mother and son

It Will Be A Cold Day In Hell When I Charge My Adult Kids Rent

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Every parent has a different idea of when and if it is appropriate to charge an adult child rent. I can only go based off my own personal situation and what I have seen with a few friends.

I have to warn you that I am very biased about this topic. My parents were all about teaching me financial responsibility at a young age, but there’s more to the story. I really appreciate the hard work ethic they instilled in me, but all of this was going on at a time when my mom had gotten remarried.

My stepdad and I have a good relationship now, but in the midst of the family blending, I always felt unwelcome. I vividly remember my parents talking about how they were excited for the day that I would turn 18 and leave the house. Maybe they were joking, but that really hurt me. I stayed for another year until I was 19, but I was required to pay rent.

Instead of sending me the message of responsibility, it made me feel like I was merely a tenant. Instead of feeling like a family member in my own house, I felt fairly unwelcome throughout my teenage years. When my parents said that they couldn’t wait for me to grow up and leave, I felt even worse.

My husband’s house was different because he wasn’t charged rent at a certain age when he was “expected” to leave the nest. But both he and his brother moved back in with their parents intermittently in their twenties to save up money, and I know they paid a very low rent to help out—like $200.

I am all for teaching my kids financial responsibility and how to make it in the real world. But because of the message that I received related to paying rent, i.e. you don’t really live here anymore and you’re not welcome, I’ll never make my kids pay rent as adults. Yes, they’ll learn to be responsible for their own bills as soon as they start working, but they’re always welcome in my house.

(Image: Robcartorres/Shutterstock)