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s/o: pay rent if you're working, but not in college?


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This has been on my mind lately, particularly in light of the many "is college needed?" threads that have been posted as well.

 

There seems to be a very strong bias in favor of paying for a whole lot more when one's grown or nearly grown children are going to college, as opposed to when they get a job. Of course, it does vary:

 

Some parents don't pay for any expenses at that age, including college, but a working 18-yr-old is expected to pay room and board. And 18-yr-old student is not.

 

Others will also pay for many college expenses, on top of not charging the student room and board. This is often the case even when the student has a job.

 

If your thoughts run along these lines, can you tell me why? Is it an effort to make college the more attractive choice?

 

If you *don't* think college should be the default choice, but still have these rules, what is the reasoning?

 

In either case, is it something you've given a lot of thought to recently, or is it a long-term 'default' type decision? ie, it's the way you grew up or what's common in your area.

 

Clearly kids who decide on college under these rules will get a much larger chunk of the family resources than those who do not. That may make sense IF I am trying to skew the results toward "everyone goes to college," but not so much if I'm open to other paths.

 

If your family is firmly in the "college is not the best path for all" camp, would you consider financing a business opportunity instead? For example, if you are paying tuition for one kid, would you be open to buying the next kid a vending route or such?

 

Talk to me, people.

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Some parents don't pay for any expenses at that age, including college, but a working 18-yr-old is expected to pay room and board. And 18-yr-old student is not.

 

Others will also pay for many college expenses, on top of not charging the student room and board. This is often the case even when the student has a job.

 

If your thoughts run along these lines, can you tell me why? Is it an effort to make college the more attractive choice?

 

I expect my son to go to college and we talk about it and his options even as young as he is.

 

If a child is in college, they have expenses: tuition, books, supplies. Even if they have a job, they are probably also taking out loans (I expect this will be our route). Making them pay rent if they lived at home would be adding to debt rather than helping out.

 

If a child has a job but isn't in school, their money isn't going towards bills. It should be. :) Making them pay rent is teaching them that there isn't a free ride.

 

I see the difference in what the child is working towards.

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This has been on my mind lately, particularly in light of the many "is college needed?" threads that have been posted as well.

 

There seems to be a very strong bias in favor of paying for a whole lot more when one's grown or nearly grown children are going to college, as opposed to when they get a job. Of course, it does vary:

 

Some parents don't pay for any expenses at that age, including college, but a working 18-yr-old is expected to pay room and board. And 18-yr-old student is not.

 

Others will also pay for many college expenses, on top of not charging the student room and board. This is often the case even when the student has a job.

 

If your thoughts run along these lines, can you tell me why? Is it an effort to make college the more attractive choice?

 

If you *don't* think college should be the default choice, but still have these rules, what is the reasoning?

 

In either case, is it something you've given a lot of thought to recently, or is it a long-term 'default' type decision? ie, it's the way you grew up or what's common in your area.

 

Clearly kids who decide on college under these rules will get a much larger chunk of the family resources than those who do not. That may make sense IF I am trying to skew the results toward "everyone goes to college," but not so much if I'm open to other paths.

 

If your family is firmly in the "college is not the best path for all" camp, would you consider financing a business opportunity instead? For example, if you are paying tuition for one kid, would you be open to buying the next kid a vending route or such?

 

Talk to me, people.

 

 

I don't really understand your perspective. I worked while I went to college, had scholarships and grants, and I still had to take out loans to cover the total expense. Loans that I'm still paying back now.

 

This has presented a considerable financial burden to us. Any money our son would earn while working is most likely going to go to off set the costs of attendance.

 

Since it's my goal to give my son the very best opportunities in life that I can, why would I seek to add to his burden by charging rent while he's in college? I want my son to use his energy and time focusing on his studies, not spending it like I did--stressed out and over-tired from working all the time.

 

Am I missing something here?

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I won't expect dd to pay rent while in college. I really hope that she will go to a state school and live at home in order to save us all money.

 

If she plans on going to work, I have no problem with her staying home for a year or 4 in order to save up her money so she doesn't have to start out life in debt like I did.

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Ds is welcome to live at home while attending college. We would not charge rent, this is his home. College would be his "job", imo, and since it does not produce an income and requires an investment, free rent would be part of our investment. He will have to obtain loans or grants for school, we will not be able to afford much financial help.

 

The reality is that there are about 3 colleges that he could commute to from our location. One requires all freshman to live on campus, none of these may be a good fit for him.

 

We also have a different perspective if he were working. I seriously doubt dh would ever charge him rent, as long as he is being productive. If he were working and living at home I'd rather him save his money to move out, or pay us a rent that we would gift back to him when he moved out.

