To try to talk my sis out of this? (Money)(25 Posts)
Really just wanted to get this off my chest because I feel I am being U about it but I feel sad and sort of wondering if I could – or should – do something about this. Sorry if long.
I am single and childfree and so is my sister. We are both in our 40s. She has been lonely and found it hard to make friends all her life. She doesn’t like my friends.
She has been unemployed about half her life (choice). She has also spent a lot while doing this. I don’t enjoy office work either, but life has to be paid for.
We received an inheritance a few years back. We were both living in studio flats in a rough area. I used mine to move to a better place. I’d have bought a place with her but she thought people would think we were weird!
She used most of her inheritance to live on while not working. It wasn’t a large amount and she’s a big spender. She has some left and has now taken a job purely to be able to sign on the mortgage for a new flat. It is literally a “new” flat (not finished yet) and the service charges are very high – nice gardens, gym in block etc etc Due to it being brand new, it is also very expensive – she could have bought a nice flat for much much less money.
I asked her if she was confident about paying the mortgage and charges given her work history and she said “no, but if it doesn’t work out, I’ll have to sell it and move somewhere crappy again – probably within a year if I leave this job and can’t get another”. She already hates the job she took and the people there - and has had issues getting references in the past. She doesn’t seem to register all the costs of moving etc and also she is heading for 50 and I hear a lot of talk about over 50s finding it hard to get jobs.
Am I being U to be worried about this? She hasn’t paid the deposit on the flat yet but with it being new I think it could go through to deposit very fast as surveys etc won’t take that much time. Am I being U to sit her down and say “what the hell are you thinking?” Generally I prefer to leave adults to make their own choices but the chances of getting money back if you have to sell a new flat in a year…?
I must admit to an extra thing – I feel she is getting more and odd as time goes by and I don’t enjoy spending time with her. And, it’s quite far away….from what she said she expects us to just to do weekend visits but it’s quite hard to spend a couple of hours with her over a cup of tea, much less do weekends!
Would anyone here talk to her about it or just let her get on with it? I suppose there’s an argument that if she really can’t pay bills she will have to stick with her job?
thanks for listening if you got this far!
Well of course I would talk to my sister if I thought she might be making a mistake! I wouldn't tell her I thought she was wrong but I would try and make helpful suggestions. Maybe find a few more suitable properties and ask her to go and view them with you?
Service charges are a killer - got to be paid even once the mortgage is paid off and can increase dramatically.
I wouldn't interfere if it was just a friend, but my sister - most definitely. But I have a close relationship with mine - sounds like you perhaps don't with yours?
I'd definitely say something but be prepared for it to fall on deaf ears.
It's. shame she didn't buy using her inheritance when she had the money. Hindsight is wonderful.
sorry I didn't want to the post to be too long so maybe didn't emphasise enough
she really wanted a new new flat so said she would pay this. She knows what else she can get, she's looked around. After talking about it once, I feel like saying it again is quite rude and patronising and it is her £ to spend as she wishes and she's factored in the risks and accepted them - I find it bonkers but should I just respect her choice?
close relationship - um....I would have said yes even a year ago but she is getting more and more strange so I don't know.
It sounds like you've had a lucky escape if you say you would have bought a place with her.
You'd have ended up supporting her.
I would speak to her again. What happens when she retires? A state pension is not very much. I would encourage her again to get an affordable flat.
However, at the end of day, she is an adult and will make her own mistakes.
Do you think she may expect to move in with you if things go pear shaped?
yes, maybe I should give it another bash.
what do I mean by "strange" - she is getting harder and harder to talk to. I mentioned it to her once and she apologised and said "I think I am being very self obsessed, sorry". She looks to me as a source of entertainment, like I'm the one who is meant to arrive with conversation and she doesn't have to contribute anything.
She has this fatalistic attitude of "I am unlucky that I will never get a good job" but she has actually had really good jobs and left them, citing boredom or problems with management etc.
