The University of Vermont's Independent Voice Since 1883

The Vermont Cynic

The University of Vermont's Independent Voice Since 1883

The Vermont Cynic

The University of Vermont's Independent Voice Since 1883

The Vermont Cynic

There’s nothing wrong with moving back to your hometown

Alex Porier

I used to think I wanted to move to Boston or a cute coastal town as soon as I could after high school. However, now that I’m getting older, I think I want to stay at home for a few extra years.

I always hear about people wanting to make it out of their hometowns as fast as they can, and the trope of the college graduate living in their parents’ basement is still ever-present in today’s media.

Moving back to your hometown doesn’t always mean you peaked in high school. There are many other reasons to stay home post-grad.

I’m from the Adirondack region of New York. If you haven’t been there, just imagine an outdoorsy person’s dream—a perfect picture of mountains and lakes with fall foliage.

In high school I thought my area was a postcard for suburbia, but I have grown to love my hometown now that I’ve moved away.

While I love college and my life in Vermont, coming home for the summer is always the best time of year for me. 

When I’m home, I get to relive all the nostalgia of my childhood: my old bedroom, my family, coming back to my old summer job and swimming in the lake. I’m not ready to give up this crucial piece of who I am yet.

The recent rise in the amount of college grads living with their parents shows that I may not be alone in this feeling.

In 2020, more than 50% of adults aged 18 to 29 lived with their parents, a record high since the Great Depression, according to a May 17, 2023 College of Coastal Georgia article. This number has not declined much since then.

Increasing financial burdens for young people is one of the top reasons for this, according to the same article.

It is unsurprising that so many Gen Z and Millennial college grads are struggling with moving out. Our current financial system makes it next to impossible for students paying their own way through college to move out even if they want to.

The current starting salary for college graduates is approximately $56,000, according to a May 9, 2023 CNBC article.

With the average cost of living for a single person in the US being $38,266 per year, and the average student loan debt of a college student being $30,000, moving out right after college is not a feasible option for many recent college grads.

Even if possible, for some, living at home after college can help to pay off student debt or save money to help with financial stability after moving out.

It takes twenty years for the average student loan borrower to pay off their loans, according to the Education Data Initiative. If I can spend a couple years not paying rent to put a dent in my debt, I’m going to do it.

However, this is more of a common experience in Western individualist cultures, or those that value independence, self-sufficiency and the nuclear family, according to a 2020 study

Collectivist cultures tend to value multi-generational households in which extended families take care of each other, according to an April 5, 2019 Success Across Cultures article. In these countries, moving out of your hometown is the more taboo move.

Despite what others might say, loving your hometown is cool and staying can be practical. I might not stay in Upstate New York forever, but I will love this chapter of my life a little while longer before giving it up.


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About the Contributor
Emma Dinsmore
Emma Dinsmore, Digital Media Editor
(She/her) Emma Dinsmore is a junior elementary education major and political science minor from Queensbury, New York. She has been an Opinion Columnist for the Cynic since the fall of 2021, and became the Digital Media Editor in the spring of 2024 as well. In her free time, she loves writing, baking and watching chick flicks. Email [email protected] to get in contact with Emma.