How do your kids factor into your next home upgrade?
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You’re considering a home upgrade, but your 20-something kids are still at home… So, how do kids factor into the home buying process?

Children are often front of mind when couples decide to upgrade their home. One in three Aussie families say their kids had a say in the decision to upgrade, and another 45% of people consider their children when thinking about moving to a bigger home. Kids that are older have a bigger say than younger kids on where and what kind of home a family buys next.

But while many parents are happy to take their children into account when buying a new home, they are also happy to suggest they move on when they feel the time is right. According to the ING survey*, 7% of parents have asked, or will ask, older children to move out.

Is it time for your ‘kids’ to fly the coop? Picture: Getty

Chief economist of Nerida Conisbee says a growing number of parents are faced with the prospect of adult children living at home due to children staying at school or university for longer, taking longer to find a job and because of the high costs of buying or renting, particularly in major cities.

“If children move out of home, rents in city areas can be prohibitive,” she says.

The Australian Institute of Family Studies says 43% of 20 to 24-year-olds still lived with parents in 2016, compared to 36% of 20 to 24-year-olds in 1981. More young men than women lived with their parents – 21% compared to 14% of young women. And adult children living in greater capital cities were more likely than those children living in regional areas to stay at home.

“I think the regional difference may be due to young people in those areas having to move out of home to go to university to study. It can also be tough to get a job in regional areas so young people may move out of home and to the city for work,” says Nerida.

Kids in regional areas are likely to escape the nest sooner than city kids. Picture: Getty

But she points out that many families are happy for adult children to stay in the family home until they find their financial feet.

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“I think parents are often happy to have children around for company and to help them save money to eventually be able to move out of home,” she says.

“We know from search activity that the most popular size home for upgraders is a four-bedroom home, so I think that suggests people are prepared for the fact that children may stay longer. We also see people searching for ‘granny flat’ – that might be because they want to make some money from Airbnb or because they want to accommodate older kids.”

Four-bed homes, and homes with granny flats, are popular for upgraders. Picture: Kate Hunter

Shazz Sharma, 38, a public servant living in Sydney’s west has two children aged eight and nine. He bought his four-bedroom home to ensure there is plenty of space to accommodate his children in years to come.

“I’m happy to support my kids at home as long as they are saving money and working towards getting their own property,” he says.

“As they get older, we have plenty of space to ensure we all have our privacy.”

Josephine C who lives in Sydney’s south-west, says her parents supported her as a young adult and she will do the same for her children.

“I left home when I was 27 and married at 28 and living at home really helped me. I was able to buy an investment property and I’d paid off half of that property by the time I got married and that set my family up for the future,” says Josephine.

“If I can help my children out and help them save money, I will – but if they reach the age of 40, have no goal in life and are sponging off us – then I might encourage them to leave!”




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