Need some suggestions
Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 35
  1. #1
    Registered User MommyBliss's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Southern California
    Age
    38
    Posts
    900
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Rep Power
    9

    Unhappy Need some suggestions

    We live in a nice community not that far from the beach. We have a number of friends and family who like to come and stay with us to visit the area without having to pay for food or hotel. We love having company and have the room for them. My problem is that it's starting to become a financial burden on us when we have visitors. Hubby makes a good living, but there are 6 of us, we are paying off debt, and when we have visitors they usually stay a minumum of 2 days and at the max 5. Paying for 3 or more extra people even for 2 days becomes taxing, even with good meal planning. I don't know how to tell our visitors this. No one ever offers to pitch in money, time, or anything. Well except for my inlaws when they visit and one other family. Otherwise, we are expected to pay for all the meals, including meals out, plus any activities(there is just a long story behind this). We were supposed to have some friends come visit this coming week, but hubby put his foot down and said no, because he knew I'd end up paying for everything and we are trying to get caught up in school lessons. I feel like I can't just be honest and say it's too expensive, especially because of the snarky comments we get about the amount of money we make.

    Any suggestions on how to handle these situations? I just really needed to vent I guess. I'm just at the end of my wits and tired of having visitors who can't pay for anything or come just for a mini vacation where they think we are a hotel.

  2. #2
    Registered User PrairieRose's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    14,689
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Blog Entries
    1
    Rep Power
    32

    Default

    My 2 cents worth:

    IF these are family and friends who would or will reciprocate and if they are people you truly enjoy spending time with, want to have them in your home, etc.....I'd let them come and stay and I'd feed them the most frugal food possible. Watch for brisket on sale, roasts on sale, hamburger on sale....do not eat out unless they offer to buy, don't buy soft drinks, etc. and so on. Make homemade snacks (really cheap ones)...and maybe they'll get the hint that you're not a bed and breakfast (or you're not intending to be). A big pot of red beans doesn't cost much. You can make rice, have red beans and rice for 2-3 meals. I say 'feed em leftovers!'. Really drive home that you're frugal... And also I wouldn't feel a bit bad about saying 'if you want soft drinks or special foods or snacks you might wanna pack those and bring em'. Then just go about your visit, but spend no.extra.money.at.all. Also, you might 'visit' them and let them see how expensive it can be to have guests
    Last edited by PrairieRose; 02-28-2009 at 09:20 AM.

    ~48 yr. old sahw, livin' it up in our empty nest, smack dab in the middle of everywhere.~

    *We're debt freeeeeeeee! (including the house)*



  3. #3
    Registered User mombottoo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Michigan
    Age
    56
    Posts
    1,840
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Rep Power
    16

    Default

    Sometimes being honest is the only way to approach a subject like this. Your friends and family are taking undo advantage of your hospitality and good nature. I am with your dh on this one, it is time to put your foot down and lay down some new ground rules for visitors.

    "We'd really love to have you, but we have laid out some goals for ourselves and the added financial burden of having "put # of guests here" extra people to feed and entertain just isn't in our budget. If you would like to contribute your fair share, we'd be more than happy to have you."

    That puts the ball in their court and if they have any manners at all they will get the drift and either cough up some cash, groceries or entertainment costs or stay in a motel.

  4. #4
    Super Moderator Darlene's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Upstate NY
    Posts
    27,948
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Rep Power
    64

    Default

    Just talk to them.
    ~*Darlene*~
    Live Well~LaughOften~Love Much

    "Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around."
    Leo Buscaglia

    2013 Challenge
    Books Read: 67




    Become a Fan of Frugalvillage on Facebook!

  5. #5
    Registered User Grayce's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    616
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Rep Power
    9

    Default

    One way to really cut the costs would be to stop taking them out to dinner and paying for activities. Sounds like some of your visitors are kind of thoughtless guests. When I stay at my sister's I usually go out and get groceries and take her family out at least once.
    Carrie

  6. #6
    Freebie Queen englishcottage1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    South Dakota
    Age
    43
    Posts
    2,567
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Rep Power
    36

    Default

    If I was your guest, I would just assume that I was responsible for my own food and offer to pay your way of what I could just because you are saving me money etc by letting me stay at your home. I think those who don't offer to pay something, no matter what your income is, are selfish guests.

