Author Topic: Financially dependent roommate - advice?  (Read 9795 times)

clara2009

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Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« on: December 06, 2015, 06:14:36 PM »
Have you ever had someone financially dependent on you Ė when is the time to get out of it?

Iíve recently been told that my rent (2BR/2BA) will increase from 1700 to 1850 per month. I live with a girl (Allison) - both of us are 29. I make 78k, she currently makes 30k (yearly). This is Allison's first professional job out of college, it might not get much better for her considering her degree. I currently pay 1100. Allison pays 600. Allison's rent was decided based on initial circumstances Ė we had a 3rd roommate in the master bedroom with me.  After a few months, the 3rd roommate (also mustachian!) and I mutually decided it was a bad idea to live together as we were also coworkers Ė no hard feelings from coworker thankfully. I left Allisonís rent at 600 because I felt it was unfair to increase the rent for a circumstance that was out of her control (it was a poor move to live with a coworker on my part) Ė I still have the master bedroom. Allison and I have been living together for 1.5 years with a lease renewal approaching in a few months. The good news is that Iím comfortable with her as a roommate. The bad news is that she has no promotion potential where she works and Iím starting to feel like she is getting comfortable knowing that I can and will pick up the financial slack. What sort of conversations should I be having with her if any? 

Allison is tentatively planning on applying to grad school for a start date in Fall 2017 (1.5 years away). I suspect she thinks that she'll have access to $600 monthly rent until then. And I'm not sure that I'm ok with it. However, if I decide I want to pursue a cheaper living situation or pursue other job opportunities - I will be the crash to her positive forward momentum she has in her life. I'm pretty sure she would have to move home (400 miles away). I think she is still living paycheck to paycheck. I'm really proud of her - she has made some positive changes to her life and she has mentioned several times that she wishes should could contribute more.

What would you do in this situation? I tend to be a compassionate person and I know that I probably sign the lease and request that Allison build up a 6 month emergency fund within a year. I just want to go forward aware of the consequences. Would you take steps to get out of this situation? I was offered a place to stay for $600/month - but Allison would not be with me. I am torn because I'm aware that I was given opportunities (primarily education) and a great set of parents that Allison did not have. And I'm not sure that the grass is greener with lower cost housing.

Thanks!

use2betrix

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #1 on: December 06, 2015, 06:25:48 PM »
Why don't you just read her this post, minus the last bit about her being less fortunate?

Just talk to her, you obviously have an idea in your head what is fair or unfair. If you want to help her out then that's your decision and I don't think anyone here can truly give honest advice regarding that not knowing either of you personally.

In my opinion, I would say at a bare minimum it'd be reasonable to ask her to cover the increase in rent. That'd bring your amounts closer. Simply tell her, "the rent is increasing $150/mo, and brings I am paying $500/mo more right now, I think it'd be reasonable for you to cover the difference."

I understand your reasoning that you had another roommate that was your friend and left, and that's understandable for the duration of the lease. But now with the lease ending is a time to make it a bit more reasonable. Also, being you have the master, I think that's also understandable to pay a little more (granted not $500/mo more)

johnny847

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #2 on: December 06, 2015, 06:28:43 PM »


What would you do in this situation? I tend to be a compassionate person

This is a business transaction, plain and simple. I see how you ended up paying $1100 vs Allison paying $600 originally, and how it wouldn't be fair to change her rent for the 3rd roommate leaving. But I'm assuming that this rate was written into some type of contract which is up for renewal.
It is obviously unfair for you to be paying this much going forward, even if you do have the better bedroom. This is a business transaction. If she can't afford it, then she should find housing elsewhere.

I know that I probably sign the lease and request that Allison build up a 6 month emergency fund within a year.
Whoa buddy. Very few people respond well to having their financial decisions dictated to them.

I was offered a place to stay for $600/month - but Allison would not be with me. I am torn because I'm aware that I was given opportunities (primarily education) and a great set of parents that Allison did not have. And I'm not sure that the grass is greener with lower cost housing.

