What are the variables necessary to download to get kids/young adults ages 18 to 25 years in households?

I’m still pretty new to the IPUMS, I need to download the correct variables to get count and percentage of kids/young adults still living at home ages 18 to 25 years old

To get the largest sample sizes, I recommend using IPUMS USA. This includes U.S. decennial census and American Community Survey (ACS) data. These are household surveys, so you can identify everyone living in a residence. To identify persons aged 18-25, use the AGE variable. The RELATE variable reports how people are related to a single reference person (the “householder,” the person in whose name the housing unit is owned or rented); a RELATE code of 3 identifies the child of a householder.

You might also consider the following depending on how you are thinking about “still living at home”:

  1. Using a RELATE code of 3 identifies children of a householder only. However, it doesn’t identify other relationships that might also represent someone with coresident parents (e.g., young adults who are otherwise related to the householder–a niece/nephew or grandchild, or someone aged 18-25 who is the householder and lives with a parent (RELATE value of 5)). You may want to note which kinds of families you are/are not including if you only use RELATE values of 3 (i.e., nuclear families where the parent owns/rents the housing unit).
  2. IPUMS has an algorithm to define family interrelationships and identify a person’s probable co-resident parent(s) (see MOMLOC, POPLOC)–these would be a good way of capturing some of these additional cases like those I mentioned above. That being said, for certain RELATE values (e.g., “other relative” or “housemate”), we only assign parental location variables for persons aged 22 and younger (see table 4 of this working paper for more details). Persons with a MOMLOC or POPLOC value greater than zero would indicate they are living with their parents.
  3. The last point you might consider is how does the academic calendar possibly play into your definition of “still” living at home–particularly for persons aged 18 or 19. Variables related to education (SCHOOL, EDUC) could help you identify currently enrolled juniors or seniors; employment variables (EMPSTAT, UHRSWORK) might help you think about whether or not the person is working full time. While I recommended IPUMS USA, IPUMS CPS would allow you to implement more timing specificity as it releases monthly data (the ACS data are collected on a rolling basis throughout the year, but the public use files do not include information about when the person was surveyed). Accordingly, CPS allows for the flexibility of treating 18 year-olds who have finished high school and live with their parents in July (i.e., summer after graduation) differently than those living with their parents in October (i.e., those who didn’t move away after the summer).
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