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    Former MSE Debs
    Real life MMD: My hubby earns more. Should he pay more of joint bills?
    • #1
    • 9th Feb 12, 12:21 PM
    Real life MMD: My hubby earns more. Should he pay more of joint bills? 9th Feb 12 at 12:21 PM
    Money Moral Dilemma: My hubby earns more. Should he pay more of joint bills?


    When I moved in with my husband two years ago, we agreed to each pay half of all bills. He now earns twice as much as I do, so is it now a little unfair? I can afford to pay my half of the bills and still have money to buy clothes, go out, etc, but I struggle to save. My husband isn't mean, and happily pays for meals out more often than I do. But it's unfair I need to pay as much when he has more disposable income than I do. Should I ask him to contribute a greater share of the bills?


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    Last edited by Former MSE Penelope; 28-02-2012 at 4:07 PM.
Page 1
  • jamespir
    • #2
    • 28th Feb 12, 8:03 PM
    • #2
    • 28th Feb 12, 8:03 PM
    i think when you are married you should split things 50/50 so i dont think he should pay more
    Replies to posts are always welcome, If I have made a mistake in the post, I am human, tell me nicely and it will be corrected. If your reply cannot be nice, has an underlying issue, or you believe that you are God, please post in another forum. Thank you
  • Evilm
    • #3
    • 28th Feb 12, 8:11 PM
    • #3
    • 28th Feb 12, 8:11 PM
    Umm.. why aren't you discussing this with him and feel the need to ask here first? You shouldn't feel this is an awkward conversation with someone you are married to.

    To be honest Me and My hubby now have a joint account and freedom to spend what we like so it doesn't come up. We respect each other and discuss adhoc items over 100 between us before spending the money though.

    When we weren't married and had only just moved in together hubby did pay about 1/3rd more into the joint account for bills. He was earning about 1/3rd more than me at the time.
  • clarey33
    • #4
    • 28th Feb 12, 8:24 PM
    • #4
    • 28th Feb 12, 8:24 PM
    Um hang on a minute, a marriage is a partnership, all money is joint money so whyare you both paying an amount?. Both of our wages go into a joint account and bills are paid from it. There is No you pay half and so will i! what happens if u have children and you.stop working how will you pay your share? I never have to justify what I have spent money on as I pay my share into the *pot*. My husband earns 4x my salary, but that is not an issue to us.
  • robynprincess
    • #5
    • 28th Feb 12, 8:52 PM
    • #5
    • 28th Feb 12, 8:52 PM
    I really feel this shouldnt be an issue. My husband an I have all our money paid into 1 account and then put money aside for bills savings etc and spend the rest between us. He earns far more than I do and is happy with this. We opened a joint account a few months before we were married and it has always been like this. I am the one in charge of moving all of the money around to make sure the bills etc are paid.
    It honestly would never even occur to me to say 'well this is my half of the bills'. We're married, we share everything.
  • tescobabe69
    • #6
    • 28th Feb 12, 8:58 PM
    • #6
    • 28th Feb 12, 8:58 PM
    OP are you sure you're married ?
    My wife has never paid a household bill in her life, she wouldnt know how.
  • qetu1357
    • #7
    • 28th Feb 12, 11:02 PM
    • #7
    • 28th Feb 12, 11:02 PM
    Husband earns 2000, wife earns 1000, bills are 1000.

    Husband pays bills so both husband and wife are left with 1000.

