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One at Uni, one at work…

937 replies

BelleClapper · 20/05/2021 12:23

How do you square this without causing resentment?

Dd (17) is working full time on an apprenticeship course. We are charging her rent/keep/petrol equivalent to 25% of her take home.

DS (18) up until now was planning to leave college and get a job. He announced yesterday that he is now accepting the three University offers he got a while back. As an aside he’s just split up with his GF of two years who was absolutely definitely in no way the reason he wasn’t going…

So we will be in a position of taking money from DD and sending money to DS. Which has totally changed the dynamic. I’m really conscious of causing resentment from DD who already suffers a bit with middle child syndrome and jealousy.

If you’ve been in this situation what did you do? I want DD to contribute for lots of reasons, none of which go away just because DS now needs three more years of support.

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Am I being unreasonable?

AIBU

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Tulipomania · 20/05/2021 13:11

Your DS will be building up a huge debt going to Uni, and there is an expectation that parents contribute to supporting them unless they qualify for the full maintenance loan - but it's still only a loan.

Your DD won't have this.

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toconclude · 20/05/2021 13:12

@chocorabbit

£250 (a MONTH, don't forget) would in fact only just about cover 1/4 of total food etc, c/tax, electricity, water, internet connection and heating in most households.

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Comefromaway · 20/05/2021 13:12

@BernadetteRostankowskiWolowitz

It can sadden you all you like. I dont earn the salary to keep two homes - one for the family (which he is welcome to stay in as long as he needs), and one for him.

He wants it? He pays for it.

If you don't earn the salary then he will be entitled to the maximum £9k amount. Parents are expected to top up according to their income. I'm not penalising my kids because I happen to be well paid.
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LookingGlassMilk · 20/05/2021 13:12

I'm one of 4, two of us went away to study and the other two stayed at home and went to a local college. Our parents paid for our rent if we moved away, but they bought a car each for the two that stayed at home. I thought it was fair.

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skybluee · 20/05/2021 13:13

I'm shocked at the people saying her wage is so low.

When I started one of my old jobs, working in admissions at a university, the take home was under 1000 a month. The job was, I think, £13.1K and I got about £950-£990. £400 went on rent, and the rest stretched for food, transport, bills. It was very, very tight.

It's a tough one because is an apprenticeship seen as a full time job (with a low wage) or as education?

You obviously want to treat them fairly.
I definitely agree with previous posters about being open with her about saving the money she's putting aside. That will make a big difference.

Will DS be moving out - into halls, living away from home? Because they are two separate circumstances and I wouldn't let them affect each other.

I agree that if she's living at home and bringing in what is essentially a full time wage then she needs to contribute, I think your set up sounds about right. How long is her apprenticeship and what happens after?

I'd just treat them as separate situations.

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cuparfull · 20/05/2021 13:13

DS needs to work during Uni time and pay his own way like many of us did.
Given the present lack of incomers to the UK, there are by all accounts plenty of PT jobs going in the hospitality industry/baristas/hotel staff.
A niece worked nights at the Travelodge, others worked in hotel housekeeping. Seems the hospitality industry is quite desperate for staff.
And good experience of life moving forward.

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FoxgloveBee · 20/05/2021 13:13

I wouldn't charge her, an apprenticeship is education in my opinion. Not least because she's younger than her brother.

I'd say she needs to transfer you the same amount but you are putting it away as savings for her.

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UhtredRagnarson · 20/05/2021 13:13

I think you should provide them with the same. So if you’re covering DS’s accommodation then you shouldn’t be charging DD for hers. If you’re covering his food costs then you shouldn’t be charging DD for hers.

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OunceOfFlounce · 20/05/2021 13:14

It does seem like she's being penalised for not going to university.

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FunMcCool · 20/05/2021 13:15

Is there a real need that charge a 17 year old? Don’t give her any money but don’t charge her rent.

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Comefromaway · 20/05/2021 13:15

I will be charging ds £50 per week if he chooses not to to go to uni. Doing that will be an incentive for him not to sit at home on Universal Credit playing his piano all day but to actually go out and get a job.

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trilbydoll · 20/05/2021 13:15

My sister went to uni and I didn't. I lived at home rent free, and my Dad bought me a second hand car (it was £3k 14 years ago so not brand new but not cheap as chips either)

Yes they probably gave my sister more money but I've always felt we were treated fairly.

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TheTeenageYears · 20/05/2021 13:15

There is a government expectation that parents support DC at university. Parents are means tested for students maintenance loans and expected to top up amount a student can borrow based their income. It is what it is.

In your shoes OP I would support DS as per expectation if you can but keep a note of how much help you give. I would lower DD's contribution slightly and make her aware that at some point you will even the scales. There may be another time in the future where she would like or needs some financial support and so whilst it might feel a little unbalanced now, it will all be evened out eventually and she has to trust you to be fair.

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Meghansego · 20/05/2021 13:15

@misselphaba

25% seems harsh. I don't know how I'd feel if I was in her shoes. I'd expect DB to get a job and pay his own rent for a start.

