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crh20

Living with parents during law school?

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Hello, 

I am just completing my undergrad at UCalgary and I am staying here for law school as well. I have yet to move out from my parents place but I am considering it as I go into law school. Currently I live just outside of Calgary and my commute is 45-60 minutes one way (90 minutes if I take transit). I also do not have a great relationship with my parents and I am itching to get some distance from that. I am also worried that I'll miss out on important social aspects of law school by being so far away from campus. 

I would love your opinions regarding whether the reduced commute/independence/ better social experience is worth the additional financial burden that comes with living on my own.

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1 hour ago, crh20 said:

Hello, 

I am just completing my undergrad at UCalgary and I am staying here for law school as well. I have yet to move out from my parents place but I am considering it as I go into law school. Currently I live just outside of Calgary and my commute is 45-60 minutes one way (90 minutes if I take transit). I also do not have a great relationship with my parents and I am itching to get some distance from that. I am also worried that I'll miss out on important social aspects of law school by being so far away from campus. 

I would love your opinions regarding whether the reduced commute/independence/ better social experience is worth the additional financial burden that comes with living on my own.

I did my undergrad in Toronto and I’m originally from Vancouver-the sense of independence is certainly nice and taught me a lot. However you have to consider the toll that law school may take on you and whether having the suppprt of your family may alleviate some of that stress. I know you say you don’t have a great relationship with your parents, but to clarify is it like they annoy you/are too smothering or is it actually detrimental to your mental health? 

 

If its the former you may appreciate them more once in law school and on top of that save quite a bit of money on food and rent!

sorry if I come off as paternalistic or condescending I obviously don’t know your situation personally but if I could go to law school near my home and live with my parents I would (I just don’t have high enough hard stats to do that :’(  )

Just my two cents and I wish you the best in whatever you decide!

 

 

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1 minute ago, providence said:

OMG, move out yesterday!

Would you care to elaborate? From seeing you post over my time on the site you seem to be a pretty rational person so I'd love to hear what your reasoning is.

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1 minute ago, crh20 said:

Would you care to elaborate? From seeing you post over my time on the site you seem to be a pretty rational person so I'd love to hear what your reasoning is.

1) That's a really long commute and a lot of time to waste in transit

2) You won't be happy living with them if you don't get along

3) It will cramp your social life

4) You're probably too old to live at home

5) You learn important skills and life lessons living on your own

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Maybe try living with them at first and see how it goes.  If you can make it most of the way through your first year, you can see what happens job-wise and make a decision then.

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33 minutes ago, providence said:

1) That's a really long commute and a lot of time to waste in transit

2) You won't be happy living with them if you don't get along

3) It will cramp your social life

4) You're probably too old to live at home

5) You learn important skills and life lessons living on your own

 

Plus like, your ability to have a relationship. 

Then again, for a lot of people law school cramps their ability to have a relationship

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1 minute ago, BlockedQuebecois said:

Plus like, your ability to have a relationship. 

Then again, for a lot of people law school cramps their ability to have a relationship

I included that in social life.

I moved out in gr.12 to have a relationship.

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2 minutes ago, providence said:

I included that in social life.

I moved out in gr.12 to have a relationship.

I currently am in a serious relationship and she lives very close to the university, so I'd be saving travel time there as well.

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Lemme break it down for you op

My best friend - lived with his parents during school, got a job in his field and bought his own house at 23. Sure he waited 5 extra years to move out, but he was in a much better position to do so. He’s an engineer working on windmills 

me - moved out first chance I got and have a mountain of debt to fight before I could even consider buying property

Don’t listen to the stigma OP. Stay at home if you can, you will be in a much better position to strike out on your own once you enter into the professional workforce. I wish I did. 

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17 minutes ago, bhaywardio said:

Lemme break it down for you op

My best friend - lived with his parents during school, got a job in his field and bought his own house at 23. Sure he waited 5 extra years to move out, but he was in a much better position to do so. He’s an engineer working on windmills 

me - moved out first chance I got and have a mountain of debt to fight before I could even consider buying property

Don’t listen to the stigma OP. Stay at home if you can, you will be in a much better position to strike out on your own once you enter into the professional workforce. I wish I did. 

I would think tuition is the bigger source of debt than rent. Get a couple of roommates and don't be picky about where you live and rent isn't so much of an issue. 

Engineering allows you to do that because it's 5 years of undergrad and then you have a great shot at getting a well-paying job right away. And their tuition is a bit less than law school tuition. Law school is different because for most people it is 7 years of education and a year of articling before you're eligible to make money. If you want to buy a house at 23 and minimize debt, don't even think about law school. Most people are starting law school around 23 or older and wouldn't want to be living at home. 

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8 hours ago, crh20 said:

I currently am in a serious relationship and she lives very close to the university, so I'd be saving travel time there as well.

OP, you're asking about money and whether it's worth saving it, but the most significant things you've mentioned are personal not financial, that you're in a serious relationship and don't get along well with your parents (and are itching to leave). What does she think? I don't mean tell us here, I mean I assume she knows you and your situation better than anyone on this board. Your relationship with your parents might be so bad that you should get out ASAP, or maybe you're just whiny (I'm saying that for effect, I'm not actually saying you are!). I don't know. I mean yes, do the calculations about the differences (rent + food - commute costs), but I don't think you can make this an economic decision.

