The following post is from Melissa Batai

When I graduated from college, I moved back in with my mom for 2.5 years.  During that time, I worked a fairly low paying job (getting a good paying job with an English B.A. is difficult!) and put any and all extra money onto my student loans.  I had cleared much of the student loan debt before I finally moved out and went to graduate school.  For me, moving back home was a smart financial decision.

Many college graduates move home with their parents after college with varying success.  However, in today’s tough economic times, some married people are moving their entire family back home with mom and dad!

Should you move with your family back in with your parents?

My answer is easy—no!

Drawbacks of Moving Your Family back in with Your Parents

There are so many drawbacks to this arrangement.

Your parents are used to their freedom and quiet.  If you already have your own family, your parents are likely used to an empty house that they can keep clean.  They probably enjoy their freedom and have their own social life.  If you move back in with your spouse and kids, there will likely be conflicts over the noise and mess that the kids create, even if your parents love your children a lot!

Your authority may be challenged.  Kids sometimes like to pit mom and dad against one another.  A kid will ask her dad if she can do something, and dad will say “yes” not knowing that mom already said “no.”  Imagine this times four!  Your parents may give permission to your kids or spoil them in ways that you don’t like.

Your relationship may be strained.  Let’s say you have a plan to live with your parents for just six months.  However, if you’re not able to move out at that point, resentment may build on both sides.  Can your relationship with your parents survive the stress of living with them?  Do you want to put it to the test?

When Moving Your Family in With Your Parents Might Make Sense

Of course, there are a few situations where it might make sense to move in with your parents.

You’re unemployed for several months.  If you’ve been out of work for some time and may need to start dipping into your retirement savings just to survive, moving your family in with your parents might make sense.  If this kind of move keeps you out of bankruptcy, it may be a smart move.

You or your parents need help.  If your parents are elderly and need live-in help, or if you’re a single parent and need help watching your kids, this arrangement also may make sense.

In this type of situation, you’ll likely have the most success if your parents and your family each have their own separate space in the house and if you have a rough timeline of when you expect to move out on your own again.

My Question for You

Would you, or have you, moved your entire family in with relatives to save money?  If so, how did it go?

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