    I don't know though if you can just tell people you want them to start paying for this or that when you have given them a free ride on previous visits. I think if it was me, I would talk with my husband and tell him that I agree with him, but I don't know about just telling people "No" when you have never made them responsible before.

    I might try what was suggested above, buy cheap meals, don't offer to treat them to places, when they ask what your all doing for the day, say you thought you would just hang at the beach and collect shells, or hang in the yard work on the garden, etc, of course asking for their help. But gently reminding them that your glad to see them but that you are going out less for some financial goals that you have set for this year. Tell them to enjoy themselves at wherever!

    I wish honesty worked with everyone but it doesn't. Your financial situation will bring on their financial situation and I'm sure theirs will be worse, according to them. I think when you do make a change, whichever way you decide, you will see who your real friends are.

    Good Luck and when you invite me, I'll pay for my things plus treat you to supper and an outing for letting me stay
    Daisy

  7. #7
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    639
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Rep Power
    10

    Default

    I would have to tell the family & friends that you can't afford to run a vacation home anymore. you have been gracious & hospitable to them in the past, if they are going to handle it badly (have a tantrum because you aren't doing what they want you to do anymore) that's a reflection on what kind of people they are. You will have to be assertive, it is YOUR home, or do you want it to remain a free destination spot?
    I can relate as we had a single brother in law living the carefree life & using our home as a free hotel when he was in the area several times a year. It became more frequent. I am glad it is over. It was difficult having someone on vacation in our home (napping on the sofa) while we worked, cooked meals & did routine chores.
    You might write letters to everyone now...before their vacation season starts.
    I also think it is very rude to plan a vacation at someone else's house w/out being invited!! If they do ask...just say NO!

    Good Luck!!

  8. #8
    Registered User LynnLC's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    1,005
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Rep Power
    17

    Default

    Wow! I would never stay at someone's home on vacation and not pay for meals, entertainment etc. It is in poor taste not to do so...I mean you are providing free lodging...who would not think to step up and take you out to dinner at least for thanking you for your hospitality?

  9. #9
    Registered User Contrary Housewife's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Kansas City
    Posts
    4,558
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Blog Entries
    75
    Rep Power
    43

    Default

    I won't ask why you get snarky comments about how much money you make, but it really is none of their business. If you don't feel comfortable telling people that "things are tight right now, you know, the economy..." tell them you're sorry you can't host them in your home this time, but that you'd be happy to help them locate a nice hotel where they'll be more comfortable. You don't have to give an excuse to explain yourself.

    As for restaurant dinners or "entertainment", apologize for having "other plans" or a "previous commitment". Or, if you really want to go out to dinner with them, but don't want to pay you can suggest "a nice family place, where *they* can get dinner for themselves at reasonable prices". Because you're sure, with 'the economy' the way it is, they are counting their vacation budget dollars very carefully.
    Use it up, Wear it out,
    Make it do, Or do without. ~unknown

    You can't always get what you want
    But if you try sometimes you just might find
    You get what you need ~Rolling Stones

    A clean house is a sign of a wasted life. ~unknown

  10. #10
    Master Dollar Stretcher madhen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    California
    Posts
    17,536
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Blog Entries
    427
    Rep Power
    91

    Default

    People get weird when you basically accuse them of taking advantage (even if your accusation is just). I don't think the direct approach is necessarily the best one.

    I would probably start by deciding just how much money you are willing to put into these freeloaders, and work it into your budget. I have some friends who are good friends, but who are also cheap b*stards. So I know that sometimes, the friendship is worth having to put up with a few traits you don't love.

