Is Moving Back Home After College Normal?

Let’s be clear on one thing – moving back home after college is no one’s dream. When you’re in your twenties, finishing school ideally corresponds with starting your career and finding a place of your own. That’s why going back to your childhood house can seem like taking a huge step backward.

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December 22, 2022 Posted in Moving Tips

The truth is that this is completely normal. It’s become a common occurrence these days, and most young adults are going through this experience. You might be able to save up for a car or pay off those student loans, but living at home after college can be a difficult process to navigate. That’s why we’ve gathered some advice that will hopefully help you adjust to your brand-new circumstances easier.

Moving Back Home After College Is Becoming More Common – The Biggest Benefit Is Saving up Money

So, where do most students live after college? Ever since the migrations during the Coronavirus, young adults are finding themselves more and more on the doorstep of their parents’ houses. In today’s uncertain economic circumstances, not having to worry about rent and all of the living expenses that come with relocating to a new city alone is a great prospect.

It’s a Great Way to Plan for the Future Without Having to Think About Making Ends Meet

If you’ve finished school recently, you’re probably wondering – how do I start a new life after college? The truth is, no one has it completely figured out. Some people might have jump-started their careers while still in school, but most of them were too busy working for their diplomas. That’s why it can get a bit overwhelming when you’re a recent graduate trying to find your footing in this world.

In that regard, relocating back to your childhood house is a great way to give yourself the necessary time to prepare for your future without rushing anything. So, it’s important not to see this move as taking a step backward but as the best opportunity for you right now to start planning at your own pace.

A stressed girl packing for long-distance moving
If you're a recent grad, you're probably wondering - is it normal to feel lost after college? Absolutely, everyone goes through it

You Will Be Able to Save Up Money and Find Work Without Rushing It

The biggest benefit of cross-country moving back to your parents’ house is definitely being able to save money that you would otherwise have to spend on rent or utilities. Sure, you’re probably going to contribute to the family household in one way or another, but the expenses will be nowhere near what you would be spending if you were living on your own.

Maybe you want to save up money to buy that car you’ve always wanted, build a good credit score, or you want to pay off your student loans and start your adult life debt-free. When you don’t have expensive rent or utilities to stress over, saving up money comes easy. Also, there’s no need to rush and find a job before you move back. You can actually take your time in dealing with these real-world challenges, and your parents can give you advice throughout the whole process.

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There Are a Lot of Questions to Consider – If You’ll Be Able to Adjust Is the Most Important One

Now that we have gone over the pros of returning to your childhood house after finishing school, let’s talk about why it can be a stressful process. It can be very difficult to adapt to each other’s routine, and you will feel frustrated at some point because it will seem like you’re losing independence. There’s no more going in and out as you please, having friends over whenever you want, or leaving your space messy.

Moving away from family is hard, but going back to their place after graduating can be equally as hard. Every big change can be frustrating and emotionally exhausting at the start. It’s hard to go from doing things your own way to having to consider someone else’s rules. And while you’re struggling with adapting to these circumstances, your family might start treating you like you’re a teenager again, and that can add a lot more frustration to the mix.

Give Yourself and Your Family Time to Adjust to the New Life Circumstances

According to Pew Research, living with parents edges out other living arrangements for the first time in the modern era. It will take time to get used to the brand-new circumstances, not only for you but for your family as well. It’s possible you experience relocation depression or maybe even adjustment insomnia, and it will definitely be hard dealing with moving away from friends you met as a student.

Life can get pretty boring fairly quickly, especially if you’re relocating to your small hometown from a big city. Rushing the process of adjusting will only make the situation worse, but with the right routine and communication, everything will be easier.

A man and his elderly parent
It takes effort to adjust to a slower pace than you're used to

Communication Is Essential for Creating a Solid Relationship With Your Parents

As we’ve mentioned, adjusting to these brand-new circumstances can be a hard process to navigate for everyone. That’s why it’s important to have a good understanding of each other from the very beginning. So, even before you’ve googled “long-distance movers near me” and made a decision on what kind of long-distance moving services you need, talk to your family about the ways in which you can create the best possible circumstances for everyone involved.

It’s Important to Be Considerate of Each Other

Having a healthy relationship with your family is important, especially when you find yourselves under the same roof. It’s a big part of keeping yourself mentally strong and productive so you can keep up with your set goals. So, communicate actively from the very beginning and try to find a common middle ground together by respecting each other’s wishes and boundaries.

