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Real-life MMD: Should I share utility switching cashback?
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# 61
lardaholics anonymous
Old 28-11-2012, 7:21 PM
MoneySaving Newbie
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 12

Spend it all on booze, or chocolate or a takeaway and share that with your housemates. Don't tell them it is from cashback and they will think you are awesome because you are being generous (which, judging by the bulk of posters here, you are!)
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# 62
Old 28-11-2012, 8:45 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 96

You earned it, they will benefit from the reduction, keep it.
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# 63
Old 28-11-2012, 10:17 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Manchester
Posts: 2

Maybe you could split it, like spending 10-15 on something shared for the house (dine in for 10 meal deal maybe or pizza) and the rest for you.
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# 64
Old 28-11-2012, 10:42 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 385

You should keep it.

If I was your housemate it wouldn't bother me if you kept it.
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# 65
Old 28-11-2012, 10:57 PM
MoneySaving Convert
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 83
Default Take the cherry !

You just baked your house-mates a 150 cake...

Unless you pointed it out to them , they would never know there was a 30 cherry missing from the top of it !

It's your name on the bill . If you are happy playing God just now then don't complain about devils when they do their own bit of mischief .

Enjoy .
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# 66
Old 28-11-2012, 11:13 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 25

You should explain and suggest you share it - I think if I found out my housemate had kept a freebie or special offer item on something I paid for, I would feel like they nicked something. It's not yours to keep.

Your housemates may surprise you and let you keep it. Or indeed put it towards communal groceries/loo roll.

It's too small an amount in the scheme of things to risk getting everyone's back up. It's just not worth it.
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# 67
Old 29-11-2012, 1:03 AM
MoneySaving Convert
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 21

Be honest.

It is almost a guarantee that if you tell your housemates they will not only appreciate your honesty and work but suggest that you keep it. You don't mention how many ways the bill is split but it would surely be 10 or less each if they chose to split it.

On the other hand, if you conceal it from them, and they later find out, the damage to your relationship with them may well be irreparable. Dishonesty in group finances of any description is always a recipe for souring things for everybody.
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# 68
Old 29-11-2012, 3:30 AM
Fantastically Fervent MoneySaving Super Fan
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 8,195

This is a difficult one and there is nothing worse than going out for a meal with colleagues and discovering one is being picky over who had what along the lines of I only had the pie, they had the steak or alternatively seeing someone getting stuck into double measures of expensive liqueurs, in a way you know they would not have behaved were the "whip round" not paying.
Assuming you are living as a household (ie have a kitty and share the basics, generally make meals for each other etc, and you have the status of accountant/banker) then you should act with utmost good faith.
You are in a position of trust and this is real money.
Hopefully you have better than a purely dog eat dog commercial relationship with the other members of the household?
I would recommend keeping an account book, or a spread sheet, with look but don't touch access for all.
Personally, I would have a sub fund for "windfalls" like this and try to create some sort of communal celebration from it.

This is not pure altruism, there is nothing worse than the feeling that the banker is somehow a rip off merchant, for poisoning the relationship within the group. Let's face it you are all living together because that is cheaper and hopefully less work and more fun, than living alone, so work at the relationship. Make sure the kitty is always in funds and make it clear that any surplus on the kitty is not refundable or an excuse for being late with this week's payment.

If you keep the kick back, this petty corruption tends to grow, where do you draw the line ? Do you want to end up with the morals of a traffic cop in Nigeria ?

Last edited by John_Pierpoint; 29-11-2012 at 3:44 AM.
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# 69
Old 29-11-2012, 4:05 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Winnersh
Posts: 4

No don't share it. You did the legwork as you said and the cashback should be for your time an initiative.

You have already helped the others financially by sourcing them the best deal.

The cashback is the wage for your time and effort.

Keep it under your hat and be ready to defend yourself if you are questioned about it.
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# 70
Old 29-11-2012, 5:17 AM
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Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 30

If I was the flatmate who had done nothing to reduce the bills, I'd be grateful someone had saved me 150 & wouldn't expect the cashback too.
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# 71
Old 29-11-2012, 9:42 AM
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Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 114

Fine to keep it, you are not ripping them off, they haven't lost money, they are saving money and no one is losing out.

Would any of them have gone to the trouble themselves? In most houseshares one person often has to control the bills, otherwise things have a habit of not being paid.

Many people that I know would rather someone sort it for them, they are not so concerned about savings and just want someone to do things as they can't be bothered. That's worth something, and you are not stealing from their pockets

Had you not found a better deal, that extra 150 would have to be paid, what you did with the 30 is a perk, it exists in many jobs where you benefit from doing some legwork that others don't.

It's no different as some people do in houseshares by being paid to to extra cleaning or chores that some people can't be bothered doing, those people are happy to pay others to save themselves a job, believe me, I know these people. That's no different to you doing the extra work to get a better deal for everyone.
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# 72
V Chic Chick
Old 29-11-2012, 12:44 PM
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: Manchester
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I wouldn't keep it - in just the same way that I knocked about 800pa off my shared house's gas and electricity bill () and got free insulation installed (another 200pa saved), but never in a million years would I expect to be able to keep that grand for myself . . .
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# 73
Old 29-11-2012, 4:31 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 2

As the bills are in your name I assume that only you can negotiate any deals so I suggest you stop overplaying how hard it was to get the deal and take all your flatmates out for a drink on your windfall.
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# 74
Old 29-11-2012, 5:15 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Manchester
Posts: 4,706

Actually, I DID tell the first housemates about the cashback, but by the time it had come they'd forgotten about it (or maybe didn't understand it in the first place) so I kept it.

The spreadsheet idea is a good one. I don't bother this year as I'm only in charge of one bill.
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# 75
Old 29-11-2012, 10:48 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 7

Seeing as you did all the hard work, then you keep it!!! I got sick of doing all the leg work during the years I house-shared, then finally kept the final yrs cashback my self. Without your work, you would all be paying more anyway!
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# 76
Old 30-11-2012, 1:17 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: London
Posts: 43

Man, keep it. It's only 30.
"The thing about quotes on the internet is that you cannot confirm their validity." ~ Abraham Lincoln
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# 77
Old 01-12-2012, 8:55 AM
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Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 24

I would probably keep it - think of it as a fee for you doing all the leg work! If you feel guilty about it you could always buy a communal box of chocolates for advent or something
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# 78
Old 01-12-2012, 1:24 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 2

I would keep it,your'e responsible for paying the bills anyway.As others have said - it's been all your hard work.
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# 79
Old 04-12-2012, 3:14 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: south-east of north westfordshire
Posts: 180

I think you've been working with Martin Lewis for too long! Remember that the love of money is the root of all evil - it's not a life changing sum, don't be so mean, share it with the others!
Owed @ LBM, including mtg: 85961.15, One year later: 82797.37, 2 years: 73079.84, 3 years: 64676.66, 4 years: 61948.34, 5 years 51307.91, 6 years 40,196.31, 7 years 36,260.93. As of 2nd March 2015: 25,541.59
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# 80
Old 20-12-2012, 9:32 AM
MoneySaving Stalwart
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 449

Of course you should share the cashback with them - or sepnd it on a treat you can all enjoy together. Keeping it for yourself is just mean!
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