High rent, housing prices keep Port St. Lucie millennials, Gen Zers living with parents

Francisco Acevedo Andino, a 24-year-old substitute teacher, wants to move out of his parents’ Port St. Lucie home to South Florida. But he cannot see himself being able to do that for at least two years.

“I cannot afford to move out on my own right now,” Andino said.

His living situation is typical for a young person in Port St. Lucie, where 83% of Gen Zers (18-25 years old) and 27% of millennials (26-42 years old) live in multigenerational homes, according to analysts at RentCafe, an apartment listing service. The main reasons for this trend are high housing costs, along with changes in demographics and preferences.

This trend also was observed in older generations during their youth, according to another study released this year by RentCafe.

Most Gen Zers in Port St. Lucie live with their parents

Andino, a lifelong resident of Port St. Lucie, briefly lived in a dorm at Florida Atlantic University during his bachelor’s studies, but returned home for convenience. After working as a pharmacy technician, he became a substitute teacher for St. Lucie County public schools. Despite wanting to move to Fort Lauderdale, West Palm Beach or Boca Raton, he faces financial challenges.

Abby Powell, left, and Jaclyn Magill, both juniors at Florida Atlantic University, in a portrait in Powell’s bedroom in the off-campus housing she shares with two additional roommates in Boca Raton, Fla., on August 24, 2023. Both the women pay close to $1500 a month for a bedroom and use of common areas in their domiciles.

“I’ve been trying to save up enough money so that I would be able to move out. But the way these prices are looking, it’s not going to happen yet,” Andino said.

Substitute teachers with a college education earn between $150 and $172.50 per day, according to the St. Lucie schools website, or about $39,120 to $44,845 per year.

In Port St. Lucie, 9.4% of 18- to 24-year-olds have bachelor’s degrees, and 59.5% have some college education, according to Census data for 2022. Andino’s earnings align with the city’s median salary of $41,497, according to Census data for 2022.

The percentage of residents in different income groups are:

27% of workers (111,376 aged 16 and above) earn $35,000 to…