There is an increasing trend among Australian young people* to live at home for longer periods of time. This has been attributed to many factors, most of which are mainly based around the financial dependence of young people on their parents. In other words, most people wouldn't live at home if they could afford living somewhere else.

These are just some of the factors affecting the patterns of youth accommodation. As a result of these, young people are often caught between "adulthood" and "adolescence", especially in the eyes of the government, which uses parents to mediate between youth and themselves. It can cause great tension and conflict in the family unit as power balances are tested and, to a large extent, unknown. Can you tell your 25 year old daughter to be home by a certain time to set a good example for the younger kids? Can you tell your 28 year old son that he hasn't taken the garbage out for a month and it's his turn? This is even more pronounced in households built on a step-parent family, where both step-parent and 'child' are unsure of what is expected of them in the relationship.

The financial strain a young person can cause when living at home also causes tension. Often, younger siblings have to do without special treats as the family budget is stretched. This leads to a strain on family relationships, and can be quite harmful to the family in the long term.

*"Young people" are described by the Australian government as those aged between 16 and 25, but as trends such as those described here change it is common to accept that a person is "young" until they are up to 30 years old.

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