 

We've had periods of our adult lives where we've lived in my parents temporarily. They've never charged rent, although we chipped in on utilities and groceries. Dh has already told ds that if he ever needs a place, this is his home, he is always welcome here. Even in adulthood, we want ds to consider this home and a safe place to land, should he need it. I believe it would by hypocritical of us to do otherwise.

 

If behavior/lifestyle/actions were an issue, we'd address those and err on the side of grace (hopefully).

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Some parents don't pay for any expenses at that age, including college, but a working 18-yr-old is expected to pay room and board. And 18-yr-old student is not.

Others will also pay for many college expenses, on top of not charging the student room and board. This is often the case even when the student has a job.

If your thoughts run along these lines, can you tell me why? Is it an effort to make college the more attractive choice?

 

 

No, it has nothing to do with making college attractive.

To me, it means considering college full time job. Having spent 60 hours per week on school as an undergraduate in my field, I would much rather free up my children to devote themselves to their studies than require them to pay me rent.

From a long-term financial point of view it makes a lot more sense if the student focuses completely on his studies, graduates within four years with a high GPA and then goes on to a paid job in his field of degree - as opposed to taking a light class load and taking more years in order to free up the time for a low paid job, and then graduate with a low GPA and being unable to find a job in his field because the outside work did not allow him to focus on his class work.

The amount of money the second student earns while working in college will be much smaller than the amount the first student will earn having a good job in his field of degree during the years he is done earlier- so from a long term financial perspective, the second choice does not make sense.

I realize that many students must work because it would not be financially possible otherwise; I assume you ask what we would choose if there was an actual choice.

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My parents were in this camp. We could eitehr go to college and live at home for free, or work and pay rent. They did NOT help with college at all so the free rent was their way of trying to make sure we could focus on school. Problem was we had to work anyway to pay for school so there could not be the 100% focus on school anyway. I lived at home paying rent for 6 months after graduation and thn moved out on my own. I worked and supported myself for 1.5 yrs before deciding to apply for college. My biggest issue with paying rent to my parents was that they still wanted to treat me like a little kid with strict curfews and rules (like 10 pm curfew at age 18 while paying rent, they were still trying to tell me I could not go to certain parties etc), and my thoughts were if I am paying to live there as a tenant than I have a right to create my own rules as long as they did not disrupt the rest of the family. So I moved out and got my own place and did what I wanted.

 

When it comes to my own kids I can not offer then anything finacially upon graduation towards college or a business venture etc. I will offer that they can live here either until done college or until they have saved up enough from working to have a good savings account before moving out, however they will be expected to contribute to household expenses as well as covering all their personal expenses (clothes, entertainment, vehicle, cell phone etc). Both ways is situational on behaviour. If for example, my oldest ds goes to college BUT continues with his aggression and attitudes etc then he will not be living here at all kwim. As well regardless of which route they take there will be a time limit of 4 yrs, that's long enough to either graduate from a 4 yr program and get a job, or to have created a decent nest egg if only working. I will not allow them to live here indefinitely expecting me to pay their way in life.

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I won't expect dd to pay rent while in college. I really hope that she will go to a state school and live at home in order to save us all money.

 

If she plans on going to work, I have no problem with her staying home for a year or 4 in order to save up her money so she doesn't have to start out life in debt like I did.

 

 

This.

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My dh wanted to charge rent, because that is what his parents did. I did not have to pay rent while living with my parents so this is my pov. We agree to disagree on rent and made these adjustments for our oldest son.

 

Our oldest ds will be 21 next month. He has some comm. college under his belt. He does not have a clue what he wants to do for a college major, so for now he is just working. He is responsible for his car insurance, yearly plate sticker and his portion of the cell phone bill. He does not pay rent. I think paying for the above expenses is enough for now :) There will be plenty of years to pay rent/mortgage whether or not he earns a college degree.

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OP, since you asked about the scenario of working while living at home--though I really want for ds to attend college--I'll answer that as well.

 

No, I wouldn't charge him rent. I'm his parent, not his landlord. What I have is his (can't take it with me when I leave this life anyway). If he wishes to contribute and is able, that's fine. But, it's all going back to him eventually anyway.

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Giving ds free room and board, isn't attached to college but it is attached to him continuing his education and broadening his own horizons. If he wanted to get a job pumping gas and then spending the rest of him time doing what ever he wants, then 'no, I don't feel like I need to support him'. But, if he is in school, doing missions work, volunteering, starting his own business, etc....that are broadening who he is...I have no problem with him staying here. It costs us a few hundred a month for him to be here, to be on his own it would be a thousand. As long as he is doing good in the world, I do feel the need to push him out the door.

