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Friday, November 4, 2011

Return-to-nesters (and never-left-er’s)

Observation:  Long-time friend and associate Rusty Winter in Jacksonville shared this story from CNN-Money, which explains that the trend of adult children moving back home to live with their parents is continuing.   Click here to see the story.

Implications:   The big take-away from this story, for me, was the thought that 150,000 fewer households are being formed in a year compared to the 1.2 million households that might form in a normally functioning economy.

But note that it’s not just kids moving in with parents.  In some cases, we’re hearing of parents moving in with their adult children, too.  Whether you sell groceries, home furnishings, home improvements or home electronics—or almost any other product or service—you would be wise to consider the challenges and opportunities presented by this emerging multi-generational household.    Is it possible that a “guest” is helping with the supermarket shopping?  Should home furnishings be smaller, in order to accommodate more seating per room?  Will home improvement projects be intended to help convert a family room into a bedroom, or a multi-function area? 

If an adult child lives there… are they paying rent or helping out in other ways, financially?  Do the economic efficiencies created by this living situation leave more money for the co-habitant to spend on things like automobiles, entertainment, or other indulgences?

More homes are occupied by more people;  ask yourself whether this trend presents an evolving sales opportunity for your company, products and services.

Mike Anderson, for the Elm Street Economics consumer trends blog. A service of The Center for Sales Strategy, Inc.

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