

    No Essex, you don’t make babies that way.

  33. Ernest Money says:

    Too much Walking Dead marathon over the weekend.

    After a few episodes, I began to think an existence like that might be a best-case scenario for us.

  34. hoodafa says:

    Where Everything Is Lavish Except the Property Taxes

    The shimmering limestone tower at 15 Central Park West, where apartments routinely trade for upward of $20 million, has become symbolic of the most luxurious upper reaches of New York’s real estate market. Its architect, Robert A. M. Stern, is the dean of the Yale School of Architecture. The views stretch out over the expanse of Central Park. And earlier this year, a single penthouse sold for $88 million.

    Yet despite its sublime finishes, refined pedigree and nosebleed prices, the residential portion of that Manhattan building is officially valued by the city, for tax purposes, at only $332 per square foot. According to the Miller Samuel appraisal firm, the average price per square foot for apartments sold there over the past 18 months has been $7,813.

    More at: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/16/nyregion/many-high-end-new-york-apartments-have-modest-tax-rates.html?hp&_r=0

  35. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    [35] I was jumping to watch the Zombies during commercial breaks in the Yankee game yesterday. I still think the greater carnage was in the Bronx.

    Too much Walking Dead marathon over the weekend.

    After a few episodes, I began to think an existence like that might be a best-case scenario for us.

  36. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    [34] Like in Mel Gibson’s Apocalypto?

    No Essex, you don’t make babies that way.

  37. Anon E. Moose says:

    cobbler [30];

    and which is the limit of what liberals here may strive for

    O Rly?!?

  38. Ernest Money says:

    moose, I wish the liberals here had half the guts of Che. They don’t have what it takes to kill in the name of revolution.

  39. Ernest Money says:

    …although I still think it will ultimately be the hard-left liberals in public unions who begin the shooting when their bennies and pensions disappear.

  40. cobbler says:

    Philosophically, liberalism and radicalism (left or right) are the opposite. Actually, in the U.S. we have way more right-wing radicals (at least since 1950s), ultra-left are the fringe element. As it is told that the democracies don’t wage wars with each other, it can be also stated that the liberals don’t shoot.

    As for what could happen if the pensions and benefits of the public unions disappear – I guess the same as when someone steals gold bars you’d stashed in your cesspool… But I think it is much more likely that your kid doesn’t get this college recommendation letter, than the teacher tries to shoot up the BofE members…

  41. Anon E. Moose says:

    Money [43];

    although I still think it will ultimately be the hard-left liberals in public unions who begin the shooting when their bennies and pensions disappear.

    I think others believe that as well, which might have something to do with why they get the bennies in the first place.

    e.g., Leftists don’t produce Broadway plays making fun of islamists like they do Mormons — islamists ave proven themselves far more likely to behead people when aggrieved.

    Conduct rewarded is conduct repeated. QED.

  42. Essex says:

    34. Looks like Montclair got it’s dispensary. Good times.

  43. Comrade Nom Deplume in PA says:

    [30] cobbler,

    I was wondering who’d be first.

  44. Comrade Nom Deplume in PA says:

    [30] cobbler,

    I’m not seeing the relevance unless it is to assert that US liberals qua socialists would not dream of implementing a system of econ redistribution more radical than that of Denmark or Holland. First, I’m not sure that’s a safe assumption, and, second, US liberals couldn’t live with dutch tax laws.

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  47. cobbler says:

    nom [50]
    More radical redistribution systems were shown by the history not to work… but gini coefficients in the 0.25-0.30 range (like in N. Europe) still provide more than enough incentive for work. Liberals on average studied more history and economics than the conservatives, so they are aware of these facts. As for the Dutch tax system, my former colleague moved there in 1995 and still loves living and working in Holland (and you probably can count him as a liberal since he always absentee-votes D). The bane of the North-European societies is flooding in of the people totally hostile both to the nation’s culture and the concept of the social contract.

  48. NJCoast says:

    Somebody give Fiona her drugs back. She’s twitchy on stage. Killer voice though.

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