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Wanting to hold onto our little bit of money?

(60 Posts)
numberplease Fri 17-May-13 17:32:27

Eldest son, child number 4, has just been with his wife and 2 teenage boys. They`ve been to look at a touring caravan that`s for sale, about 6 or 7 years old, £5,500. It`s a good price, but they can`t buy it on their own, they want us to go halves with them. It`s a 6 berth van, twin axle, and is 26 feet long. That`s a hell of a long van compared to our present van, which is about 15 foot, and I`m worried that it`s too long for hubby to tow, he IS 69 now, and he`d be towing, son doesn`t drive, and DIL doesn`t want to tow, they`d be taking their own car as well.
But my main worry is the money. All we have in the world, apart from pension money, is about £3,000, which is earmarked for one of our funerals, still trying to accumulate enough for the other one, if we buy this van with them, that`s virtually all our money gone, we wouldn`t get more than a thousand, if that, for our present van. Hubby seems quite keen on the idea, but it worries me, and I don`t know that I`d want to spend every holiday with them, their youngest boy drives me scranny!

Sel Fri 17-May-13 17:39:07

Oh numberplease I wouldn't even consider it. I'm sorry but I don't think it's fair that your son even suggested it. Obviously the problems that are concerning you won't go away. Your husband will find it increasingly hard and I can't imagine a holiday with two teenage boys would be relaxing. Not to mention that your nest egg would be gone. The caravan will depreciate so the money has gone, finito.

FlicketyB Fri 17-May-13 17:41:04

numberplease Tell him firmly but kindly that you cannot afford it. Anyway as he and his wife are not prepared to tow it why are they even expecting you to share it with them. You know that is the situation, why do you find it difficult to say that to your son?

sunseeker Fri 17-May-13 17:43:25

I agree with Sel - my Brother (67) has a motorhome, so isn't as big as the caravan you are looking at and he has said he can't see himself driving it for much longer.

Your son is being unfair asking you to contribute (especially as he won't be doing any driving!) but to be fair to him perhaps he is unaware of your financial position.

Ana Fri 17-May-13 17:44:21

I agree, number. Perhaps your son thinks you have more disposable cash than you actually do, but in any event that's a big caravan and they'd presumably expect you to go along with their holiday plans. You deserve a bit more consideration, IMO.

Tegan Fri 17-May-13 17:48:07

Also number, you'll be tied down to having holidays in school holiday time with them, which means the traffic will be awful. And if the boys are teenagers how long will it be before they won't go on holiday with their parents? Not long I would think. It's a complete no no. You've phoned a friend [well, several wink] and that's our final answer.

numberplease Fri 17-May-13 17:48:54

Sel, those are my thoughts exactly, but I know that our son will think we`re being spoilsports if we don`t go along with it. I don`t even know where his share of the money would come from, he never has 2 ha`pennies to rub together, and is notorious for borrowing and getting into debt. He says if we get to the stage when we don`t want to go caravanning anymore, they`ll buy us out of our share, but what with?

numberplease Fri 17-May-13 17:51:51

Blimey, all those replies whilst I`ve been composing mine! I agree with all of you. Our son does know about our financial situation, he says not to worry about funeral costs, they`ll come out of the sale of the house! I just need to convince hubby that we shouldn`t do it.

sunseeker Fri 17-May-13 17:56:16

If your husband still wants to go ahead I would stress to him the amount of driving he would have to do, the busy roads during school holidays, having to go to places that teenagers like which will be busy and noisy and not the least bit relaxing.

Grannyknot Fri 17-May-13 17:57:18

number the thing is, your son can't afford it (unless you go halvies) and neither can you and hubby (unless you spend your savings). So the answer is sorry, son, no can do.

Stansgran Fri 17-May-13 17:59:57

Can you not offer your son help with driving lessons? Suggest that if there were more help driving then you would think again. I hate to generalize but I am doing. Men like large cars ,caravans, etc so its up to you to be the spoilsport in the nicest possible way. Where would it lie when not in use? Would your existing car be adequate for it? I know little about the cost of funerals but I paid for a relatives very modest funeral- notice in the paper, family flowers, simple coffin and funeral meats and it was £2000 about ten years ago. Other people may be able to give a more recent estimate. I amazed at the chutzpah of the young these days. Keep your van and encourage them to buy a tent.

merlotgran Fri 17-May-13 18:01:38

Number, Three generations in a caravan sounds like my idea of hell. You pack up all your domestic strife and tow it along behind you and you'll be worrying about money all the time.

