Become Financially Independent from Parents Here are 5 ways you and your spouse can become financially independent from your parents and in-laws. BY JENNA D. BARRY
Don't let your parents or in-laws hold money favors over your head.
Do you live with your parents or in-laws? Do you work for them? Do you owe them money? Do they provide daycare for your children? Do you depend on them for transportation?
Many couples, especially newlyweds, sometimes lean on their folks for financial support, which is not necessarily a bad thing. However, it could be a bad thing if (1) your parents or in-laws are controlling, manipulative people, (2) you feel obligated to do everything they want because they take care of your monetary needs, or (3) your spouse feels financially trapped by them. Unite with your spouse to identify problem areas, reach loving compromises, focus on mutual goals, and brainstorm ways to achieve those goals—even if they seem unattainable.
Here are 5 ways to become financially independent from your parents and in-laws:
1. Move out. If you think your parents invade your privacy, then move out of their house. If you are living with your in-laws while saving up to buy a house, consider postponing that dream if it means saving your sanity and your marriage. Find an apartment or a cheaper house that you can afford now. Get a roommate if necessary. Consider moving to a part of the country where housing is less expensive. Work overtime hours and cut back on other expenses as necessary.
2. Get a different job. If you feel that your folks boss you around or know too much about your finances then it might be best if you stopped working for them. Pursue a job you love, even if that doesn’t fit into their plans for the family business.
3. Pay back your loan. If you constantly feel obligated to get your parents’ approval because you owe them money, then do everything in your power to pay them back as soon as possible. Get a bank loan. Downsize to a cheaper car or smaller house. Get a temporary second job, eat cheaper meals, etc.
4. Find alternative daycare options. If you’re angry because your in-laws undermine your authority with your kids, then don’t depend on them for your daycare needs. Hire a babysitter, be a stay-at-home parent, or even start your own small daycare.
5. Find another mode of transportation. Perhaps you can carpool, use public transportation, or ride your bike to work. Now may also be a good time to see if your boss will let you work from home (at least some days)—this is a cost savings to them and for you.
Decide as a couple what is best for your marriage (even if it’s not the most wise financial decision), and realize that you may have more options available than you think.
Jenna D. Barry is the author of “A Wife’s Guide to In-laws: How to Gain Your Husband’s Loyalty Without Killing His Parents.” Find more at www.WifeGuide.org.