Families on TANF in South Carolina: Employment Assets and Liabilities. Presence of Other Adults in the Household


Table II-2 presents findings on the presence of other adults in the households of TANF recipients who responded to the survey. Other adults in the home might provide helpful support for respondents in income, sharing expenses, and/or as an informal child care resource.

Table II-2 –Household Composition
of the Survey Respondents
Composition Percent
Presence of Other Adults
No other adults present 55
One other adult present 27
Two or more other adults present 18
Household Structure
Single parent, no other adults present 55
Single parent, other adults but no partner 38
Single parent with partner 5
Two married adults 2
Presence of Recipient’s Family Members
Mother 22
Brother/sister 9
Father 8
Recipient’s adult children 8
Other relatives 7

Source: Telephone survey of 1,120 TANF recipients in South Carolina

  • Nearly half of the respondents were living with at least one other adult.

Although few of the survey respondents were married or living with a partner, nearly half (45%) were living with at least one other adult. This finding suggests that some respondents were adjusting to their limited resources by sharing living costs with family or friends, or by living rent-free with family. High school dropouts were more likely than respondents educated beyond high school to be living with another adult. Specifically, 52% of high school dropouts were living with another adult, compared to 38% of respondents educated beyond high school. As shown in Chapter IV, high school dropouts had lower rates of employment and lower average earnings than more educated respondents.

  • Many respondents were living with other family members.

At the time of the survey, 2% of the respondents were married and living with their spouse, 5% were living with a non-marital partner, and 38% were living with another adult other than a spouse or partner (Table II-2). In addition, 22% of the respondents were living with their mothers, and 8% were living with their father. Nine percent were living with a sibling, 8% were living with their own adult children, and 7% were living with other relatives. The findings indicate that many of the respondents had direct access to family support networks.

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