My in laws are retired and well off financially. They saved very well for retirement and have earned a good standard of living.
We are moving house shortly and they have offered us a very generous ‘housewarming’ gift of five thousand pounds. We are moving to a much bigger home (growing family) and will only be furnishing the bedrooms for a while as we don’t currently have anything else. (We have a table to eat at and an old couch and will be takng those so we are not short of anything essential.)
I have privately told my husband I feel very uncomfortable accepting this gift. We planned this move carefully and can afford all the expenses without being very short of money. We knew we wouldn’t be furnishing a great big house straight away. We won’t be redecorating for a while anyway as we are having another baby just after the move and we already have toddlers.
My husband is worried about the expense of the move and the new baby and very much wants to accept the gift.
I feel uncomfortable with it because although currently our relationship with them is okay we are not close. We see them most weeks but we never ask them to babysit or look after kids because we don’t need childcare. We are okay with the relationship as is and weren’t planning to change that after the move.
It seems like a big gift to take from anyone, especially if you are not close. I just feel unhappy taking it. They have loaned us money many years ago at a credit card rate of interest. We did really need it then (unexpected illness) and were grateful but the high compound interest made it a bit difficult to pay off and we felt pretty bad about owing them money. There were some pretty awkward conversations over the period even though we paid it off as fast as possible and sold things to make the payments. I’m not moaning about that, we owed them the money and were duty bound to pay it off as fast as possible. It just made a number of birthdays, Xmas etc really awkward as it was brought up in front of aunts, uncles, etc.
I just have felt a lot better not having financial entanglements with them since then and I don’t know how I feel about being approached with money again. I know they can ‘afford’ it but we are fine money wise and I would just rather not. They are after all retired people with fixed income streams and a fixed amount of capital. I also feel worried that we might be asked to pay it back but that’s probably not the case. I just worry because it was hard the last time.
Husband feels it is his parents so his decision. He also feels that as his brother accepted a similar gift last year he is ‘entitled’ to accept it. I don’t feel the same but these things are handled differently in my family so I don’t want to get into making comparisons.
I wouldn’t take any money from my own parents in these circumstances but every family is different.
AIBU to have reservations? What do you think we should do? I have quietly reached out to some trusted friends and they all say not to take it. I post on some other boards about stuff in my own family and they all say not to take it.
I suppose it’s my husband’s decision, right? I don’t think he would tell me if he accepted it privately anyway.
Is this something you would expect an adult child to refuse? It really is a lot of money.
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