If my mother is living with me, how much money should I ask her to contribute each month?

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She does have some debts and of course her health insurance and such. I just want to be fair. We don't make much and have our own financial difficulties. Should I base it on a percentage? If so, on her income or on our monthly bills? Unsure on how exactly to approach this. Any help would be appreciated.

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You'd be wise to see an attorney to have something drawn up so you don't run into Medicaid problems down the road. A business attorney, estate or elder attorney should be able to write a simple contract for you. You'd want to base the amount on rent and other costs in your area, as well as the care you give that save money for her since other's don't have to be paid. This will come in handy, too, if you have siblings.

Carol
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I actually spoke with my accountant about this recently. His recommendation was whatever her expensese were before (rent, water, phone, cable, gas, electric, etc) could reasonably be used as the basis for what she pays you. It is helpful if you have documentation of what she was paying prior to moving in with you as a basis for this. His other thought was to charge her a percentage (for example 1/3 if 3 people living in house) of what your monthly expenses are. Whatever felt most comfortable for us. I added up all her monthly bills and that is what she now writes a check to me for each month. Plus she chips in on groceries and purchases all her own "personal" items. Hope this helps.
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I took care of my mother for several years before she eneterd a
nursing home. I never asked her for anything as I knew she did
not have much, but she offered to help with whatever she could.
(She took care of me until I was 19 and this was pay back). After she went to the Nursing Home I still paid some of her medication every month. Now here I am (elderly and disabled and I live with my daughter. She never asked me about money but I pay the greater part of the bills, my extra food, repair of the car and gas. I will now be moving to a Senior Residence to
live on my own and I feel good about my life. I paid it forward
and got it back.
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We have been paying everything for her, she has an annuity and buys things...detergent, food, toilet paper and such. The only problem is, they are not the correct items...we have septic system and have to use a particular toilet paper and so on.... I am afraid she is spending too much, hoping that if we do it this way she will not feel obligated to buy stuff and leave that to us. We had canceled our landline, but had to put it back in since she moved in. We are going to pay 1/2. We try to do as much as we can to help her, we just cannot afford it all. I know that at some point she will need more help physically...she is 82...having worked in a nursing home, I know what I am getting ready for and prepared to deal with it, so paying it forward for me is looking forward to what lies ahead since I cannot support her fully financially, I can sure physically in the future.
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kverduyn, thanks, she has nothing other than her monthly income. She did rent for years, paid her utilities and that is mainly what got her financially and caused her to have to move in with me. Been thinking the 1/3 rd concept. She did pay 300/mo for rent, know she can't afford that so 1/3rd of that would be fair along with the rest. Thanks for your help.
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