Take the other place. If Allison were a significant other than this would be different. But she's just a roommate.

pbkmaine

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #3 on: December 06, 2015, 06:31:14 PM »
You have already done plenty for Allison. You can use the rent increase as an excuse for moving out. Do so.


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clara2009

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #4 on: December 06, 2015, 06:58:03 PM »
"Take the other place. If Allison were a significant other than this would be different. But she's just a roommate."


I didn't include it in the original post but I've known Allison for 10 years (college roommate). When we moved in together, I was helping her out of unfortunate situation and I thought she would get on her feet faster.  If I parted with her for financial reasons, I risk some ugly stares at every wedding and friends picking sides. But as someone else mentioned - maybe this forum isn't the best place to get insight on this situation as it is somewhat emotional. I've also realized that if the $600 month rent didn't work out long term, a $1400 (1 BR) rent isn't really a step in the right direction. 

Now the question is, how do I delete this thread as I think I have my answer. Thanks!

 
« Last Edit: December 06, 2015, 07:32:45 PM by clara2009 »

lbmustache

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #5 on: December 06, 2015, 07:39:23 PM »
Have you ever had someone financially dependent on you Ė when is the time to get out of it?

Iíve recently been told that my rent (2BR/2BA) will increase from 1700 to 1850 per month. I live with a girl (Allison) - both of us are 29. I make 78k, she currently makes 30k (yearly). This is Allison's first professional job out of college, it might not get much better for her considering her degree. I currently pay 1100. Allison pays 600. Allison's rent was decided based on initial circumstances Ė we had a 3rd roommate in the master bedroom with me.  After a few months, the 3rd roommate (also mustachian!) and I mutually decided it was a bad idea to live together as we were also coworkers Ė no hard feelings from coworker thankfully. I left Allisonís rent at 600 because I felt it was unfair to increase the rent for a circumstance that was out of her control (it was a poor move to live with a coworker on my part) Ė I still have the master bedroom. Allison and I have been living together for 1.5 years with a lease renewal approaching in a few months. The good news is that Iím comfortable with her as a roommate. The bad news is that she has no promotion potential where she works and Iím starting to feel like she is getting comfortable knowing that I can and will pick up the financial slack. What sort of conversations should I be having with her if any? 

Allison is tentatively planning on applying to grad school for a start date in Fall 2017 (1.5 years away). I suspect she thinks that she'll have access to $600 monthly rent until then. And I'm not sure that I'm ok with it. However, if I decide I want to pursue a cheaper living situation or pursue other job opportunities - I will be the crash to her positive forward momentum she has in her life. I'm pretty sure she would have to move home (400 miles away). I think she is still living paycheck to paycheck. I'm really proud of her - she has made some positive changes to her life and she has mentioned several times that she wishes should could contribute more.

What would you do in this situation? I tend to be a compassionate person and I know that I probably sign the lease and request that Allison build up a 6 month emergency fund within a year. I just want to go forward aware of the consequences. Would you take steps to get out of this situation? I was offered a place to stay for $600/month - but Allison would not be with me. I am torn because I'm aware that I was given opportunities (primarily education) and a great set of parents that Allison did not have. And I'm not sure that the grass is greener with lower cost housing.

Thanks!

I think you have a lot of things going on here.

First of all, what amount do you want her to pay? If she contributes $100, $150 more, will that be enough for you? I personally think the amounts you are each paying are relatively fair given 1) your incomes and 2) the room you are occupying.

Second of all, have you talked to her about ANY of this? I don't think you need to drag down your life (e.g. not taking jobs, etc.) for her. If you want to kick her out, maybe help her find a new place or offer 6 months notice rather than 1 or 2.


tj

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #6 on: December 06, 2015, 07:59:06 PM »
"Take the other place. If Allison were a significant other than this would be different. But she's just a roommate."


I didn't include it in the original post but I've known Allison for 10 years (college roommate). When we moved in together, I was helping her out of unfortunate situation and I thought she would get on her feet faster.  If I parted with her for financial reasons, I risk some ugly stares at every wedding and friends picking sides. But as someone else mentioned - maybe this forum isn't the best place to get insight on this situation as it is somewhat emotional. I've also realized that if the $600 month rent didn't work out long term, a $1400 (1 BR) rent isn't really a step in the right direction.

