Zach Ramsay, pictured with dad Bernie, is hoping to move out of home with long-time girlfriend Mikaela Dunn. Picture: Tim Hunter.
Zach Ramsay, pictured with dad Bernie, is hoping to move out of home with long-time girlfriend Mikaela Dunn. Picture: Tim Hunter.

Fights, curfews the new price of buying a home

CRAMPED love lives, unreasonable curfews and dinner table fights are the new price of buying into booming property market.

Stress levels are rising as vast numbers of adults move back in with their parents so they can scratch together enough money for a home deposit.

The strategy has become so popular that a quarter of those who bought their first home in the past two years saved while living with mum and dad, new research shows.

But more than half of parents and adult children in such arrangements described them as "awkward", according to the St George survey.

The most common complaints were frequent fights over the dinner table and arguments about the best way to do things. One in five adult children were also frustrated with having a curfew, despite many being in their late 20s or 30s.

High Sydney rents and prices have meant city home buyers are among the most likely in the country to move back in with their parents. Picture: Dylan Robinson
High Sydney rents and prices have meant city home buyers are among the most likely in the country to move back in with their parents. Picture: Dylan Robinson

Almost a third of children were annoyed at having to hang out with their parents' friends and facing questions on when they planned to have kids of their own.

Parents, meanwhile, also found the living arrangements uncomfortable, especially when they wanted to watch raunchy entertainment. Nearly a quarter of parents said they had sit through an awkward TV or movie moment with their kids.

Nearly a quarter also complained about children lecturing them on super foods and "healthy" living and felt their kids made it difficult for them to spend romantic time with their partners.

St George general manager Ross Miller said both parents and their returning children struggled to deal with the sacrifices involved.

Average rent on a Sydney house is $530 per week, the highest in the country.
Average rent on a Sydney house is $530 per week, the highest in the country.

"Everyone is affected," Mr Miller said. "Parents often forgo luxuries and give up on things like travelling to help their children but it can also impede on everyone's privacy."

The high numbers of adults returning home showed property ownership remained a high priority for millennials despite Sydney's median house price nudging $1 million, he added.

"Home ownership is now associated with making compromises and that's why so many (adults), especially millennials, are moving back in," Mr Miller said.

Divorcee Susanne Gervay has lived with her 31-year-old daughter Tory for the past three years and said the arrangement helped both save money but it required "clear boundaries".

"The key is she has her space and I have mine," Ms Gervay said. "We live on separate ends of the house and don't share a bathroom."

Teacher in training Zach Ramsay, 20, said he is itching to move out of his parents' Menai house and move in with girlfriend of five years Mikaela Dunn but felt high prices made it impossible.

"It will probably be three years at least before I'd even be able to afford to rent, but maybe more like five," Mr Ramsay said. "I'd prefer to actually buy rather than rent so that would add a few more years."



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