Author Topic: When to move out of my parents' house?  (Read 3164 times)

mrnovember09

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When to move out of my parents' house?
« on: August 06, 2015, 08:18:52 AM »
Hi fellow mustachians.

I'm a recent college grad working a desk job and living at home. I was an English major, so my salary is only 30k (happy to have a job right after college though). Currently the only main expenses I have are insurance/phone bill ($150 a month), and my gas (roughly $150 a month). I just bought a cheap, used car, but my commute is 30 minutes to and 60 minutes back with traffic, and my car guzzles gas. After taxes I only take home around $1700 a month. I have roughly $8000 in savings, and with taxes, I can afford to save at least $1000 a month while living at home. Still though, I don't have many expenses.

My parents are fine with me living at home, and we get along well, but still, I'm itching for independence. My current plan is to at least live at home until the end of 2015, and then try to move somewhere closer to my job and to my girlfriend's school (thus making the commute roughly 15 minutes each way). However, this is an expensive area. Even with roommates (most of my friends have moved away so I'd have to live with strangers) I should still expect to pay more than 30% of my take-home income not even including utilities.

My cost of living is pretty low; I don't go out on expensive binges, I don't have a ton of clothes, I get most of my entertainment online, I don't drink coffee or soda, etc. My only vices are $10 a month for Spotify (I'm a music junkie) and a love of building a book collection (I'm in the process of building my own bookshelf).

The question is: when do I move out? Obviously, the best financial move would be to just...not move out, but that's not realistic. I have to leave at some point relatively soon, at least for my own sanity. Should it be after a certain amount of time? After saving a certain amount of money? I have to stick with job for awhile at least, and I don't want to leave the area because my girlfriend is still in school for several more years.

Any advice? Thanks so much!

frugaliknowit

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Re: When to move out of my parents' house?
« Reply #1 on: August 06, 2015, 10:13:36 AM »
How soon do you think you could upgrade jobs so that your income is significantly higher?

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Re: When to move out of my parents' house?
« Reply #2 on: August 06, 2015, 10:30:11 AM »
You might want to consider exchanging your love of a book collection for a love of reading. The library is free, both for physical books and e-books. Lots of free books (some legally, some not) are on the internet too.
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mrnovember09

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Re: When to move out of my parents' house?
« Reply #3 on: August 06, 2015, 11:06:07 AM »
@frugaliknowit: Not for awhile. I literally just started this one and I don't have much other experience. This is a high-paying job in my field as a first job. I need to stick with it for at least 2 years IMO. For the sake of the question, assume leaving this job for a higher paying one isn't possible.

@FIRE Me: I do love reading. I just like having the physical book. I fail to see how that affects anything in my question though.

GreenPen

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Re: When to move out of my parents' house?
« Reply #4 on: August 06, 2015, 11:21:55 AM »
I don't see how your annual salary could be 30k, but you take home only $1700/month after taxes. It seems like you are paying too much in taxes -- or at least having your employer withhold too much. Are your parents claiming you as a dependent?

Your situation is tough, since moving out (i.e. gaining independence from your parents) would cost money and make you more dependent on an employer. Really, the obvious suggestions are to either keep living with your parents, or find a better-paying job (or at least a similar job closer to home). If you take both of these options off the table, then it will be really hard to stash a lot of money away each month...

astvilla

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Re: When to move out of my parents' house?
« Reply #5 on: August 06, 2015, 11:25:42 AM »
I struggle with this question myself as well. 

This is only possible by staying at home and the money is good, and I mean real good, especially if you make a decent amount and stay home.  Depends on parents and arrangement you have with them.  But no rent, no car insurance, no expenses, literally for me no expenses.  I pay some things on my own, but not more than $100-200 month.  If I had stayed home and worked full time for 10 years, I would have over 1,000,000 easy.  And I'm not adding a partner, (or kids) to that equation.  I could retire by 35-38 maaybe. 

However, social pressure and personal preference really makes me want to move out as well. 