Now the question is, how do I delete this thread as I think I have my answer. Thanks!

This is generally why I try to live wiht randoms off craigslist. If a roommate situation goes south and it's your friend, that can mess up your social life. It's no different than a co-worker. If it was just a random girl you found on craigslist, you would probably put up with less.

It sounds like you guys need to have a conversation, just try not to be judgmental. If you have a 10 year old friendship, she shouldn't hold it against you that you have other opportunities out of the area.


I am confused though. Your previous post stated that your roommate is not your friend and that you paid $900 in rent.

http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/ask-a-mustachian/is-my-mindset-is-unhealthy-i'm-overwhelmed/msg826303/#msg826303
« Last Edit: December 06, 2015, 08:09:22 PM by tj »

mandy_2002

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #7 on: December 07, 2015, 01:06:03 AM »
...
Now the question is, how do I delete this thread as I think I have my answer. Thanks!
I believe if you go to your first post, the should be a "Remove" option. Good luck with your decision!

ooeei

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #8 on: December 07, 2015, 11:53:41 AM »
What would you do in this situation? I tend to be a compassionate person and I know that I probably sign the lease and request that Allison build up a 6 month emergency fund within a year. I just want to go forward aware of the consequences. Would you take steps to get out of this situation? I was offered a place to stay for $600/month - but Allison would not be with me. I am torn because I'm aware that I was given opportunities (primarily education) and a great set of parents that Allison did not have. And I'm not sure that the grass is greener with lower cost housing.

Thanks!

I would tell my 10 year long friend that the lease is up, and while I was happy to pay for the extra rent when my friend moved out because of me, now it's time to re-assess the situation.  I'd tell her that the rent is going up to $1850, and we can split it $1000/$850 since I have the bigger bedroom.  I'd then state that even $1000 is a bit more than I'd like to spend (bring it back on ME not wanting to pay much, not insulting her because I assume she can't pay), so how about we look for a cheaper place to split because I like her as a roommate.

I don't have any friends who would get mad at me and alienate me from other friends for that proposition.  If I did, they probably wouldn't be friends for long.
« Last Edit: December 07, 2015, 11:58:12 AM by ooeei »

cchrissyy

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #9 on: December 07, 2015, 01:02:44 PM »
how about giving her the lead about the $600/m opportunity you were offered?  If she takes it, cool, you've helped way beyond what a friend or roommate needs to do. If she doesn't want it, you can.

Dicey

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #10 on: December 07, 2015, 01:53:48 PM »
how about giving her the lead about the $600/m opportunity you were offered?  If she takes it, cool, you've helped way beyond what a friend or roommate needs to do. If she doesn't want it, you can.
I think this is a great suggestion! Would it work?

galliver

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #11 on: December 07, 2015, 01:59:28 PM »
One place I rented, we split rent based on bedroom square footage (there was one bathroom, otherwise private bath would be included in private space, I think). I think that's one of the most fair ways if there's any significant difference in size/amenities.

I couldn't quite figure out the full scope of your problem...do you want to ask her to pay her share, and are you willing to look for a different apartment if she's unable? Do you want to move elsewhere/with other people? Do you want to move out of town/state?

Regardless, talk about it. Treat her as an adult who can figure out her own affairs if you change your role in this situation. Obviously, be kind and compassionate but if your friends think you're obligated to live with her indefinitely because you moved in together at one point...well, you might need new friends. But I suspect not, unless you're a jerk about it (e.g. you only give her 2 weeks notice or something).

mozar

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #12 on: December 07, 2015, 07:09:15 PM »
If you can get a place for $600, there must be other places your roommate can also get that is similar. Also 1.5 years is a long time. Before I bought a house I never lived anywhere that long.

lostamonkey

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #13 on: December 07, 2015, 08:44:49 PM »
I don't see this as a business transaction. You clearly care about Allison and she seems like a close friend. Is it possible that you and her could look for a new more affordable place together?

clara2009

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #14 on: December 07, 2015, 09:16:17 PM »
TJ - You were right to catch the contradiction between first post Ė I did state that my roommate was not a friend. My first post was me trying to learn to take risk/steps without being dependent on my roommate. I guess Iím still trying to figure out how to do adult things with my money, resources and time following mustachian principles. So I was trying to discourage the ďdrive your roommateís carĒ advice as we really are different people, different lives and different priorities. At the time, she was still unemployed and really really stressed out. It wasnít a good time to lean on her for social support/car buying, and I needed to find my own way. I should not have been so misleading. Sorry, really.

