Between all of the Mother’s Day festivities, I was able to catch up with on of my newly married friends this weekend. It had been a while, so as we indulged in our favorite guilty pleasure: Red Lobster’s Cheddar Bay Biscuits, we filled each other in on the latest happenings in our lives.
Since getting married five months ago, she and her new husband have been desperately looking for a new apartment with rent that is conducive to their plans of saving for a downpayment on a home. A place that is significantly closer to her husband’s new job is also at the top of their wish list, as his current commute is nearly two hours each way. As fate would have it, she recently learned that her grandfather has an opening in one of the two family homes that he owns, which is conveniently located a couple of subway stops away from her husband’s new job. Even better, granddaddy is willing to give his baby girl the cozy one bedroom pad for the low-low. Rent that low in New York City is unheard of. However, as with most things in life, there’s a catch.
The second occupant of the two-family home is my friend’s uncle. He shares the place his wife and two children, and this is what has my friend and her husband apprehensive. Most newlyweds are advised to maintain a healthy distance from their in-laws, and this might be a little too close for comfort. Both my friend and her husband worry that living so closely to her uncle and his family will eventually cause problems in their marriage, and well, they’re trying to protect what they have. At the same time, they worry that they could be passing up the deal of a lifetime.
I had no idea what to tell her. I mean, reasonable rent is wonderful; however, saving a couple of hundred dollars per month certainly isn’t worth a peaceful, happy marriage. Sure, there’s no guarantee that living next door to her uncle will cause my friend and her new husband any problems at all, but there’s certainly a chance that it will.
What do you think? Is living too closely to your in-laws asking for trouble?