I’ve been living at my Dad’s house since I graduated from college in May, without any college debt, might I add! While I like living with my siblings, I’ve been having trouble with my Dad’s rules and my step-mother. My dad is very traditional and thinks I should live at home until I get married (yikes!) and would not be supportive of me moving out.
I’m saving money and with my job situation, it doesn’t seem financially responsible to move out. The problem is, I’ve been so unhappy living at home that I feel like moving out is my only option.
When did you move out of your parent’s home?
I’ve made a list of pros and cons to try to help me make an informed decision. Most of the cons are financial so the question boils down to whether it is more important to save money or stay sane.
1. Learn Financial Responsibility – Not too long ago I spent $1,400 in 4 days! Ugh. Looking back, I realize how nice a cushion those savings would have been while moving out. Once I move out, I will be responsible for my bills. I will be forced to learn budgeting skills, which will prepare me to take care of my own family one day. While this is a little scary, I think that I’d be able to adjust (I hope!).
2. Peace of Mind – While saving money while living at home has been great, I’ve had to give up other things. It’s been hard to adjust to living with someone I barely know (my step-mother) and to live by my father’s rules. Unfortunately, I sometimes feel like an unwanted guest in my own home.
3. Less Family Responsibility – While at home I spend a lot of time helping out with my little brother and my nephew who sleeps over two or more times a week. By moving out I’d have more time to focus on myself and would feel less obligated to help with babysitting and other family chores in exchange for my Dad paying my bills. Taking away the financial help my father gives me would make me feel less in-debt to him and my family.
4. Privacy – I have very little privacy while living at home. My dad is especially concerned with allowing my boyfriend and I to be alone…ever. Since my boyfriend lives in PA when he visits he stays with us and this is really the only time I see him.
1. Paying Rent – Even with roommates rent is going to cost between $400-$700 a month. This would make saving money a lot harder and it would be a big cut of my monthly budget.
2. Buying Groceries – While at home I haven’t had to buy any groceries so this would again cut into my budget. But I’d be able to choose the foods that I want to eat. My Dad tends to buy unhealthy snacks (that I find hard to resist!) and by living alone I wouldn’t be tempted by these treats.
3. Angry Dad – My Dad would be very angry if I moved out. He doesn’t believe that I should move out until I’m married because he’s very traditional and because he thinks it’s financially irresponsible. While I see his point, angering him wouldn’t be enough to keep me from moving out.
4. Bye-Bye Savings – In order to pay for furnishings, appliances, rent and groceries I would use up all of my savings. I haven’t gotten my dream job yet so in order to move out I would have to get another job to be able to save as much as I had been previously. Still, another job might be less stressful than living at home.
5. Away From Family – Moving out would help me get away from the family drama but it would also leave me far away from my little brother who I spend a lot of time with. I’m not sure how he would react to me moving out and that was one of the main reasons I made the choice to move home after college.
Trying to decide whether or not to move out has been wearing on me. I’m aware that it may not be the smartest decision financially, but I still feel like it’s the best choice overall. My main concern is that after moving out I’ll regret spending my money and savings. Do you have any tips for moving out and saving money?
If the real problem is that you are butting heads with dad and don’t feel comfortable with your stepmother but aren’t sure if you really want to live on your own or with roommates, have you thought about living with another relative? Do you have an Aunt and Uncle or cousin you could live with instead? Do you have an elderly or disabled relative who would trade room and board for company and help with errands and cleaning and maintaining a house?
If you want to price living on your own or with roommates I suggest you check Craig’s list for rooms for rent or to find a group of people to rent a house together. Renting a furnished room in someone’s home is about the least expensive way to live on your own. Sharing rent on a 3 or 4 bedroom house probably comes in second. You’ll have about the same level of privacy that you did living in a dorm and won’t have to deal with dad’s rules. You can furnish an apartment very inexpensively between Craig’s list and free cycle and only buy new the 1 or 2 things that really matter (like your mattress).
Bargain Babe says
@Jennifer I agree that living with another relative is a good option to keep the cost of rent down. But it sounds like Dacia is ready for true independence, and with family that’s not entirely possible. I’m guessing she can find a room she can afford with enough roommates. Also, sometimes you can get reduced rent in exchange for taking on tasks like pet care, cleaning, childcare, etc.
Dacia Daly says
I have a huge Italian family and I’m super close with my grandparents. I could live with most of my relatives if I chose to. As Julia said, I’m leaning more to moving out and being on my own. I’m currently saving money and looking for roommates. Thanks for the advice. Wish me luck!
Jen Y says
I had to kind of laugh at this just thinking back through the years. I moved out when I was 18, 7 days after high school graduation, to go to another state for college. (I met my husband 9 days after high school graduation as well) I came home & worked one summer while I was 19 but pretty much I was on my own with no thought at all how to pay for anything. I would have lived just about anywhere to have my freedom not that things were really all that bad looking back. I was so naive!
That was 30 yrs ago & I fumbled through, quickly learned some things the hard way & some things I had enough sense to listen to good advice.
Jennifer’s suggestion of living with another relative is a very good one.
Bargain Babe says
@Jen Y You were very independent! I know a lot of people who lived on their own, but not until after college. Whenever Dacia finally moves out, she’ll learn how to manage her money and manage relationships with her roommates. It’s a lot to learn, but that’s life.
Mark Cash says
Living with relatives can always been difficult at times and I think it’s important to think long and hard about saving money for the future whilst having some degree of independance.
Bargain Babe says
@Mark Cash Absolutely. It’s a hard decision to make. But we (almost) all eventually live on our own even though it would be cheaper to live with our parents because we are adults.
Seriously? It’s time to move out. I don’t really get the current generation. I left home at 18 and have been self supporting by my own means ever since. I wouldn’t have done it any other way. If you are out of college you must be in your mid 20s by now — time to move out and become an adult!
Dacia Daly says
Hi Kat. That’s great that you were able to move out and support yourself at 18! Most of my friends didn’t live on their own until after college. Choosing to move out would definitely be a much easier decision if my family had your mindset. The pressure they’re putting on me to stay at home, combined with the amount of money I’m saving, makes it hard to want to leave. Still, I’m leaning towards moving out. As you pointed out, I’m an adult and feel like it’s time to have my own space and my own experiences.
Three thoughts: (1) I’d be wary of using Craig’s List or anything similar to find potential roommates UNLESS you thoroughly vetted the candidates. (2) It may be your “own home,” but it’s also your stepmother’s. (3) No one is truly independent if living at home OR being financed at all by a parent.
Definitely let us know what you decide to do.
Dacia Daly says
Hi Diane! I don’t think that I would feel comfortable finding a roommate on Craig’s List. I’ve had some friends with some real horror stories. I definitely see your point about it also being my stepmother’s home. It would be great if we could get along and feel comfortable. Unfortunately, that doesn’t seem like it will be happening anytime soon. If I want to feel “at home” moving out still seems like my best option. Also, the only money my father gives me right now is for family expenses, so if I move out I would be independent. While I’m sure I could ask my father for help if I needed to, it would definitely be a last resort.
As long as you have your dad to bail you out if needed, Dacia, you are not truly independent.
Wow Diane way to be rude. Mind telling us how you became independent and found your fortunate ability to get by with no help from your friends?