Regarding the rent discrepancy, the 3rd roommate was paying 200/month for a while to make up for bailing out of the lease (she moved in with her folks). So I was paying 900 until October, then I picked up her 200 monthly contribution recently, so Iím now paying 1100. Allison was paying $600 the whole time.   

As others pointed out Ė my question wasnít very clear. For those asking if Allison and I talked about it Ė yes, to some extent. But at the end of the day Ė talking about it doesnít change her circumstance Ė she feels bad, and it isn't my intention to bring it up frequently and remind her. Iíve also realized that I canít change her financial, motivation or priorities. That is her decision. So yes, (Johnny849), you are right, telling her to have an emergency fund in a year isnít necessarily going to go over very well. Iíve told her that Iím looking at other jobs, but Iím not planning on getting serious about it for another 9 months at the earliest. And at the end of the day Ė she still might not be financially where she needs to be for the time when I leave and I might just have to accept that. I guess all I can really do right now is budget my funds carefully and give her as much warning as I can.

Regarding the $600 rent situation Ė if I could, I would offer the situation to Allison Ė but the offer was extended by a couple that I go to church with Ė they want me to tutor their daughter in the afternoons Ė I work 6Ė3:30.  I donít think they would extend the offer to Allison and I donít think Allison would make that commitment.

For now, we still have a few months before the lease renewal, so Iím just going to see if I can flex some mustachian muscles and see if I can pick up couponing or maybe consider tutoring the daughter anyway for second income. Allison and I will likely look for cheaper alternatives, but we have a pretty good deal for the area as it is. This is the first time for me living in a high cost of living area - so the concept of paying so much for rent is hard for me. My hometown has apartments for $400/month. 

Anyway, Iíd delete the post so no one felt compelled to respond or rereading, but it wonít allow me to and Iím grateful for those who took the time to respond!  It has given me something to think about!!! This forum has been so wonderful!

Zamboni

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #15 on: December 07, 2015, 09:58:56 PM »
I'm kind of confused by your post because I never had a roommate situation that I expected to last longer than the duration of the lease.

Your roommate and friend is not your life partner, not your child, not some helpless pet you adopted, and not your responsibility. You are sacrificing your own financial future right now for her.  I'm with the other posters who suggest that you use the rent increase as an excuse for your own graceful exit from this apartment.

The only other alternative that makes any sense to me is for her to move her bed into the larger bedroom with you so that you both can get a third roommate in the other bedroom. Then you can both save money, and I did this option when I lived in a very high COL area. If sharing a bedroom with her is not something you are interested in doing, then cut your losses when the lease is up and move out.

clara2009

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #16 on: December 07, 2015, 10:13:52 PM »
I'm kind of confused by your post because I never had a roommate situation that I expected to last longer than the duration of the lease.

Your roommate and friend is not your life partner, not your child, not some helpless pet you adopted, and not your responsibility. You are sacrificing your own financial future right now for her.  I'm with the other posters who suggest that you use the rent increase as an excuse for your own graceful exit from this apartment.

The only other alternative that makes any sense to me is for her to move her bed into the larger bedroom with you so that you both can get a third roommate in the other bedroom. Then you can both save money, and I did this option when I lived in a very high COL area. If sharing a bedroom with her is not something you are interested in doing, then cut your losses when the lease is up and move out.

