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    • MSE Sarah
    • By MSE Sarah 7th Sep 17, 1:30 PM
    • 101Posts
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    MSE Sarah
    Money Moral Dilemma: How much should we charge our daughter for living with us?
    • #1
    • 7th Sep 17, 1:30 PM
    Money Moral Dilemma: How much should we charge our daughter for living with us? 7th Sep 17 at 1:30 PM
    This week's MoneySaver who wants advice asks...

    Our daughter has returned home after flying the nest as she found the cost of independent living too expensive. She earns over £20,000 a year after tax and has plenty of money left over each month for clothes and social events. We want to be reasonable parents but would appreciate a small contribution regularly to help us with the extra costs and she is not keen on this suggestion. This is causing a bit of an atmosphere at home as we are not wealthy and are economising every day. What would be a reasonable amount to charge?

    Unfortunately the MSE team can't always answer money moral dilemma questions as contributions are often emailed in or suggested in person. They are intended to be enjoyed as a point of debate and discussed at face value.

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Page 4
    • crmism
    • By crmism 13th Sep 17, 1:21 PM
    • 79 Posts
    • 44 Thanks
    crmism
    Live-in daughter
    Given her net earnings, it strikes me that your daughter is being very selfish and is most definitely taking advantage of you.

    I hope that you brought her up to respect the value of money and the generosity of others but, if you didn't, then maybe her attitude stems from what she learned and experienced from her peers. We all hear about the bank of Mum and Dad and youngsters living with their parents into their mid-late 30s, but a time has to come when they have to stand on their own two feet and not look to others to support them.

    I do think you should sit her down one evening and show her what it is costing to run the home, and provide food for the table. That done, she ought to contribute at least one-quarter of the monthly outgoings which, whatever that comes to, will be significantly less than the rent and other expenses she was paying.

    Might I suggest that you show her the door if she doesn't agree?
    • darymave
    • By darymave 13th Sep 17, 1:25 PM
    • 6 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    darymave
    you don't get owt for nowt
    When I lived at home with 4 brothers and a sister , we all paid 1/3rd of what we brought home.This is the fairest way for both parties, you are not doing any favours by not taking anything or by saving them a nest egg with the money, this is the real world.!
    • CC_Popsicle
    • By CC_Popsicle 13th Sep 17, 1:39 PM
    • 7 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    CC_Popsicle
    As usual, not enough info to really give advice, (makes you think they aren't real scenarios or they edit out far too much detail).

    First off, that isn't a bad salary taking home £1660 a month, I had a mortgage and house on my own on a third less than that (and only just on slightly more than her now), so don't be too lenient.

    I reckon reasonable is £250 and is a drop in the ocean compared to living on her own, if she's not keen on that and it causes an atmosphere tell her to get back out in the real world and stop using you for a financial lifeline. Unless there is a reason missing out of this scenario she's being selfish. The love in a family works both ways, it's not all about sacrificing yourself for your children especially when they are at an age where they should be financially independant. Don't forget to forget to do their washing if she isn't up for doing some household duties either, afterall she's an adult.
    • coffee18
    • By coffee18 13th Sep 17, 1:45 PM
    • 37 Posts
    • 23 Thanks
    coffee18
    What about extra electricity for laundry .
    • Kate P
    • By Kate P 13th Sep 17, 1:47 PM
    • 1 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    Kate P
    I moved back home after University - I was broke and unemployed, got a part-time job, unemployed, got a full time job finally. But my parents never charged me a penny in rent regardless of my earning situation. I was expected to save up and buy my own place (achieved at the age of 28). And yes I probably did spend too much money on going out and having fun, but who doesn't when they are in their twenties! But since taking on a mortgage I had to prioritise more. I don't think you can dictate to your daughter how she spends her money - if she wants to save or fritter them away - it's up to her. I also think if you are parents that your offspring are your dependents and you signed up to 20-30 years of support. It's one thing to charge a lodger, but to charge your own children seems rather mercenary.
    • coffee18
    • By coffee18 13th Sep 17, 1:52 PM
    • 37 Posts
    • 23 Thanks
    coffee18
    You have done your bit and she has had a try at living independently and seen how expensive it is, but you are not in a position to be able to subsidise her social life. She does need to meet the extra costs involved and help with chores. It is only what any reasonable person would expect and be happy to do, especially for their parents.
    • Mojisola
    • By Mojisola 13th Sep 17, 1:53 PM
    • 28,524 Posts
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    Mojisola
    I also think if you are parents that your offspring are your dependents and you signed up to 20-30 years of support.



