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to expect my teenaged son to pay us a decent rent now he's working full time?

(240 Posts)
julesbd Wed 31-Aug-11 23:17:39

My 19 year old son decided after A levels to take a year out, so he's been working full time (at min wage take home £180 per week) for the last 6 months and paying us £25 per wk housekeeping/rent. He was supposed to be starting an HND this Sept, but he's decided to carry on working instead of going to college, which is ok. My husband says that he should be paying more rent (£50 per wk) as he's now a wage earner not a student. He is horrified although that would still leave him with £50 + per week disposable income after all his bills (car ins, petrol, rent, phone bill). We are both professionals on good salaries with the usual bills and 3 children and we do not have £50 spare per week each to spend on ourselves. AWBU? Bear in mind he has really good food, internet, nice big warm bedroom, avoids household chores if possible and gets to have his girlfriend to stay. If he lived in a rented flat he'd have to pay way more for much less comfort.
What is an acceptable amount to charge a young worker living at home?

troisgarcons Wed 31-Aug-11 23:20:55

Divide his take home pay by the amount of adults in the house - if its the 3 of you - he pays a 1/3rd.

If he can't understand that - then you need the serious sit down chat and bring out all the bills - rent/mortgage, council tax, gas, electric, TV lic, insurances, water rates etc etc and let him see exactly how wages are proportionally spent.

Beamur Wed 31-Aug-11 23:21:09

He's getting £180 wages per week? Then £50 a week bed and board sounds like a bargain to me.
Point out that if he wants to move out and pay private rents he'd be a lot worse off and have to look after himself.

LineRunner Wed 31-Aug-11 23:21:41

I'd tell him to keep the lot but that he has to buy all his own food and you'll ask him for 'houseshare' rates for internet and bills - i.e. 1/5.

OR he can give you £50 a week.

troisgarcons Wed 31-Aug-11 23:21:53

sorry ... clarification:* if its the 3 of you - he pays a 1/3rd.* - he pays a 1/3rd of his take home pay as his board and lodging.

CaptainMartinCrieff Wed 31-Aug-11 23:22:35

I personally cannot ever imagine charging my son rent.
I'm probably totally in the minority and I am in fact probably the one people will think is BU.

troisgarcons Wed 31-Aug-11 23:25:50

We had to pay our contribution when we went to work and my parents were very wealthy. It's about responsibility.

I dare say we got it back, and more in lifts and a house deposit though.

theginganinja Wed 31-Aug-11 23:28:00

I think 50 quid a week is perfectly reasonable on his wage, if he moved out, he would have to pay a LOT more. My mum had a third of my wages when I lived there and I fully intend to charge ds a third when he gets a full time job.
I think troisgarcons idea of sitting him down and showing him the bills and the household spend is an excellent one btw.

MsHighwater Wed 31-Aug-11 23:30:19

Captain, YABU (how old is your son?). OP, YA not BU at all. He needs to pay his way and £25/w on that take home does not cut it.

Beamur Wed 31-Aug-11 23:30:19

I think charging your kids rent, even if you don't really need the money yourself is a good start to teaching them some of the financial skills needed to live on their own. Plus, they might never leave home otherwise!

Birdsgottafly Wed 31-Aug-11 23:37:55

You would be doing him a favour by charging him £50, it would go towards showing him how much it costs to live. It may over time make him think about his future rather than just drift (not saying he would). Especially as his girlfriend is staying as well.

When my eldest moved in with her boyfriend she had to handle all of their money, as he didn't have a clue about budgeting/going without if you caren't afford it, or the cost of living in general. He had never paid keep.

TheFeministsWife Wed 31-Aug-11 23:39:03

Honestly, I think £50 a week is too much. Yes he gets all the nice things like food, warm room, internet etc, but isn't that what everyone gets when they live at home?

MY DSD is 19 and works full time on minimum wage. We don't take any rent off her. She came back from Ibiza 2 weeks ago, she has just booked to go again in 3 weeks this time with her boyfriend. She can do this because we don't take any money off her. The way I see it is, when I was 18 I was working full time on £3 an an hour (no minimum wage then) and all my wages went on bills and food because I'd chosen to move out and live with DH. We want her to be able to enjoy her own money while she can whilst she's living at home because once she moves out it will all go on bills and she'll have the rest of her life to be working just to pay the bills. She will probably move out soon as she wants to be with her boyfriend every night but DH is quite strict about letting him stay and so far he's only been allowed to stay twice.