I know, that is why I'm torn. In some sense, I know am sacrificing my financial future for her. But income wise, the rent is split fairly evenly taking into consideration our pay discrepancy. If made my exit from this living situation, I would either be living in the $600/month church couple situation (which would only last a year) or find another 1700 apartment and at best, split the cost evenly with the new roommate for a monthly rent of $850 (down from my current $1100/month).  I make 78k right now, looking at a likely 8% raise in about a year and a verbal promise of 92k within two years - I don't know the math or mustachian principles of when I just suck it up and accept the situation or do something about it? Having this apartment allows me to telecommute comfortably, study for work related exams in peace, and walk to most necessary destinations, etc.   

I guess I should also consider focusing on my love life and not counting every penny at the moment? Not that a partner should be my exit strategy, but living with Allison was never supposed to be long term. 
« Last Edit: December 07, 2015, 10:20:49 PM by clara2009 »

ClaycordJCA

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #17 on: December 07, 2015, 10:58:34 PM »
i think we need more facts about how Alison's share of the rent was fixed at $600 per month. If you were living together or wanting to live with your co-worker and invited Allison to join you to either reduce your costs or make that possible, why should Allison be stuck with increased rent because you decided to end the relationship?  Seems to me she was offered the smaller room for a percentage of the rent. Her circumstances haven't changed - yours did. Unless there is something we don't know, my take is that Alison continues to pay the same $600 until the lease is up.

As to the rent increase when the lease expires, you of course have the option to move. So tell her that you don't want/can't afford the increased rent, especially since the other roomie left, you are thinking of moving and have budgeted x dollars a month for rent  and what does she think?  Allison can then agree to pay the difference for your current place when the rent increases or not. If not, you and she should move when the lease is up.

clara2009

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #18 on: December 08, 2015, 07:01:00 AM »
The original breakdown was Clara + 3rd roommate - $550 each ($1100), Allison $600 for a total of $1700. Allison had her own full bathroom. 3rd roommate and I shared bathroom.

I absolutely agree with the sentiment that Allison should not have to pay for a mutual falling out between me and the 3rd roommate/coworker that occurred last year. I'm fine with the circumstances of paying 1100 until the lease is up. But it will be 24 months soon (we have 5 or 6 more months on the lease), that Allison has $600 rent and I'm paying $900 - $1100. 

What I'm uncomfortable with is the reality that pursing more mustachian housing options greatly affects Allison - she would ultimately have to move home and lose what positive career momentum she has in her life right now.  I feel like I'm choosing between wise financial decisions for myself and someone's future. 


Ceridwen

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #19 on: December 08, 2015, 07:33:21 AM »
You are a good friend, but I think it's time to move on and move out.  Allison needs to figure out her own financial situation.  If she can't afford to live in the city you are living in (either on her own, or in a cheaper apartment with another roommate), then it's not up to you to pay her way.  This decision won't be any easier to make 1+ year from now, so I would do it now.

You should be paying rent based on square-footage of private space (as previously suggested), or find a place on your own or with another roommate.

neophyte

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #20 on: December 08, 2015, 08:33:39 AM »
I don't know the math or mustachian principles of when I just suck it up and accept the situation or do something about it? Having this apartment allows me to telecommute comfortably, study for work related exams in peace, and walk to most necessary destinations, etc.   

I agree she's not your responsibility, but I think you should also weigh the advantages of having a roommate you know you get along well with. There are few things in life more miserable than having to live with someone you can't stand. (My roommate of 3 years is also an old college friend I've known for 10. However we have similar incomes and split rent evenly.)

I think you should discuss the increase in rent with her and see if she is willing to take on all or most of it.  Would she be able to afford a more equal share of the rent if you two moved to a lower priced apartment in the same area or a 3 bedroom with a third roommate?  I don't see why you couldn't both move to a cheaper apartment together.

Dezrah

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #21 on: December 08, 2015, 08:57:45 AM »
I admit I'm confused as to why the two of you can't take on another roommate. Alternatively, why not take the tutoring gig and let your friend take over the lease, that gives her months to track down suitable roommates. If she' really wants to stay where she is and keep her job she'll figure out how to make it work. If she can't... then maybe she needs to go back home to think about what she really wants out of life.

