You don’t want to move back in with your parents, but it makes financial sense. These tips for moving home as an adult will help you transition smoothly – they’re from “The Money Couple” Scott and Bethany Palmer.
“Whatever your reason for heading back home after college, you are not alone – not by a long shot,” say the Palmers, authors of First Comes Love, Then Comes Money. “It’s estimated that nearly 85% of college grads move in with their parents after they finish school.”
If you’re part of the majority, you need to find ways to be as independent as possible, while respecting their wishes.
Does your relationship with your parents make you crazy? Read Walking on Eggshells: Navigating the Delicate Relationship Between Adult Children and Parents – it’ll help you navigate the ups and downs.
Okay, this might not be how you pictured your future. You thought you’d graduate from college and head off to your money-making job, your great apartment, your new life in the “real world.” Instead, that job hasn’t shown up just yet and you’re moving back to Mom and Dad’s house.
For most graduates, this is a temporary situation. But no matter how long you plan to stay with your parents, it can be a tricky arrangement for all of you, especially when it comes to money.
Believe it or not, your relationship with your parents includes what we call a “money relationship” – how you think about and deal with money as individuals and as a family. And if you’ve ever argued with your parents about money, you know that can create some stress.
But with a little effort, you can make this time with your family a smooth transition between college and the next stage of your life.
Here are five ways to make moving home easier…
Remember that you are not the boss
Yes, you’ve been fairly independent for the last four (or more) years – with your time and your money. And yes, you can take care of yourself. But you are living in someone else’s house. So, give your parents time to adjust to you being there. Take care of your own expenses, try to keep your stuff contained to one room and be respectful of your parents’ schedules. Contribute to the household by cleaning up after yourself, doing your own laundry, and pitching in on expenses and meals.
If you have a rocky relationship with your parents, read How to Cope With Difficult Parents – For Adult Children.
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Set expectations before moving back in with your parents
Before you let another week go by, ask your parents to sit down with you and talk about expectations. Talk about ways you can contribute financially to the family, what your plans are for the next few weeks or months, and how long they are willing to let you stay. Get everything out on the table so there are no surprises after moving in with your parents.
Find a job – get to work ASAP
It’s tempting to think of this as a vacation. It’s not. Use this time to find some kind of job or get ready for graduate school. Even if you can’t find your dream job or a full time job, start working. Large gaps in your work history will be a strike against you in the long run, but holding down a job – any job – will look good on a resume and let your parents know you are serious about moving forward.
Review your Money Personalities
Your Money Personality is the way you think about money. If you and your parents have different money personalities, that can be a source of conflict. Let’s say your dad is a Saver who keeps track of every dime and you’re a Spender who loves to spend money on the latest gadget or keep up on fashion trends. He’s likely get uptight if you’re taking long showers or ordering pizza every afternoon.
Looking over the Money Personalities with your parents and being aware of how each of you deals with money can help you avoid some serious tension.
If your parents are wealthy, read Getting Money From Your Rich Parents – When to Say No.
Keep the lines of communication open
Don’t assume that because you set expectations a month ago that everyone is still on the same page. Frequent short check-in conversations will help all of you stay sane. Moving back home may not be easy, but it can go smoothly.
Taking these steps will lessen the pain, keep the relationship strong and keep the family moving forward.
If you think moving home with your parents is a big mistake, read Dysfunctional Families – 5 Tips for Solving Family Problems.
And if you have any tips to make moving back home easier, please comment below!
For more info about the Palmers, visit The Money Couple.