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If my dc are working full time and not going to school we will ask that they pay rent. I want my dc to know the value of work and that adults work for what they have. The purpose of living at home will be to save money so we will set aside the rent for them in a savings account. The accumulated money will be theirs when they leave.

 

If my dc go to college, we will help as we are able. There will be no expectation of rent if they choose to live at home because they will have little to no income.

 

It's good to think about these things. College has always been our default choice but now that our oldest is 15 she's looking at going to vo-tech training. She really wants to be a cosmetologist. I don't know that a college degree will be a worthwhile investment for her given her career plan. It's something I never really considered before.

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To answer the question - would I charge a child of mine room and board if they were working and the answer is "maybe."

 

I would not if they had little money or were saving for big goals - college, their own place, etc.

 

I would if I felt they were skating close to taking advantage of me/ acting entitled/ showing poor money management (i.e their not paying room and board was causing issues).

 

The room and board would be small - just to cover some expenses.

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If a child is in college, they have expenses: tuition, books, supplies. Even if they have a job, they are probably also taking out loans (I expect this will be our route). Making them pay rent if they lived at home would be adding to debt rather than helping out.

 

If a child has a job but isn't in school, their money isn't going towards bills. It should be. :) Making them pay rent is teaching them that there isn't a free ride.

 

I see the difference in what the child is working towards.

:iagree: I have an expectation my children will go to college - and major in a field in which they can earn a living adequate to the support of a family. (1dd may be a classics major, but she works as a database administrator. One woman among a dozen guys in her dept.)

 

even with loans, scholarships, grants, etc. AND a part time job, there are many expenses someone NOT going to college doesn't have. students still have "rent/board/transportation", but they also have books/tuition/school supplies/etc. And when they graduate, they have loans to payback.

 

2dd has been very careful, if she can get away without accepting a loan - she does without it. we figure just her living at home will save her $40K over the course of four years. She did get a wake up call in just how much it would cost for her to live even with a roommate in a small apartment when she and dh went over her finances and what it would cost. she decided she really can't afford it unless she takes out more loans, and she won't do that. she is working part time at a good wage and is due for a raise at the end of this school year. she is also able to do most of her communting via bus. we have provided teens with a cheap car - but they share it and it stays here.

 

dh's nephew didn't even graduate high school - did eventually get a GED. he worked odd jobs and was on his own by the time he was 20 when he was able to get a good job. He showed up here regularly (for a month or so for meals) until he got his first real paycheck. His expenses still are rent/utilities/food - and material/durable goods. and lots of travel.

 

while dh's nephew make a very healthy living - there is a HUGE difference in attitude between him and his college educated siblings and cousins. Maybe it will improve with age - but he's 32 now and the cousins are all younger than him, two own homes, one working towards owning a home, etc.

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Our children are welcome to live at home while attending college. We would not charge them rent but would expect them to be respectful of our home and family rules. Meaning they need to clean up after themselves, tell us when they're expecting to get home and not stay out all hours of the night. Mom will and does worry whether they're 18 or 28. They would also be expected to work part time to pay for car insurance, gas, and other extras. My older two did this for a couple of years and then decided to move out. They live together.

 

If they weren't going to school but working, and being responsible (saving money, being respectful) I don't think we would charge them rent. They have to be a contributing member of this family and that could include occasional financial contributions which I imagine they would want to do. However, if they were flitting away their money, running around all the time, trying to see how many parties they could get to, basically using our home as a crash pad, they wouldn't be getting a free ride from us under those circumstances. I believe that would be enabling them to become irresponsible adults and citizens. If they weren't employed, they would have to be actively looking for a job.

Edited by Ishki
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Is it an effort to make college the more attractive choice?

 

 

Nope. If you are working and not in school, you have plenty of money to help out with bills. If you are in school, you can work less and have the expenses of books and things. In our case, it's completely practical.

 

Tara

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I do not believe in charging rent. If my child wants to go to college or trade school that is fine. If they want to take a year off to work and save, that is fine. I will have the same rules for them growing up I had. Respect me and the house, clean up after yourself and help out. I bought the groceries for the house and did the yard work. As long as my kids do that I am happy.

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It depends.

 

If they're working to save up for college/University, no, there would not be rent charged.

 

If they're working and have no further plans, then yes, we'd charge a nominal rent.

 

My thoughts are a) it prepares them for budgeting for the real world, and b) I don't want my kids living at home forever.

 

Unless some miracle occurs, we're not going to be able to pay for secondary education, so living for free would be our contribution to it.