SKL-HOU

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #22 on: December 08, 2015, 10:25:34 AM »
You need to stop thinking and planning for Allison. She is an adult. Stop being her mother. She will figure it out. You are just enabling her to rely on you.

dandarc

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #23 on: December 08, 2015, 10:38:42 AM »
What I'm uncomfortable with is the reality that pursing more mustachian housing options greatly affects Allison - she would ultimately have to move home and lose what positive career momentum she has in her life right now.  I feel like I'm choosing between wise financial decisions for myself and someone's future.
This sort of thinking is how my parents have more-or-less bankrupted themselves in regards to my drug-addict sister.  Allison's an adult.  Moving back home / quitting her job is simply one choice among many she might make if you say, "I'm not gonna renew the lease this time."  5-6 months is plenty of time to figure something out on her own.  And your relationship will likely be better in the long term if you cut out this co-dependent nonsense.

lizzzi

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #24 on: December 08, 2015, 11:31:22 AM »
Yes, Allison is an adult, and you should not be living your life for her. You seem to be worrying about a lot of stuff that is "not your space."  Stuff that is her problem/s, not yours. Do what you need and want to do for yourself...giving Allison adequate notice, of course...and don't look back. I know nothing is more irritating than someone trying to be an armchair psychologist, but I am seeing big co-dependency and enabler red flags here.

SKL-HOU

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #25 on: December 08, 2015, 11:46:52 AM »
Another thing is why is it just you that is having to take on the financial responsibility of the falling out between you and the ex 3rd roommate? These things happen in a roommate situation. You are giving too much. Paying for rent proportionate to your income only really applies to if you are in a committed relationship IMO, not with roommates. It is very nice of you to try to help her but in addition to enabling her to be dependent on you, you are screwing your own future. It is not up to you to make life fair for her.

mm1970

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #26 on: December 08, 2015, 01:22:06 PM »
This is a tough situation.

When I was first out of college, I rented a room in a house with a stranger and a fellow sorority sister from college.

Eventually, the dude (stranger) moved out and my other roommie and I got a 2BR apartment.  She got the master, so our rent was split by square footage of the bedrooms.

One summer, her boyfriend moved in.  My rent went down a bit - he split her room, but added a bit more because now the "kitchen/living" areas were shared by 3 people.

Then he went back to school. 

Our rent went up and we moved to a different apartment.  It was a nightmare (roach infested).  We only stayed a month, had not signed the lease.  At that point, her boyfriend was due to come back to the area for 6 months.  As we were looking for a new place, I decided to get my own place, because I didn't want to live with him again, AND because shortly after that, he would graduate and they'd move in together.  So I was looking at moving 2x in a year.

That was not very popular at all.  She made a bit less money than me, but she wanted a nicer place than I did.  She really wanted an apartment with security (in the DC area), and could not afford a 1BR or studio on her own.  She opted to move in with her brother who lived way out in NoVa and commute.

We haven't spoken since.  In her mind, I totally screwed her over.  In my mind, I just didn't want to move 2x and I didn't want to live with her boyfriend anymore.

NoraLenderbee

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #27 on: December 08, 2015, 03:33:16 PM »

What I'm uncomfortable with is the reality that pursing more mustachian housing options greatly affects Allison - she would ultimately have to move home and lose what positive career momentum she has in her life right now.  I feel like I'm choosing between wise financial decisions for myself and someone's future.

You're treating Allison as if she were your child or your dependent.  She is an employed grownup the same age as you, with her own career and her own finances, and the ability to determine her own fate. It is not your responsibility to shelter her from life lessons nor is it in her interest. She can and needs to learn to fend for herself, even if that means moving home temporarily, taking a second job, or doing something else that isn't fun.

Have you asked Allison what she thinks? Have you said, "Here's the situation: The rent is going up $X and I don't want/can't afford to pay it all. What are your thoughts?"

I had roommates all through my 20s, and there was a period where my roommate made more money, had the master suite, and paid more than I did. I got to live in a somewhat nicer place than I could afford on my own, and it was nice. However, when life changes came along and he decided to move in with his significant other, I didn't expect him to arrange his life to suit my finances. It wasn't unfair of him to do that, he didn't owe me support.

Allison knows on some level that she needs to be able to support herself. And if she doesn't, it's about time she found out. And *you* need to stop keeping her dependent on you.