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/07/30/business/millennials-less-likely-to-leave-the-nest-a-pew-study-finds.html

You're not alone in this.  A number of young people on this forum live with their parents.  You can say that living independent of parents is an anomaly and that for millions of years, people generally stayed in close family units.  It's not a bad thing to stay at home.  It's hard for me to accept myself still though.  I feel like a loser but not because I have to be one.  Others people call "losers" can't actually move out cause they don't have the means.  I made a conscious choice to stay home.  But I want to move out so bad but money influences my decision so I have to stay home. 

Consider opening an IRA as well.  The decision to move out is up to you, no real hard guide that says move out by this age.  People grow differently, different situations. 

Me personally, once I hit 100K, I'll pull the plug.  Though I said I'd move out this summer and didn't pull the plug so who knows how long I'll be at home. 

In your case though, I'd base it more on saving a certain amount for emergency expenses.  6 months of living expense should be enough.  Then you can consider moving out and don't have to worry about getting evicted or strapped for cash.  Maybe save and when you can move out of the high cost area, move out.  Doesn't make sense to stay in high cost area outside of parents.  Even better, try to get a better job, and stay at home.  Then when time comes, you can leave in a stronger position. 
« Last Edit: August 06, 2015, 11:29:05 AM by astvilla »

Frankies Girl

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Re: When to move out of my parents' house?
« Reply #6 on: August 06, 2015, 11:30:48 AM »

@FIRE Me: I do love reading. I just like having the physical book. I fail to see how that affects anything in my question though.

Because buying and keeping scads of books means money out of your pocket, and it can start adding up (and also take up more space - I have a freaking wall of books right now that I need to reduce; it's ridiculous how much room they take up). The library has physical books that you can read and not pay for... so it's a win/win. Once you start collecting stuff, it's a slippery slope (not saying never buy books, but if you start buying lots of stuff now while you make so little, it is going to make a dent in your savings and cause you to have that much more stuff to store and haul around).


There's nothing wrong with living at home for a few more years, especially if you are saving tons of money by doing so (and not feeling uncomfortable with living with your parents). Living on your own - even with roommates is going to wipe out your paycheck right now since you make so little. Rent, utilities, groceries, furnishings (even if using craigslist/thrift stores), renter's insurance...

Do you have school loans? It wasn't mentioned, but you hedged a bit on your expenses it looks like as you said your only "main" expenses... if you don't have school loans, that's great, but if you do, it's an even bigger incentive to live with your parents for another year or two and pay aggressively on those, while building your savings.

You totally can ask for a raise after your first year, and if you know you do good work for them, do ask. And keep your eye out for other (better paying) jobs while you're working there. You never know when something will pop up.

And I wouldn't move any place until I had a good job I was sure I wanted to stay with for a while (more than a year or two anyway). Right now, you have a bit of a commute, but you have the option of locating a job that might pay much better just about any other location, and could move if you got it with no notice. That's a good thing to have that kind of flexibility.

Also since your girlfriend is still going to college for several more years, I honestly would consider that the timeline to getting your own place; when she graduates and gets a job, what about finding an apartment together near both of your jobs at that point? You should have a good amount saved (and I do hope you're taking advantage of any 401k if available, and investing in an IRA if not) and be in a much better state to find a higher paying job by then as well if you don't have one by that time.

If your sanity is affected by living at home (as you stated) is it just because you feel like you should be out of your parents' house by now, or because there are issues with your parents - abusive/no boundaries/hostile? Because just itching to move for the sake of moving (because you're an ADULT now dammit) is kind of an illogical reason - you know you're an adult, but you don't have to throw away your very meager salary to prove this do you? Because that's what you are proposing.

I get wanting to go out on your own and be your own person, but logically, you are in a great position to saveSAVEsave and still have someplace safe and comfortable to live. And I assume you're young, so there's still going to be plenty of time a few years down the road to get a place of your own. ;)

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Sibley

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Re: When to move out of my parents' house?
« Reply #7 on: August 06, 2015, 11:34:53 AM »
Regarding the books - the more books you have, the more bookcases you'll need, the more room it'll take, and the harder it will be to move. Plus you have to dust them.