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Assuming we will be able to we will pay for as much of dd's college as possible assuming she does well or gives it her best to do well. If she didn't want to go to college and came to us with a well thought out plan of where she wanted to go we would do all we could to help out. She won't live at home for free and party all the time.

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I do not believe in charging rent. If my child wants to go to college or trade school that is fine. If they want to take a year off to work and save, that is fine. I will have the same rules for them growing up I had. Respect me and the house, clean up after yourself and help out. I bought the groceries for the house and did the yard work. As long as my kids do that I am happy.

 

I mostly agree with this viewpoint. I'm okay with charging rent if the child is working, not in school, and not saving. The "rent" could just go directly into a savings account for later, more responsible days. As long as the individual is furthering him/herself, pulling his/her weight, and being respectful, I see no reason to change my financial expectations of him/her. It will differ for every family, though. I don't think there is any one right or wrong way here.

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I expect all my kids to get a 4 year college degree, absolutely. I actually expect them to get grad. degrees unless their 4 year degree is exceptionally employable.

 

We'll pay the vast majority of their schooling expenses through 4 year college, and will assist with grad school to the best of our ability, especially if they are able to get a 4 year degree w/o us having to shell out huge expenses (ie, they get great scholarships and/or choose a good but less expensive school. We have a $$ figure in mind that we'd use towards grad school if they don't spend most/all of it in undergrad). Our commitment to ourselves is to get them through 4 year degree in minimum time w/o debt, which is why we'd help a lot. (Our own parents did this for both of us, and we expect to be able to do so.)

 

We'd expect them to contribute to expenses by working summers, making good choices, being frugal, getting scholarships as possible, etc, but we'd fill in all the gaps assuming they were doing their best. For grad school, we're OK with them going into debt as reasonable for their profession, which is why we wouldn't expect to fully cover their costs in grad school. (Our own parents gave us a little help during grad school, but we mostly self-funded via work/assistantships/personal money from real estate and inheritances, and loans.)

 

IMHO, a 4 year college degree is non-negotiable part of basic education (assuming no unusual intellectual impairments). All of our kids is more than capable of advanced academic work. If they choose not to go to college, Hell would rain down on them from us. We'd not help them financially, except possibly to provide health insurance, which would be more for OUR protection than theirs, as we know we'd end up covering medical costs if needed. We will exert all resonable parental pressure to convince them NOT to choose to skip college, and we will also strongly encourage grad school as well, although we won't put the high pressure tactics on for grad school.

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ps. If my child were living at home & not going to school, I'd think a good compromise would be to charge reasonable room & board, and then to put that $$ in a savings account, ready and waiting for the child to actually spend on SCHOOL. Otherwise, I'd be concerned that the rent/board $$ saved would just be frittered away. I'd tell the kid what we were doing, and let them know that if it wasn't spent on SCHOOL in, say 10 years, the $$ was MINE to go on vacation with or otherwise fritter away, as it was, afterall, just fair room/board. :)

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I'm assuming that by "paying rent" you apparently are talking about the dc living at home w/ you and charging them rent. If that's the case we would never charge our kids rent to live at home.

 

In our case we have only had one old enough for college at this time - we paid for all expenses including his housing (we bought a home in the city he's attending school bec it ended up being cheaper than paying rent for an appt and then we'll sell it when he's finished with it providing no other dc decided to attend in the same city.) DS has now graduated but his current job isn't in his area of schooling and doesn't pay enough to cover all his expenses so we con't to help -- we do expect him to pay for his "extras" and we pay for basics.

 

Our family is one where we begin talking about going to college practically at birth - it's our expectation and it's all our kids have ever known. It wasn't until we go into the hs circle that our kids had friends who talked about getting a job instead of going to college.

 

As long as they are in school or beginning a track of employment we'll help out and pay expenses. If they decide to take a gap year we'll still cover expenses at home but will expect that they'll work and pay for their extra expenses - going out w/ friends, etc. If they were to decide to not ever go to college - well, we'd just have to see. We might help for a short time but we'd probably make it harder on them in an effort to encourage college bec we feel that the college experience is more than just a piece of paper w/ a degree. But that's our family view.

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I have one kid in college so far - he lives on campus as it is three hours away.

 

The next kid in line does NOT want to go to college. She has not a clue what to do. She does have a part-time job, but spends it all on pizza, clothes, her phone bill...and now gas and insurance since she took over our old mini-van. She knows that once out of high school in a couple months she can either prepare to attend the local cc full-time in the fall OR have a full-time job by then so she can pay rent. She can use the van to drive to her job and/or college as long as she can afford it.