    Figure out what you are willing to spend, then you could just tell your would-be visitors that you have other plans when they call to get some free vacation time. Or, you can say something along the lines of, oh, wow, I'd love to have you, but money is really tight this month. If they aren't totally clueless, they'll figure out that they either need to chip in or stay out.
    DH aka Mad Hen
    (http://mad-hen-creations.blogspot.com/)

    Every time you spend money, you're casting a vote for the kind of world you want. Anna Lappe

  11. #11
    Registered User Persimmon Lace's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Green Country Oklahoma
    Posts
    1,130
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Rep Power
    13

    Default

    "We will be having dinner in, you are welcome to stay and eat or here are some restaurant recommendations."

    No one can take advantage of you unless you let them. Tell them you are eating at home, they can go out on their own, same with activities. Take them to the market with you so they can pitch in for food. Tell them upfront what you expect, they can get glad in the same shoes they got mad in if they don't like it, you are not a resort. Good friends and family don't take advantage of you, but even then I think you need to be upfront and tell the economy is hitting you all in the pocket too.
    Last edited by Persimmon Lace; 02-28-2009 at 01:47 PM.

  12. #12
    Registered User rowdy35's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Sacramento
    Posts
    414
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Rep Power
    8

    Default

    You have been given some excellent advice here !! Wow !! I guess I am lucky as no one wants to stay with us, we live in the burbs... lol

    if you can't face them with the real truth just blame the current economic condititions, after all that is what is being blamed for everything else going one now, lol !!

  13. #13
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    930
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Rep Power
    14

    Default

    I would just simply tell them that you have some personal family obligations and vacation plans of your own going on and that you simply do not have the time to host family and friends this year. The only exceptions I would make would be your dh's parents and your parents. If anyone wants to argue the point just say well I can give you a list of good hotels and eatery's if you still want to come.

  14. #14
    Registered User MommyBliss's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Southern California
    Age
    38
    Posts
    900
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Rep Power
    9

    Default

    Thank you everyone for your great advice. It really has helped and well, I'm not the best at having a backbone, and I'm going to try my hardest to be gracious and honest.

    We will no longer offer up activities that aren't free and I'm going to be letting people know that we have cut out soda for health and expense reasons. You guys have given me some great advice, thank you.

  15. #15
    Registered User forHISglory's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Right Here
    Age
    65
    Posts
    3,807
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Blog Entries
    11
    Rep Power
    35

    Default

    I think you can be gracious and nice and frugal and honest all at the same time. If guests want to visit, I'd say, "Sure! What do you want to do while here, and I'll gather some brochures so that you know how to plan and what the cost is!"

    I would fix budget meals, served without apology, and carry on my normal routine with a smile. If guests ask you why things are different this time, just honestly say that the recession is hitting you like everyone else, and that your family had to become more frugal. I would reiterate how much I enjoy their visit, and then graciously let them find their own entertainment. Offer to give them directions to the places they want to go and to the restaurants they wish to dine at. Most folks will get the hint.

    Really...... the most you would be out is the cost of laundry for the bed clothes, the extra water used in showers, and the shared frugal meals at your table. And a little more water and beans in the soup pot won't cost much! Best to you!
    Spiritual:
    "You are fearfully and wonderfully made." Please... respect life.

    Financial:
    Debt free, hoping to stay that way!


    MY BLOG: glorybug.wordpress.com


    1. Keep on writing.
    2. Get some balance in my life.
    3. Lose weight. Hopefully 20# this year.
    4. Continue to be looking for how God wants to use me this year.


Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Suggestions please....
    By cmdarlin in forum General Chat
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 01-28-2009, 08:53 AM
  2. Need some suggestions please
    By MNmommy in forum Education
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 04-07-2007, 03:21 PM
  3. Suggestions!
    By oklahomapoet in forum Debt Reduction & Money Management
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 12-23-2006, 08:21 AM
  4. Need suggestions
    By baxjul in forum General Chat
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 02-23-2005, 05:45 AM
  5. Suggestions please
    By duckduckgoose007 in forum Health and beauty
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 01-21-2005, 03:33 PM

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •