Let’s just take a moment to agree that the cost of housing and the cost of rental spaces is currently much, much too high.
But navigating the housing and rental markets should not involve taking advantage of loved ones, pointed out the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.
To help his brother and sister-in-law out, Redditor J1995916 invited them to come to live with him to avoid paying high rental costs.
But once they became pregnant and expected to stay, the Original Poster (OP) felt like he was being cornered into something he hadn’t signed up for.
He asked the sub:
“AITA for telling my brother he can’t raise his child in my house?”
The OP enjoyed being a homeowner.
“I (27 Male) have had dreams of being a homeowner for as long as I can remember.”
“I actually started saving for a house when I was 18. I bought a three-story house three years ago, and while it’s not the best house, I am beyond blessed to own my own house, and homeownership is everything I always hoped it would be.”
“To be able to come home and have everything exactly where I left it, to be able to play video games all day and have no one tell me otherwise, it feels like I am free and in control of my own life which is all I’ve always ever wanted.”
The OP’s brother and sister-in-law then approached him for help.
“About a year ago, my older brother (36 Male) and his wife (30 Female) asked to move in with me because while they can afford rent they do not want to pay 2000 dollars per month for an apartment.”
“While I did not want them here, I reluctantly agreed because I can’t tell my own brother that he can’t live with me when I have two empty rooms in my house, knowing he would let me live with him if I had ever asked. I was also fortunate enough to have family to live with while I was saving to buy my house.”
“I do not charge them any rent or ask for anything, but they give me around 400 dollars per month to help out.”
Everything was fine until the couple changed their plans.
“My brother and his wife had been trying to conceive a child for a long time and were finally successful in doing so. They are expecting in a few months.”
“While I am extremely happy for them, I also do not want them living with me. I did not buy my house for them, I bought it for me.”
“I did not sign up for having my living room filled with baby toys and having my gaming room turned into a kid’s bedroom. I did not sign up for my fridge being full of milk and other products for a kid that isn’t mine.”
The family lashed out against the OP for having concerns.
“This leads to today when I have asked them to move out before the birth of their child.”
“They were both extremely offended and hurt that I told them this.”
“My family also seems to think it is wrong of me to ask them to find their own place when they are expecting a child.”
“AITA for asking my brother to move out?”
Fellow Redditors weighed in:
- NTA: Not the A**hole
- YTA: You’re the A**hole
- ESH: Everybody Sucks Here
- NAH: No A**holes Here
Some reassured the OP that he could call the shots in his own home.
“You were gracious enough to allow not only your brother, but his wife to live with you for what I assume was a limited time. For them to try and force a child into YOUR living space is beyond entitled.”
“Part of me feels like this was planned way in advance. They knew they would be able to save quite a bit of money by only paying you $400 in rent each month for the soon-to-be three of them, thus allowing them to save up enough money to care for a child the way they’ve been fantasizing about.”
“Also, I’m sure if you don’t put your foot down now about them moving out, they’re going to take advantage of you in other ways once the baby is born. Suddenly you’ll find yourself being the built-in babysitter, the errands ‘gopher,’ etc.”
“Not to mention what some other commenters are saying about babies changing the dynamic of the household. Do you think when that baby is crying all hours of the day and night only your brother and his wife will be able to hear it? Unless you live in a 3000-foot mansion, everyone is subject to the baby’s cries. Your lifestyle will certainly be affected.”
“If your family thinks YTA, tell them they have X amount of months to clear out two rooms in their homes for your brother and his growing family, because they won’t be sharing an address with you any longer. Stand your ground, OP!” – FairMedia5507
“NTA. Your home is your sanctuary. You have been generous to let them live with you and save money for their own place. A baby completely changes everything in the house. They are loud, you will have to eventually baby-proof, parents will tell you to be quiet and not wake the baby, etc…”
“You could have given them a warning that if they had a baby they would have to move out. But it is your home and you have every right to control what happens in your home. It somewhat sounds like they are planning to spend years living with you. I wouldn’t want a baby invading my space.”
“It is kinda disrespectful of them to just assume you would be okay with them having a baby. Plus they shouldn’t have been trying to have a baby when they don’t have their own roof over their heads. Plus if people are upset with you asking them to leave, then those people should house the soon-to-be family of three.” – Spare-Imagination132
“You said, ‘I can’t tell my own brother that he can’t live with me when I have two empty rooms in my house knowing he would let me live with him if I had ever asked.'”
