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What to do when adult kids don't want to leave home?

(74 Posts)
Diamondzzz Thu 02-Aug-18 20:15:39

I'm a single mum to a son 20 and daughter 24. Apart from a few years when I was married (not to their dad) I've brought them up on my own and always put them first. They have never gone without and fortunately we've always been ok financially because I have always worked.

A year ago I decided to downsize to a smaller house so that I could pay off the mortgage and have less financial commitments and work part time. To do this, it has meant that they have a bedroom each in the house and I have a caravan in the garden. This was something I was willing to do to have a less stressful life and still give my kids somewhere to live.

The problem is that I planned on each of them contributing financially. I only want £25 a week from each of them which works out as them paying a quarter each and me paying half of the bills. I think this is fair as it is much cheaper for them than living anywhere else and it should be nicer to share with family rather than strangers. My son's girlfriend has also been living with us since January and I haven't asked for any extra money from her. If I lived here on my own, I could just about afford it. The bills would be cheaper as I wouldn't be paying full council tax and using as much water and electricity, etc. so I think it's reasonable for them to contribute something. However, my son and his girlfriend won't hold down a regular job and always say they don't have the money to pay me. Yet they always have cash for takeaways and trips out. Until recently, my daughter has paid me and didn't mind as she said it was very cheap compared to what she would have to pay to rent a room somewhere else. But now, she is understandably fed up with being the only one paying and I've had to agree to her stopping paying me until her brother does. The house is also a complete mess as nobody ever cleans up and everyone denies it's their mess. I've given up as I would spend most of my evenings cleaning and doing chores to keep on top of it and I'm rarely in the house so resent clearing up other people's mess. There always seems to be arguments because my son and daughter, don't want each other living here.

It's got to the point where I have told them that in January I want them all to leave. This has caused a lot of discontent. My daughter is moody and says I'm being selfish and blames her brother for causing the situation. She thinks it's perfectly acceptable to live with your parents indefinitely. My son is cocky about it and says I won't throw them out in January and that if I do, he will never speak to me again. He thinks that I am being totally unreasonable to expect a penny from them and tells me to get a full time job if I'm worried about paying the bills.

I really don't know what to do. I left home at 17 and most of my friends did at around the same age. I don't think it's unreasonable to expect them to provide for themselves at their ages or at the very least for them to contribute a small amount here and stop acting like kids.

Does anyone have any thoughts or advice on this?

Thanks.

I think it's absolutely fine to live with your parents as long as you pay your way, take on a fair share of chores and don't act like a moody teen when you're in your 20's and it's a mutual choice. I think you're perfectly reasonable to expect that at a minimum, and I can't believe your kids are letting you sleep in a caravan in your own house. Even if they were paying you money, one of them should have taken the caravan.

Stick to your guns, giving them until January is more than generous.

Myneighboursnorlax Thu 02-Aug-18 20:20:56

I think if your daughter is happy to pay, and wants to stay living with you, then I’d let her stay. I’d then give your son the option of paying as well, or finding somewhere new to live come January.

Myneighboursnorlax Thu 02-Aug-18 20:21:51

Or at the very least if your son won’t pay then he and his girlfriend should move into the caravan. Only those contributing to bills get bedrooms.

mineofuselessinformation Thu 02-Aug-18 20:22:23

WTF? You're living in a caravan while they live it up in your house and then sometimes don't pay.
They're taking you for a mug.
Tell them it's now £150 a month each and if they don't pay they have to leave.

faloma Thu 02-Aug-18 20:24:39

Regardless of their income I would sit them down and explain you are all adults, these are the outgoings and these will be split between the four of you in the house.

I'd also put son and girlfriend in caravan immediately!

thereareflowersinmygarden Thu 02-Aug-18 20:24:43

At the very least put the couple in the caravan!

Live in your own house!

MyBloodyMaltesersAreMelting Thu 02-Aug-18 20:28:58

I’d tell the girlfriend to move out immediately
Set the deadline for January and stick to it
TBH I feel a bit sorry for your daughters , she has a point , it’s unfair

kissthealderman Thu 02-Aug-18 20:29:10

Put DS and GF in the caravan! Good lord, you shouldn't be living out there, that's outrageous!

And renting a room in a shared house would be at least 3 times pp what you're charging them! They're being extremely cheeky and taking the piss.

mineofuselessinformation Thu 02-Aug-18 20:33:01

Reading back, I'd like to add that while I don't think your daughter stopping paying is the right thing to do, I can see her point of view - her brother and his girlfriend don't contribute and you are letting them get away with it.
She's lashing back at you, because she can see that the situation is wrong. You as the mum need to do something about it.
Move your son and his girlfriend into the caravan if you must, but still insist on money from them. You're not doing them any favours to let them think life is a free ride.

bobstersmum Thu 02-Aug-18 20:37:15

I think they are taking the piss massively. 25 quid a week is ridiculously low, should be at least double that. And you living in a caravan is crazy!

