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Small House Because Of Relatives?
Old 06-15-2007, 11:29 AM   #1
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Small House Because Of Relatives?

Further to the downsizing house size thread, DW & I have had a small house for many years now. About 1,000 SQ FT 2 BD, 1 BA. Mostly this has worked for us and our two boys (don't think this would have worked with other child arrangements). Older son is long gone, schooled & married. Younger son is off to college this fall, more room for us!
Now over the years my wife has at least occasionally expressed a desire for more space, either adding on or a bigger house. But what has worked in my favor is that she does not get on all that well with her mother. So when DW mentions the need for space I remind her mom would want to visit for extended periods if not outright move in period. End of discussion.
I wonder if there are any folks in this position, not wanting to add space because of family or friends who would 'invade'? Maybe the folks in Hawaii & more desirable areas would have only a seasonal problem?
I wouldn't mind the cost of adding, maintaining, utilities & taxes on more space if I could assure MIL would not occupy said space.

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Old 06-15-2007, 11:58 AM   #2
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I/we are not in that position (actually Mother did live with us (just before she passed away) and before that we purchased a Condo and then a home down the street for her sole use) however, I guess you and DW could just say "No" when the MIL (or other relatives) raises the question! But that may negate a possible inheritance?

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Old 06-15-2007, 11:59 AM   #3
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Maybe you could add living space that's not seen "guest space"; separate workshop, exercise room, family room, library, office, etc. Or maybe just do what you want and be ready to defend it.
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Old 06-15-2007, 04:26 PM   #4
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My grandparents bought a really nice and huge home on a corner lot in the Ravenswood area (good area where the Governor of Illinois lives) of innercity Chicago in the late '60's; because the basement was where the brother-in-law moved into, and it was the only way he could get rid of him! Literally!!!
The family got a great house complete with built-up basement, bar and all!
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Old 06-15-2007, 07:12 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by yakers View Post
Maybe the folks in Hawaii & more desirable areas would have only a seasonal problem?
We have plenty of people dropping by all year long, but most especially Nov-Feb. We tell them it's cold & rainy and that they won't have any fun but they just laugh and come anyway.

Originally Posted by yakers View Post
I wouldn't mind the cost of adding, maintaining, utilities & taxes on more space if I could assure MIL would not occupy said space.
I think the only assurance possible would come from building her own apartment or waiting until after the memorial service...

Or let her move five time zones away near one of her other children!

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Old 06-15-2007, 07:48 PM   #6
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I live in the same house I grew up in. It was a 3 brother and I shared one, my sister had her own, and the folks had their's. It's now a 2 bedroom home. My Mom (who is 80) and I share the house and the expenses. We both get along fine, but neither of us are too keen about having relatives come stay with us, so we converted the 3rd bedroom into her hobby room for a bed!

We're more than happy to have relatives come visit, but when it rolls around bedtime, they can retire to one of the local hotels. That way, they and us get a break from each other. Makes their visit much more enjoyable! Plus the hotels have swimming pools and jacuzzis.....which we don't. And they get breakfast at their convenience, not at 6 a.m. when we eat. And the best part of it for my siblings, is that we pay for their hotel room. It's worth the price to have our peace and quiet! And the siblings don't seem to mind! So it's a "Win-Win" situation!
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Old 06-15-2007, 07:49 PM   #7
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Over the years, DH's family has made snide remarks about our living in the Midwest and not being worth visiting. But their eyes sure lit up when we once mentioned moving to Florida .... at that point I decided that if we went, we'd be moving into a very small apartment.
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Old 06-16-2007, 08:04 PM   #8
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One of the best things about living in a motorhome is that when we visit relatives, we still get to stay in our own home! We're just wrapping up a 3 week visit at Dad's (and lots of nearby relations), and it's been so much more relaxing and enjoyable this way, having our own place.

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Old 06-16-2007, 09:13 PM   #9
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We bought our house from people who were tired of their kids moving back in with them.
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Old 06-17-2007, 11:00 AM   #10
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SIL did this, she bought a townhome that could not accomodate ILs, ie all the bedrooms upstairs with a difficult staircase to manouvere. Seems to me doing this is depriving yourself of so much.

DH and I are doing the opposite. Whatever we decide to buy will aim to accommodate friends and family for long stays. I am sure we will get visitors that we can't wait to see the back of, however hopefully that will be outweighed by those we enjoy. We don't want to turn into a pair of miserable gits surrounded by things rather than company.

I be a girl, he's a boy. Think I maybe FIRED since July 08. Mid 40s, no kidlets. Actually am totally clueless as to what is going on with DH.
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Old 06-17-2007, 12:02 PM   #11
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The primary consideration should be the space that you two need and want. Now that your kids are leaving the nest, space is already being freed up. Before going to the trouble of moving, I suggest thinking clearly about what you would do if you had extra space. Do you want to keep a spare bedroom for your college age son to use during vacations? Do you want a hobby room? You probably don't want an ensuite into which the unpopular inlaws could move and get a little too comfortable. Why not ask a designer's opinion to get some creative ideas? Perhaps some minor renovations can give you the space you need, without having to move.
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Old 06-19-2007, 11:23 PM   #12
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I hope to build a home with a guest house/cabin. My boyfriend lives with me and we will be a couple of hours out of the city. So when his buddies come they can stay in a guest cabin or my family guest. When I don't have guest the cabin won't be heated but it will be where my boyfriend can hang stuffed fish and deer heads. We will have acreage near the woods so the guys could have campfires, sit around in the evening drinking and telling stories and I could stay home or visit with them if I liked them. The cabin would have like a bunk room, wood stove and bathroom and maybe a little refrigerator and kitchen counter with sink. Fun for a day or two but not a place to live but nobody would come live in my home anyhow.

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