His Brother Lived Rent Free in Exchange for Helping With Home Renos. Now He Wants to Get Paid. Was He Wrong to Kick Him Out?

It’s always nice to hear about siblings helping each other out in their time of need. It’s even better if arrangements can be made where both parties benefit. But often times things can go wrong, just like they did for these brothers.

The original poster (OP) took his brother in when he dropped out of University. His parents told his brother that he would have to pay rent if he moved back in with them. OP told his brother that he could live with them rent-free but would have to help with yard work and fix up the house he and his wife purchased at an auction. 

The brother agreed and provided a lot of help with the housework. However, one day he started saying he should be paid for his work. OP and his wife explained that he receives free rent and food for around 20 hours of work a week, which is a perfectly fair exchange. 

The brother did not back down and said that OP would have to pay a contractor more. He wanted money for going out and entertainment. OP told him to go get a job. The discussion ended badly, so OP kicked his brother out and moved him back to their parents’ house. 

It Turns Out the Parents Were Involved

OP later found out that his brother had been complaining to their parents that he and his wife were taking advantage of him. His mother convinced him to ask for money in return for his work. 

He had free rent, free food, and free utilities. Now at his parents’ house, he has to get a job to pay rent, and they don’t have fiber optic internet. 

Now the brother realizes he had it good. He is asking to come back, but OP and his partner think they can handle the rest of the projects around the house. They also like having the house to themselves again. 

OP Receives Reader Support

Many readers believe that OP did the right thing by moving his brother out. 

“Don’t bite the hand that feeds you.”

“He had a good deal going. He could have gotten a part-time job to pay for extras. Now he has to adult, and he doesn’t like it.”

Many readers don’t believe OP should take his brother back:

“Sometimes young people have to learn not to be foolish by not getting what they want. Leave him there, and if he complains about wanting to return to you, point out that he wasn’t happy with the terms you were willing to offer, and you wouldn’t want to hire somebody who wasn’t content.”

“He kinda had a good deal. And for the people doing the math. If he were a licensed and insured general contractor, he could charge more. He’d also have a lot more expenses, insurance can’t be cheap. He was also getting free food and utilities, that’s a few hundred dollars on top of the rent. He was also only working 20hrs a week. Of course, OP also benefited from his stay.

Now? He has to pay rent, which will probably require 40hrs a week. That’s ultimately good for him though, he’ll start getting real work history and maybe eventually be able to have his own place.”

Was the Mom Scheming Behind the Scenes?

Some readers believe the mom actually wanted to teach her son responsibility since he complained so much. 

“Forcing him to learn responsibility by getting a job and paying for things? Sounds like she got EXACTLY what she wanted. Mothers know their sons like the backs of their hands.”

Overall many believe that the mom shouldn’t have gotten involved.

“It’s your home, and he’s an adult. It’s much more detrimental to coddle him and that seems like a reasonable deal. Your mom should not have got involved! That was a big boundary cross but her problem now!”

OP Still Wonders if He Was Wrong

But OP does feel a little guilty because he understands that his brother didn’t have any disposable income. He was, after all, doing work that a contractor would have charged a lot of money to complete. 

What do you think? Should he have helped his brother out with some regular payments? Should he take his brother back?

This article was produced by This Mom is On Fire.

This post originally appeared on Reddit.

Image credit: copyright RossHelen via Canva