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OPINION | DEAR ABBY: In-laws offer sweet deal for home ... With a catch

by Abigail Van Buren | April 29, 2022 at 1:00 a.m.

Dear Abby: I’m a newlywed. My husband and I are looking for a house to settle down in, but we’re struggling to find one we like and can afford. My in-laws, who are moving, offered to sell us their house for a very generous price. The house is in a great neighborhood, but it’s old, outdated and has HVAC and plumbing problems.

I think the house would be the perfect place for my husband and me to raise a family if we had some renovations made. However, we have talked to my in-laws, and they are very attached to this house and very against having any renovations made to it. My husband is happy to buy it and not have the renovations made, but I’m not so sure. — House Hunter In California

Dear House Hunter: You and your husband should talk with your in-laws. While I understand their sentimental attachment to the house, they are being unrealistic and controlling. If they sold it to strangers, you can bet the first thing that would happen would be renovations. HVAC and plumbing problems cost a fortune to keep fixing over time if they are not dealt with. Don’t they want their grandkids raised in a nice, safe home in a great neighborhood? If the answer is yes, they need to loosen the reins. If not, then keep looking.

Dear Abby: My college-age daughter who still lives with me is addicted to caffeine. I am considering slowly replacing the regular coffee with decaf without telling her. I don’t want to tell her, as this may get in her head, and she may react by having withdrawal symptoms. I don’t think she would be angry, because she knows I am always looking out for her. — Mom With A Plan

Dear Mom: Quit being a helicopter barista. Have enough respect for your daughter to tell her the amount of coffee she drinks is a concern. Then ask if she would like your help to cut back. Withdrawal from caffeine is real, and your daughter might wonder what’s wrong when she experiences symptoms of withdrawal if you keep her in the dark.

Dear Abby: I’m a veteran with a nonservice-connected back injury. I need artificial discs between several vertebrae. The hospitals and clinics ignored my condition for the past 25 years. My fiancee is a nurse and doesn’t have money for my operation. A wealthy female friend has offered to fund it. Should I ask my fiancee for permission since this friend is a woman? — Getting A Chance In Oklahoma

Dear Getting: You should definitely clear it with your fiancee. If she loves you, she will agree that you are fortunate to have such a generous friend. However, if she’s insecure, you will then have to decide which is more important — your health or your relationship.

Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips and was founded by her mother,Pauline Phillips.Contact Dear Abby at P.O.Box 69440,Los Angeles,CA 90069 or visit


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