How to help your kids move back home without losing your mind
Posted: Oct 04, 2018
As the holidays loom so does the prospect of your kids coming back home. Maybe it'll only be for a week or two before they head out or maybe it'll be "for a short while, just until I find a job"…
Having got used to life without them, and they've got used to life without you, there is naturally going to be a transition period when you adjust to living under the same roof again. Here are a few tips to help make that period as short and calm as possible.Preparing Their Room
It's tempting to use their old room as a bit of a junk room so before they come home you're going to have to sort through and discard anything you no longer need. For items you can't bear to part with, or simply to make some temporary space if the returning child will need to share with a sibling again, you could move some of it into self storage until they move out again.Ground Rules
No doubt you had ground rules before they left but it doesn't hurt to sit down and remind them what they are. Don't forget you're no longer dealing with a sulky teenager and be prepared to listen to their requests for rules on your part – such as not calling them by pet names in front of their friends and locking the bathroom door before showering.Helping Out
If you don't want them to treat the house like a hotel now would also be a good idea to tell them what you expect in terms of helping out round the house. Do you want to charge them rent for their room? What chores will they need to do? Who's responsible for topping up the snack cupboard? If necessary write down what you agree to avoid arguments later.Their Stuff
No doubt whilst they've been away they've managed to acquire more clutter. Items such as kitchen utensils and small pieces of furniture probably won't be needed until they move out again and if your garage or loft isn't big enough to store them you could consider using cheap self storage. If they are only home for the university or college holidays you could even rent one near their institution and save having to cram it all into the back of the car. The Long Term
If it's open-ended when your child is going to move out you need to set a time line to help them spread their wings and finally leave the family nest. Decide a reasonable period during which you expect them to be actually looking for a job and a place of their own. Keep the conversation about their future going without nagging and be prepared to do that bit of last minute ironing for an interview or to give them a lift to view a flat.
The author has written and published articles on a wide range of topics including Small Business Advice, Tax and Accounting, Interior Design, House Renovation and Project Management.