It is not surprising to read that one in five people in the 25 to 29 age group are still living with their parents, many of whom had left and returned after getting into financial difficulties through no fault of their own. There were so many reasons, a marriage breakdown caused by a partner wanting to maintain a life style beyond their means, those who became addicted to drugs, alcohol or gambling or had lost their savings on poor quality “dead end” real estate products such as high rise units.
People keep living longer. Longevity usually leads to expensive costs of care. Parents spend their savings and eventually need to sell the family home because one elder (sometimes both) needs cash to cover assisted living, home care workers or other care giving arrangements. By the time one parent needs full time care in or outside the home, there may be no other choice and the parents want to put that house on the market. As they age they elect not to be homeowners any longer, or they want to move closer to other family members. In numerous parts of the country it’s a good time to sell with low interest rates and rising home values. Their dependent live-in adult children are unwilling to leave the parents’ home. It’s our observation after seeing many of these situations that there is typically something
not quite right with the adult child who cannot support himself .
He wants his parents to give him free rent indefinitely. For most young people, leaving home is a process occurring over time rather than a single event, and is a decision rarely made on the spur of the moment. Planning, imagining and fantasising about the experience before taking the step is often valuable preparation for the real thing. Complaints about chores, however, pale in comparison to those about lack of privacy in the family home. This is the result of a combination of family members not respecting personal boundaries but also of many contemporary housing designs (open-plan living, for instance) that are not suitable for multigenerational needs.
Susie O’Brien, Heraldsun, Wrote: PARENTS should declare “Independence Day” and turn their children out of the nest by the time they turn 20. Life skills coach Michele Jones thinks a failure to “set a date for kids to vacate the premises” can lead to major problems down the track. Ms Jones said a growing number of parents were seeking professional help to persuade their adult children to leave home. She said children should live independently by age 20. “Parents convince themselves the child staying at home longer will help them save for the purchase of their own home, some even going as far as building a granny flat to accommodate their child, keeping them safe and tending to their every need,” Ms Jones said.
“In reality, parents are simply sending the message to their child that they are not resourceful or capable to live out in the world on their own, and they won’t be successful enough to afford a house without their help.”
“A recent Household, Income and Labour Dynamics survey of 17,000 found those who left home after the age of 25 earned $6000 less than those who fled the nest earlier,” Ms Jones said. “Men end up $20,779 worse off and women $95,676, leading to further welfare benefit blowouts by 2020.” Nearly 25 per cent of people aged 20 to 34 continue to live in the parental home. In Sydney and Melbourne, this figure is 27 per cent. Ms Jones said parents cited cost of living, university fees, and safety concerns as reasons why their children hadn’t left home. Multigenerational Family Living, a new book by University of New South Wales academics Edgar Liu and Hazel Easthope, said financial problems were the main reason children did not leave home. This reflected increasing tertiary qualifications, workforce casualisation and the unaffordability of housing. However, some adult children helped to pay off their parents’ mortgages, the authors found.
Anthea Szemeti, 19, who is just about to move out of her parents’ comfortable home in Donvale into a college at the University of Melbourne, said: “Twenty is before most people have finished uni, so it could put a lot of extra pressure on them. It seems unnecessary to say they should move out by then regardless of circumstances.” Her mother, Eleni Szemeti, said 25 was a “more reasonable” age
Live-at-home kidults take advantage of parents
One of the bigger gripes about multigenerational living is that not everyone pitches in.
Lyn Craig and Abigail Powell found that while adult children do pitch in and help out with chores, these efforts don’t really help their parents all that much, particularly their mothers.
The reasons are a mix of adult children doing chores for themselves (such as doing their own laundry or cooking their own meals), instead of communal sharing, and of culturally imbued ideas about who should be responsible for groceries, cooking and gardening.