SKL-HOU

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #28 on: December 08, 2015, 03:42:54 PM »

Allison knows on some level that she needs to be able to support herself. And if she doesn't, it's about time she found out. And *you* need to stop keeping her dependent on you.

This... She definitely knows, that's why she makes the comments that she feels bad. Just give her plenty of notice, which would still be going above and beyond. let her figure it out. If having to get her own place will derail her plans for her OWN future, then they can be derailed anytime.

clarkfan1979

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #29 on: December 08, 2015, 04:13:56 PM »
I don't see anything in your post that would suggest that your roommate is counting on you to pick up the slack.

If this stresses you out, I would move after the end of the lease. Her situation doesn't seem to change much if bedrooms rent for about $600.


Zamboni

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #30 on: December 08, 2015, 06:17:37 PM »
This is a tough situation.

When I was first out of college, I rented a room in a house with a stranger and a fellow sorority sister from college.

. . .

We haven't spoken since.  In her mind, I totally screwed her over.  In my mind, I just didn't want to move 2x and I didn't want to live with her boyfriend anymore.

This is why it is not always such a good idea to live with friends. My own experiences with roommates who were pretty much strangers to me were generally pretty good, while my experiences with roommates who were my friends prior to the roommate situation were generally not good. For whatever reason, people are just not always super considerate in living with friends (just for examples, eating food/"borrowing" laundry soap, etc. you bought for yourself, not cleaning their share, being inconsiderately loud when you are trying to sleep, getting pets or letting someone else move into their bedroom without asking you first, not paying their fair share sometimes etc.) and they expect to be cut slack because of the friendship. And then you do cut them slack for the sake of the friendship, and the whole situation snowballs month after month until you realize that you are completely screwing yourself by living with this person.

The longer it drags on, the more she will resent it when you cut the cord.

former player

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #31 on: December 08, 2015, 07:04:57 PM »
I don't know how it is in your locality, but in most of the places I've lived in the UK spending a third of your income on housing is about right.  In London a lot of people who are renting pay more than that.  Allison is earning $30,000 a year, which isn't much, but it's enough to pay more rent than she is doing, especially in a HCOL area.  If her career job isn't going to pay much better in the near future, she needs a side-hustle.

OP: you have a high income.  You could afford to subsidise Allison if you wanted, but you don't want to and it would be a bad idea for both you and Allison if you did.  Let the current agreement run until the end of the lease.  Tell Allison now that you will want to make changes: you have your $600 a month plus tuition option to consider, and you think the rent for your current place will be rather high by comparison.  You might think about staying if Allison could increase her share of the rent, but you don't want to put her under financial pressure to do so.  If she does want to continue with the current apartment but paying more, she needs to let you know in good time.

mm1970

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #32 on: December 09, 2015, 01:37:39 PM »
This is a tough situation.

When I was first out of college, I rented a room in a house with a stranger and a fellow sorority sister from college.

. . .

We haven't spoken since.  In her mind, I totally screwed her over.  In my mind, I just didn't want to move 2x and I didn't want to live with her boyfriend anymore.

This is why it is not always such a good idea to live with friends. My own experiences with roommates who were pretty much strangers to me were generally pretty good, while my experiences with roommates who were my friends prior to the roommate situation were generally not good. For whatever reason, people are just not always super considerate in living with friends (just for examples, eating food/"borrowing" laundry soap, etc. you bought for yourself, not cleaning their share, being inconsiderately loud when you are trying to sleep, getting pets or letting someone else move into their bedroom without asking you first, not paying their fair share sometimes etc.) and they expect to be cut slack because of the friendship. And then you do cut them slack for the sake of the friendship, and the whole situation snowballs month after month until you realize that you are completely screwing yourself by living with this person.

The longer it drags on, the more she will resent it when you cut the cord.
Yeah, it's a total bummer.  We weren't necessarily friends when we started - more like acquaintances, she was a year older.

We got along well as roommates because we rarely saw each other.  We both worked full time.  I took classes at night a couple of nights a week and played volleyball and had a boyfriend. She took classes on different nights and was in a choir.  We were both home at the same time maybe one night every couple of weeks, and enjoyed each other's company then.

