Supporting your child living at home.
Your child is coming home to live after college. For many parents, it’s easy to put their child’s needs ahead of their own. But things are different now — your child has experienced what it’s like to live independently. You’ll want to create a balance between supporting your recent grad (financially and emotionally) and helping him or her continue to be independent and maintain a sense of responsibility.
Make sure you don’t forget about yourself.
Just make sure you pay attention to your own financial goals and needs. Perhaps you can’t put as much into savings as you did before your child moved back home. Or maybe you can save even more. Either way, make sure the money you are able to save is doing as much for you as it can. Higher interest-earning accounts like PNC’s Premiere Money Market account or a Growth account within your Virtual Wallet® can help make your money work harder for you. These accounts can earn higher interest rates than a regular savings account.
Discussing the living arrangement.
A child living at home is very acceptable in today’s world, and this arrangement can save both of you from the expense of paying for another place for your recent grad to live. Living together, you can share costs for things like food and utilities, and your child can help with the housework and yard work from time to time, as well as clean up after meals. You can also look for new expenses your child can take over from you when he or she can afford them, like a car payment and auto insurance.
Additionally, if your child does have an income, ask him or her to contribute something for room and board — it’s the payment that is important to build responsibility, not the amount. Similarly, make sure you and your recent grad set up bills to be paid automatically. With PNC Online Bill Pay, you can manage all your bills in one place, pay your bills in just minutes and even receive bills online.
Help your child establish a budget and savings plan.
If your child has a job, create a budget and see when he or she will be able to support him/herself — either provide a list of budget considerations or a simple budget chart.
Then help your child set up a checking and savings account. PNC Virtual Wallet features a checking account and a savings account called Growth that is a great choice for getting started. It provides a digital experience and tools to plan for short- and long-term savings goals. Spending + Budget shows what you’re spending your money on each month. Broken down into categories like Education, Restaurants, Gas and more, it allows you to set a budget for each. You can also elect to receive handy reminder emails if you’re close to maxing out your budget for any one category. For example, a recent graduate may want to track expenses like:
- School loans
- Car loans
- Auto insurance
- Credit card bills
- Utility bills
With Calendar, you can create reminders on when your child should be contributing. You can also use Calendar as your bill payment hub to pay bills, view upcoming paydays and plan ahead.
Help your child set goals.
Sit down with your recent grad and set some realistic goals. Some of these goals could include: getting a full-time job or internship, taking a part-time job while figuring out a career path, buying a car or starting a savings account. You could even help your child set up a timetable for finding an apartment. Remember to be patient and start slowly. Make sure to check in periodically to see how things are going, so you can help him or her make changes if necessary.
With these simple steps, your recent grad will begin to establish good financial habits. These will serve your child well now, and will help your child achieve whatever goals he or she has for the future.
Remember, PNC can help make sure your savings continues to work for you and your family. Stop by your local PNC branch today.