More living alone, but roommates, multi-generational homes rising: census


TORONTO — Canada’s latest tranche of census data show more people are living alone than ever before, but the number of households where roommates live together or multiple generations of a family share a home is rapidly rising.

Statistics Canada says 4.4 million people lived alone in 2021, up from 1.7 million in 1981. Roughly 15 per cent of all adults aged 15 and older lived alone in 2021, the highest share on record.

However, the number of homes shared by roommates increased by 54 per cent between 2001 and 2021, the fastest growth of any household type.

Sharing homes with roommates was more common in downtown regions of large urban centres, especially in cities where large post-secondary institutions were located.

The census also found that the number of homes being shared by multiple generations of a family, two or more families living together or one family living with people they may or may not be related to grew by 45 per cent over the last 20 years.

These households amounted to almost one million in 2021, making up seven per cent of Canada’s homes.



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