    This is the fairest way.
  • Techno
    • #8
    • 28th Feb 12, 11:08 PM
    • #8
    • 28th Feb 12, 11:08 PM
    If neither of you want a joint account then work out all of your outgoings including food, car, utilities, mortgage; holidays, pressies, joint savings etc and split it in the ratio of 2:1 (if he earns double) you are then sharing the expenses in proportion to what you earn. Whatever is left over is your 'pocket money' to do with as you wish.
    If you think you are too small to make a difference, try getting in bed with a mosquito!
  • pogie2
    • #9
    • 28th Feb 12, 11:51 PM
    • #9
    • 28th Feb 12, 11:51 PM
    Im lucky not to be in this situation. I am a stay at home mum si earn 0. My hubby and I believe we are a single entity and therefore everything is ours not his or mine. I think it is terrible to do it any other way. Doesn't sound like a marriage to me. More like housemates!!!
  • gloriouslyhappy
    My husband and I put all our money in a joint account then each gets a personal allowance from the left overs after the bills are paid and the savings accounts are fed. The personal allowance is the same amount for both of us regardless of whose income was bigger that month and varies depending on how the bills work out that month (one bad patch it was 25 each!). We think that's fair, and that way it's our money to do with as we like no questions asked, but you should work out what feels fair to you. Never mind people saying "but you're married, you're one unit now", everyone needs their own personal spending money if only to buy the other one birthday presents!
    Last edited by gloriouslyhappy; 29-02-2012 at 12:58 AM. Reason: to replace the text that disappeared mysteriously!
  • jax1305
    before I left the rat race for the delights of full time parenting, we used to put all our money together to pay for everything, on the basis that joint living required joint paying and joint saving required whatever else was left.
    in order to overcome any squabbles about spending joint money on personal spending, we took an amount out each month for our individual use, to spend on what we wanted, thus avoiding any resentment about either of us spending more than the other, regardless of earnings. he spent his (pretty much in full) every month, I didn't - hence I've now got a nest egg to spend on whatever I feel like, when I like, even though I'm not earning a wage now.
    So, it's worked for us - maybe it would work for the OP.
    Just realised gloriouslyhappy does the same so that's two of us - the campaign begins!
  • bob4jane
    Aside from all the moral "partnership in love and money" arguments, (If you ask me, anything else is a mockery of your vows and you should stop being so selfish.) I can't understand how life for my wife and I would work without the "All in one pot" system. I earn more than my wife, she works part time.

    The other half of the week, she "earns" the extra I bring home by just generally being all lovely and a good wife, and loving me! That's what love is, to me - giving all you have.

    (As well, of course, by doing her other job of mother to our wee lad!)
    "Money is the root of all evil" -Poor person.
    "Money makes the world go round" - Rich Person.
    "Lack of money is the root of all evil" - (c) Me.
  • jackieb
    I'd be really cheesed off if this was the case in our house. My husband earns the majority of our money. Everything is paid into a joint current account - one (not so) big pot. The day our salaries go in is the same day that all our bill money is paid by standing order into our bill paying account. What's left is ours to do with what we want (it would be very easy to transfer an equal amount into a personal account for each partner, but we don't). It's simple. You have to trust someone if you're married to them. If you're married, it's to your partner, hence it's a partnership. I don't see why this should be an issue. This should be sorted out before anyone gets married, and if you can't agree, then just live together instead.
  • Cabbagewhite
    When we met I was earning a lot more than my Husband, now I have a part-time job and look after the children, he earns as much a week as I take home a month. We had our own accounts to start off with, then had a joint account for expenses but still maintained our own accounts. As he was then paid weekly in cash which varied greatly from one week to the next, whereas I was paid monthly into the bank - it seemed that we were forever juggling money between accounts. We just paid it all into the joint account, so much simpler. You do really have to trust your partner though and we all know of relationships where one party was either a lying, cheating waste of space or had drink/drug/gambling issues - do not put all your money where they can get it in that case.

    All of the expenses should come out first, then the disposable income should either be split to spend/save as you wish, or better still decide how much you will save then split the money left over after that. After all, you never know when your circumstances may change and your income may increase or decrease. Having been with my Husband for over 20 years, I can honestly say that when we met, I would never have envisaged how our lives have gone, especially in the last 4 or 5 years.
  • SoozM
    Yes!
    My husband & I have a joint account from which we pay all bills and expenses for our son. We also both maintain our own individual accounts, where salaries are paid and personal spending (clothes, nights out apart etc) come from.

    Each month we both pay a set amount into the joint account from our salary account to cover bills, and this is directly proportionate to our salaries... each year we review the amount depending on any pay rises we are lucky enough to get, and alter the amounts if required. It's only fair that we each have a similar percentage of disposable income leftover after bills.

