Whose House Is It Anyway? When Your Kids Take Over

Before you had kids, it was easy -- well easier, at least -- to stay organized. Now it seems like everywhere you turn, they’ve staked their claim on your space. Their numerous coats cover yours on the coat rack. Their shoes are piled by the back door (and beyond). So, what's a parent to do?

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Make rules

It may take a lot of reinforcing, but it’s okay to make certain areas off limits, at least to their stuff when they aren’t there. They have a whole playroom. Do you? Didn’t think so.

Put out baskets or boxes for their toys and books.

Even if they don’t always remember to clean up after themselves, you can quickly sweep everything into the box. If they don’t put it away themselves, they can sort it out later.

Add on

If you’ve simply outgrown your space, it may be time to add some for yourself. A master suite adds value to your home, as does a home office. Even a small side porch could be a nice retreat.

Consider some storage solutions

There are plenty of ways to add storage (and value) to your home, making it a more serene place for the whole family.

Ask yourself if you’ve outgrown your home

But do the math before you move: If you’re only a few years away from sending one to college, you’ll have extra space soon enough. And instead of getting a larger mortgage or taking out a HELOC or cash-out refinance to pay for home improvements, you’ll be able to tap into your equity to help pay for college, if you need to.

Do you feel like your house belongs to you? Kids need space, and they live there, too, but if you’re craving a little adult space, know your options!