“But you can. You absolutely can. You were very kind to take them in in the first place. If you didn’t have your own place, what was their plan, exactly?”
“Their poor planning is not your fault or your problem.”
“Nine months is plenty of time to find somewhere.” – Sloppypoopypoppy
“OP notes that his sibling WAS paying 2,000 dollars per month at their apartment but didn’t want to because it was an apartment.”
“They only pay his 400 dollars per month. They should have been putting away 1600 dollars per month towards their own house. His brother and his wife should have plenty of money to either get their own place or buy a small house.”
“In my opinion, his brother and his wife have kind of taken advantage of him. To make it worse? They brought other family members into it, trying to shame him.”
“NTA, but I do think his family is.” – Swimming_Bowlers6193
“NTA. Where does the sponging stop? Are you to provide them with housing for the rest of their lives? Their child/children’s lives? In perpetuity? They should be looking to get their own place before adding to you the burden of other people.”
“For those here asking if you said anything about this before they moved in, I ask did they tell you they were going to expand their family?”
“Where does that stop? One kid? Two? Three? 15?” – Floyd-fun
But others felt the OP should have set firm boundaries a long time ago.
“You knew they were trying to have a kid. You agreed to them coming into your home. You are basically renting to them with a verbal contract. Now, you are evicting them because their family is expanding, something you knew they were trying to do beforehand.”
“I’ll tell you, if you went to court, your outlook doesn’t look great. Even without the courts, what you have done is a significant betrayal of trust.”
“I have nothing but sympathy for you since you have wanted your own space for so long. I want the same thing. But at one point, you decided that your family’s financial/housing comfort was of such a concern to you that you placed that above your desire for boundaries. Now, you seek to reestablish boundaries, which is entirely fine, but you have pulled the rug out from under them.”
“I would suggest you consider alternative outcomes prior to this. You know, it is a seller’s market right now, and it is highly likely you can find better financing terms now than before. Especially considering a successful mortgage under your belt and the terms you can dictate to your buyers. Alternatively, you could lease the property to them, move out yourself, and begin a second income stream.”
“There are alternatives to the senator you have laid out above.” – adwasaki
“Slight YTA for not telling them as soon as she got pregnant. They have saved nearly 12,000 dollars since they made the baby assuming she is seven months along and didn’t waste the money. That’s a down payment for their own house. They just want to continue taking advantage of your generosity.” – Fuzzy_Department2799
“YTA. You waited until close to the last minute to tell them that they needed to move. Also, you don’t really know much about babies if you think your fridge is going to be full of milk and that the baby would need your game room. You could at least give them until the baby is several months old to move out.”
“A couple of months’ notice isn’t long enough to save to move and be able to find a place. You knew you didn’t want a child living in your house before she got pregnant. You should have told them when they first started trying that they can’t live with you if they have a child.” – kornhurt1
“Look, this isn’t about whether you have a legal right to kick them out, or what you ‘signed up for.’ Your brother and his wife are about to go through an absolutely massive life change, by bringing your nephew into the world.”
“I would have a different opinion if you would have talked to them sooner, but a few months before they give birth? Are you kicking them out a few months before they give birth? Are you planning on helping them find a place or move, or will you just watch from the sidelines as your sister-in-law waddles their boxes out during her third trimester?”
“If you think they’re freeloaders and you want them out of your life, fine. This will do it. But make no mistake, this will DEEPLY damage whatever relationship you have with them, and likely the rest of your family. God forbid you face some inconvenience in your home for the sake of family.”
“It doesn’t matter what all the Reddit people say, what your family will remember is that you are willing to help them until it becomes annoying for you, and then you’ll abandon them. It’s totally reasonable to not want them to be fully raising their kid in your home, but you need to give them a reasonable timeline or at a minimum do some legwork to help them find a place. They’re family, you should not begin the relationship with your nephew by putting them into exile.” – SirBiscuit
The subReddit could all completely agree that this was the OP’s home and he was entitled to use it how he wished. However, they all wished that he had been more direct and firm with his brother and sister-in-law before allowing them to move in about what was and was not tolerable in his space.
Some were simply left cringing as they watched the OP try to navigate this, while others felt the OP’s poor boundary-setting had placed him in AH territory.