How Much Rent?

DawnSmithJanuary 6, 2014

I have a 4 bedroom, 2 bath home, about 2800 sq ft. I have 2 children. My boyfriend and his son are moving in with us. His son will have his own room. How much rent/utilities should my boyfriend pay? Should I expect him to help out with the yard work, house work, cooking, and such?

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Half of everything! As far as helping, there may be things you enjoy, as well as him. He may like to cook, therefor your job would be to set the table/clean up, but both of you could do the food shopping as well as sharing the expense.

You need to discuss EVERYTHING with him before he moves in. Once his address is on the mail, the deal is done, and it become HIS legal home also. You might want to consider him having a PO Box.

    Bookmark   January 6, 2014 at 6:38PM
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He needs to pay half and I agree there needs to be a lot of talking before he moves in.

I don't think a po box will make any difference. As long as he shares her home she will have to have him evicted if he won't leave on his own.

This post was edited by EmmaR on Mon, Jan 6, 14 at 20:59

    Bookmark   January 6, 2014 at 8:58PM
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I'm curious how we arrived at half of everything? If the woman has two kids and the boy friend brings his son, wouldn't an equitable division be 2/5ths?

In any case, there does need to be a lot of discussion beforehand. Mostly about money with the rest on how household chores will be divvied up.

    Bookmark   January 6, 2014 at 10:33PM
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In all honesty I would expect you to live as a married couple would. You get together and figure out your bills, and also the college funds for your children. You then decide on what you have left and that is where you decide on where that should go. For example would you decide a certain amount goes to the upkeep of the house, and a certain amount goes to savings for each of you? When you are living as a family the focus is on the benefit of the family. Percentages of income or rent IMHO (and i apologize if I sound harsh) seems silly to me. This man and his child are moving into your house and you will be living as a family. In a family all adult members pull their weight for the good of the family and make sure the children do as well.

This post was edited by Acadiafun on Tue, Jan 7, 14 at 1:40

    Bookmark   January 7, 2014 at 1:23AM
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You're not married so one of you could bail and leave the other stuck with the bills. Put in writing who pays what, etc, and sign it. Have something in writing as to what happens if you break up. If the two of go out and buy a TV and then break up, who owns the TV?

I also agree that he should pay 2/5ths of the rent as there are only two of them and you are three.

    Bookmark   January 7, 2014 at 8:25AM
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Thanks everyone, great ideas and advice. I wrote up what I think is fair, 25% of the house hold expenses. Since my kids are with us 90% of the time and his son about 20% of the time, I thought that was reasonable.

I also wrote up some general expectations and thoughts. Communication and agreement is key, I agree with you all on that and it is just a conversation we need to have! I hope to do this tonight, so I will post results if it happens! :)

    Bookmark   January 7, 2014 at 4:26PM
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There is no right answer, but rather what makes both of you happy. The reality is that your mortgage payment isn't going to change when he moves in. Nor is the cable, phone, or property tax bill. 80% of the heating/cooling bill goes to heating or cooling the structure. Clear communications about expectations is the key and any marriage counselor will tell you that the biggest point of contention in any relationship is money. Sometimes it's the silliest stuff that causes problems. He wants steak and you're happy with hamburger. You want Chinese take-out and he's happy with LaChoy in a can.

The kids are going to be a challenge too. I assume he's going to assume some kind of parental role with your kids and you with his. Different parenting styles, different expectations, different tolerances all lead to challenges in the relationship you have with your boyfriend.

Good luck!

    Bookmark   January 7, 2014 at 11:12PM
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I read that the number 1 reason for a divorce in a first marriage is money. In a second marriage it is children.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2014 at 1:06AM
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He disciplines his kid and you discipline yours. But you need a united front. So discuss discipline before he moves in.

This is going to sound absolutely silly, but record the TV show "Judge Judy". And watch it. There are usually cases every episode where a couple lived together and broke up.

Things like their buying a car together and now one wants the other to pay him/her back, and the other said it was a gift. Issues like a TV or furniture, etc that they bought as a couple.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2014 at 7:24AM
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I really don't want to be a "Debbie downer" here but having been there, done that I want to encourage you to think long and hard about why he is moving in, what exactly your relationship is, besides all the nuts and bolts about shared responsibilities, expenses, child-rearing. And, most especially, about the effect of your relationship and his living in *your* home on those children.

One poster above said it should be like any marriage. But is that how both of you are seeing this relationship? From the questions you asked, maybe not? Or are you kind of "testing the waters"?

How long have you been dating? Long enough to really know who is moving in with you -- financially, emotionally, maturity, etc? Are you willing to get along with his child's mother, and he with your child's father? Are you willing to have your children be treated like brothers and sisters by *everyone* involved?

Is there a chance one of you will bail, for whatever reason (didn't have same expectations, didn't pull own weight, tired of responsibility, novelty wore off, found someone else, wanted to maintain independence....).

When kids are involved, there really needs to be deep commitment already (IMO). Hearing you wonder if you should expect him to take any household responsibility make me wonder if there is much commitment at all.

And, there may be legal consequences of turning *your* home into "*our*" home.

Please, no need to try to answer these questions in this forum. Just give it some thought!

    Bookmark   January 9, 2014 at 3:50PM
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Very well said.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2014 at 9:38AM
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Don't forget the food! How will you feel if you buy food to prepare a specific dish/meal and the BF's son eats it before you get home to cook. You need to discuss how you will share the cost of the food and whether your food purchases will be there when you get home. People who share houses tell me this is their biggest peeve.

