Should You Move Out? The Pros and Cons of Living with Family


There was a time when every Filipino family dreams of owning a house and lot.  Times have changed and lot prices have gone sky high.  Now, Filipino families dream of living high, as in skyscraper high.  Living in condominiums has become more than just an alternative these days.  In so many ways, it has become the norm.

In 2013, real estate companies unveiled a record 51,000 new high rise units according to property consultancy firm Colliers International Philippines.  By year-end alone, some 4,880 units were completed.  Collliers noted significant increase in the sales of high-end condominiums priced at P5 million.

Following this trend, the real estate industry in the Philippines is in a good mood to build 45,000 more units in 2014 and another 40,000 next year.  And there could only be one reason why property developers keep on building: more and more people are calling condominiums their home.

Condominium buyers are also getting younger.  Young couples starting their own families usually rent out a place while investing in a condominium.  Owning a condo is more realistic.  A two bedroom condo for example is twice cheaper than a small house in a gated and exclusive subdivision.  For young professionals, living in a condo is both practical and convenient as most developments are in prime locations and friendly to their way of life.

Are you ready to take the plunge? Let’s weigh it down.  Below are the cons of living with family and why you should probably consider moving out:

Do not enter

Locking the door to your room does not really mean you have privacy.  When living with your folks and the rest of the family, it is unlikely that you’ll get all the privacy you want, when you want to.  Watching an NBA game without someone dialing the remote?  Impossible.  Talking to someone on the phone without the unnecessary background noise?  Impossible. Trying to put yourself to sleep without someone knocking at your door just to borrow your cellular phone charger? Again, impossible.  That is just the way it is when you share a common roof with the family — you don’t own the place, you don’t get much space, literally and figuratively.

On the other hand, a condominium gives you all the privacy you need.  It maybe a smaller in size but it’s not too crowded and cluttered that you can’t even invite friends to come over.

Rules rule

The rules your parents live by are unbreakable.  You can’t put your feet up on the table, you can’t come home later than 2am and you can’t skip mass on Sundays, and so on.  Trying to argue against these rules will only make you look like the most ungrateful human being.  But when you rent a condo on your own or try to invest in one, you will have to set the rules on your own.  In that case, you won’t be fooling anyone when you try to break them.

Late bloomer

The longer you stay with your family as an adult, the longer it will take you to be fully responsible of your life. Adjusting late in the game will spell some trouble for you when you finally have to move out.

At some point, you have to be a little hard on yourself.  Start building your empire from the ground up.  When you’re 30 and all you think about on a Friday night is where to party, then something’s wrong with you.  This is the time when you’ve spend a significant amount of time and energy working so you better know where to invest your hard-earned money.

A condo is a good investment because it is relatively more affordable and the terms are lighter.  Condo dwelling is also practical and convenient for young professionals who work in the metropolitan’s business districts.

Hurting your chances

Living with your family for too long will hurt your confidence, your resume at work, and even your romances.  People around you might think less of you and worse, you may start believing you really don’t have the guts to do things on your own.

Parents need freedom, too

Believe it or not, your parents need a time off from you too.  They have done their part, so do yours.  Parents will need their own space and time to do what they want to do.

Here are the pros of living with family and why moving out may not be the best idea yet:

Missing home

Living on your own also means your mom’s adobo won’t be waiting for you when you get home.  There will be no toys on the floor to step on.  The noise that haunted you to your sleep will no longer be there, too.  These are the things you’ll miss when you start living on your own.

However, it is only in missing that you’ll realize “home is a nice place to visit.”  You will be surprised at how you missed being around your parents and your rowdy nephews and nieces.  You will also be surprised at knowing how much they missed you too.

Bills, bills, bills

Remember freedom does come with a price, and sometimes a rather hefty one.  Now, you have to pay the bills on your own (and also know when they are due).  You won’t have someone there to split electricity bills or rent with. This is a tough one because you need a regular job to give you financial freedom.

Condo checklist

There are a lot of things you need when you move out.  The cost of condo living is a challenge for any first time condo dweller because you would need to provide everything from your appliances to your linens and towels.

In case of emergency

When you live alone, you won’t have a warm body there to take care of you when you’re sick or comfort you when you had a bad time at work. Having close family ties is a traditional Filipino practice that is simply wonderful, when not abused.  Imagine always having someone there in times of emergency — health, money, or even a broken heart.

Living alone is not for the faint hearted.  You must be ready to face all emergencies, even if it’s just a leak in your sink.

Lack of responsibility

Before you take that big jump, ask yourself: am I responsible enough?  If the answer is even on the border of a yes or no, maybe you need more time to think about it.  What you can do instead of overstaying at your parents’ nest, you can invite them to yours.  Ask them to stay for as long as you need them and walk you through the birth pains of living on your own. Yes, no matter how small, a condo can also accommodate a family.   If you can make the space work for you, then you will be among the millions who have busted that common misconception about condo living.


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