 

IF she can afford to move out and live a full, independent life, good for her. I do not see this happening ;) . If she has to live at home, she WILL pay rent - but it will be held in an account for eventual college costs if/when she decides to go.

 

If she does not go to college and can not find a full-time job (and her part-time job may end soon) then she will have no $$$ for the van or her phone....and we are not paying for them. They will go bye-bye.

 

She most likely will decide college is a good idea after all. Full-time college with decent grades gets us to help pay for the phone and car, too (which would still be far less than we are forking out to ds's LAC)

 

She often tells me "I am 18 now and can make my own decisions!" I respond that I am OVER 18 and can make my own decisions, too - one of which is to charge rent for non-college-attending "adults". :D

Edited by JFSinIL
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In our case we have only had one old enough for college at this time - we paid for all expenses including his housing (we bought a home in the city he's attending school bec it ended up being cheaper than paying rent for an appt and then we'll sell it when he's finished with it providing no other dc decided to attend in the same city.)

 

That was clever of you! I hope your ds appreciated that move.

 

Our family is one where we begin talking about going to college practically at birth - it's our expectation and it's all our kids have ever known. It wasn't until we go into the hs circle that our kids had friends who talked about getting a job instead of going to college.

 

Same here.

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To us it would depend on what they're doing, what their plans are, etc. If they are in college or working toward something better (trade school, vocational training, etc) then we would help them. If they go down the street and get a job at the local fast food place with no plans we'd have to reconsider. I'm certainly not in the "college is the ONLY way" camp but I do believe some type of training beyond high school is necessary to survive in the world. My husband made more last year as an insurance agent than he ever did using his master's degree. Becoming an agent only required him to take the state insurance test so he didn't need college for that. But working at a fast food place is another matter. They need to do something that will prepare them for a career.

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I have a 21 year old DD and I have never charged her rent but she's always gone to community college. Even if she decided to stop going to school, as long as she was working and saving some money, I would not charge her rent. Why would she pay me rent when she could rent her own place? I would consider charging her rent if I wanted her to move out because that would seal the deal.

 

My DD has to pay for her own car insurance and gas. I pay for her cell phone bill. She moved out three weeks ago. She didn't like the long commute (1 hour each way) and she thought she was putting too many miles on her new car. She's hinted to the fact that she will be back in six months. :001_huh:

 

My DD works three jobs (bank teller, cvs, & waitress for catering place) and goes to community college full time. I'm not sure what I would do if I had a kid that refused to work or go to community college.

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To answer the question - would I charge a child of mine room and board if they were working and the answer is "maybe."

 

I would not if they had little money or were saving for big goals - college, their own place, etc.

 

I would if I felt they were skating close to taking advantage of me/ acting entitled/ showing poor money management (i.e their not paying room and board was causing issues).

 

The room and board would be small - just to cover some expenses.

I agree with this. I don't feel that it is "good" for our children to be supported while they use their entire salary on toys. I think it gets them used to an unrealistic standard of living. I also don't think it's "good" for them to live at home for years not taking a job bc the "right" one hasn't come along.

 

If they have a plan and are saving toward that plan then I would consider not charging rent.

 

My parents let me move in during transition times rent free. My brother was there long term and had a small rent charged. I think this was very good for him at a time he very much needed to learn responsibility.

 

Our family lived w/ my MIL for 7 months btwn permanent jobs. We paid for the groceries and I cooked and cleaned. Dh helped finish her unfinished home. My SIL and BIL lived there long term and paid rent but they did not contribute to the household in anyway and would not have if they had paid no rent.

Edited by freesia
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ps. If my child were living at home & not going to school, I'd think a good compromise would be to charge reasonable room & board, and then to put that $$ in a savings account, ready and waiting for the child to actually spend on SCHOOL. Otherwise, I'd be concerned that the rent/board $$ saved would just be frittered away. I'd tell the kid what we were doing, and let them know that if it wasn't spent on SCHOOL in, say 10 years, the $$ was MINE to go on vacation with or otherwise fritter away, as it was, afterall, just fair room/board. :)

 

THIS is a great idea! I hereby amend my initial "rent of non-student, non-saving adult child goes into savings" to include this provision. :tongue_smilie:

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I am in the college is not for everyone camp. My dd and my youngest ds are academically minded, but they need direction, so they will do better working for someone else which means they will need a college degree. My middle child is not very academically inclined, but he has great ideas, and he knows how to make his ideas work. I will certainly give him the same amount of money to start a business as I plan to give my other children for college. He will of course need to write out a business plan and show me that he is determined, but honestly that will not be hard for him. He is actually working on some of that now at age 8, so I figure before he graduated college he will be well on his way to achieving his dream.

