Will my kids ever leave home?

These days it can be natural for kids to stay at home until adulthood. Our 7 tips can help ensure your own goals don't pay the price.

If you were expecting to have the house to yourself once your kids reached a certain age, you may have to adjust your expectations.

Because for Generation Y—or millenials as they’re often called—moving out is not the rite-of-passage it once was.

In 2011, around 29% of young adults aged 18-34 years lived without a partner or child, but with one or both of their parents1.

All under one roof

Almost one in five Australians now lives in a household with two or more generations of related adults aged 18 years or older2.

The reasons are complex but rising living costs can make moving out challenging—Australia is the most expensive country in the world to live. Staying at home can also be a lifestyle choice from the beginning while others may move out then back in again because of changed circumstances.

Tips for making it work

Having your adult children at home may be something you’re comfortable with. But if you find your own goals are on the back burner, consider our seven tips.

1. Assess the financial impact

Consider the additional costs of having your kids live at home. Use our budget planner and work through the costs with your children. Consider asking them to pay board for living at home and contribute to the costs. Can you split the costs of certain purchases or ask your kids to pitch in?

2. Help them help themselves

By helping your children meet living expenses you’ll be encouraging good money habits and equip them for independent living. If your kids download MoneySmart’s TrackMySPEND app they’ll see their own spending habits and can make choices and work towards saving and investing—helpful if they’re saving to buy a car or to move out.

3. Consider government entitlements

Help your children understand any youth allowances they may be entitled to—you can find out more at the Department of Human Services website.

4. Seek advice

Financial advice can help you manage day-to-day expenses while boosting your savings so you’ll be comfortable in retirement. A good adviser can also help you understand any impact on your own entitlements if your children live at home.

5. Protect yourself and your family

Consider arranging insurance so you have financial protection. The right insurance can help absorb the financial impact of an unexpected event—if you have a mortgage, how would you meet your repayments if you were suddenly unable to earn an income? How would that impact your loved ones? It can be cost-effective to buy insurance through your super fund. That way you don’t pay for it from your take-home pay—find out more about buying insurance through super.

6. Look ahead

Talk with your child about their plans and your own. Let them know about the future life you’re aiming for and seek to understand theirs. Help them set goals and guide them in achieving them. For example, if they're aiming to buy their own place, our borrowing power calculator can help them understand how much repayments will be.

7. Live in harmony

At times, living with your children can be stressful for you and them. Consider each other’s needs, personal space and communicate regularly about the positive things you can both do to support each other. For example, if you’d like your children to help with some of the housework, say so. And consider how you can help them too.

Stay on track

Having your kids at home may suit them and you. Regardless of the living arrangements, make sure you stay focused and set yourself up for the retirement you want. Think ahead when it comes to your home. Will you sell up and downsize once the kids move out.

Speak to a financial adviser so you can explore all your options and make sure you’ll have enough super when you retire.
 

1 http://www.abs.gov.au/AUSSTATS/abs@.nsf/Lookup/4102.0Main+Features40April+2013
2 Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute (2012). Multi-generational households in Australian cities.
 

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© AMP Life Limited. This provides general information and hasn’t taken your circumstances into account. It’s important to consider your particular circumstances before deciding what’s right for you. Although the information is from sources considered reliable, AMP does not guarantee that it is accurate or complete. You should not rely upon it and should seek qualified advice before making any investment decision. Except where liability under any statute cannot be excluded, AMP does not accept any liability (whether under contract, tort or otherwise) for any resulting loss or damage of the reader or any other person.