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Please tell me I am not BU for making DD pay rent? :(

(137 Posts)
nailsolah Mon 20-Feb-17 00:47:09

Hiya. I'll try not to miss anything out as don't want to be considered drip feeding.

DD is now 22 and at uni. She did okay in her AS levels and messed up her A levels. Tried to retake but still failed so had no qualifications after 3 years and this was due to her beginning to struggle with an eating disorder imo.

She then did an access course as she was old enough and did want to waste another 2 years (this could be done in 1). Her eating disorder was diagnosed at this point. She completed the course (was 20) and then went down hill. Was admitted at a residential unit for her ED. was there for around a year due to things not going well but she is not doing good and is at uni. Will graduate at 24.

I said to both my children that at 21 you will need to start paying rent. This had the idea that you could finish uni and when you move back home, you start paying (if they decide to love back home). DD1 knew this and actually didn't move back home for a year but no had and pays a percentage of her income (she now has a full time job) she pays £225 a month which is 20% of what she gets a month but this does include all washing done, all food, all wash products, etc. paid for and she is more than happy with this. DD is obviously just started uni (at 21) so she started to pay then. She has a part time job and is going to a local uni so has no accommodation/food to pay for. I ask for £80 a month, she gets £400 from her part time job. Again, it's 20%.

She says it's not fair because the whole idea was that we would finish uni and I do appreciate that but that's also because I kind of expected them to live in accommodation so would pay when they returned if that makes sense?, although I am obviously very happy she is at home due to her mental health. Her nan gave DD1 £200 a month for uni (she was at a London uni and everything was so expensive) and DD2 doesn't get that from her nan due to her being at a local uni and I know that upsets her a bit.

However, please tell me I'm not being unreasonable? I'm really trying to be fair sad

Rixera Mon 20-Feb-17 00:51:47

Of course you're not, she's a grown adult.
I'm her age with similar MH issues (AN + others) managing a home and a toddler. She's old enough to understand budgeting, and not expect to get pocket money from her nan, especially as she works.
20% is a token, she's left with £320 a month to do whatever she likes with- YANBU.

Flipthebirdy Mon 20-Feb-17 00:54:33

It's good to teach your children the necessity of budgeting and paying bills. However, it's so difficult getting on the property ladder- would you not prefer her to save as much money as possible to get her own place one day?

mummyplus7 Mon 20-Feb-17 00:59:11

YANBU. I'm praying that none, or very few, of ours kids will stay at home after finishing school (we will have 8) and I certainly will charge board/rent to try and encourage them into a sharehouse.

lalalalyra Mon 20-Feb-17 01:00:00

I don't think you are being unreasonable at all, but I can also see her point. She's basically £280 a month down on what her sister got because she had an eating disorder and wasn't well enough to stay in uni.

Personally I think your DD's circumstance is worth a re-think of the 21-rule if you can afford it.

ThroughThickAndThin01 Mon 20-Feb-17 01:07:19


I wouldn't charge her that much.

nailsolah Mon 20-Feb-17 01:09:56

Her sister didn't have a job at uni so I could take 20% anyway. The £200 came from her nan and if she went to a uni that required accommodation I'm sure she would get that from her too.

SuperBeagle Mon 20-Feb-17 01:14:43


Even if she's living at home, being at uni still inhibits your ability to earn and has associated costs. When I was at uni (and living at home), I didn't pay board but I paid for all of my things: most of my food, my phone, everything to do with my car. Never asked for a cent from my DM. All clothes were washed by me and I routinely cleaned the whole house. I had a part time job but was still just scraping by.

I think that's a better system than asking for board money. She'll still learn the value of a dollar and won't be able to spend beyond her means.

A full time job and no uni is a different ballgame entirely.

Spice22 Mon 20-Feb-17 01:14:59

Tough one OP. Does she not get student finance? Cos if she does, then she can afford £80.

I don't agree with charging board but since you do, I think I would continue doing what you're doing. It wouldn't be fair to DD1 if you then changed the rules to suit one daughter - she(DD1) could argue she was punished for NOT having an ED.

Think of it like this; you're teaching your daughter that life is a bitch. Rent etc doesn't stop being paid just because of illness. Like a PP said, she still has plenty left. Also, she sounds a bit entitled tbh, especially the bit where she's not happy to not be receiving handouts from her man.

Out2pasture Mon 20-Feb-17 01:15:20

I'd consult with her or a MH practitioner. She is under educational pressure I'm not sure how adding more pressure would be helpful to her healing process.

Mynestisfullofempty Mon 20-Feb-17 01:15:51

Our daughter left home last August at the age of 25. She had only been able to get a part-time job so we didn't charge her anything because we could afford not to and because she was really excellent at saving and we knew she would need every penny when she left home. I suppose what I'm saying is that it depends on the circumstances. Sometimes it will be necessary to charge rent, because the parents can't afford not to and/or because the son or daughter needs to learn to budget and manage money and sometimes it's not necessary. There is no hard and fast rule. FWIW our daughter is now living in an excellent house share an hour or so away and working more hours and managing fine financially.

seventhgonickname Mon 20-Feb-17 01:19:47

I think £80a month for her housing with food is generous of you,she has also not had to pay anything for the previous 3 years.Also £320 for anything else she wants is more than I have available so I think you are being very reasonable.

