The Modern ‘Joint’ family in Dubai

Has economics pushed people to live in a new kind of joint family system?


Life is not easy on your wallet, from the constantly increasing rents to daily expenses, everything has to be carefully budgeted to make sure you still have something left to add to your savings account every month. To cope with this, some expatriate families in the UAE choose to share their living space with other families, or their friends in order to cut expenses and save more.

A joint family helps to support in case of financial issues. It helps them save a lot of money since the house rent, electricity bills, internet bills and even grocery costs are divided.

Other than economic efficiency, it also helps environmentally that food wastage is much less comparatively. They get to share food and make different types of food. It is different from living with your own extended family because when you choose to live with another family, their cultures and customs are also different. You get to celebrate different festivals, learn about their family traditions and participate. It also helps children understand concepts like giving other people their space, tolerance, sharing, helping and building relationships with those other than your immediate family.

Another thing is that you do not feel lonely and can always be assured of more helping hands around the house. When a problem arises, there are more people finding solutions for them.

The choice does come with its own drawbacks. Sometimes there may be conflicts, which can’t be resolved immediately because it’s easier with your own family but your don’t want to make the other family dislike you or make it uncomfortable. But then it also helps you find the smartest ways to communicate without hurting the set-up.

While most expatriates live away from their family members, these are a few of the UAE residents who have chosen to build their own joint families. Do you think this is a good idea? Do you live in a joint-family system with friends?

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