Men and women between 25 and 34 years old, much of them on the millennial side of the age line, with some Gen Z'ers making up the youngest end, are not having the same lives as their parents and grandparents. Sadly, they’re also one of the most vilified and unfairly attacked generations.

People aged 25 to 34 are more than twice as likely to live with their parents compared to 1967. And it’s not weakness. It’s not idealism. It’s not selfishness. It’s not that “their generation expects a participation trophy” as baby boomers and Gen X'ers drone about. (By the way, which generation do you think gave them those participation trophies when they were kids?)

It’s that the world got far more financially impossible to deal with.

Many Gen Z'ers and millennials would love nothing more than to have their independence if only it were as affordable as it was for their parent’s generation.

A new study by found the number one state for adult children 25 to 34 living with their parents is New Jersey.  At 43.3% of that age demographic. That’s almost five percentage points higher than the number two state California at 38.6%.

Is it any wonder?

The cost of housing in the Garden State is 30% higher than our national average. The cost of living here is 1.18 times greater than the national average.

SEE ALSO: Study says it sucks being single here

CNBC calculated what it would cost to live comfortably in New Jersey on a 50/30/20 budget. 50% for necessities, 30% on discretionary spending and 20% on savings. The salary needed?


Take away being comfortable. Take away putting money into savings like we’ve been told to do since we were five years old. Let’s call living comfortably a silly fantasy.

How much just to barely survive living on your own in New Jersey? Just to barely get by, according to GoBankingRates, $64,463.

Just. to. barely. get. by.

That’s $31 per hour.

According to ZipRecruiter, New Jersey’s current average salary is $58,890 per year or $28.31 per hour. That’s of all people, not just the younger people with less work experience who haven’t had a chance to work their way up.

See the problem?

This is one of many reasons younger people don’t want to come home and live in New Jersey once they’re done with their education. This is also one of many reasons no one better dare judge a 25- to 34-year-old person for making the choice to live with parents. We, the older generation that too often stupidly mocks millennials for no good reason, are the ones who tolerated far too long the same incumbent politicians who have left New Jersey in such an economic mess.

And yes, the same ones who thought of giving them those participation trophies.

Most affordable places to live in New Jersey

SmartAsset released a study analyzing the most affordable places to live in New Jersey. The eighth annual study weighed several factors, including taxes, homeowners’ insurance, and home costs relative to the local median income.

Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Jeff Deminski only.

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