GarrulousGrimoire Mon 20-Feb-17 01:23:23

The question is do you need the money? If you don't I wouldn't be charging and adding that pressure.

It's her home, my parents I can't ever imagine charging me for anything if I went to theirs as its my home, my safe place. I have t actually lived there since 18 but I know it's there.

Unless you need the money don't charge.

Mummyto7 I think it's really sad you are hoping all of yours leave and will be making it difficult for them to stay sad

ElvishArchdruid Mon 20-Feb-17 01:31:08

I can see your daughters point of view, to the person who say the other DD could moan it's not my fault I don't have an ED, just wow!

She is being treated different by Nan, maybe have a rule that whilst in Uni it's 10% rent. That gives her a bit more money, try and sit down to figure out her expenses. £400 is £100 a week, so not a massive amount. If she can't afford food whilst at Uni that could trigger the ED & you're back to square 1.

Are you saving what they give you to give back to them at some point or are you spending it like housekeeping?

Peanutandphoenix Mon 20-Feb-17 01:34:02

Yanbu at all me and my sister had to pay rent when we lived at home and we where both working I was also in college as well as working my sister paid more rent than I did because she was working FT and I was working PT but it taught me how to budget and it also taught me that the roof over my head has to be paid for whether you like or not nothing in life is free.

nailsolah Mon 20-Feb-17 01:36:09

She takes lunches to uni which is part of her meal plan by dietician and we buy all that food.

Mummyoflittledragon Mon 20-Feb-17 01:42:44

Have you consulted her MH practitioner? I think you're being very hard on her. You're lucky she's alive and well considering she's relapsed in the past. On top of the pressure to perform at uni, to hold down a pt job, to continue to eat healthily, you want her to pay you rent. It sounds as though this is out of a principle, which was made in another time of her life rather than a necessity to supplement your income. Yes, many people have to stand on their own two feet and have mental health problems. But why make it harder for her when you don't need to right now?

DioneTheDiabolist Mon 20-Feb-17 01:54:12

YANBU OP. Part of being a parent is about teaching our DC to be adults and that includes paying keep. In my family, as soon as we started working (part time while at school), we paid housekeeping. When my parents were living at home they had to hand over their entire pay packets and were given an allowance.shock

Food, accommodation, heating and electric all cost money and being an adult involves paying your way.

Italiangreyhound Mon 20-Feb-17 02:06:07

YANBU. £80 a month is well under £3 a day, and you buy all her food. She would probably struggle to get a lunch in the cafe for £3 a day!

However, if you fear her health could be at risk, yo could wave the 'rent' for a period of time to allow her some breathing space.

I really think this may be a case of whether or not you need the money. Looking after adult children into the future could be quite pricy but if you do not need the money I would try and find a way forward.

I agree with Mummyoflittledragon "Have you consulted her MH practitioner?" I think this would be a good way to start.

Not charging her any rent at all may send her back into a form of childhood, which is not good, but pressure to pay rent may not be helpful at this time.

Also think £320 for anything else she wants is pretty good.

lorelairoryemily Mon 20-Feb-17 02:29:51

I think it's terrible to charge her to live at home while she's in education, my parents would never have done that, I had to give them something once I was full time employed but until then it's horribly unfair

user1477282676 Mon 20-Feb-17 02:31:18

I also don't think it's good to charge your own DC when they're in education. Unless you are struggling very badly.

lorelairoryemily Mon 20-Feb-17 02:31:27

I also think you wouldn't be asking the question if you honestly thought you were being reasonable. Yabvu

user1477282676 Mon 20-Feb-17 02:32:11

Emily I said, some people are very low incomes. So it's not "horribly unfair" then. It's neccesity. Everyone has to muck in. But if OP is ok financially then it is wrong.

MouseClogs Mon 20-Feb-17 02:53:15

I don't think you're being inherently unreasonable, OP, but I think it's worth scrutinising the main motivation for the charge.

If you need the money, that's a bit of a side issue but does slightly alter the weight of obligation on your daughter's part.

If you don't need the money then the benefit is presumably either in instilling a certain mindset on your daughter, or the maintenance of fairness (since DD1 had to pay). In either case, I think you have to weigh up the potential pros of keeping up the rent payment system (and cons of ditching it) against the likelihood that such a system is contributing to any MH difficulties.

It's a tough call, I don't envy you. Do you think there's any viable compromise? e.g. a (small) contribution from grandma, or lowering the rent a little on the understanding that DD is now responsible for her own washing?

I think all you can do is establish what system is fairest all round, then accept potential need for "revisions" and play it by ear.

SoftlyCatchyMonkey1 Mon 20-Feb-17 03:00:39

I think you're being a bit unreasonable here. She's in full time higher education (who is paying for this by the way?) so any money she earns doing part time will not be limited as she should be concentrating on studies. If she'd bummed around for a few years not bothering to do anything then it would be a different case however she's had mental health problems etc. You said that you'd told your daughters that once they were 21 they would have to pay rent, with the idea that they would have finished uni and should have a job and therefore be able to contribute. But dd2 hasn't finished uni, so I don't believe she should be charged rent yet. I do see where you're coming from though OP, I just think that in this exceptional case your dd2 should be given the benefit of the doubt.

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