Stay at home or go it alone – The pros and cons of living at home
December 4, 2018
The current housing market makes it very difficult for many younger people to cut the proverbial apron strings. In fact 1 in 4 people aged between 20-34 are living with their parents, often because they are priced out of living independently. Of course, living at home can have its benefits – and these extend beyond the obvious financial aspects – but you will have to be able to balance this out with some of the more frustrating aspects of living at home. Let’s start off with some of the best aspects of staying in the nest...
This is the big one. If your parents are willing to let you live with them, chances are they will let you live there at a significantly reduced rate – maybe even rent free if you’re lucky! You are also at a major advantage if they live near to where you are working, particularly in London. This can provide you with the opportunity to get some major saving done, giving you time to find the money for a deposit or even a few months of rent to get you started.
Even if your parents are charging you rent you are still likely to be in a preferable financial situation than if you were to rent privately. At home, you will not be locked into a legal contract and it’s unlikely that your folks will ask you for a deposit. This flexible setup is something you won’t be able to find elsewhere in the private rented sector. Your parents might even be able to help you move out when the time comes, which is an added perk. No matter how good your landlord is, very few of them will offer that!
It is very normal to be worried about feeling constrained by continuing in the familial home, whether you are making a return or simply planning to remain for a little longer. It can, however, give you a much greater level of freedom. Having the extra cash will give you a lot of leeway, but you’ll also be living with people with lots more life experience than you, who will be happy to give you advice if you need it. Having their support – whether financially, domestically or emotionally – will put you in a privileged position when making other important life decisions.
They are your parents
Another major benefit is that you get to spend more time with your parents. They won’t be around forever, so getting to spend quality time with them as an adult is a great opportunity that you might regret missing out on, particularly if your parents are older. Depending on your relationship they might also do you favours such as buying groceries for the whole house or regularly cooking dinners.
Everyone has their own unique relationship with their parents, so only you have any real insight into what it will be like. However, even the little things about living with your parents can make a huge difference to your overall wellbeing whether you recognise it or not. This is especially true if you are working a difficult job or just starting out in a new career. As Joni Mitchell sang before she jumped into her big yellow taxi, you don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone.
They are your parents
There’s a saying that often gets quoted in AA circles that goes: ‘your family know how to push your buttons because they put them there.’ Even if you have a very good relationship with your parents they can get on your nerves in a totally unique way, and the reverse is certainly true too. If you have lived away from home before you’ll know how nice it can be to pop back home for a short trip. Permanently returning to the family home can be a potentially more taxing experience altogether.
Living at home can sometimes feel like you’re sacrificing a degree of freedom and autonomy. While it is a fantastic opportunity if it works for you, it can also feel like arrested development for some or a regression if you’re a ‘boomeranger’ returning home.
Living with anyone can place a strain on your relationship, which you might want to avoid with your own kith and kin. A more formal relationship, where expectations about issues such as repairs are written down in a contract, offers a significant amount of protection for you as a resident that it might be difficult to get with your parents. If you have a contract you will have concrete legal protections, and the truth is that sometimes family can be less attentive to these sort of everyday problems, even if it is without malice.
Living at home can be both a convenient and necessary experience. In popular culture there is a perception that it is in some way bad, but – however you want to look at it – it is a consequence of the incredibly expensive housing market which is limiting many young people’s property choices.
That’s why Vesta is committed to being part of a sustainable rental market that makes having a place to live achievable rather than a dream. We have worked hard to build a property marketplace that deals with tenanted properties, giving tenants more security as they will not be evicted when their landlord sells up. In the end, you might still choose to live with your parents but at least it will be because you’ve made the choice to rather than because you have to. Contact our team today to discuss your options.