 

While he is starting his business and while my other kids are in college they will not need to pay rent, but they must be working hard at what they are doing. They will need to live on campus or with us though, because I will not be left holding the bag for rent if the other kids in the apt. jump ship and do not pay.

 

If my child lives at home and does not go to school or start a business, then yes they will have to pay rent. I will hold that in an account to give to them as a downpayment for a house.

 

My parents wanted to help me more but could not. It was a struggle to get to where we are, and though I think some of that is good, I do not want them to struggle as much as we did no matter what path they choose.

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I would not charge my children room and board in their own home.

 

If they wanted to use another property to live on without us, and they worked full time, I would expect them to take over the expenses as well. We would cover the bills if they had such an arrangement while attending college full time. In any case, their living on property but not with us would be a financial loss if we can rent, so it would be highly preferable that they are able to cover the expenses so at least we hit a zero (rather than losing money by allowing our children to live for free there AND losing money by covering bills for them). But, if they are in school - and we consider school to be a full time job - things change as we are committed to supporting our children through school.

 

We would also be willing to consider financing a business opportunity instead of college, yes, if we had a child that was not college-bound, but seriously set their mind to that.

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IMHO, a 4 year college degree is non-negotiable part of basic education (assuming no unusual intellectual impairments). All of our kids is more than capable of advanced academic work. If they choose not to go to college, Hell would rain down on them from us. We'd not help them financially, except possibly to provide health insurance, which would be more for OUR protection than theirs, as we know we'd end up covering medical costs if needed. We will exert all resonable parental pressure to convince them NOT to choose to skip college, and we will also strongly encourage grad school as well, although we won't put the high pressure tactics on for grad school.

 

I went to school with kids whose parents had this attitude. A lot of them ended up flunking out ... NOT because they weren't perfectly capable of college-level work, but because they were in college for the wrong reasons or at the wrong time. College is not for everyone, and neither is going to college straight out of high school.

 

I switched schools at one point, for perfectly valid reasons, but my father did not approve of the school I switched to. He exerted so much pressure on me to change back that it very nearly destroyed our relationship. I don't hold it against him now (it was a long time ago), but I do look back on it as a parenting mistake he made.

 

College-age children should be making their own decisions about college. The parents can't, and shouldn't try to, own it.

 

Tara

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If my child is legally an adult and is not in school, I don't see it as their home. I see it as mine.

 

Tara

I am more in the "our home is your home" camp with my children. I guess that my children would have to make some chronically poor choices for me to start talking "business" with them.

 

I would be displeased, however, with them choosing to live at home past certain age. I think working young adults should not live with their parents if different arrangements are at all possible.

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We want our kids to go to college or trade school. FWIW, I'm tempted to say they will go no matter what, but I've learned to never say never. If they live at home during this time, we will not charge rent.

 

If they were out of highschool and living at home NOT going to school and not planning or saving for school, we probably would make them pay rent.

 

If they were saving for school and they were diligent about saving, we wouldn't make them pay rent. If they weren't a good saver, we would make them pay rent and save the rent for them for school.

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I can't imagine charging rent when they were living in their own home. If they are at uni then it is hard enough without adding extra expense. I was brought up with the family home being there for all of us (we live there now), it is a true family home, we have all been back to it at some time, everyone chips in but we don't pay rent. I can't imagine not continuing this way of thinking.

 

If the child was working and obviously frittering their money away then I may have to rethink that, but working, being sensible and saving would be fine. My BIL lives with his father and is on a good income with no dependants or bills and just fritters his money away and I know his family find it hugely annoying. He is always broke. They have mentioned to him several times about saving for a deposit for a house or for a new car (his is decrepid and he needs it for work) but it all goes on DVDs and sci fi memorabilia.

Edited by lailasmum
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college students probably cannot afford to pay for many expenses; full time workers (even at minimum wage) can.

 

:iagree:My kids don't pay for room and board while in college. One is living away from home and one is commuting. My dd is also a ballerina (which doesn't pay much, lol). Her money goes to maintaining her vehicle and paying for gas, food and dance expenses (she gets a pointe shoe allowance from the ballet company, but no one is paying for her leos, tights, etc.). We pay for her auto insurance because she is not living here and therefore some of her college money has to pay for rent and food. She has a scholarship as well...which we figure is her contribution to her education.

 

My son works part-time in the evenings which pays for his car insurance and gasoline. We pay all the rest of his living expenses, since he is still here at home. If he transfers to another university which will require him to live away, then we will reevaluate what expenses he's responsible for.

