Issues with an Adult Child & Rent?

I live on low income disability. My paid for house is in desperate need of several repairs. My adult child and small grandchild moved in with me. My adult child has full use of house, laundry, yard, and exclusive use of 2 bedrooms. We split bills 50/50, buy our own and share groceries. They work 140 hrs per month and pay me $250 monthly to watch the child. I asked for $100 month "rent to start making repairs". They said "NO! The home is paid for. I'd rather live on my own than give you my $$." I'm confused, hurt and wonder if I'm asking too much. Options Please. Thanks.


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Gold Feedback Medal for All Time! 949 Feedbacks
March 18, 20200 found this helpful
Best Answer

No matter how you handle this there is the chance they will move out and take the grandchild with them - are you prepared to live with this?
I'm just stating the obvious because it could happen - they may regret it and want to move back but how would you deal with that?
Would you just let them move back with the same conditions or would you insist on more money? Even though you already know that they may or may not live up to the conditions?


Just think about this because whatever you decide here should help you decide what action to take.

First - they most likely cannot move out because no matter where you live the rent will be more than they can pay and the 'move-in' cost will likely be a minimum of $2,200 (first & last month plus deposit - deposit on electricity and other utilities) and then also have to pay full amount for someone to 'watch' the child. Do you know how much this will cost them?
This does not include a car and gas and insurance to pay...

Why are they living with you? Is this due to a divorce? Are they collecting child support? You do not mention the age of your child and do not say if this is a son or daughter; I'm not sure why but answers might make a difference in answers members provide.


Now I can understand that you must have agreed on some charges before they moved in but you may need the small amount of money they are paying but have you actually thought about how much you are being paid to 'watch' your small grandchild?
Just out of curiosity, I did a little figuring:
work: 140 hours
daily commute? 2 hours x 5 days week = 40 hours
Total: $250 divided by 180 = $1.39 hour.
Now I'm sure you probably look after your grandchild many more hours a week (babysit while your child goes 'out'?) and also do their laundry and cooking as well as many other household chores that you child does not have to do even though the child should be their responsibility.
All of this is normal because generally we love our children and grandchildren and want to help them any way we can. It is very difficult to be stern and strong when dealing with situations like this as feelings run amuck and things can be said that should not be said.


I do not believe you are helping your child by allowing them to think all of this is okay as it is not teaching them about how to live in the real world when they have to take responsibility for their child and themselves.

I believe you should change the rules and explain that it is their responsibility to pay more money (unless they can prove to you they can live somewhere else for the same amount of money).
Actually, I do not believe you should have to say what you will do with the extra money and it probably should be more than $100 more each month.

I feel sure their will be words said maybe about 'love', 'grandchild' and maybe things that will have to be forgiven later but you should stick to your guns and help your child to grow up and take responsibility for THEIR child and their living expenses.

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Gold Answer Medal for All Time! 617 Answers
March 24, 20200 found this helpful
Best Answer

To me it really depends on what his financial situation is. I am glad he is actually contributing something, because so many times in these cases kids go home, mooch, and contribute nothing. He also actually has a job which is a big plus.


If he can well afford it, then yes, it is unacceptable that he cannot pitch in $100, and that he cops an attitude when you ask. It's almost like the attitude is what's worse about this situation.

If he really can't afford it, then the attitude is explained because it is depressing and emasculating to NOT be able to afford even giving $100 to your mum in spite of working basically a full time job. But the fact he said "I'd rather live on my own" means he prbably can afford it and is just being spoiled.

The situation sounds almost like he believes he has the upper hand somehow. He thinks he's doing you a favour by having him there contributing what he does, and request for anything more seems outrageous.

How badly do you need the $250 for childcare he already provides? If you really need it badly then you may have to put up with it. If not, call his bluff by making some of the good points others make on here.

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Bronze Post Medal for All Time! 105 Posts
March 16, 20200 found this helpful

In a case like yours it seems your son does not believe that he should help out with the money for the home repairs and considers paying you just $100 a month is too much money. He feels that if he needs to do this then he would rather pay someone else rent to live in their home. I am not sure where you actually live but to rent a home or even an apartment is rather expensive and will cost him well over $1000 a month. On top of all this their child care would be a lot more than what they are now paying you. I know 15 years ago my daughter had to pay $750 a month for just one child that was in daycare. I am sure this has risen quite a bit since then.


I feel you have two choices. You can tell him if he does not want to pay rent to help fix up the home then he can hire a person to do the work instead of paying you rent.

If this one is not good for him then he can go out and pay another person rent to live in their home.

I would also check the cost of child care in your area and find out how much it really is. You can always demand more money to watch the kids and use the extra income to repair your home. If he does not feel like this is a good idea then tell him to take the kids to a daycare provider and see how much it will cost him.

If both of them are working and the small amount of money they are paying you they have plenty of funds left over each month to spend on what ever they want. it seems they are taking total advantage of you and they know they could not afford to live anywhere else for the amount of money they are spending at your home. I would force my hand and demand more money for either rent or childcare. If they refuse then tell them to find another home to live in and another person to watch the kids. See how fast he changes his mind after checking prices in your area.

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Diamond Post Medal for All Time! 1,298 Posts
March 16, 20200 found this helpful

I am sorry to hear you are going through this right now.

If your adult child does not want to give you an additional $100 for repairs (rent), then perhaps your adult child could do the repairs as an option. Make a list of what needs to be fixed and have your child fix them.

Paying you $250 + the $100 rent is very low. You were generous to take them in your home. Day care is really costly where I live, but may vary depending where you live so, if your adult child and grandchild were to find a place rent would definitely be more than $100 + utilities, bills and day care.