Butty Fri 17-May-13 18:01:41

Oh number I agree with Sel. I can imagine it's difficult, but I think it's important you feel secure.

As a little aside, I would love an Eriba caravan. I have always really liked them and am beginning to think we 'might' afford a second-hand one - but with the house for sale and hopefully buying back in the UK (one day)..... it'll have to wait.

kittylester Fri 17-May-13 18:06:13

And, if one or both of you have to pay care costs there may not be enough left for the funerals.

Just as a separate issue, are you getting all the benefits you are entitled to? smile

harrigran Fri 17-May-13 18:11:44

number I am not sure it would be wise to sink all your savings into a joint venture. I have been in the same situation, "why don't we buy a house in France/Yorkshire/Northumberland" ? I could probably afford to but why should I ? I do not like to be told where I will be holidaying for the rest of my life. Bored teenagers in a caravan would drive me to distraction.

Marelli Fri 17-May-13 18:19:32

Oh no, number! That's all I can think of to say - and you know how much I can talk! blush
If DH wants to go ahead with it...well, there's not much you can do, apart from refusing to go on holiday. That should sort it! He's not going to put up with all that by himself. Nightmare situation.

ginny Fri 17-May-13 18:24:05

Just say " sorry can't afford it ". End og conversation.

FlicketyB Fri 17-May-13 18:25:02

number, your son says 'if we get to the stage when we don`t want to go caravanning anymore, they`ll buy us out of our share.' but you have just told us that he doesn't drive and his wife won't tow.

HappyNanna Fri 17-May-13 18:55:50

Sorry. Can't believe they want to buy a touring caravan and neither of them will be able or willing to tow it. You'll just have to tell them no.

Mishap Fri 17-May-13 19:26:34

This does not sound a very good idea to me - I really would steer clear of it. And i would set about spending that funeral money on something you can both enjoy peacefully together free from teenage boys and general hassle!

Nelliemoser Fri 17-May-13 19:29:20

numberplease IMO just say No! No! No!.
If your son easily gets into debt, it suggests he doesn't think other financial matters through very well.
I would say it is not going to be a good start to lend him money for anything. He should not be spending on a caravan at all.

As for paying funeral expenses from the sale of your house! With the current housing market not moving at all it plain daft. When you need to fund a funeral it needs to be funded within a couple of weeks. The alternatives are mind boggling!!!.

Tell your son and DH the van is too big to have comfortably drive. You might well need your savings to replace/repair your car/washing machine/house roof at any time and need the money. Everyone who can, should have a household contingencies repair fund.

Many others above have also raised good points about this.

It could help to write yourself self a list balancing the pros and cons that the others have suggested. Sit down with DH and point out the problems with this grand idea to him! At length.

It is just typical of men to jump at daft ideas and not be able to think things through.

You are not being mean or unreasonable here, whatever your son thinks.
Good luck with this.

Tegan Fri 17-May-13 19:45:54

The problem isn't so much the son as the husband not wanting yo admit that towing a large caravan might be a bit much at his age [rage rage against the dying of the light and all that] so number has got to play this very carefully hmm and a bit of female guile needs to be applied.

Faye Fri 17-May-13 19:56:49

I would dig my heels in and say No.. dont even ask. You already have a large van and then to be expected to sell it and buy a larger van and share your holidays. Then you will most probably have a debt because he doesn't have the money to pay for his half. I wonder does your son expect that you prefer to have no savings at all. Also what happens when you or your husband dies first, will your son be expecting that the one who survives will sell your home to pay for the first funeral.

I wouldn't be concerned at all what your son thinks, it's a silly idea and one you would live to regret.

Gally Fri 17-May-13 20:19:13

NO, NO and NO. I think you know that already number hmm

Oldgreymare Fri 17-May-13 20:21:26

Number I agree with all that has been said so far particularly the last 2 posts.
I suggest your son invests in a 'static' van as he doesn't drive and DIL won't tow. Be strong xxx