Are your grown kids eating you out of house and home? Is your empty nest getting a little too crowded? Here is how to get your grown kids out of the house and off your payroll.
|Tom, right now, with unemployment of young people ages 20 to 24 running about 13% and underemployment, another really significant problem, is it reasonable to expect that young adults are going to be moving back home with their parents?
|Thomas J. Henske, CFP
|I think it’s reasonable to expect that they will. The question is for how long. When clients are coming to me and asking me what’s reasonable, usually I think that six months is the right amount of time. So for the first three months, they live rent-free in the house. Then for maybe another two, two-and-a-half months, they pay a small rent. The last two weeks, you actually move them to a hotel. I usually get a lot of laughs when I say that, but you pay for the hotel room for two weeks, and they move all of their stuff there. At the end of two weeks, lo and behold, they usually have a job or at least they find another place to live.
|What can parents do to facilitate and expedite their children’s independence?
|I think you have to teach your kids about budgeting, and that usually happens in college. Give them a monthly stipend to use to pay for rent, food, going out, socializing, and it gets them in the mode of having to have money for the things they want to do…and then also start thinking about what their career is going to be.
|Tom, is it OK for parents to supplement their kids’ rent for example…or help them put a down payment down on a house if that kid is working but just not making enough money?
|I think, in general, I’m not really a huge fan of that idea, the reason being that it just continues on and on, and becomes an expectation. I think it’s a better lesson for your children to learn to become autonomous.
The bottom line on boomerang kids? First, make sure you’re establishing some kind of migration plan, probably something over the course of six months or so, that will get them out on their own. Next, make sure that you are not subsidizing their living expenses too much once they’re out on their own, because, after all, this is about teaching your kids financial independence.