    It's one thing to charge a lodger, but to charge your own children seems rather mercenary.
    Originally posted by Kate P
    While the adult child who is earning a good wage is behaving well by refusing to pay for their own food, electricity, gas, water, etc.......
    • Pollycat
    • By Pollycat 13th Sep 17, 2:10 PM
    • 18,319 Posts
    • 46,893 Thanks
    Pollycat
    I moved back home after University - I was broke and unemployed, got a part-time job, unemployed, got a full time job finally. But my parents never charged me a penny in rent regardless of my earning situation. I was expected to save up and buy my own place (achieved at the age of 28). And yes I probably did spend too much money on going out and having fun, but who doesn't when they are in their twenties! But since taking on a mortgage I had to prioritise more. I don't think you can dictate to your daughter how she spends her money - if she wants to save or fritter them away - it's up to her. I also think if you are parents that your offspring are your dependents and you signed up to 20-30 years of support. It's one thing to charge a lodger, but to charge your own children seems rather mercenary.
    Originally posted by Kate P
    The OP's daughter has probably had 20 years of support already from her parents.
    When do you propose it should stop?

    It's not mercenary to expect an adult to at least cover any additional costs that her parents incur by her living back at home - at the very least, especially when the parents are having to economise.
    • coffee18
    • By coffee18 13th Sep 17, 2:13 PM
    • 37 Posts
    • 23 Thanks
    coffee18
    No one is saying they should be looking after you ,but go back a couple of generations and that is exactly what happened ,families lived together and helped look after their elderly. And now adults are releasing equity to give their children deposits for their first time houses ,and are helping with care costs for their own parents.
    None of my children have bought their own houses yet and I for one am glad because when interest rates start to rise like they did in the early 90s because the banking and housing market cannot sustain what is happening today ,there will be a lot of people in a position of extreme difficulty and I speak from experience.There seems to be far too much emphasis on saving to buy houses.
    • happyandcontented
    • By happyandcontented 13th Sep 17, 2:26 PM
    • 828 Posts
    • 1,671 Thanks
    happyandcontented
    No one is saying they should be looking after you ,but go back a couple of generations and that is exactly what happened ,families lived together and helped look after their elderly. And now adults are releasing equity to give their children deposits for their first time houses ,and are helping with care costs for their own parents.
    None of my children have bought their own houses yet and I for one am glad because when interest rates start to rise like they did in the early 90s because the banking and housing market cannot sustain what is happening today ,there will be a lot of people in a position of extreme difficulty and I speak from experience.There seems to be far too much emphasis on saving to buy houses.
    Originally posted by coffee18
    Surely they will only be those who have over stretched themselves and not looked at what has happened and what could potentially happen again? It doesn't have to be either or, common sense can be applied.

    All my kids are homeowners (on single incomes) but before they bought they were sure they could afford the mortgage if interest rates went higher. As it happens they have owned for between 3 and 5 years respectively and rates have been relatively unchanged for that time, house value has increased and they also took out fixed rate loans to further protect them against rate changes. They are now in the fortunate position of having a decent amount of equity in their properties.
    • warehouse
    • By warehouse 13th Sep 17, 2:30 PM
    • 3,010 Posts
    • 5,638 Thanks
    warehouse
    My eldest is still at Uni but when she finishes and starts earning I'll be taking 1/4 of any take home pay off her. I intend to invest it for her and give it back later on when she really needs it.
    Pants
    • Eidion
    • By Eidion 13th Sep 17, 2:32 PM
    • 3 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Eidion
    Fair share
    I recently got my own place after years of living with my mother and brother and since my first after college part time job I was paying something to towards rent (we did rent the house) I was unemployed for a while and 75% of my income was for the household then....

    But in my 20's with fulltime job I earned less than 20K a year we split the bills 3 ways equally and I was paying between £500-£750 a month for bills (to my mum) plus some extra contributions to food.

    I must admit my circumstances are more extreme than most as my mum was poor and bad with money and we lived in an expensive rented house in the last few years.
    • FilmNerd1989
    • By FilmNerd1989 13th Sep 17, 3:41 PM
    • 243 Posts
    • 418 Thanks
    FilmNerd1989
    Yes, sure, bring her into the world and then when you're fed up of looking after her, screw her for the same kind of nonsense private landlords would demand. She'll love you for that. Did you plan what this extra money would be used for? Did you pay your parents?

    (And how old is she, and where does she live? And earning 20k is nothing in most big UK cities.)

    I write in a rude fashion, I accept. But I've been able to save up enough to move away properly through my parents taking the exact opposite approach to you. It's made me regain my independence that was otherwise at the mercy of London landlords' whims.
    Originally posted by _nate
    I can't decide if you are serious or not ( but I really hope not)

    Do you actually believe this grown woman should be able to live rent free, sponging off her parents after moving out and deciding that she didn't have enough money to go out regularly and buy new clothes whenever she feels like it? She wouldn't be able to live rent free anywhere else, it's not like she could turn around to a landlord and say 'I'd love to pay my rent this months but then I won't be able to go out with my friends and buy the things I want'

    Why should she get away with living rent free? Her parents are absolutely right to expect a contribution for living there - their bills, expenditure, and grocery costs have all risen to accommodate another person, so she should AT LEAST cover the deficit, if not more. She will never learn to be a responsible adult if she isn't held accountable for her actions.

