It is always a huge moment when your child is ready to move into their first home by themselves. They may very well have already gone through something similar, piling into a giant house share at university or spending a few months sharing living space with a couple of mates while looking for work somewhere. But there is a big difference between that obviously temporary set-up and the first proper home. For starters, there is the unspoken agreement that they probably won’t be coming back to your house every time they need a hot meal or to do some laundry.
And even though it is always a complicated emotional moment, full of pride and worry, it is particularly complicated right now. The pandemic has made us all very anxious about pretty much every part of our everyday lives, from our job situation to whether we are going to be able to fill our cars up at the petrol station, so it goes without saying that having your child definitively out of the nest might make you a little worried. But, letting them spread their wings is just as important as making sure that they are going to be able to land safely. Here are a few tips to help you guide them through the right choices without overstepping.
Prepare Them For A Long House Hunt
Anyone who has been watching the news will know just how competitive the property market has become, as people all over the country have been pushing out of the big cities in search of more space and a garden. If your child is moving into their first property, they may not be aware of just how much patience this process is going to require. Help them to narrow down their search by working with them on a list of must-haves, from location to space to appliances.
Make Sure They Are Not Paying More Than They Can Afford
When it comes to not overstepping, there are very few areas more fraught than money. You want to make sure that they are not going to be taking on more debt or committing to a rent price than they can afford, but it is also none of your business how much your child is earning. The best way to avoid getting into any difficult conversations is by being open and patient. Explain to them that there are always going to be more costs than they think there will be, and that everything from council tax to the broadband fee is going to be their responsibility. If they are taking on a mortgage, make sure that they feel comfortable talking to you about payment structures and interest rates, and offer to go through any offers with them before they sign on the dotted line.
Offer Practical Help With Furniture
We hate to generalise but when it comes to kitting out a home, a lot of younger people tend to be focused on their immediate needs. Is there a bed? Is there somewhere they can put the TV? Do they have somewhere they can set up their computer if they are going to be working from home? If the answer is yes, then they tend to leave it at that and realise that they need a lot of other furniture at a later date. This is a part of their move were giving them a helping hand ahead of time could save a lot of mess and headaches later on. Take built-in wardrobes, for example. They can be tricky to install if you don’t know exactly what kind of space you are working with. But Online Bedrooms can create a made-to-measure built in wardrobe that they can send to you in flat-pack form. Simply take your measurements and they will make it up for you, and you can help your child put it together themselves.
Set Some Boundaries But Don’t Go Too Far
When your child moves into their first new home, you can probably expect a certain amount of radio silence for a while. This is a big step, and they will have a lot on their plates getting settled in and getting everything set up. But it is also important that you try to avoid getting too involved and dropping by every few days just to see how they are doing. Remember to give them some space, even if they haven’t moved very far away.
On the other hand, it is important to remind them that you are still here for them if they need you. We all know how tough the pandemic has been on everyone’s mental health, and especially the mental health of young people. Think about how you can show them that just because they have moved out, does not mean that they can’t come to you for help and advice.