I have significantly downsized my books. The only books you should own long-term are the ones you re-read more than once, refer to, or are otherwise not available to you. The library is a good resource, and not just for for books.

mrnovember09

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Re: When to move out of my parents' house?
« Reply #8 on: August 06, 2015, 12:02:47 PM »

@FIRE Me: I do love reading. I just like having the physical book. I fail to see how that affects anything in my question though.

Because buying and keeping scads of books means money out of your pocket, and it can start adding up (and also take up more space - I have a freaking wall of books right now that I need to reduce; it's ridiculous how much room they take up). The library has physical books that you can read and not pay for... so it's a win/win. Once you start collecting stuff, it's a slippery slope (not saying never buy books, but if you start buying lots of stuff now while you make so little, it is going to make a dent in your savings and cause you to have that much more stuff to store and haul around).


There's nothing wrong with living at home for a few more years, especially if you are saving tons of money by doing so (and not feeling uncomfortable with living with your parents). Living on your own - even with roommates is going to wipe out your paycheck right now since you make so little. Rent, utilities, groceries, furnishings (even if using craigslist/thrift stores), renter's insurance...

Do you have school loans? It wasn't mentioned, but you hedged a bit on your expenses it looks like as you said your only "main" expenses... if you don't have school loans, that's great, but if you do, it's an even bigger incentive to live with your parents for another year or two and pay aggressively on those, while building your savings.

You totally can ask for a raise after your first year, and if you know you do good work for them, do ask. And keep your eye out for other (better paying) jobs while you're working there. You never know when something will pop up.

And I wouldn't move any place until I had a good job I was sure I wanted to stay with for a while (more than a year or two anyway). Right now, you have a bit of a commute, but you have the option of locating a job that might pay much better just about any other location, and could move if you got it with no notice. That's a good thing to have that kind of flexibility.

Also since your girlfriend is still going to college for several more years, I honestly would consider that the timeline to getting your own place; when she graduates and gets a job, what about finding an apartment together near both of your jobs at that point? You should have a good amount saved (and I do hope you're taking advantage of any 401k if available, and investing in an IRA if not) and be in a much better state to find a higher paying job by then as well if you don't have one by that time.

If your sanity is affected by living at home (as you stated) is it just because you feel like you should be out of your parents' house by now, or because there are issues with your parents - abusive/no boundaries/hostile? Because just itching to move for the sake of moving (because you're an ADULT now dammit) is kind of an illogical reason - you know you're an adult, but you don't have to throw away your very meager salary to prove this do you? Because that's what you are proposing.

I get wanting to go out on your own and be your own person, but logically, you are in a great position to saveSAVEsave and still have someplace safe and comfortable to live. And I assume you're young, so there's still going to be plenty of time a few years down the road to get a place of your own. ;)

I can see that...you're right in that the main reason I want to move out is because I just...feel like living at home means I'm not an adult, and it's hard being forced back into essentially my high school home life. I loved the independence of college - I lived in a foreign country for a semester completely by myself and backpacked for a month by myself and loved it - and now I'm home in an environment that just feels chafing.

I know logically that I should just be saving up, but I can sense that it's going to start damaging my relationship with my parents (even if it's fine now) if I stay for a good long time. I can't really put that in financial terms. How am I supposed to put a price on feeling like an adult?

Also, I can't open a 401k until I've worked here for 3 months, but I plan to once I can. I also do have $10,000 in school loans...I was just under the impression that I could pay them off very slowly, as paying them off now would wipe out everything I've saved plus the rest of the calendar year too.

Sibley

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Re: When to move out of my parents' house?
« Reply #9 on: August 06, 2015, 12:32:31 PM »
What's the rate on your SLs? If it's high, then you should be working on those a little more aggressively.

And it's ok to live with your parents. Be an adult, sit down with them and define roles, responsibilities, and boundaries. Pay them rent, or take over a bill or something. If they're treating you like you're in high school then they need to adjust. If they can't, then move out. If it's just in your mind, then you need to adjust.

Note: this only works if you're acting like a responsible adult.

Yankuba

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Re: When to move out of my parents' house?
« Reply #10 on: August 06, 2015, 01:27:45 PM »
I graduated college in 2001 and lived at home until mid-2005. During that time I was able to save up enough $$$ for a down payment on a condo. From a financial standpoint there is nothing better than living at home.