Dicey

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #33 on: December 09, 2015, 02:16:25 PM »
Is there any possibility of Allison finding a roommate to replace you? If she can find someone who can afford and is willing to move into your place, you can move into the other situation for a year and save bank before deciding what to do next. If the lease is in your name, this will require some co-operation with your landlord, but it might be worth considering.

I lived in a rent-controlled apartment in LA for years. When the first roommate moved out, I took over the whole lease. All roommates from then on had a lease with me, paid their rent to me, and I paid the full amount to the landlord (with the landlord's full understanding and approval). Since I was a long-term, fast-paying, quiet, non-complaining tenant, they were okay with this arrangement and for several years didn't even bother to raise the rent, as the law allowed. Over the years, I gradually charged each succeeding roommate a higher portion of the rent. Soon my 50-50 split became more like 30% me and 70% roommate. The fact that I had lived there so long kept the rent below market and very affordable, even for the person paying the big half of the rent.

Not sure if this would work in your situation, but I just remembered this chapter in my life as I was checking back to learn the "rest of the story".

TomTX

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #34 on: December 12, 2015, 07:57:34 AM »
...
Now the question is, how do I delete this thread as I think I have my answer. Thanks!
I believe if you go to your first post, the should be a "Remove" option. Good luck with your decision!

Please don't do this. The community has contributed ideas and information on dealing with this problem. Others can learn in the future from the analysis.

To delete is both rude and selfish.

Now if you post something you shouldn't (ie information another person doesn't want released or something) - delete away.

My opinion.

ClaycordJCA

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #35 on: December 12, 2015, 09:43:27 AM »

What I'm uncomfortable with is the reality that pursing more mustachian housing options greatly affects Allison - she would ultimately have to move home and lose what positive career momentum she has in her life right now.  I feel like I'm choosing between wise financial decisions for myself and someone's future.

You're treating Allison as if she were your child or your dependent.  She is an employed grownup the same age as you, with her own career and her own finances, and the ability to determine her own fate. It is not your responsibility to shelter her from life lessons nor is it in her interest. She can and needs to learn to fend for herself, even if that means moving home temporarily, taking a second job, or doing something else that isn't fun.

Have you asked Allison what she thinks? Have you said, "Here's the situation: The rent is going up $X and I don't want/can't afford to pay it all. What are your thoughts?"

I had roommates all through my 20s, and there was a period where my roommate made more money, had the master suite, and paid more than I did. I got to live in a somewhat nicer place than I could afford on my own, and it was nice. However, when life changes came along and he decided to move in with his significant other, I didn't expect him to arrange his life to suit my finances. It wasn't unfair of him to do that, he didn't owe me support.

Allison knows on some level that she needs to be able to support herself. And if she doesn't, it's about time she found out. And *you* need to stop keeping her dependent on you.

Very well said.

Malum Prohibitum

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Re: Financially dependent roommate - advice?
« Reply #36 on: December 12, 2015, 11:09:08 AM »
The original breakdown was Clara + 3rd roommate - $550 each ($1100), Allison $600 for a total of $1700. Allison had her own full bathroom. 3rd roommate and I shared bathroom.

I absolutely agree with the sentiment that Allison should not have to pay for a mutual falling out between me and the 3rd roommate/coworker that occurred last year. I'm fine with the circumstances of paying 1100 until the lease is up. But it will be 24 months soon (we have 5 or 6 more months on the lease), that Allison has $600 rent and I'm paying $900 - $1100. 

What I'm uncomfortable with is the reality that pursing more mustachian housing options greatly affects Allison - she would ultimately have to move home and lose what positive career momentum she has in her life right now.  I feel like I'm choosing between wise financial decisions for myself and someone's future.
  Well, based on this, you still have 5-6 months.  That is PLENTY of warning.  Why would that derail her?  She has plenty of time to plan.  Every day you put off telling her is one more day that she does not have to plan for the future.

She is not your pet.

She is not your kid.

She is an adult.

Make up your mind as to what you are going to do, and inform her.

Do you even know what you want to do?