But that's just the way we do it.

PrimaBallerina Wed 31-Aug-11 23:40:24

YANBU at all. I had to pay rent when I lived at home. When I bought my own house my parents helped me out considerably. It's a valuable lesson whether the rent is needed or not.

Feminine Wed 31-Aug-11 23:40:27

I know someone who charged their children rent ...but they saved it all to give back to them (to help with home deposit)envy

FWIW I gave my Mum 60 pounds (for my weekly keep) back in 1988!

AnyFucker Wed 31-Aug-11 23:43:19

I would charge the 50 quid absolutely no question

If your son has decided to join the whole of work, he is now officially a grown up and with that comes responsibility

Freeloading off your parents is not appropriate now

He has it much, much cushier than if he was in a traditional house share...he has to pay

julesbd Wed 31-Aug-11 23:43:31

Thanks guys, that's what I was thinking. We gave him 6 months on a low rent just to get him started really, but it's up for review now. The only trouble is, several of his friends have parents who don't charge 'em much, so he's totally indignant about our proposal. His biggest problem is his car costs. The insurance alone is £1000 plus (and he has some no-claims). He needs it to get to work though as we live in the wilds of Wales. I reckon I should take as much as I can from him and save some of it on his behalf. He did well at school but has lost his impetus for further ed so I'm quite happy for him to experience living on min wage for a bit until he realises that he'll only earn more by being more qualified.

Jellykat Wed 31-Aug-11 23:48:39

YANBU I charged my DS1 £40 a week rent 4 years ago.. His car insurance was £1000 plus (we live in the wilds of Wales too smile)

I'm with those that think it's a bit of a lesson in financial budgeting, and real life stuff.. and Yes, my DS1 went to Uni the following year!

Feminine Wed 31-Aug-11 23:53:00

I think what you are proposing is very fair.

I have siblings that live at home ...they pay 70 pounds a month! shock

My step-Mom asks them to just pay her what she would have got in child benefit (for eldest child)

On several occasions she has said that their friends pay a lot more smile

Chocolocolate Wed 31-Aug-11 23:53:32

When my younger brother was working full time on minimum wage and was living at home, my mother took a reasonable rent from him (can't remember exactly how much off the top of my head), but she saved every penny without his knowledge.

He is twenty-two now and lives away from home. He still does not know that Mum saved the money. He will be told this when he needs a deposit for his own house.

I'm not saying that this is how it should be done, especially if you need your son's contribution, but it worked well for my Mum to teach my brother responsibility a the time without making her feel guilty.

I know my brother, who will most likely always be on minimum wage, will really appreciate it when he is eventually told about the money.

Birdsgottafly Wed 31-Aug-11 23:53:47

OP i take it then that you paid for him to start driving?

As i said, you would be doing him a favour to take the money off him, then, even if you do treat him to holiday spends or a deposit, later on.

RedOnion Wed 31-Aug-11 23:59:29

OP - of course you are not being unreasonable. What possible life skills would you be teaching you son by giving him the idea that adults can live for free and have money to throw around before taking care of the basic essentials of living.

Of course you will be told by a small few that it is just pure eee v il to take money from a CHILD that you bore but then really, how is that "child" expected to manage in the real world when they realise that a home and utilities and food do not come for free.

naughtaless Wed 31-Aug-11 23:59:33

No YANBU, we all pay to live in this world one way or another. Btw, if it was me I would take no less than a quarter of his weekly take home pay.

Tortington Thu 01-Sep-11 00:01:30

i told mine that if they were in education and earning - i wouldnt take anything off them - so saturday job.holiday job etc.

but full time job - i get 1/3 of wage - so it works itself out proportionally

RedOnion Thu 01-Sep-11 00:01:55

If anyone would like to take me in, given that I am in fact someones child, I will pay zero and expect taking care of. Fully.

PM me grin

ilovesooty Thu 01-Sep-11 00:03:29

A third is £60 and if he paid that it would still be a bargain. If he moans tell him he knows where the door is if he thinks he can do better elsewhere.

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