The hardest part about living at home is dating but since you have a girlfriend you don't have to go out on dates and explain why you're still living at home. Although in expensive urban areas it is common for young people to still live at home after college.

I used to buy my books, like you. But they overwhelm you and your living space and your taste changes over time. Now you can have all your books on your Kindle if you don't want to deal with the library. Buying books is definitely anti-Mustachian.

Good luck!

lbmustache

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Re: When to move out of my parents' house?
« Reply #11 on: August 06, 2015, 01:33:35 PM »
I would stay a little longer (end of year? next summer?) to save up OR get a better paying job, and then move out. I am a big proponent of moving out however it is not very mustachian. But you get a lot of experience and it's great to live on your own.

I lived on my own (without a roommate) on a $35k salary. Had all the bills, worked relatively close by, take home pay was around ~$2000 and my rent was ~$895. Which was almost 50% of my take home pay. I still had enough money left over to save a bit and enjoy life. I'm sure it added like 15 years to RE though. Just depends what you want to prioritize.

acroy

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Re: When to move out of my parents' house?
« Reply #12 on: August 06, 2015, 01:45:13 PM »
The question is: when do I move out?

Sooner the better!
Moving out is a big part of 'growin up'. Go get 'em Mister.
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FrugalShrew

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Re: When to move out of my parents' house?
« Reply #13 on: August 06, 2015, 03:03:05 PM »
I am definitely in the minority on this issue, but I have a sizable book collection and no regrets. I am more mindful of whether a book is truly worth keeping since I have moved around a bit over the last few years, but I find physical books much more pleasant to read and I love having my personal favorites at my fingertips. (Though I do supplement with the library to keep things under control :D)

There is no reason for books to be an expensive hobby. I supply my habit with used book sales, the Friends of the Library book shop, garage sales, etc. I have consistently found my books to be the #1 easiest thing to pack every time I move -- they are square, so they fit right into boxes without any fuss!

galliver

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Re: When to move out of my parents' house?
« Reply #14 on: August 06, 2015, 03:06:07 PM »
I don't think anyone can answer for you "how much is it worth to me to live on my own?" because it's such a question of personal values and your relationship with your parents. Had it been an option geographically, I would have had no problem living with mine until...certain issues in a long-term relationship came up. ;) But other than that (and it's not like it was expressly *forbidden* I just prefer discretion...), they've treated me like an adult since I started college, and I know they wouldn't mind helping out that way; and would in fact enjoy having any of us kids around. Whereas some relationships may feel more regressive or begrudging.

As a second point, I think you could make it anywhere except SF/NYC/maybe DC areas, if you found a place slightly farther out or lacking in some amenities. As a corollary, however, you probably would not be able to make it on 50% of your income. Again, it becomes a question of personal values; how important is saving to you vs independence. We can't answer that for you.

Finally, I'd like to second (third, etc) that you should look into withholding/deductions from your paycheck. I ran your 30k through a paycheck calculator and got $1973 (assuming CA state tax, which I would guess is relatively high). Maybe you have health insurance or something else taken out, but that seems like an expensive plan!

AZDude

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Re: When to move out of my parents' house?
« Reply #15 on: August 06, 2015, 03:26:52 PM »
I lived on my own making about $30K, it was tight, but I was not very Mustachian at the time. With better planning and financial acumen, it would have been feasible. However, this was in a low CoL area.

Obviously, splitting the rent with a roommate is ideal, or even just renting a bedroom from someone else. I'm sure there are options for independence that are cheap, if that is the goal. Just do not go crazy and look for the hipster stylish bachelor pad that will cause you to go broke.