She saw a counsellor about loneliness etc and the counsellor asked her to work on changing her attitude - sis response to that was "it is ridiculous to suggest an attitude can be changed". She also increasingly has trouble seeing the points of view of others.
sorry, that is a separate issue to the money - or is it? Perhaps the points that I have made to her in relation to the new flat simply haven't "computed" in her head?
I have to go out now but thanks for the replies, I appreciate it.
PS no I don't think she expects to move in with me, she'd hate it and I don't have room really - I have a boxroom that I use as an office. But I do think she might ask for money later and she sees that I am frugal and a big saver so I suppose that's a possibility.
It could be a good investment longer term...
Could she rent it out if she finds she's unable to afford it. or rent a room out if she has a spare bedroom?
I'd have one more go at talking to her about it - it seems crazy to buy a place fully expecting to not be able to afford it - but beyond that she's an adult and there's nothing you can do. At least you'll feel like you've given it your best shot though.
You say it wasn't a large inheritance yet it's subsidised her life for several years and she still has some left for a deposit. I think we need to know how much it was because on the face of it she hasn't been completely irresponsible. She made a choice to use it to enable her not to work. She didn't just fritter it away willy nilly but made it last several years and now realises it's now or never to buy somewhere. It sounds as if she's budgeted a bit? Maybe her choices aren't totally bad, just different to yours?
All you can do is talk to her about her options and give her your opinions in a non judgemental, but caring way. After that you need to leave her to make her own mistakes. It's hard to see a car crash slowly happening but at the end of the day it's her choice.
She has a different outlook than you and a different attitude to work and money. That doesn't make her wrong, just different. It's her choice and, personally, I would let her get on with it. That doesn't mean you have to bail her out at any point and it doesn't mean you have to like her or want to spend time with her. You aren't joined at the hip....what she does with her life doesn't impact on you....she's your sister not your spouse.
She is a not far off 50 year old woman and you've already tried talking to her.
She seems to have managed quite well in life so far, even though her choices and lifestyle are different to yours.
Leave her to it, she has made her life choices, you have made yours. At the age she is she will not take any "interference" (because that's how she'll see it) from you.
You have no knowledge of how this is all going to pan out. She is an adult with free will. I know you must love her and feel concerned about how it all appears to going, but she really is charge of her own destiny and I don't think anything you say or do will make any difference.
Make it clear to her however that you are not up to baling her out financially in the future as any savings you have are to fund your retirement.
If she's nearly 50, a single applicant with a spotty work history and a not well paid job, she isn't going to get a mortgage anyway, so I wouldn't worry about it.
Mention this to her before she shells out on a deposit.
Perhaps your sister should see a financial advisor first (if she hasn't already), it's always good to be realistic about these things and then the advice isn't from you.
Failing that, as long has she has the mental capacity to make these financial decisions, they're her mistakes to make - however bad this decision is. You should not feel responsible to bail her out if this fails, you have tried to warn her and she hasn't wanted to accept it, whatever her reasons.
If she's nearly 50, a single applicant with a spotty work history and a not well paid job, she isn't going to get a mortgage anyway
Good point - perhaps you should mention this to her before she goes and pays a deposit or anything
I doubt she'd have enough ni years for a full state pension even if she kept a job for next 15 years. Tbh it seems as of she is too singleminded to listen. Do you suspect any mh issues?
She sounds completely irresponsible and financially incompetent. If she was 30 you could try to force a change but she's 50 and won't listen. Leave her to it.
thanks for the input everyone
I've been out for a run and with a clear head I think I am being U and she's an adult and just has to get on with it and I have to stop worrying.
I'm out for the day now but thank you for listening, it's much appreciated.
Maybe email her a few concerns or points to consider before going ahead? Unless she only needs a tiny mortgage it sounds dubious as to whether she'd get one at all.
I would be worried in your position but she doesn't sound as if she really wants your input.
You cant just "get a job to get a mortgage", you would need a decent job history, so hopefully she wont get one, because it doesnt seem as though he is very serious, you could try and have a chat with her, bu as you say, she IS an adult, and you cant make her do anything even if it is the sensible attitude.
Do you think she may have mental health issues OP?
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