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Money Moral Dilemma: Should I ask the neighbours staying with us for rent?

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  • Tim11111000111Tim11111000111 Forumite
    29 posts
    Second Anniversary 10 Posts
    I think talking about "wear and tear on carpets" is a bit petty and probably a red herring. However, that doesn't mean you're wrong to want to be compensated for the inconvenience of having them stay for far longer than expected. It certainly sounds to me like the neighbours are getting by far the best deal out of you - staying somewhere rent free for months on end. I for one had more than my share of housemates over the years and now very much enjoy having my own space with just my partner for company. It's that loss of your own space and privacy I would want to be paid for if taking in a lodger, not damage to carpets!

    On the other hand, depending on what's already been discussed, I can see that it might be an awkward conversation: if you'd originally told them they could stay for free, it would seem slightly unfair turning round and asking for rent. That said, the neighbours don't seem to have any such moral qualms about extending their stay!

    Finally, if you charge rent you will become a landlord and they will be considered lodgers. That's not a huge problem, but just something to be aware of in terms of your rights and responsibilities. 
  • CimscateCimscate Forumite
    144 posts
    Part of the Furniture 100 Posts Combo Breaker
    Hmmm, I would say if they have not initiated the conversation about how it affects you all socially and financially they're not great friends anyway. If you want them to find somewhere else for the next 3 months or longer if it extends again then that is the conversation you need to have. 
  • PollycatPollycat Forumite
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    Cimscate said:
    Hmmm, I would say if they have not initiated the conversation about how it affects you all socially and financially they're not great friends anyway. If you want them to find somewhere else for the next 3 months or longer if it extends again then that is the conversation you need to have. 

    +1 to this ^^^^.
    I would be feeling very unappreciated if they are expecting to stay for 4 months longer than the original 1 month and have not started a conversation about the delay and impact on friends who were good enough to ask them to stay.
  • wortluckwortluck Forumite
    3 posts
    Third Anniversary First Post
    MoneySaving Newbie
    Worrying about negligible wear and tear doesn't fit in with your apparent generosity to put them up in the first place. It's a bit like donating £1000 to charity, then asking for a fiver back to cover your bank costs. I wouldn't mention the wear and tear at all, but you could mention a larger contribution if you're out of pocket for bills/food - depends on the relationship. TBH, I wouldn't do this anyway as it is fraught with problems. If there's a next time, offer to help out with stuff rather than opening your home, although you've set a precedent for it now. Quite often, people feel obliged to do things to keep relationships sweet, but this only acceptable if it works both ways.
  • TechnosaurusTechnosaurus Forumite
    46 posts
    Fifth Anniversary 10 Posts Combo Breaker
    Households mixing indoors has been against the law for several months now hasn't it?

    I'd worry less about the carpets and more who will be paying the Covid fines?
  • MojisolaMojisola Forumite
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    Not necessarily, but reassess the situation via an adult conversation. You agreed to a month. It has been longer already with no clear end date. Talk to them and work out what works for you all. This might be them paying you. It might be them finding somewhere else to stay in the meantime. It might be something else.
    This has got to be the way to go otherwise small irritations will grow into bigger issues and tempers will get frayed and the friendship might well end. 

    I think it's a bad sign that the visitors haven't already raised the issue themselves and offered to pay more towards the household.

    For me, it wouldn't be wear and tear I would be bothered about but sharing my space for so much longer than originally planned.

    The people who are saying the visitors shouldn't pay anything more - would you really arrange to stay a month with someone, extend it to possibly four months or longer and not offer some financial compensation to your hosts?

  • JayDJayD Forumite
    602 posts
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    Really? You must be close to have let them come and stay in your home! So , if they are paying their way on the household bills, why would you want to charge them anything more? I guess, familiarity breeds contempt! Wear and tear on your carpets etc???

    So, how much are you going to charge your visitors then? 12p towards electricity to share light/heat and to wash up their cups; 15p towards water rates for each time they use the loo;10p per square ft of carpet they walk on; 10p per hour they sit on your furniture ...

    You are having a laugh!!!
  • NowVillagerNowVillager Forumite
    10 posts
    Ninth Anniversary First Post Combo Breaker
    Personally I wouldn't: raising it could create tension, and none of us needs more of that at home right now. Unless your financial circumstances have changed, that is; if so I think you can justify simply saying that and renegotiating, but bear in mind that paying rent may give them rights and you obligations. Six months from now keeping the relationship will seem more valuable - plus they're going to be seriously in your debt! That said, if I was them I'd have raised it myself to check if you were still OK with it given the timeframe has changed.
  • RetSolRetSol Forumite
    336 posts
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    Worrying about negligible wear and tear doesn't fit in with your apparent generosity to put them up in the first place. 

    I think that it's the OP's nerves which are suffering wear and tear, not the carpets.  As has been said already, the petty squabbles will break out eventually and it will all end in tears. 

  • sclaresclare Forumite
    44 posts
    Sixth Anniversary 10 Posts Combo Breaker
    Households mixing indoors has been against the law for several months now hasn't it?

    I'd worry less about the carpets and more who will be paying the Covid fines?
    No, it's not against the law to take someone into your home in this kind of situation. I did the same thing during lockdown 1, when a friend had to return from abroad due to Covid, but had nowhere to live. I checked the rules carefully, and there was no problem. My friend though, unlike OP's neighbours, paid his way for the four months he was with me. And as soon as it became possible to travel and view rentals, he took responsibility for finding his own housing.
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