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Adult step daughter moving in

(199 Posts)
Swivelchairaccident83 Mon 12-Mar-18 13:10:33

So.. I’ve been hanging around here for a while but now I need some advice myself. Not all that familiar with some of the abbreviations and such.

My 25 year old step daughter has moved back home after travelling. When she asked her father if she could move in (I wasn’t present) she told him she could only afford to pay £100 a month. My husband said this was fine. She works full time, no longer has a car and it appears her only outgoing is her phone bill.

Am I being horrid or is it rude to state how much you can afford to pay in these circumstances? I spoke to my husband as we do communicate quite well. Obviously he was quite defensive but I asked what was £100 supposed to cover? It’s not enough in my opinion for a 25 year old who’s working full time. In fact to be honest I think it’s downright rude! I’m not sure what is a reasonable amount but my instincts are telling me this isn’t enough.

To contradict my earlier statement that my husband and I communicate well he didn’t even ask me if I was happy with the amount before clearing it with her. He told me this could go towards the food bill but what about all the other outgoings?

He asked me to speak to her about it but I’ve put my foot down after many difficulties with her over the years and asked him to stop giving me the rubbish jobs. He’s her father and I think he should be questioning her. I’m happy to be there and join in with the discussion when I feel I need to jump in but I believe he needs to start the conversation.

She came home last night and my husband was asking a few polite questions but he never directly asked her what was going on. He does tread on eggshells around her and I’m growing tired of it.

I know she has a busy year with hen parties, weddings and such and I do believe this is her reason for only affording £100. If this is the case which I believe it is then won’t she just have to try and budget and prioritise like the rest of us.

He’s basically just told her she can move in for £100 a month no questions asked.
Do I lead the conversation by myself without my husband? Which I don’t believe I should even if he was present. He’s afraid of looking like the bad guy.
Then there’s me, trying to fight the stereotype of a shitty step-mum.

I hope this is clear as I’m not good at explaining myself and fear I may have babbled on a bit smile any advice welcome smile

MyBrilliantDisguise Mon 12-Mar-18 13:14:38

How much does she earn?

twer Mon 12-Mar-18 13:16:51

If they've agreed £100 then they've agreed it. Not much you can do about that without seeming like a witch.
Some/a lot of MNers don't charge their adult children anything when they come back home so you might have some polarised views here.

I think you can approach it from the side of "if you can only afford £100 then you'll have to make up with doing plenty of housework/cooking/etc"

Magda72 Mon 12-Mar-18 13:17:23

Did he also agree to her moving home without consulting you?

HarrietSmith Mon 12-Mar-18 13:18:26

Gosh. That's a difficult one. It's generally seen as good practice when adult children move back home to have a thorough discussion about how everything is going to work.

Not just money, but stuff like tidiness and noise and people having their mates round. Privacy and communal space etc. Also to build in a kind of review system so people can look at how it's working,

I think it is worth thinking about how much her moving back will cost. £25 per week is one thing if she is going to be buying and cooking her own food. Another if it's covering breakfast, packed lunch, dinner - wine from the booze cupboard. How much is she earning? How much would it cost her to live in a shared, privately rented flat.

And how much do you want her back in your home, for an open-ended period.

It sounds as if, at the very least, your partner isn't thinking this one through...

NorthernSpirit Mon 12-Mar-18 13:34:02

Firstly you should of been consulted. Appreciate it’s his daughter, but it’s your home too and you should be a partnership.

She’s ‘told’ you she’s going to pay £100 per month - equates at £23 a week. How much does she earn? What’s this figure based on? It’s important at that age she pays her way and realises how much things cost.

If you were to take your living expenses and divide by 3 (you, OH, DSD) what would that cost look like?
• Mortgsge interest payment
• Home insurance
• Gas
• Electric
• Water
• TV license
• Broadband costs
• Food
• Etc......

I bet the cost comes to more than £23 a week. I’m sure she’s had a lovely year off travelling, but at 25 she needs to start standing on her own 2 feet.

And yes..... you should be consulted before!

This is worth a read:

Bananasinpyjamas11 Mon 12-Mar-18 13:36:52

I would never agree to my child moving back in without discussion with my DP first. That’s pretty bad.

There are many reasons why it’s so important to have both you and DP making this decision together-
- it needs to be clear that it is both of yours home. Not the child’s. It is a favour. Not a ‘right’.
- the adult child needs to see that you both need to agree and be happy. Otherwise you are just setting up the child to ignore your say in other things like cooking / washing.
- it’s a big deal. It’s not a small thing to share your home with a step child.
- there’s the vital chat about how long for and whether this is helping the child bridge to adult independence- or enabling tumble back to dependency.

So I would be annoyed OP!

Apart from that. It is always nice where possible to help kids even when adults. As long as she is fairly respectful of you, there should be no reason why she couldn’t be accommodated and welcomed. But I’d have a word with DP - say that you are fine in principal- but that you need to work out together how. As a compromise you could say ok 100 for three months, then it goes up to ——- other amount - and six months you Exocet her to be actively seeking other accommodation?

Ariela Mon 12-Mar-18 13:42:23

Agree with twer that the shortfall could be made up with jobs around the house, talk over with your OH as to the exact jobs she should do, make a list that HE can present her with as she moves in. Your home is not a hotel.

Laska5772 Mon 12-Mar-18 13:43:09

Look up the local housing allowance rate for a shared house in your area( google local housing allowance then put in your postcode); This is what she would get in housing benefit (and of course thats before any other expense would be needed to be covered).. then you can use that as a starting point. In our area of the south it is £68.50 a week..