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If my child is legally an adult and is not in school, I don't see it as their home. I see it as mine.

 

Tara

 

Isn't it funny how culture affects us? A doctor here told me that many here think that Americans don't love their children because they want their kids to leave home at a young age. I told him that most American kids want to leave home! He said that here most young married couples live with parents even.

 

We all love our kids. But our cultures put some rather adamant ideas and expectations in our heads that would be totally different if we were born somewhere else.

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Isn't it funny how culture affects us? A doctor here told me that many here think that Americans don't love their children because they want their kids to leave home at a young age. I told him that most American kids want to leave home! He said that here most young married couples live with parents even.

 

We all love our kids. But our cultures put some rather adamant ideas and expectations in our heads that would be totally different if we were born somewhere else.

 

Well, that seems to be the majority here. But, I'm not personally in a hurry to make my son leave. That's not to say I don't have expectations that he will be either studying in pursuit of higher education, or working productively. I expect him to use his talents and abilities for both the betterment of himself and others.

 

Our home is his home. He is part of what makes it home for us.

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Isn't it funny how culture affects us? A doctor here told me that many here think that Americans don't love their children because they want their kids to leave home at a young age. I told him that most American kids want to leave home! He said that here most young married couples live with parents even.

 

We all love our kids. But our cultures put some rather adamant ideas and expectations in our heads that would be totally different if we were born somewhere else.

 

Interestingly, we know a number of 40 and 50-somethings who are inviting parents to move in with them. Two couples we know had a "mother-in-law" suite constructed in their homes to accommodate aging parents. In one case, my friend was pleased to have a daughter return home after college (and while looking for a job) to give a hand with grandma who was losing her faculties. All would agree that this is noble. Otherwise it seems that there is the cultural message to 20-somethings that one must be a "loser" to return home.

 

As a pragmatist, I have often wondered about people who have large houses. Is their plan to downsize at retirement or is it their hope that the space will be shared by multiple generations?

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Our 19 year old, because of stupid QC laws, has decided to wait to apply as an adult student rather than jumping through the hoops neccessary if he goes to college now. He works part-time, helps with his siblings part-time, and contributes 30% of his earnings towards household expenses.

 

The reason we do it this way is that we want him to get used to putting aside a rent/mortgage payment as soon as he gets paid, rather than having a rude awakening when he (eventually, when he feels ready) moves out.

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I see a lot of problems with the live at home and pay rent philosophy. If the young adult pays rent, the young adult is a tenant and not a member of the family. The parents have no right to dictate lifestyles, choices, etc. and most parents I know, us included, are not willing to house a young adult in our own personal area with younger sibs in the house and not be able to say, "Young adult...you may not do X in this house." (We actually don't have to really state any rules for dd. We always laughingly say dd was born as a mature adult in a baby's body!) But, nearly every single young adult I've known who has paid rent has had their lives dictated to them by their parents and they've paid for a bedroom, one shelf of the refrigerator, a shared bathroom, and no privacy...if they rented a room near campus or near their job from someone they were not related to, they'd be far more likely to have the privileges that go with paying rent.

 

That's problem #1.

 

#2 is that even if the child is not in college, it costs a lot of money to get one launched in life without a boat-load of debt these days. The rent could be saved for that first car...lower or no payment, lower interest rate etc. because the 20-something has a large amount of money saved, first/last/security deposit on an apartment...in our area, the child would need $2000.00 to get into a $350.00 a month apartment...1st and last plus a double security deposit, $200.00 to have electric turned on, $200.00 to have heat turned on...etc....only water and garbage are included in rent around here. That list just keeps going. So as long as my kids are willing to be saving towards a goal of independence with a sound financial plan, then I am more than happy to have them continue to live at home as long as they aren't nasty influences on their younger sibs.

 

#3 Colleges expect full-time students to put in 40-60 hrs. per week. College is the full-time job. Additionally, some majors place an even increased burden of time on the student. In order to graduate in four years as a piano performance major, I had to take 18-20 hrs. per semester and practice 4 hrs. per day on my primary instrument and an 1 hr. per day per secondary instrument that I would be tested on....art majors had to spend 3-4 hrs. per day painting, sculpting, sketching, whatever it was that they were working on in their private lessons and there are other majors that have these kinds of demands. Nursing students may have travel time and a significant amount of it when they do their clinicals and fieldwork, while still taking lecture classes, etc. If the student had to work a job in order to pay rent, the chances are that they wouldn't be able to go full-time and thus have to consider the cost of turning a 4 year degree into 6 or 7 years or just take out more student loan money to pay mom and dad.

