Forget buying a home — even renting a room is out of reach to many young people, especially in big cities. Wages have stagnated but rents haven't, meaning workers just out of college are in a bind: To live where the jobs are, they need help.
For almost half of them, though they don't often admit it, that help comes from their parents.
According to an Institute for Social Research Transition into Adulthood study whose results were analyzed by assistant professor Patrick Wightman and written about in The New York Times, about 40 percent of 22-, 23- and 24-year-olds get significant assistance from their parents, much of which goes towards housing and start-up capital.
The average amount they receive per year comes to $3,000.
The rising cost of living over the past couple of decades, coupled with the fact that salaries haven't kept pace, has made it harder for all young workers to become independent, according to the Times: "In the 1980s, Mr. Wightman found, fewer than half of this age group received any parental support. But by 2010 nearly 70 percent of them did."