In the interim

the in-laws

Our old place has been sold, and the new one is ‘in progress’. So what about the next nine months?

Hello in-laws.

We’ve got a rental property in the Hornsby area, but the tenants we’ve got in there are fantastic – they’ve paid their rent on time every month for the last two years and we haven’t heard a thing from them. So, in an attempt to not rock the boat with the tenants, we’ve moved in with the in-laws…

To say that it’s a social experiment is an understatement. It’s a change for all of us. Megan and I have lived on our own for years now, and her parents haven’t had the kids back under their roof now for over a decade. This is all compounded by the fact that the family dog is now 14 years of age, and we’ve got a 2 year old black lab that’s a ball of energy. Needless to say, keeping them apart is a chore in itself.

Any sort of adjustment that’s big enough to throw your life out of whack is a challenge for everyone, but the ‘limbo period’ has been softened by the support of our surrounding family, and we feel very fortunate. We’ve taken with us what we’ve needed for the next 10 months or so, and everything else has been put in storage.

While I’m fine with storing stuff away for as long as is required, the day to day stuff that you’re accustomed to when you live in your own home are a bit more difficult when you all of a sudden have other people in your household. Things like planning and cooking dinner becomes a bit more difficult, and the morning routine of getting ready for work becomes just a little bit longer.

At the end of the day, we need to remember it’s a means to an end. No matter how generous your surrounding support structure is, or how well your in-laws take care of you, it’s never ‘your place’. But in less than a year we’ll be in our own place again, and that’s what we need to remember. Once again, it’s all about compromise.

Are you in the process of building? What are you doing in the interim? How are you coping with ‘temporary living’?

About Stefan
Stefan is the regular writer for Megan & Stefan, and hails originally from San Diego, California. A resident of Australia since 2007, he write about his experiences living abroad, his love of photography, and documenting the process of building a house here in this sunburnt country he calls home. Feel free to drop him a line - he's always up for a chat.


  1. Amanda says:

    We were planning to live with my folks for a few months – they have a huge house and we would have had our own leve with bathroom. We lasted all of 3 weeks (and 2 of those weeks my parents were in Paris on holidays!). Luckily we found a nice reasonably priced rental (try finding anything half decent around Stonecutters Ridge 2 years ago – all dumps).

    We have however lived for 2 years in the place and I have about 40 boxes that were never unpacked. Does that mean I really don’t need a lot of the stuff that’s packed away? It will be a big chore evaluating every piece that comes out of a box when we move – keep, chuck or donate!

  2. SarahV says:

    In answer to your question Stefan, not well at all! I think that us humans aren’t designed to temporary. We’re nesters, planners, we get excited about the thought of planting a tomato vine, and painting a feature wall the colour of dirt. Temporary doesn’t come up in that list once! We did kick the tenants out, to our defence they had only been here for 6 months and were having relationship problems and had told the agent that they were thinking of breaking up and moving out so we told them we’d make the decision easier and that same week bought our block of land (unfortunately the week after that they got back together – whoops). Just like you Amanda we have a garage full of boxes that aren’t unpacked, which does make me question what on earth is in them. My hubby keeps on threatening me that he is going to put them all out the front for a council clean up. I have promised to go through each and everyone of them meticulously when we move and sell half of it on ebay. Like most people I’m just itching to move, this last 4 weeks has been so painful seeing no work on the house but we’re excited to hear that tomorrow the roofing is going to re-commence so we hope that will kick start things.

    You have an amazing family Stefan to have you in their home, but I understand what you are saying about living with other people. Not on my life!


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