 

If my parents had charged rent to my sister when she graduated college and moved home, she would never have been able to save enough money to spend a year as a volunteer teacher in a very poor foreign country...an experience that was absolutely incredible to her. My parents, who are not rolling in the money by any stretch of the imagination, have never regretted that decision.

 

Beyond all of this, I think about the economy in its current state. In our area, if an 18 year old without college or significant vocational training and experience had to pay rent to his/her parents or get out, then they'd be homeless. Our county has a 20% unemployment rate. There are people with master's degrees who are working as clerks at Walmart because their unemployment ran out and they had do have some kind of job. I see 40 years olds bagging groceries and stocking shelves and middle-age individuals doing valet parking at the museums in Detroit. Seriously, the expectation that an 18 year old be able to be even remotely financially viable as soon as he/she graduates, is a pipe-dream in many parts of the U.S. Michigan of course, is one of the absolute worst places for young people fresh out of high school to be looking for employment.

 

DD is working as a paramedic to save money to finish her pre-med/chem degree debt free. I would not dream of charging her rent which would cause her to have to be out of school longer. I want to help my young adults get launched in life without undue burden. My brother did not do this for his sons. They left home without any help and ended up deeply in debt to try to keep a roof over their heads, a car to drive to work, money to pay for classes and vocational training, money for insurance....one had a health problem and his dad refused to keep him on his insurance unless he began paying a portion of the premium even though my brother's premium did not go down when he dropped that child and so said child couldn't afford it, ended up uninsured, and not getting medical help. My brother, whose whole life has always been all about money, got what he had coming to him. His sons have almost zero contact. He was not even invited to his oldest boy's wedding.

 

All that said, I don't really see my financial job as finished when my kids turn 18. Yes, the roll does change, but they still need as many boosts up as I can provide because the world is not a kind financial place to young people these days.

 

Faith

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I grew up with the assumption we would attend a 4 year college, and because we were in a rural area it was also understood that we would love away at school. It was really never discussed - I just knew I was going to colege after high school. College was also the assumption for DH growing up.

 

It has always been our assumption for our children that they will attend some sort of higher education after hs, but we live in an area where they could commute.

 

If they are pursuing higher education, we would not charge rent. If they choose to work full time instead, yes we wold charge them some rent. Our theory is that we are trying to prepare our kids for the real world, and it is very hard to duplicate that scenario when someone is in college. (It just isn't real life.) Working full time provides an opportunity to teach about real life and budgeting/expenses, insurance, etc.

 

We would save that money and probably give it back when the child was ready to move out.

 

Of course, we now have a DD who has forced us to rethink a lot of this. She is not as academically minded and faces different challenges than a "typical" child. Her "launch" into adulthood may have us thinking outside the box.

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I expect my son to go to college and we talk about it and his options even as young as he is.

 

If a child is in college, they have expenses: tuition, books, supplies. Even if they have a job, they are probably also taking out loans (I expect this will be our route). Making them pay rent if they lived at home would be adding to debt rather than helping out.

 

If a child has a job but isn't in school, their money isn't going towards bills. It should be. :) Making them pay rent is teaching them that there isn't a free ride.

 

I see the difference in what the child is working towards.

 

:iagree:

 

I believe if they have the resources to pay their way, they should. That is being an adult. That said, the rent we would charge our living at home children would not be comparable to apartment rent. We only asked our daughter to pay $100 a month when she was living here five years ago. We look at as being a contributing member of the family. It's not a big deal.

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If the young adult pays rent, the young adult is a tenant and not a member of the family. The parents have no right to dictate lifestyles, choices, etc. and most parents I know, us included, are not willing to house a young adult in our own personal area with younger sibs in the house and not be able to say, "Young adult...you may not do X in this house."

 

Living at home and paying rent to your parents is not analogous to living somewhere else and paying rent. And even so, tenants don't have unlimited rights.

 

I live by the "my house, my rules" philosophy. My kids are welcome to live here while they are in college (rent-free) or even for a short amount of time (with rent) if they are just working. But I don't intend to indefinitely actively parent my children once they are adults, and neither do I plan to have my adult kids use my home as a rent-free crashpad while they play. My husband and I work hard for this house and home. Not helping out with that "just cuz u dont wanna" is not cool (or kewl as the case may be).

 

Not to mention the fact that I have younger kids, and my older child will have to set a good example for them. If she wants the ease and convenience of living at home after she's legally an adult, the trade-off for that is either helping out with the costs associated with housing her or setting the good example of going to college.

 

An adult child who pays rent is not a tenant unless you set up a landlord-tenant contract.

 

Tara

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