Managing Your Household Finances When Adult Children Move Back Home

Student loan debt, a weak job market and rising apartment costs are prompting many recent graduates to move back in with their parents. While you may be happy to help your children during difficult financial times, supporting grown kids can place an additional strain on your finances and create tension within the family.

So, how do you help your kids while keeping your finances on track? Experts at have four tips to make your personal life and finances more manageable:

Set boundaries and impose rules: Rather than allowing your unemployed kids to lounge around the house all day, you can require them to complete basic tasks to make themselves more useful, such as cleaning, cooking and running errands. This can help young adults stay busy while they are going through their job search, and ease parents’ burden of completing chores when they return home from work.

Encourage your children to find part-time jobs: Moving back in with parents can be difficult for your children as well, and working a part-time job gives them some financial flexibility to cover cell phone bills, student loans or other personal expenses. By covering these bills, your children will reduce the amount you contribute to their expenses. Part-time jobs can also lead to full-time jobs, which will help your children to start an independent life.

Ask your children to contribute to the household expenses: If your children are steadily employed but want to save money on housing and living costs, they should contribute something to the household expenses. You may be hesitant to ask your kids to shell out money for part of the mortgage or rent, but requesting that they pay for smaller expenses, such as groceries or utilities can be helpful. Keep in mind that your children are still saving a large amount of money by moving in with you, so you shouldn’t feel guilty about asking your children to make some type of financial contribution.

Teach your children to manage their money: If your children move back in, take this opportunity to teach them money management skills. Teaching your kids how to budget, pay down debt or utilize the right savings tools, such as high-yield accounts, can slowly put them in a better position.