It’s a good idea to start by talking about the ways in which you can help each other out because that will set a good foundation for building a healthy relationship. The truth is, this situation will aid not only you in numerous aspects, but it will go both ways. There are many reasons why going back to live with your elderly parents will help them a lot. You can contribute by helping with the chores around the house or with their ever-lasting confusion about technological devices.

Sit Down and Talk Like Adults to Set Clear Boundaries From the Very Beginning

First things first, everyone should realize that your relationship now should be completely different from before. You obviously shouldn’t be treated as a child because you’re an adult now. That’s why it’s important to openly discuss everything as adults and set clear boundaries that work for everyone. Sure, you might have to compromise your independence and privacy in the sense you’ve enjoyed them in your dorm room, but by setting boundaries, you won’t completely lose them.

Set the Household Rules and Talk About the Daily Responsibilities

By setting boundaries as well as household rules, the environment in the house will be much more comfortable because everyone will feel at ease. That’s why it’s a good idea to talk about things such as curfews and quiet hours because your family members won’t feel like you’re treating their house as your dorm. At the same time, you will have the privacy and independence necessary for your mental health.

You should also talk about the household chores that will be your job to do. It’s important to help around the house because it will surely build a solid relationship that goes both ways. It will not only solidify your relationship but dividing the responsibilities will also leave you with a freer schedule to focus on your goals.

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Don't be too lazy to contribute to the household by keeping it clean

Talk About Not Only Helping Around the House but Also With the Expenses

While you’re going over the rules and responsibilities, it’s important to also talk about the finances. It might not be the most comfortable discussion to have with your family, but it will be helpful to understand their expectations as well as manage your own. No matter what your agreed expenses will be, they will not be anywhere near the living costs you would have if you were to move to another state alone.

There are several ways you can contribute to the finances, so discuss those possibilities to see what would be the best option for everyone:

  • Pay a symbolic amount as rent – depending on the circumstances, your family might be willing to put it aside for when you start house hunting,
  • Help with the utilities – because there is no need to transfer your utilities, you can contribute by taking care of them in your childhood house,
  • Take care of the groceries – kill two birds with one stone by going grocery shopping because it will be both your chore and financial contribution.

Knowing you won’t have high expenses once you’re there can also contribute to your relocation budget. With a bigger budget, you will be able to move efficiently and acquire any special service you may need. For example, if you have a car, you can invest in booking auto-transport services that will make the whole ordeal so much easier. Without having to deal with relocation stress, the only thing you should focus on is how to make this big change easier on yourself.


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See Your New Circumstances as an Opportunity to Plan for the Future You’ve Always Wanted

As we’ve mentioned before, it can be hard to deal with the prospect of finding yourself on the doorstep of your childhood house. Sure, it may feel nostalgic at first, but it can get depressing and unproductive quickly. That’s why it’s important to not see this circumstance as something you should be ashamed of but see it as an opportunity to grow as a person on your own accord.

Having a Fresh Mindset and Focusing On Your Goals Is the Key to Adjusting to Moving Back Home After College

Once you’re back in your old bedroom, it’s important to approach the situation with a brand-new mindset by keeping a steady routine. Redecorate your old bedroom, look after yourself and your mental health, take up an internship that will aid your career in the long run, or find a job for the time being. Just keep yourself busy and motivated because it will help you feel like you’re making progress and not taking a step back in your life.

It’s a good idea to find a new activity or a hobby because it will surely contribute to feeling like you’re approaching everything with a fresh mindset. While you’re at it, this is also the perfect opportunity to reconnect with old friends and make this whole experience a bit more fun. For helpful advice on how to look at the bright side of being back in your hometown, check out this video:

It’s Time to Book a Long-Distance Moving Company and Prepare for Your Move Back Home

Once you’ve weighed out all of the pros and cons and your decision to go back to your hometown becomes certain, you should start making a relocation to-do list and thinking about what kind of packing services you would require. Declutter your dorm room by getting rid of things you no longer need, and avoid relocating last minute by hiring reputable cross-country movers in advance. All that’s left to do is to focus on how to make this next chapter in your life a learning and growing experience.

Maya Brown

Born in Atlanta, Maya has called many places home in her lifetime. She's a content writer and moving expert who loves to help people relocate smoothly



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