It is a win win if your adult child will provide a lending hand to help you with repairs. I hope it all works out, good luck!

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Bronze Post Medal for All Time! 140 Posts
March 16, 20200 found this helpful

It seems that this is happening all to often these days! I feel you will not get the help through your son. He has the deal of the century! There are a few places that help disabled and seniors to get help with there homes. Maybe if help is provided, you will have more leverage to decide what you would do with your roommates. Here are a few helpful sites- disabled-elderly - and

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Silver Answer Medal for All Time! 320 Answers
March 16, 20200 found this helpful

Maybe the push back is do to lack of specifics. Do you have a prioritized list the house repairs and reliable quotes for each? Maybe once they see this there will be room for negotiation.

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Bronze Feedback Medal for All Time! 168 Feedbacks
March 19, 20200 found this helpful

An adult is fully responsible for the decisions made in their life. If that adult gets in a financial bind that was out of their control like a job loss or hours cut in pay, failing health, etc., then for sure help is needed.

When an adult does not carry their own weight and is needing to live with a parent with their family because of their own doing, then all those members who moved in on Mom/Dad should do what they can to make things best for their parent(s). If it be money that helps, food, housework, running errands, and even helping you repair broken items in house as everyone uses them.

It's a no brainer when you feel taken advantage of, told money dished out is favored on an outside party who does nothing to help them, when its own family member has been the one coming to their aid willing to help.

While they are living in your house, it is they who must conform to the needs of helping to run a house and keep it orderly and smoothly operative. IF they cannot do this much; ask them to go elsewhere and learn life's lessons and see what the world will give them.

I don't understand why there's resentment against you for money needed to help out when you are helping them is a difficult thing to ask. You are paying half of the expenses? How many are in the household now? Divide the expenses by that total of family members; I think you are probably getting the short end of the stick.

If the members of your family are not saving money earned to get out of their predicament, then you are being taken advantage of and should definitely receive more money for house repairs needed.

Life on Easy Street needs to change by you, so they do not become forever dependents.

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Silver Post Medal for All Time! 267 Posts
March 19, 20201 found this helpful

I'm sorry that you have to go through this. I have an adult son still living at home (20) and he pays us $75 a paycheck to help out. That is about $150 a month but I don't charge him anything for utilities or groceries. I imagine he will be with me for another couple of years, since rents are sky high everywhere.

Your childcare costs are very low compared to what the market rate is. I think your child is being very unreasonable to not pitch in more. An additional $100 seems like a drop in the bucket. You could easily rent that space to someone else for $500 or $750 a month.

Good luck, I hope your son or daughter listens to reason and pulls their fair share.

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Gold Post Medal for All Time! 523 Posts
March 22, 20200 found this helpful

Dear tx,

I have read every response to your post, to date. All have given you some excellent advice. If I may, I'd like to add my two cents worth. I'm sure you will not like it.

You did not raise your son properly. If you had, more than likely, none of this would have happened. Are you at fault? Absolutely not! We are Humans. We are not perfect. We are born with a few basics in child rearing and that's about it.

We try to do the best we can as parents but we can't have the perfect answer for every problem that arises. Often our decisions are colored by our own sense of self worth.

Am I being too strict? Am I being too easy? Would I be having this trouble with this child if I could afford to give it more of the things it wants and needs?

You didn't say how long you had been living without your son's father. Is he dead? Did you raise this son mostly by yourself?

You would have to tell us your whole life's story for us to fully understand how things have come to this sad situation. But, unless I am wrong, you wont need to do that.

Here's what I believe. I believe you've had your share of hard times. I believe you feel guilty for the way things have turned out for your son. I believe you feel that if you had been a better parent, none of this would have happened. I also believe you did the best you could with what you had to work with. That includes what you did know and didn't know about child rearing.

Now, for the things I not only believe, but know. No self respecting mother would put up with what you are putting up with. The good news here is that it is never too late to gain self respect.

Your son averages 35 hours a week. That's not full time. He can't be making a lot of money. In my opinion, though, how much he brings home is not the issue here (at least, not at this time).

If he had said, 'Mama, I'd love to help you with some repairs on the house, but I'm not making that much. I'll try to cut some corners and give you what I can. Maybe soon, I can give you more'.

But no. He didn't say that. He said, "I'd rather live on my own than give you my $$." No child that respects his mother would say that.

You don't respect yourself. Your son doesn't respect you. And while he's pretty much got it made, you're being walked on like a door mat.

It doesn't matter who's to blame here. Did you hear what I said? IT DOESN'T MATTER WHO'S TO BLAME HERE.

So you weren't a perfect parent who raised a perfect child. All that is water under the bridge. It doesn't matter. You can't change the past. Give it up.

I said, 'It's never too late to gain self respect'. You can start by laying the law down to your son. He WILL show you respect if he lives with you. If he has to leave...well, you were making it before he moved in, you will make it if he leaves.

I want you to look into something. Most good sized cities have rehab programs. Repairs are made to homes owned by senior citizens, low income families and people on low income disability. Programs vary, but many people qualify for a loan that never has to be repaid. I don't know for sure, but I doubt you would qualify with your son living there and 'helping out'.

tx, you must do this for yourself, for your son and for your grandchild. You must gain your self respect after all these years. Be strong. Have a talk with your son. It wont be easy, There may be some yelling, there may be some hurtful things said and there may be some tears. Just do it and get it over with. As long as you are being reasonable, your son will go by your rules as long as he lives in your home.

What is reasonable? You get to decide. It's your home.

The three of you could have a good family life together, but it will never happen without respect, let alone solved money issues.

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