Jjjjigoo Thu 02-Aug-18 20:38:14

TBH you've let them get away with it and they've taken advantage. Get tough. Involve a friend to help you show them you are serious about it, if you don't feel you are strong enough to do this on your own.

Tell them they have to move out by x date (1 month is more than reasonable) and if they want to stay it's double the rent for a bedroom or £100 for the caravan. If the girlfriend stays then automatically they get the caravan. No negotiations. The second they miss payment then you make them go.
Ignore the threats of never visiting you. If he carries that out then you've got far bigger problems than money ones. You cannot be held to ransom. Call his bluff.

Jjjjigoo Thu 02-Aug-18 20:38:57

Don't wait till january. Do it now.

EvaHarknessRose Thu 02-Aug-18 20:44:45

Stick to your guns with the January date, also say that you expect full payment of 25 per week per person and cleaning or you will bring that forward to October. If gf doesn’t want to pay, offer them the caravan. Tell your daughter you will reconsider letting her stay if she gets her act together. You won’t be doing them any favours either if you don’t follow through - they need to launch as competent adults.

French2019 Thu 02-Aug-18 20:44:58

Your DS and his girlfriend are taking the piss. Give them a deadline and tell them they need to move out by that date, or they both pay their fair share. If he says he'll never talk to you again, I'd call his bluff. He needs to understand that he doesn't get to threaten and bully you into doing whatever he wants you to do.

Your dd needs to start paying again too, but I have more sympathy for her, as she was paying and she is right that the situation wasn't fair. Maybe she was trying to force you to confront your son in the only way she knew how?

I don't think there is anything wrong with adult kids living at home, as long as everyone contributes and all parties consent. Frankly, very few 17 year olds would be able to support themselves financially these days in any case. However, they need to show you some respect or else sort out their own accommodation.

Parky04 Thu 02-Aug-18 20:45:33

You are in the caravan! You are a pushover, no wonder they take the piss. They know you are weak and won't go through with any threats. It's down to you to prove them wrong.

French2019 Thu 02-Aug-18 20:45:42

And yes, January deadline is much too late. I'd say September.

haribosmarties Thu 02-Aug-18 20:50:01

Say they have to pay or they have to leave... if your daughter does actually pay then I think its fine to keep her living there... I would get your son to leave if he continues to refuse to pay and get the police to remove him if he refuses to leave... It may seem harsh but in the long run you are not doing him any favours by letting him get away with his lazy scrounging lifestyle.. let him not speak to you for a while, once hes out in the real world having to pay for himself he will quickly realise how generous you were actually being

HollowTalk Thu 02-Aug-18 20:50:18

I'd say September, too. They are totally disrespectful. Quite honestly I think they have all behaved appallingly and should leave.

I'm so sorry for you - they are treating you so badly.

DontDribbleOnTheCarpet Thu 02-Aug-18 20:50:28

How long were you planning to live in a tin box so that they can have your house? You are showing them that they are more important than you and that their needs are the only ones that matter.

I agree that your son and his girlfriend need to move into the caravan and pay rent for it. And long before January!

Diamondzzz Thu 02-Aug-18 20:50:47

TBH me being in the caravan isn't a problem. I'm happy with that as I like my own space and I am used to it from using one for years for holidays. It would be nice if I could actually sit in the house sometimes though, without having to clear up first. Because of how things are situated, it really wouldn't work with my son and his girlfriend being in the caravan as they would still have to be in and out of the house all the time. At least I have my own little sanctuary when I'm in it.

I do feel a bit guilty about telling my daughter to leave but how long is she going to be here? 30, 40? She's still living the life she lived at 16!

The big problem is the financial strain this is causing me. My choice at the moment is either to be skint all the time or change my job (which I love) for a full time one doing something else which I probably wouldn't like anywhere near as much.

HollowTalk Thu 02-Aug-18 20:50:49

And don't let them move into the caravan! You'll never get rid of them.

OliviaBonas Thu 02-Aug-18 20:52:22

Oh my goodness! Put your son and his girlfriend in the caravan immediately until they start paying you rent.

Tell your daughter she can stay so long as she pays rent and does her fair share of cleaning, cooking etc otherwise she’s got until January at the latest to find somewhere else.

OliviaBonas Thu 02-Aug-18 20:53:38

Is your daughter saving for a deposit or looking for somewhere of her own to rent etc?

HollowTalk Thu 02-Aug-18 20:53:40

You need to think long-term here, OP. They might moan and say they hate you and they'll never see you again. That won't happen. There might be a few awkward months but once they are settled into their own homes and grow up a bit, they'll come round.

I think it's really important you hold firm here. Don't wait until January. Tell them by the end of September (so, two months' time) they have to be gone. Sell the caravan then, too. They are really taking the piss.

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