Zikoris

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Re: When to move out of my parents' house?
« Reply #16 on: August 06, 2015, 04:00:52 PM »
If you want to move out, I say just do it - don't overthink it. I moved out at 18 with $1000, across the country with no job or apartment waiting for me. If you're an intelligent adult you'll figure it out. Gotta live the life you want.
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mrnovember09

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Re: When to move out of my parents' house?
« Reply #17 on: August 10, 2015, 07:43:05 AM »
I don't think anyone can answer for you "how much is it worth to me to live on my own?" because it's such a question of personal values and your relationship with your parents. Had it been an option geographically, I would have had no problem living with mine until...certain issues in a long-term relationship came up. ;) But other than that (and it's not like it was expressly *forbidden* I just prefer discretion...), they've treated me like an adult since I started college, and I know they wouldn't mind helping out that way; and would in fact enjoy having any of us kids around. Whereas some relationships may feel more regressive or begrudging.

As a second point, I think you could make it anywhere except SF/NYC/maybe DC areas, if you found a place slightly farther out or lacking in some amenities. As a corollary, however, you probably would not be able to make it on 50% of your income. Again, it becomes a question of personal values; how important is saving to you vs independence. We can't answer that for you.

Finally, I'd like to second (third, etc) that you should look into withholding/deductions from your paycheck. I ran your 30k through a paycheck calculator and got $1973 (assuming CA state tax, which I would guess is relatively high). Maybe you have health insurance or something else taken out, but that seems like an expensive plan!

First, I think that those "certain issues in a long-term relationship" are already causing a bit of awkwardness for me, as my parents *have* expressly forbidden it (they're quite conservative), so I'd be lying if that wasn't a big reason in wanting my own place.

Second, I think you're right. I'm making enough that I wouldn't really be having these problems if I lived somewhere else, but my field (publishing) is pretty centered in the area, and I'm definitely staying here as long my gf and I are together. I also can't justify moving out to a place further away from work, because the current long commute is a big reason I want to move out.

Third, I ran through my own calculations and it doesn't seem that far off - maybe I'll just get a decent amount back. Not sure if you live in Maryland, but taxes are quite high here.

galliver

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Re: When to move out of my parents' house?
« Reply #18 on: August 10, 2015, 09:17:48 AM »
I don't think anyone can answer for you "how much is it worth to me to live on my own?" because it's such a question of personal values and your relationship with your parents. Had it been an option geographically, I would have had no problem living with mine until...certain issues in a long-term relationship came up. ;) But other than that (and it's not like it was expressly *forbidden* I just prefer discretion...), they've treated me like an adult since I started college, and I know they wouldn't mind helping out that way; and would in fact enjoy having any of us kids around. Whereas some relationships may feel more regressive or begrudging.

As a second point, I think you could make it anywhere except SF/NYC/maybe DC areas, if you found a place slightly farther out or lacking in some amenities. As a corollary, however, you probably would not be able to make it on 50% of your income. Again, it becomes a question of personal values; how important is saving to you vs independence. We can't answer that for you.

Finally, I'd like to second (third, etc) that you should look into withholding/deductions from your paycheck. I ran your 30k through a paycheck calculator and got $1973 (assuming CA state tax, which I would guess is relatively high). Maybe you have health insurance or something else taken out, but that seems like an expensive plan!

First, I think that those "certain issues in a long-term relationship" are already causing a bit of awkwardness for me, as my parents *have* expressly forbidden it (they're quite conservative), so I'd be lying if that wasn't a big reason in wanting my own place.

Second, I think you're right. I'm making enough that I wouldn't really be having these problems if I lived somewhere else, but my field (publishing) is pretty centered in the area, and I'm definitely staying here as long my gf and I are together. I also can't justify moving out to a place further away from work, because the current long commute is a big reason I want to move out.

Third, I ran through my own calculations and it doesn't seem that far off - maybe I'll just get a decent amount back. Not sure if you live in Maryland, but taxes are quite high here.
I ran it through with MD and still got around $1950, vs $1975 for CA. I assumed CA had pretty high taxes, but apparently it's a very progressive system so it's actually less than some flat rate states at low incomes.

If you're overpaying, you'll get it back, but why would you want to lend the government $2500 you could happily use? I would probably go see if payroll could explain what's happening to me and if it's correct...But that's me. :)

Re: moving out, I think in your shoes, I would keep an eye out for a good deal. Not rush into anything, since your situation isn't unbearable, but watch CL to see if something around $400-500 (or less) pops up and what that looks like. But again, the exact value of the savings vs independence trade-off is very individual.