House sharing with family and friends is nothing new. We’ve all been doing it since forever.

Today, one in three Millennials, ages 25-34, lives with their parents, relatives, friends and/or soon-to-be friends who are, at the outset, unknown.

The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) recently released new research on home sharing. The research compared the rate of home sharing between 1990 and 2016. Here are the results:

1990 – 4% house shared with friends

2016 – 7.5% house shared with friends


1990 – 3% house shared with relatives

2016 – 5% or 2.3M house shared with relatives


1990 – 15% house shared with parent(s)

2016 – +26% house shared with parent(s)

of this +26%, 21% or 9.4M house shared

with parents or parents-in-law.

As with everything real estate, the rate of house sharing varies by state. States with the largest segments of house shares often have the most expensive housing markets such as New York, California and Hawaii. Similarly, states with the largest segments of house shares are states with above average Millennial heads of household rates.

Both Colorado and Oregon have an 11% housing sharing rate as well as a high, 35%, millennial head of household rate. Washington DC has a 20% housing sharing rate and 45% millennial head of household rate. North Dakota, with the highest millennial head of household rate of 54%, has a house sharing rate of 9%.

Interestingly enough, 30% of millennials say that, if/when they every buy a home, they’ll rent out a room in their “new” house to either someone they know or don’t know. Many among this demographic have rented out rooms in their various rentals homes/condos/apartments via Airbnb to help make ends meet and see no reason whatsoever to stop renting out a room, or house sharing, when they become homeowners.

A trend in the making…housing sharing among Baby Boomers. No statistics as yet, it’s still too soon, but more and more Baby Boomers are renting out rooms or house sharing in their existing homes for several reasons…one, to help make ends meet for the homeowner; two, affordable housing for the renter or sharer; companionship for both parties; independent living assistance for the owner in exchange of reduced living expenses for the renter/sharer/care giver.