How To Adapt To Living At Home After Graduating

  • Returning to live at home after graduation can help new graduates get established both professionally and financially. But living with one's parents after four or more years of independence at college can be a challenge. Clear communication is the key to living at home and maintaining positive family relationships. Graduates should follow these guidelines when returning to live at home.

    Establish an Expected Timeline
    Is this a three month stay as you study for the bar exam or wait to start your new position? Or could this become an extended stay as you pay off student loans or try to find a job during difficult economic times? Begin by establishing an expected length of stay or some specific milestones you wish to reach before getting your own place. All parties should be in agreement on how long the graduate is welcome to live at home.

    Discuss Costs
    Are your parents offering free rent for the length of your stay? Will you be expected to contribute towards household expenses? Purchase your own groceries? Adapting to living at home means understanding the financial aspects of the arrangement from the start and honoring your commitments in a timely manner.

    Limit Friends and Guests
    Unlike living in the dorms or your own apartment, living at home may require you to limit the friends and guests you bring home. While parents may not mind a couple of friends coming over to watch the ball game on tv, most parents don't want to see their homes overrun by your friends on a regular basis. It is also wise to avoid having any overnight guests, especially dates, because this is likely to cause a strain in family relationships.

    Keep Reasonable Hours
    Regular hours for college students are different from those of most working adults. While living at home it is a good idea to keep reasonable hours, not sleeping in or staying out too late. As a courtesy, most nights you may want to come home before your family has gone to bed to avoid waking them when you enter the house. It may help to discuss any late night plans or the possibility of you sleeping over at a friend's to avoid misunderstandings.

    Help Around the House
    Some families agree upon certain household tasks for returning graduates, but even if there are no expectations, you should help around the house. Plan to do your own laundry, clean up after yourself, and help with an essay online or projects. Even if mom or dad volunteers to do all the cooking, cleaning, and laundry, helping with small things, like returning all cups and bowls to the kitchen or carrying the groceries in from the car, is appreciated.

    Review Living Arrangements Frequently
    If your stay at home is longer than a month, plan to review and discuss living arrangements with your family to ensure things are going smoothly. Everyone wants privacy and their own space, including parents, and having graduates come live at home can be challenging for all involved. If you regularly sit down and discuss timelines, costs, and expectations, you may be able to address concerns and frustrations before they become a problem.

    Returning home after graduation can help students establish themselves. Living at home while searching for a job or paying off student loans means making compromises in order to build a stronger future. As long as students and parents maintain clear communication and respect, it is possible to adapt to living at home after graduation.