Boomerang Millennials

Millennials, don't be like this if you move back in with your parents.For some it’s because they can’t find a job, for others it’s to try to pay down debt and save more money. No matter the reason, many Millennials are moving back home. We’ve talked about the Millennial financial situation before so this shouldn’t be a surprise. Many Millennials are boomerang kids, meaning that they move back home after either being away at college or even living on their own. This trend picked up during the Great Recession when jobs were hard to come by and it hasn’t subsided. In some situations, this works well for both parties. The Millennial gets to spend time with family as an adult and save some money on housing costs, but it can also be a stressful experience for both parents and children. If you are a Millennial that is moving back home or if you are a parent of a Millennial that is coming back to the nest, below are some considerations for both of you. It is a good idea to discuss these things at the start to avoid putting a strain on the relationship.

  1. Discuss why you are moving home. Be honest with yourself and your parents about why you are coming back. If you want to move home to save money to start a new business or save on rent to pay down student loans, make those goals known. Also understand what your parents’ expectations of you are. Make sure you have a good reason to move back and goals to move forward in your life and career. Those goals can help your parents understand what you want to accomplish by living at home.
  2. Set a move out deadline. You don’t want to live with your parents forever, and, as much as they love you, they probably don’t want you living with them forever. They have spent many years and a lot of money raising you to be an adult. Use your goals to help establish that move out timeline so that everyone knows there is an end date to living at home.
  3. Be a master of cash flow. Don’t go spending all the money that would otherwise go to rent on clothes or tickets to Coachella. Your parents will not appreciate that you are spending recklessly when you should be saving towards those goals you discussed. Use the time you have at home to make forward progress. Make smart financial choices and establish good habits while you have the safety net.
  4. Share expenses with your parents. Moving back home does not give you the right to mooch off your parents. It may not cost your parents extra in rent or mortgage, but food, utility and other household costs will go up for them. If you can afford to, offer to contribute to household bills or pay some sort of rent. Your parents will appreciate it.
  5. Your parents have goals too. Don’t forget that they have financial goals in their own lives. They probably want to retire at some point or are hoping to downsize their home. Understand how your moving back in may affect their goals. Most parents will sacrifice almost anything for their children so you need to step up and be considerate of their lives.

None of these conversations will be easy or necessarily comfortable but it can be so valuable. Millennials, don’t be a burden on your parents if you need to move back home, and parents, make sure your child understands what your goals and expectations are. No one can read minds so have the conversation to ensure that everyone is still talking to each other at the end of the boomerang period.

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[U.S. News & World Report] 5 Rules for Moving Back in With Your Parents – So They Don’t Kick You Out
[NY1] How to Set Financial Priorities and Develop an Action Plan
[CNBC] The Millennial Future