Mature Parents Frustrated With Adult Son Living At Home
Mature Parents Frustrated With Adult Son Living At Home

How much does it cost to keep your adult kids at home?

Bored with the debate over whether grown-up kids should be paying their way at home? Well that's about to change. Saved by Michelle asked comparison website to crunch the numbers and come up with a figure on how much those freeloading offspring cost to keep around the house.

So even if you are charging your kids board you might want to rethink how much you charge for their room and meals because while it was around $12,000 cheaper to have your child stay at home in Queensland than anywhere else in the country, finder data reveals the average cost of paying to keep a child under 35 at home is approximately $18,957.

Over 10 years that's a whopping $190,000 mums and dads are forking out for the pleasure of their kids' company.

PAYING HER WAY: Kate Healy still lives at home but pays board. Picture: Adam Head
PAYING HER WAY: Kate Healy still lives at home but pays board. Picture: Adam Head

More than half of that is what they would have to pay if they wanted to rent a room on someone other than their parents.

The rest is how much you need to charge just to break even on breakfasts, lunches and dinners, internet access and the cost of topping up the tank in the car because let's be honest, mum and dad are always going to be asked for that lift to the bus or train, or party.

Of course not making them pay at all - or keeping the cost low - can help them save for a house deposit and get their own place.

Finder Insights manager Graham Cooke said there's no harm in collecting rent.

"Providing free or even low-cost rent helps young people save faster than just about anything else," he says.

"If you are living at home and want to grow your money faster, compare high-interest rate savings accounts with good ongoing bonus interest rates.

"If you have lived at home long enough to save for a deposit, the good news is that rates are at historic lows - that said, shop around and make the best decision for you."

A Finder survey of more than 1000 Australians found that the majority (52 per cent) think children should start paying rent as soon as they get a full-time job.

That's compared to one in six (16 per cent) who didn't think they should have to pay up at all.

Kate Healy, 22, pays $300 board a month which includes groceries, water, electricity and internet.

"My mum, like many, has the mentality, earn or learn in the sense if my brother or I were studying and working casually or part-time, we didn't have to pay board," she said.

"However, as soon as we start full-time work we must pay $300 each month.

"I finished university last year, so this has been my first year of paying board, and by the sounds of it, it increases with age."