People in the United States increasingly live alone, and that affects how we market food to them. The number of single-person households in the U.S. in 2018 was 35.7 million, accounting for 28 percent of all households, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. In 1960, just 13 percent were single-person households1.
The single-person household number grew nearly half a million from the 2017 total of 35.2 million households, Census data shows2. Percentages of such households vary by state, with Washington, D.C., having the highest at 45.2 percent and Utah the lowest at 19.6 percent3.
What the Census Bureau classifies as nonfamily households, which are not necessarily single households, hit a new high in 2018, at 44.5 million, or nearly 35 percent of the total 127.6 million total households in the U.S. The number of nonfamily households has grown steadily, with a few of minor dips here and there, since 19404.
For all the growth in solo and nonfamily households, it’s important to note that more than half (54 percent) of young adults ages 18 to 24 live in their parental home. That percentage drops to 16 percent for young adults ages 25 to 24, according to Census data5.
1 U.S. Census Bureau, “Families and Living Arrangements Tables,” 2018
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