I agree. 25% is ridiculously high. We take 10% from our 22 year old and have insisted that he saves a couple of hundred a month too, which he’s happy to do.
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TwoAndAnOnion · 20/05/2021 13:16

I was stuck on this - I would deem an apprentice to still be in education, and earning a reduced NMW of £4.30. It is actually an accredited apprenticeship or is it on-the-job training? Will there actually be a qualification at the end of it?

At 17, you have to be chipping in, if you are working. I don't care if you are in a low-end job, 17yos don't go in commanding high salaries (despite what some posters think) and household incomes vary. If you need the money to balance the household income then so be it.

On a different thread, the same posters will be telling you you can get married at 16, join up and have the vote in Scotland - but are apparently too young to bear some financial equality.

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user1487194234 · 20/05/2021 13:16

Although TBF I don't want my DC working during term time or taking out loans so they are fully funded by us .MY DC who is having a year out is working,minimum wage ,I don't take anything from him.
My friend still has some resentment as her brother got to go away for Uni and she had to stay at home as parents said they could only afford to pay for one to go away (!) (and that was 30 years ago,and no doubt some sexism involved)

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HollyGoLoudly1 · 20/05/2021 13:16

@HappySonHappyMum

I'm interested in this one too. My DS has just started a 3 year apprenticeship but on substantially more at £25k a year. My DD wants to go to Uni. I want to be fair but the balance is very uneven. I think I'm going to have to sit them both down and have a conversation about it all so it is all out in the open and that way there will be no resentment.

Whatever you decide to do, I second this. Have a chat with them so everyone knows what is happening.

It's a tricky one. Reflecting on all the posts so far I am leaning towards not charging her. I do agree that working adults should pay board however I also class an apprenticeship (even paying as much as this one) as education. Your DD is pursuing a qualification that comes with a small salary. Your DS could have pursued something similar; he has chosen a more expensive option and there are financial consequences of that.

As a middle child myself I can already feel the resentment that this would have caused me so maybe that is biasing my view!
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schroeder · 20/05/2021 13:17

I have one at university and one working. We send money to the the first and take money off the second. It's not equal, but it is fair.

There always seem to be a section of mumsnetters who are horrified by charging dc rent. I don't know why, because there have been a million threads about it.Confused

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HelloOldSport · 20/05/2021 13:18

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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SallySycamore · 20/05/2021 13:18

DD is being paid to learn.

DS getting paid by getting a part-time job takes away from his learning time.

I used to do two hours a week tutoring (in my university city), and then temp for a couple of months (at home) in the summer. It was much easier for me to manage than people who tried to balance retail and bar shifts with studying. In fact, on my particular course we were told to think very carefully about how we'd manage before we took on a job, because we had a lot of contact time, and weekly hand-ins.

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LeilaLiesLow · 20/05/2021 13:20

I don't get your 'logic' here OP.

Your DD could not survive on £12K a year if she had to pay rent, bills, food , transport all on her own ( flat share etc.)

I know a friend whose DD was on that wage for an apprenticeship, living away from home, and they treated it the same as uni and paid her rent for a studio flat and she funded all her other spending.

Your son's loan will depend on your household income. It may meet his needs or you may need to help with housing costs. We paid the rent for both our DCs while they were at uni. They each did science degrees which were full-on 6 days a week in the labs etc, incl evenings, so their holiday jobs were out of term time only.

Your son won't get the equivalent of £12K a year in a loan and he will have to repay it when he works. So compared to your DD who can earn £36K over 3 years he is likely to have a debt of £30K+ in 3 years.

I think you need to accept that you should contribute to his education because your DD is already getting a home, food, transport etc for only £3k a year and has £9K left for 'fun'.

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museumum · 20/05/2021 13:21

My understanding (my ds isn't uni level quite yet) is that the Government expects students to be supported to live to the tune of £9k by a combination of parental support and maintenance loan. Anything above that they should earn themselves. I know at some Unis the £9k doesn't cover living costs but it's the general rule.
So I wouldn't think of your part of that £9k as 'giving' money to your ds at all, it's more like a tax on your pay to enable him to study.

If your Dd objects you can show her what he has to pay in rent as i'm sure it won't be anything like her £200 she is paying. I'd guess it'd be more like at least double that!

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notacooldad · 20/05/2021 13:21

Personally I didn't take money from either of mine. They contributed in different ways.
I think it is bloody mean spirited to charge your kids 'rent'. I know you said they have to get used to not having the full wage to themselves but there's different ways if teaching budgeting skills. Mine managed to move out and pay his bills and mortgage without having to hand over money to me.

Ideally we’ll save it for her but I don’t want to let on that I am I always think this is ridiculous and patronising.

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DottyFlossie · 20/05/2021 13:21

I would not charge my DD if she did an apprenticeship.

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ForThePurposeOfTheTape · 20/05/2021 13:21

I'm in a similar situation.

Dc1 is on an apprenticeship while dc3 is going to uni.

Living rent free is an equivalent of getting money from me and paying me as a landlord iyswim. He's actually in a far better position because he isn't paying me with interest and it's a nicer property than he'd get on a student loan amount.

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