    Bookmark   January 20, 2014 at 12:03AM
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My vote would be for 50-50 on the rent. Adding up the number of people in each household unit or number of bedrooms used seems silly. You two are moving in together presumably as a path to marriage. You love each other, right? I know you don't expect to break up or have him move out but you must be prepared for that reality. My suggestion is to open a special, separate savings account and bank some of your own money in case things go sour. Don't tell him about this account or put his name on it and especially don't use this money for day-to-day expenses. It's your rainy-day fund for yourself and your child.Very few states in the US recognize "common-law" (living together) marriages. So don't expect society or the court system to help you out. I don't mean to sound preachy or judgmental. My husband and I have been there and done that living-together thing.

1 Like    Bookmark   January 28, 2014 at 8:51AM
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Thank you everyone! We are 2 months into this arrangement now & things are "interesting". He has paid the agreed upon rent (installments, but paid in full now), he hasn't given me anything for groceries, he does minimal chores, just enough to get by.
Yes, I have brought these things up in conversation, hasn't changed anything. This week, I will have the black/white discussion - straight talk. See how that goes. How frustrating & honestly.. hurtful. He eats, he sees me bring in the groceries, he digs through the bags, yet offers no $. I shouldn't have to ask. Sigh.

    Bookmark   February 11, 2014 at 4:02PM
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Dawn, over the course of this and other threads you've started, you've had more than a few people give their take on various red flags you've continued to gloss over. The upshot of the consistent comments is that you're facing a uphill if not impossible battle in trying to having the kind of relationship you want with the wrong guy to have it with.

Your problems having nothing to do with how costs are shared. He's got a good deal going, you're going to have trouble getting him out (which is what needs to happen).

Be honest with yourself and do what's best for you and your kids. ASAP.

This post was edited by snidely on Tue, Feb 11, 14 at 18:46

    Bookmark   February 11, 2014 at 6:45PM
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Snidely, you are 100% correct and I know that in my heart. I have never allowed anyone to take such advantage of me in my life. I am a very strong and independent person and I have allowed this individual to disrupt my life and my life with my children. I have enabled him.

We had our first argument last night and I laid it all out on the table. He played the victim and took no accountantability. I was shocked at his reasoning for not making his son a priority, his excuses for not having a job, his justification for not contributing to groceries and on and on. We are done and I feel .... good.

    Bookmark   February 12, 2014 at 11:24AM
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Dear DawnSmith,

Since snidely mentioned past threads, I looked them up. Hoo-boy.

I am glad to hear that you are "done". May I encourage you to stick to that decision....based on your posts from the past year, for whatever reason, you have had blinders on (and how!), got really good at rationalization, and may be prone to get sweet-talked back into, not just enabling, but actually being the meal ticket and doormat for this deadbeat. He will do his best to keep that going! Get him out ASAP!

At some point you might start thinking about all his "good qualities", how you would be a great couple "if only" etc etc. Resist this. I hope that you are able to see now that clearly he has too many bad qualities too and those bad qualities are in charge.

You did say several months ago that you were going to go to Al-anon. I wonder if you did, or if you did, if you were able to be honest with yourself and the group. Adult Children of Alcoholics would be a very good organization for you to check out. Did you know that the non-drinking children of alcoholics do often fall into relationships with alcoholics or other problem personalities? Do you know why?

Sometimes, the personality disorders that can go along with alcoholism or drug abuse are fundamental to the person and not just part of the addiction disorder. They even use their addiction to manipulate others into feeling sorry for them, and go from there. So, yes, there are good people who become alcoholics, and there are alcoholics who are schmucks, and were schmucks before they became addicts, and will always be schmucks.

Your guy sounds like he falls into the schmuck category. So do his parents. I really feel sorry for his child, but you won't be able to fix that; you have to be responsible for your children and your own healthy life.

Strong words, I am sorry and hope not hurtful.

I wish you the best.

    Bookmark   February 12, 2014 at 4:55PM
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Thank you Raee. It is hurtful... however true. This is the beauty of forums like this, you can get honest opinions from those that have experience in similar situations.

I do go to Al anon. I think the over-riding message in these groups is to grin and bear it. Live your own life to the fullest you can, don't enable the alcoholic, and enjoy the good times when they arrive.

My account is closed, he has drained it too far. I put my faith in 100% and I know he will never "change". He is sober, I am happy for that, now I can move on and say good-bye. Prays for his child, the bio-mom is an alcoholic as well and still drinks excessively on a regular basis.

How I got into this world of mayhem is beyond me. I have had just a handful of relationships all with normal good men, no drama. Even my divorce was drama free and we remain friends to this day. Normalicacy and peace will feel great. Thanks to all!

    Bookmark   February 13, 2014 at 12:37PM
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I am sorry DawnSmith that it did not work out. I am glad your life is more peaceful and normal now. Lesson learned albeit the hard way. Just makes you stronger...

    Bookmark   February 14, 2014 at 9:33AM
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Good for you Dawn

    Bookmark   February 14, 2014 at 7:56PM
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Greetings Dawn Smith,

I am gratified to hear that you have chosen to make your journey through life alone, for the present, rather than sharing the ride with this man, for a number of folks who commented here felt that it looked as though it would almost certainly be a rough ride for you.

I was worried that you looked as though you were, as Dad once said when a neighbour's young man got engaged to a certain girl, that he figured that he was driving his pigs to a poor market.

Sorry for your current heartache ... but good wishes for finding a capable partner who helps build a creditable future with you.

ole joyful

    Bookmark   February 15, 2014 at 2:38PM
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Dawn, you made the right decision, and I'm glad that you are feeling good. Hope you will be able to build your savings back up. You might want to consider having a woman move into your extra BR as a paying renter for a year. That would help with the savings issue. A friend of mine did that- screened the applicants and found one who was spending most of her time with her boyfriend. So she paid rent, but was hardly ever at the house.

Good luck with whatever you do.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2014 at 11:55AM
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