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Who’s Living Together These Days?

November 21, 2012

In my lifetime I have been in three serious relationships. The first one is when I was married and the other two I cohabited. I love those words that no one ever says. I guess living together is so much more “nasty-sounding.” When my sister, Jody, and I were young the questions we always asked our parents were things like “what would you do if I got pregnant?” (that was a Jody question); “what do you think if we smoked?” and “what would you do if we lived with someone before marrying them?” Now most times those questions were an irritation to our parents and we were back-handed and sent to our rooms or flat-out yelled at and told we would be going to hell. An article came out a few weeks ago in USA Today that spoke to the fact that all kinds of couples are living together..

Americans who cohabit are no longer just young couples testing their waters before heading to the altar, an analysis of new Census data reveals. In fact, cohabitation is much more diverse: Nearly 30% are divorced, nearly half are 35 or older, and growing numbers are parents with children at home. As of March, when Census did a count of cohabiters, 15.3 million unmarried heterosexual people were in live-in relationships – 6.5% of all adults 18 and over. The survey did not include those who had cohabited in the past but are now married or are living alone or with family or friends. Cohabiters are increasingly more diverse than a decade ago. The idea that young adults are dominant is really wrong. There is no stereotypical cohabiting couple anymore. The middle class, childless, cohabiting couple represents a very small proportion of all cohabiting Americans. The data will be part of a Census report on families and living arrangements scheduled for year-end release. Among the highlights:

  • 41% of cohabiting couples have children living with them.
  • 47% are 35 and older, and 13% are 55 and over.
  • 21% have a bachelor’s degree of higher, 31% have some college, 35% have a high school diploma, and 13% did not graduate from high school.

People are living together for different reasons. It depends on where you are in your life. For the young, cohabitation is a “prelude to marriage,” while for older adults, it’s a “long-term alternative to marriage.” There has been this doubling of the proportion of older adults who are living in cohabiting relationships. It’s grown for late middle-age and the oldest adults – a clear upward trend for both of these groups, and no signs this is going to slow down.

During the past several year Gunwel Associates has helped both married couples as well as cohabitating couples plan their financial future. The economy can be difficult and we are here to help you maneuver through these scary times. I believe it has always been a benefit to sit down with a financial person and talk about things like budgets, savings, investments, insurance, taxes and basically everything having to do with your financial future…together or alone. We are here to help. Give us a call today at 615-730-9444 and visit our website at There is no time like now to start talking. See you soon!

4 Comments leave one →
  1. November 21, 2012 3:45 pm

    You sure have a gift for writing such great articles! Thank you!

  2. November 23, 2012 11:46 pm


  3. May 29, 2013 5:18 pm

    I hope you do not stop writing these great articles!

  4. June 20, 2013 12:55 am

    Link exchange is nothing else but it is just placing the other person’s website link on your page at proper place and other person will also do same in favor of you.

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