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1.5 million Canadians have moved back in with their parents

At least 1.5 million Canadians have moved back in with their parents, according to a national survey by
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At least 1.5 million Canadians have moved back in with their parents, according to a national survey by

The findings, released July 21, could have ramifications for the multi-family rental sector, since the vast majority of those moving or planning to seek shelter at home are renters.

Survey results reveal an estimated 2.8 million, or nearly one in every 10 Canadians, have seen their living situation change due to the COVID-19 crisis.

Approximately one million Canadians (4%) said they are thinking of moving in with family. 

Of those moving, by far the biggest group comprises grown adults moving back in with their parents. About 1.5 million Canadians have said they have moved home due to the COVID-19 crisis, and 860,917 parents have said their kids have already moved back in. 

Members of Canada’s youngest generation (aged 18 to 24) are most likely to have already moved home (13%), with men 21% more likely to move in with their parents as compared with women. They’re also 141% more likely to be contemplating moving home.

The provinces hit hardest by COVID-19, or with higher costs of living, saw the most moves, with Ontario, Quebec and B.C. in the top spots. Ontario is the epicentre of Canada’s ‘generation boomerang,’ with 10% of people in the province saying they’d moved back in with their parents or had adult children move home with them. 

In British Columbia 10% of those surveyed said they are experiencing a change in their living situation and another 5% are thinking about it.

Just 11% of those in the Prairie provinces are in a new living situation or thinking about it. Just 5% of those in the Atlantic provinces are living in a changed living situation, with another 5% thinking about moving back with family.

While young people moving back home with parents make up the bulk of this trend, it also works in reverse, though on a smaller scale, with 278,532 Canadians who have already moved in with their adult children and another 455,780 seriously considering it. 

Scott Birke, publisher at, a Toronto-based data research platform, said that Canada’s young adults are facing an uphill battle when it comes to establishing themselves during an uncertain recession.

“Between the high cost of rent in Canada’s big cities and a recession with record levels of unemployment, young people trying to launch or grow careers while paying the bills are now faced with challenges that may seem insurmountable, making returning home to their parents the most attractive option for many of Canada’s young adults.”  

“Our data reveals about a million Canadians who haven’t yet moved home with their parents are still seriously considering it, which tells us this trend is not just confined to the pandemic and could be a longer-term setback when it comes to young Canadian adults building wealth and establishing their careers”, said Birke.

He noted the reverse trend of Canadians parents moving in with their grown children could prove to be a silver lining to a stressful situation.

“It is safe to assume that many of the parents who moved in with their adult children are also grandparents who are helping to provide childcare for exhausted working parents of young children, who have limited or no childcare options until school begins.”