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AIBU to charge my daughter's friend to stay?

(299 Posts)
Bifflepants Wed 10-Feb-16 07:35:44

Never posted in AIBU before, but I am genuinely interested to know if I am being unreasonable. Mixed views amongst my real life friends.

My older daughter is at university studying to become a vet. I miss her very much and love having her home in the holidays. As part of her course, she has to do a number of placements - 3 weeks dairy, 3 weeks sheep, 3 weeks horse and various others, just to gain experience on farms with these animals. We live in a rural area and finding placements around home is not difficult. Last holidays she had a dairy placement, arranged by me. Her new best friend at uni asked if she could also do it with her, and so came to stay for over 2 weeks. I was told by my daughter she would cook for herself etc, but she arrived from a holiday abroad absolutely broke, bought very little food and discovered a love of my cooking (I'm a good cook it must be said). So she ate very well, and contributed nothing except one meal, which took her 5 hours to cook. We ate at 10pm that night. She was a lovely girl, very like my daughter in that she was socially a little unusual and quite clever. She was also quite messy and did little to help around the house unless asked. It was like having another daughter.

Anyway, she left just before Christmas, leaving her bed unmade and a pile of books and rubbish in her room. I breathed a sigh of relief. Now my daughter has announced that the friend wants to a lot more placements here as there are no farms around where she lives. So another 7 weeks this year staying at ours altogether. I said fine, but she would have to pay some board. Either $20 (10gbp) per week for just bills, $90 (45GBP) for dinners only or $130 (65) for all meals and board. As a family we spend a lot of money on food and eat well, so this was a fair estimate of what it would take to feed her in my view. She had a very good appetite.

Additional info: We are very comfortably off but not rich and generally run out of money just before pay day. We don't have savings. I am not the best at managing money but we are never in debt. The friend's parents are both very senior doctors and very well off. Neither my daughter or the friend can get part time jobs as the course is too demanding so both rely on student loans and parental handouts. My daughter has never really had a best friend before and I very much want to support the friendship. The friend has agreed to the dinners only deal.

My real life friends were a bit shocked that I had asked for money, and also thought it was a lot. What do you think?

LaurieFairyCake Wed 10-Feb-16 07:37:45

It's not a lot if that's what it costs. I think your friends are being judgemental.

willowsummers Wed 10-Feb-16 07:40:16

I think it's perfectly acceptable to ask for a contribution but I do think giving different options makes it seem a little 'business like' when it should be friendly, if you see what I mean. I would be saying '£80 p/m as a contribution to food, if that's ok!'

Also - you can regretfully say no, you don't have the time/space - it doesn't sound like you actually want her there (which is understandable!)

Another option might be to look into renting a flat for the two of them nearby and paying your daughters half.

Eastpoint Wed 10-Feb-16 07:41:00

You aren't comfortably off by most standards if you run out of money each month. Completely reasonable to charge her board in any event, she has safe appropriate accommodation which is lucky for her.

HolsW Wed 10-Feb-16 07:42:02

I think that's fair, especially because she's messy, etc. YANBU

bearleftmonkeyright Wed 10-Feb-16 07:42:28

Yanbu. That sounds more than fair. A week is one thing, seven weeks and any adult needs to contribute.

honeysucklejasmine Wed 10-Feb-16 07:43:31

No, I think that's reasonable. It's not a huge amount of money for full board. Just male sire she understands it doesn't include naid service too!

MidniteScribbler Wed 10-Feb-16 07:43:55

I think aside from the financial situation, you need to tell your daughter that her friend needs to contribute by cleaning up after herself, making the bed, emptying rubbish and cleaning her room before she leaves.

Ingles2 Wed 10-Feb-16 07:43:56

£45 a week for bed and dinner.. Sounds like a bargain to me! When can I move in? wink

honeysucklejasmine Wed 10-Feb-16 07:44:16

*make sure

cornishglos Wed 10-Feb-16 07:44:58

I am shocked. If she arrived at yours totally broke and you eat well and are comfortably off, you do can afford it and she can't. Either have her graciously or say that you can't. But as you want to support this friendship I would let her stay. See her as a friend and not a money making opportunity.

dementedpixie Wed 10-Feb-16 07:46:59

Is that £65 per week or per month? If per week then it sounds quite steep if they are students

acasualobserver Wed 10-Feb-16 07:47:07

The most unreasonable aspect of this situation is that the friend or her parents have not already offered to pay.

MrsSteptoe Wed 10-Feb-16 07:47:29

For seven weeks? No, you're not being unreasonable (in my view). If your daughter's friend was staying with you for a week as part of your daughter's social life, that's one thing. This would be using you as free accommodation with meals thrown in while she does work experience. Make sure you are mentally prepared to have her for seven weeks without complaining, though. No point saying she can come if she pays a certain rate and then deciding after four weeks that you're being taken for granted and wandering around with a socking resentment. (Not that that's what would happen if I were in your shoes or anything.blush)

PurpleDaisies Wed 10-Feb-16 07:47:41

I think that's fine. Before she comes you need to have a chat about the house rules she needs to go along with and be prepared to tackle her if she's not pulling her weight. It'll be a long 7 weeks otherwise!

Bifflepants Wed 10-Feb-16 07:48:15

She arrived at mine totally broke because she had spent all her money on eating out on a self funded holiday. I don't want to make money but want to cover the extra costs. But I do see your point about being a good host, having her stay graciously etc (except I never actually invited her grumble grumble).

LastInTheQueue Wed 10-Feb-16 07:49:38

I don't see anything wrong with charging. If she was doing the placement elsewhere, wouldn't she have to pay for her room and board?

However, I'm not sure I understand your maths "Either $20 (10gbp) per week for just bills, $90 (45GBP) for dinners only or $130 (65) for all meals and board" - surely that should be $110 for all meals and board?

Bifflepants Wed 10-Feb-16 07:49:47

65 gbp a week. Unless I change our diet, that is the actual cost of feeding another adult and also electricity (expensive in this country), gas and internet.

Miloarmadillo1 Wed 10-Feb-16 07:49:56

I think that's fine. I'd also set a few ground rules about what contribution you expect to keeping the place tidy, it is not a hotel with maid service. I am a vet and had a foreign student to stay with us recently whilst she did a month long placement at our practice. We charged a similar amount to cover food/bills, it's a fraction of what she'd pay at a B'n'B.
If your daughter and her friend are not lining up lambing jobs for Easter they are missing a trick - the one bit of EMS for which you are actually well paid instead of it costing you money - most vet students do every Easter holiday throughout the course and fit other species into Christmas or summer breaks.

Kingfisherfree Wed 10-Feb-16 07:50:42

I probably wouldn't let her stay again.

cornishglos Wed 10-Feb-16 07:51:19

Does the university expect them to find extra accommodation for their placements? Is there funding for it?

LastInTheQueue Wed 10-Feb-16 07:51:22

And yes to discussing house rules as mentioned by pp. She cleans up after herself and helping with general household chores.

Janeymoo50 Wed 10-Feb-16 07:51:51

I think it's very fair (and a pretty good deal at that). But it's not a hotel so she needs to be a bit more considerate too. You sound brilliant.

Bifflepants Wed 10-Feb-16 07:52:54

$20 per week bills only
$90 bills and dinners per week
$130 all food, snacks, breakfast, lunch and bills.

Is that clearer?

Goingtobeawesome Wed 10-Feb-16 07:52:55

Be hats the different between dinners only and all in? Is she buying and making her own breakfast and lunch and bringing her own water to wash in and own candles to see by?confused.

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