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39 minutes ago, providence said:

I would think tuition is the bigger source of debt than rent. Get a couple of roommates and don't be picky about where you live and rent isn't so much of an issue. 

Engineering allows you to do that because it's 5 years of undergrad and then you have a great shot at getting a well-paying job right away. And their tuition is a bit less than law school tuition. Law school is different because for most people it is 7 years of education and a year of articling before you're eligible to make money. If you want to buy a house at 23 and minimize debt, don't even think about law school. Most people are starting law school around 23 or older and wouldn't want to be living at home. 

Of course tuition is the biggest expense, but the next largest expense is going to be housing. If you could potentially be pumping that money into your tuition, you can greatly reduce the amount of debt owing by the end of it. All the money that would be going into food, rent and utilities could be effectively re-purposed into mitigating costs or even saved for later. 

As others have said though, OP's reasons are largely personal. While I for one believe you can have a social life while living with family, others may feel restricted. Especially those in committed relationships. It comes down to personal preference, but I believe there is a social pressure that convinces young people to leave home before they may be ready to, both financially and emotionally. 

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5 minutes ago, bhaywardio said:

Of course tuition is the biggest expense, but the next largest expense is going to be housing. If you could potentially be pumping that money into your tuition, you can greatly reduce the amount of debt owing by the end of it. All the money that would be going into food, rent and utilities could be effectively re-purposed into mitigating costs or even saved for later. 

As others have said though, OP's reasons are largely personal. While I for one believe you can have a social life while living with family, others may feel restricted. Especially those in committed relationships. It comes down to personal preference, but I believe there is a social pressure that convinces young people to leave home before they may be ready to, both financially and emotionally. 

Well it sounds like OP is more than ready emotionally - has a serious relationship and is itching to get away from their parents. And as has been said, I don't think the money saved is worth being miserable for 3 years, wasted time and frustration in a long commute, missing out on some of the social aspect of law school and the added distance/hassle to their serious relationship. 

I don't think 23, 24 years old is an age where anyone should be not ready to leave home. 

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54 minutes ago, providence said:

Well it sounds like OP is more than ready emotionally - has a serious relationship and is itching to get away from their parents. And as has been said, I don't think the money saved is worth being miserable for 3 years, wasted time and frustration in a long commute, missing out on some of the social aspect of law school and the added distance/hassle to their serious relationship. 

I don't think 23, 24 years old is an age where anyone should be not ready to leave home. 

Like I said, it comes down to personal preference. To us, it may be a bit odd that someone in their 20's is living at home with their family. In places like Italy, as an example, it is customary for people to live with their families until they are married. The world don't turn to the beat of just one drum, what might be good for you might not be good for some! 

OP's situation is the type that warrants leaving as soon as possible, and in this case you are right that you can't put a price tag on happiness. Of course, I'd rather have awkward encounters with family members than be hungry. 

Addendum: You mentioned being too old to live at home. As long as you are getting an education, or are at the very least contributing to the household, there should be no such number. There is a vast difference between a 20 something going to law school and an unemployed 33 year old living in the basement. 

Edited by bhaywardio
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I'd say move. I also encourage any undergrads who are going to school in the same city that they live in to move into residence or find roommates. Living on your own is a big change in lifestyle and it's one that you should do now as a student rather than in four years as a professional. And besides, a 45 minute commute sucks.

Find a cheap place (with some strangers if you have to) right by the university. You can't put a price on life experience and freedom is worth the ~$6000 extra per year.

Also, does your SO live on her own/with roommates? Any reason you two don't want to live together? I understand this is a personal question but moving in with my girlfriend during undergrad (fourth year after living with roommates for the first three years) was the best decision I've ever made. We split a one bedroom and it's significantly cheaper than before.

Edited by chaboywb
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33 minutes ago, bhaywardio said:

Like I said, it comes down to personal preference. To us, it may be a bit odd that someone in their 20's is living at home with their family. In places like Italy, as an example, it is customary for people to live with their families until they are married. The world don't turn to the beat of just one drum, what might be good for you might not be good for some! 

OP's situation is the type that warrants leaving as soon as possible, and in this case you are right that you can't put a price tag on happiness. Of course, I'd rather have awkward encounters with family members than be hungry. 

Addendum: You mentioned being too old to live at home. As long as you are getting an education, or are at the very least contributing to the household, there should be no such number. There is a vast difference between a 20 something going to law school and an unemployed 33 year old living in the basement. 

Oh I am from a culture where multi-generational living is common and my 30-something brother still lives with my mother so I am well aware! But I wasn’t happy doing that and didn’t and it doesn’t sound like OP is happy with it either.

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18 minutes ago, providence said:

Oh I am from a culture where multi-generational living is common and my 30-something brother still lives with my mother so I am well aware! But I wasn’t happy doing that and didn’t and it doesn’t sound like OP is happy with it either.

I will definitely agree with you that you need to prioritize happiness. The only person responsible for your happiness is you after all, and if you have to make a decision between financial security (or mitigating financial damage) and your sanity, the option should be very clear. Maybe OP's home situation is salvageable. Maybe it is beyond repair. As you put it, it wasn't working for you, and if it isn't working for OP, he would be more than justified in making that call. 

Edited by bhaywardio
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