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COVID-19 Trends: Freelancing and Moving Back Home

The Majority of 18- to 29-Year-Olds Are Living at Home

Almost 30 million Americans in their 20s are living at home right now. This marks the first time since the Great Depression that the majority of 18- to 29-year-olds in the country are not living on their own.

Young people have moved home for a variety of reasons. Many have lost their jobs and are looking to save money on rent. Also, some people who are working remotely want the company and comfort of their families during an isolating time.

The Freelance Economy Is Booming

Millions of young people are also turning to freelance work as a result of COVID-19 and its economic impact. According to a report released recently by Upwork, the freelance economy is worth $1.2 trillion—a 22% increase from 2019 data. 36% of workers in the US are full-time freelancers, which is up from 28% in 2019.

At the moment, freelance work is easier to do in some industries because so many workplaces are operating remotely. Many people are also turning to freelancing if they are trying to juggle teaching their children at home and making money. Additionally, people who have lost their jobs are turning to freelancing as a way to pay the bills.

These Trends May Be Here to Stay

Both these trends—more people freelancing and more people living close to family—could continue long after the COVID-19 pandemic subsides. Companies have grown used to remote work during this period, and some may never go back to the office in the same capacity as before the pandemic. For this reason, freelancing and living close to family might become even more common.

The rise of remote work will make it easier for people to work and live in smaller towns close to family instead of staying tied to urban centers because of their careers. Similarly, analysts predict that companies will continue to shift white-collar work to freelancers instead of full-time employees due remote work becoming more normalized.

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