    I don't know if this is a male/female debate.... so I'm not going to say who pays more in our house, as in my opinion it shouldn't matter... the calculation is fair, regardless of who pays more and who pays less. We both have our heads held high that we pay the same percentage of our hard earned cash towards bills.
    Last edited by SoozM; 29-02-2012 at 5:48 AM. Reason: Typos!
  • juggsy
    Um hang on a minute, a marriage is a partnership, all money is joint money so whyare you both paying an amount?. Both of our wages go into a joint account and bills are paid from it. There is No you pay half and so will i! what happens if u have children and you.stop working how will you pay your share? I never have to justify what I have spent money on as I pay my share into the *pot*. My husband earns 4x my salary, but that is not an issue to us.
    Originally posted by clarey33
    Sorry, but I feel this is a very presumptious comment. All couples are different and have different views on joint spending, and thus you should be sitting down with your other half to discuss this.

    I earn 4x as much as my wife, we pay a proportion of our wages into a joint account for bills, savings etc, the rest is our own spending money. I pay more towards bills but also have more disposable cash. I tend to be the one who pays for dinner when we're out etc., but at the same time know I can spend my money on whatever as the bills are covered. At the same time, whenever she treats me, or we buy each other gifts for birthdays etc. it feels like we are actually being treated, rather than the money coming from the same joint 'pot' it always does. This arrangement works really well for us, we've never had an argument about money.

    I have a friend who pays all wages into a joint pot, which everything including spending money comes out of, and the couple frequently argue about money (I hear about it all the time as he asks for advice!) I have another friend who does this and the arrangement works perfectly for them.

    My point is, get some insight and inspiration from this thread, then sit down over a cup of tea with your hubby and work something out which works best for both of you. You don't necessarily have to listen to people who say 'you're married so your money should all be in one big lump'. This is clearly coming from someone who earns less in the household. It can work for some, not necessarily for all. Every couple is different, and this needs to be something you mutually agree on.
    Last edited by juggsy; 29-02-2012 at 7:39 AM. Reason: Impartiallity
    • VfM4meplse
    • By VfM4meplse 29th Feb 12, 7:18 AM
    • 16,101 Posts
    • 28,839 Thanks
    VfM4meplse
    I earn 4x as much as my wife, we pay a proportion of our wages into a joint account for bills, savings etc, the rest is our own spending money. I pay more towards bills but also have more disposable cash.
    Originally posted by juggsy
    I find it a little odd that you are comfortable having more disposable cash than your wife. Should you divorce, would your wife not be entitled to half of your savings and a fair slice of your future earning anyway?
    Value-for-money-for-me-puhleeze!

    "No man is worth, crawling on the earth"- adapted from Bob Crewe and Bob Gaudio

    Hope is not a strategy .....A child is for life, not just 18 years....Don't get me started on the NHS, because you won't win......If in doubt, don't pull out!
  • juggsy
    I find it a little odd that you are comfortable having more disposable cash than your wife. Should you divorce, would your wife not be entitled to half of your savings and a fair slice of your future earning anyway?
    Originally posted by VfM4meplse
    I guess you missed the point of my post, which is we have a system which works well for us (we've openly discussed it), not necessarily everyone. And frankly I don't live my life assuming divorce, that's a highly pessimistic attitude and not a very healthy outlook to married life! But suggest we don't detract from the OP on that one.
  • Maud12
    My son and daughter-in-law each pay 50% of the bills and have individual checking accounts. My son earns more but my daughter-in-law is so financially delinquent that my son would not consider making his earnings available to her. When I say "financially delinquent", she had 5 credit cards all maxed to the limit so she took out a consolidation loan to pay them off. That done she took out another 5 credit cards and to date has maxed these out to the limit and only has funds to pay the minimum payment each month. She also has additional loans. Money is a major issue in their marriage and although she promises to curb her spending (clothes, gifits, lunches, dinners, etc.) she just reverts to her bad old ways. It drives my son up the wall because he is very cautious with his spending but he hopes with time (she will be 30 this year) she will improve. So NO he shouldn't pay more of the joint bills.
  • crank_girl
    I never get why married people have separate finances. My partner and I have one current account into which our salaries are paid and bills debited from. We have separate savings accounts to take advantage of tax-free savings but understand that what belongs to one also belongs to the other. We're a team and both contribute equally to the success of our household. That one earns more than the other should not be regarded as a larger contribution.
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