    As for your comment about her parents 'planning what this extra money would be used for' - WHAT extra money???? Like I said, the cost of living for the household has risen by one whole person, and if she refuses to pay her own way then her parents are having to cover the cost.

    Quite simply, this woman needs to grow up, take responsibility for herself and stop being so bloody selfish.
    • FilmNerd1989
    • By FilmNerd1989 13th Sep 17, 3:47 PM
    • 243 Posts
    • 418 Thanks
    FilmNerd1989
    You chose to have kids out of love so don't switch that off just because your offspring's grown up and earning, or make parental love conditional on her paying you for living at home! Reducing relationships to a financial consideration isn't loving or encouraging your daughter to see beyond pound signs. Encourage her to save eg for a deposit instead with any spare cash
    Originally posted by Jupiter4
    I don't know what a 'manufared dilemma' is, but I am happy for you that you live in such a idyllic world where food, bills and electricity become free if you decide to move back with your parents so you have more money to spend on frivolous nonsense.

    I hope someone has told the (grown woman's) parents this, else they may be living under the delusion that with an extra person in the house they will have to pay for while she buys clothes, and goes out with friends, that they will be out of pocket.
    • LesD
    • By LesD 13th Sep 17, 3:53 PM
    • 2,046 Posts
    • 656 Thanks
    LesD
    I'm not sure any of our advice is all that relevant. As someone has already said, this question or similar has been asked many times and most advice is already available around here somewhere.

    What is relevant is why the question keeps reappearing.

    ML's pleas for so many years for better financial advice to young people has either fallen on the deaf ears of educators, or the deaf ears of young people.

    When we asked our 15 y/o grandson what financial advice he got at school, the answer was a blank look. And he didn't seem to think it an important issue.

    Maybe the 'benefit society' which has developed in the past 20 years, is the cause of this. "Someone else will pay!"
    • mjj1974
    • By mjj1974 13th Sep 17, 4:37 PM
    • 2 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    mjj1974
    You never do your children a favor by letting them believe that it doesn't cost a lot to run a home. Unless your daughter is really good at saving her excess income I think you have to ask for some contribution to the bills, even if you choose to put some of this to one side for a deposit at a later date. I would think the minimum ought to be £100 a month but could be more like £200 if it has any chance of covering the costs of having another person in the house. I presume she uses all of the facilities including electricity, gas, water, toilet rolls, etc so your bills will be higher as a result of her being there. My daughter is at Uni in a shared house and is paying about £350 a month on rent and bills, food is on top. Having a flat of her own would be much more costly. A bit of tough love is in order I think. If she left and moved out she would soon realise what a good deal she is getting.
    • Mojisola
    • By Mojisola 13th Sep 17, 4:53 PM
    • 28,524 Posts
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    Mojisola
    Our daughter has returned home after flying the nest as she found the cost of independent living too expensive.
    Originally posted by MSE Sarah
    You never do your children a favor by letting them believe that it doesn't cost a lot to run a home.

    A bit of tough love is in order I think. If she left and moved out she would soon realise what a good deal she is getting.
    Originally posted by mjj1974
    She has left, decided that she didn't want to spend her own money on things like rent and utilities and wants to have her financially-struggling parents pay them for her instead!
    • Trebleclef3
    • By Trebleclef3 13th Sep 17, 4:56 PM
    • 2 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    Trebleclef3
    My daughter at aged 16 started an apprenticeship earning £150 per week. Out of this she gave £30 per week as board. She soon realised the cost of items and managed her own budget well before deciding to go back to college full time and get a part time job to fund her own leisure activities!

    Decide what it's costing you as extra to have her back at home and round this up for any other bits and bobs which may arise. IF SHE MOVED BACK IN WITH YOU AS IT WAS TOO EXPENSIVE TO LIVE ON HER OWN SHE KNOWS THE COSTS OF LIVING and should be willing to contribute to your household costs.
    • Floss
    • By Floss 13th Sep 17, 5:19 PM
    • 4,018 Posts
    • 32,814 Thanks
    Floss
    Sit down, show her your household bills and food costs (and the increase since she moved back in where possible) and suggest that she coughs up to cover the increases at least plus anything special she wants to eat / shampoo etc.

    Precisely why did she move back home? Does she maybe have debts that she could pay whilst paying her own housing costs? She needs to be honest with you
    • skull
    • By skull 13th Sep 17, 5:31 PM
    • 34 Posts
    • 27 Thanks
    skull
    How much does she earn? £20k and she's dodging paying her keep? She needs to wake up and pay her way. Divide the household expenses by the number of people living there, eg if mum, dad and daughter, then by 3, and she pays that amount, anything less is going to be unworkable for you all. She needs to realise that she is your lodger now not a dependant. Your house, your rules. Call it tough love if you like, you are not made of money and she can't expect to get a free ride. Some people don't earn £20k on a joint income, even with tax credits, so she is doing very well.
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