Soon We’ll All Be Somebody’s Roommate

In a country of stagnant incomes and rising costs of living, cutting costs often means having to find an affordable city to live in, but more commonly, it means finding roommates to split the rent. Zillow, an online real estate database founded by former Microsoft execs, calls this “doubling-up.” A Zillow study shows that nearly a third of working adults ages 23 to 65 are doubling up—an increase of 25 percent since 2000. The study also shows that the adults who double up earn less on average—”76 cents for every dollar made by all adults” and that “higher incomes are not enough; individuals still need to pool their earnings and double-up to afford rent in expensive markets like San Francisco, Los Angeles and New York.”

Zillow has a handy chart of large metro areas in the U.S. with the percentage of working adults who are doubling up, as well as their median incomes (those with roommates in New York, for example, have median incomes of $35,000 a year). See if you can find what the data says about your city below.

It’s looking like we’re all going to end up like the Golden Girls someday.



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