HarrietSmith Mon 12-Mar-18 13:46:45

For a lot of young people attending weddings and hen parties is an important social event. They seem to be increasingly expensive and elaborate affairs.

On the other hand adulthood is a state in which you have to budget. Food and rent and utilities and travel to work come first. Entertainment - and weddings are essentially big parties - is purchased with what is left over.

So your stepdaughter doesn't sound very grown up - and it's as if your partner isn't terribly keen on telling her that she has to start growing up.

(Some people don't ask their adult children for much money on the basis that their sons and daughters are saving for the deposit on a property - but that's a slightly different situation.)

FaFoutis Mon 12-Mar-18 13:47:20

If she is moving in to save up a deposit charging her lots of money to live there is only going to work against you (assuming you don't want her there, which is my impression from your post).

missperegrinespeculiar Mon 12-Mar-18 13:50:04

Well, I think that the fact he didn't discuss it with you first is not good, it is your home, too

That said, first, I would never wish to deny a child of mine the chance to return home, unless there were insurmountable difficulties, if my DP did not agree this would upset me, and, second, I would never charge a child of mine rent

I would expect them to be respectful of the home and do their part in helping out though

Beanteam Mon 12-Mar-18 13:53:15

Well you could agree 100£ is fine and start chucking that into the pot too😬 leaving the rest to him

But the most important thing is how long is she staying???

boredofwaitingagain Mon 12-Mar-18 13:54:13

I don't understand the idea that she should need to pay a market rent. She is your daughter (albeit step). Your bills are only going to go up a negligible amount (you presumably heat the whole of your house already). Your council tax will stay the same. You'll probably find that she will buy her own food and eat out a lot - at 25 I wouldn't have been sitting down at the table with my parents and I wouldn't have really liked what they were eating. Slightly higher water bill I guess and a little bit more electric.

I would say the bigger issue is that you don't want her there at all (fair enough to be honest - she's an adult).

Serin Mon 12-Mar-18 13:55:15

It costs in the region of £115-£160 a WEEK for a room in Uni halls, that is without any food but bills and wifi included.

Could you do as some of my friends do and charge a similar amount and then put some of it away for her so that when a nice flat becomes available, you can 'help' with the deposit? wink

Either way it was very rude of them both to not include you in the prior discussion.

HarrietSmith Mon 12-Mar-18 15:09:28

I think not charging rent is fine for a short stay at a time when somebody isn't earning. But a nominal amount just seems like an invitation for someone not to take responsibility - especially when there's no prior discussion. Young adults who aren't responsible for bills leave lights on, take endless showers, help themselves to stuff in the fridge which was intended for a meal when they come home hungry from the pub. I suppose the interesting question is how you partner is happy for it to work. Is he happy to subsidise his adult daughter's partying - eg hen parties and weddings - indefinitely.

I think the step-parent thing is rather a red herring. I am already trying to work out how things will work out if/when my daughter - who I love dearly - doesn't have clear plans after graduating this summer. It's not going to be something open-ended and indefinite.

FlippingFoal Mon 12-Mar-18 15:26:22

Wow I paid £100 a Month in 1998 when I was first working and earning £6000!

That's awful that he hasn't even discussed it with you.

Could you say that you will now pay a third of the bills as there are now and he can pay the shortfall for his daughter?

TheFaerieQueene Mon 12-Mar-18 15:30:21

He should have discussed it with you, but it would have been rather churlish if you had turned her away. My take on the peppercorn rent would be that as she is paying so little, she will be able to save much more quickly to get a deposit together for her own home. grin

appleblossomtree Mon 12-Mar-18 15:34:49

I think for that I would be expecting her to share the cooking perhaps (and buying the food for the meals). I paid my mum a similar amount while I was working but in full time education (at around 18).

appleblossomtree Mon 12-Mar-18 15:38:32

The idea of taking a bit more but putting away as a lump sum is a good suggestion.

LoveProsecco Mon 12-Mar-18 15:39:20

I think he should have ran it past you before agreeing to her moving in or the amount.

I think the amount depends of what she can afford, expectations of housework etc and also how long she is moving in for. If it's a long time or he foreseeable future £100 is far too little.

SandyY2K Mon 12-Mar-18 16:01:15

If for whatever reason I moved back parents would never charge me a penny.

I would buy groceries as a contribution though. I do realise my culture is different though.

Swivelchairaccident83 Mon 12-Mar-18 16:14:46

I appreciate everybody’s advice, thank you. Just to add she will have sole use of her own bathroom too.
She never kept it clean the previous times she lived here. The toilet bowl turned brown, she left a full bin of used sanitary products rotting to the point I could smell it on the landing. She never washed anything and when she did would just leave it in the machine damp. I am nervous because she is filthy. Her bedroom ends up a disgusting, smelly pit full of pots, dirty clothes and litter. My husband knows what she is like and always got very defensive.
I keep a nice home and got very distressed as I felt totally disrespected.
She cannot do anything for herself, she can’t work an oven, struggles to cook food from a packet and on her days off just sits around in her pyjamas.
My husband tried to speak to her last night and he just chickened out.
To confirm she is working full time on minimum wage.

FaFoutis Mon 12-Mar-18 16:32:42

Well that just confirmed the evil stepmother stereotype.

Heartofglass12345 Mon 12-Mar-18 16:34:17

She sounds disgusting! I was living on my own in a rented house at her age after finishing uni at 21 and moving out when i was 22. You definitely need to sit down and talk to your husband and set some ground rules with her as well. I wouldve been ashamed to have someone like that living in my house and its far from spotless! Good luck thanks

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