Money Moral Dilemma: Should I pay more towards my partner's bills than my own?

MSE_Kelvin
MSE_Kelvin Posts: 339 MSE Staff
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This week's MoneySaver who wants advice asks...

My partner and I want to live together in her home. She has a small mortgage on her property and I live in a narrow boat that's paid for. My living costs covering food, energy and water are £350 a month, and I believe that's what I should pay if I lived with her. But she thinks I should pay closer to £550, which is half her monthly living costs. In this case I'd be putting money towards her mortgage too, which seems unfair as I'll never own any part of her home. How would you split it?

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Comments

  • Mojisola
    Mojisola Posts: 35,557 Forumite
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    My partner and I want to live together in her home. She has a small mortgage on her property and I live in a narrow boat that's paid for. My living costs covering food, energy and water are £350 a month, and I believe that's what I should pay if I lived with her. But she thinks I should pay closer to £550, which is half her monthly living costs. In this case I'd be putting money towards her mortgage too, which seems unfair as I'll never own any part of her home. How would you split it?
    You will build up a beneficial interest in her property if you are paying half the mortgage unless you sign to say that you don't intend this to happen.
    Don't you have on-going costs with your narrow boat that will need to be paid?
    If she comes on a holiday on the boat with you, does she plan to pay you for the trip or would she expect that for free?
    How you deal with this depends on whether you're still at the 'separate economic lives' or are ready to be a couple, sharing lives and income.
  • Mojisola
    Mojisola Posts: 35,557 Forumite
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    You should pay half the utilities, the increase in council tax that comes with her losing the single occupancy discount (so a quarter of the total bill) and half the food.  Possibly also contents insurance if you have items that could be stolen or lost in a fire meaning you benefit from it.
    Mojisola said:
    How you deal with this depends on whether you're still at the 'separate economic lives' or are ready to be a couple, sharing lives and income.
    You don't have to pool finances to be in a committed relationship and choosing to keep them separate says nothing about the commitment of the parties to each other. 
    I didn't mean to imply that one was better than the other though I can see it could be read that way.  As long as couples talk and are both on the same page about their relationship and finances, it doesn't matter how they arrange things.
    I think it would be a bit mean to only pay a quarter of the council tax bill.
  • You should pay half the utilities, the increase in council tax that comes with her losing the single occupancy discount (so a quarter of the total bill) and half the food.  Possibly also contents insurance if you have items that could be stolen or lost in a fire meaning you benefit from it.

    You should not pay towards the mortgage (it's not your house), buildings insurance (it's not your house), and household maintenance (it's not your house) or "rent" unless you get a room for your exclusive use.  

    Mojisola said:
    How you deal with this depends on whether you're still at the 'separate economic lives' or are ready to be a couple, sharing lives and income.
    You don't have to pool finances to be in a committed relationship and choosing to keep them separate says nothing about the commitment of the parties to each other. 
    I agree wholeheartedly except for the council tax where you should pay half as you're benefitting equally from the services. And you should pay a contribution equivalent to a 'rent' as what gives you the right to expect a free roof over your head. You don't say what you plan to do with the houseboat though. 
  • 2702
    2702 Posts: 20 Forumite
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    It is up to you how you work it out and you both have different ideas on this, does not bold well for the future.
    Why don't you meet halfway and pay £450 but this will only work if you both are truly happy with this otherwise will build up resentment.
  • iclayt
    iclayt Posts: 454 Forumite
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    If I was your gf I would think you should pay half for everything you will use/ benefit from so utilities, CT, internet, TV and streaming services, food and household supplies, and contents insurance if your items will be covered. I personally wouldn't expect you to pay towards the mortgage or building insurance.

    If you moved in and there was a major repair needed requiring an unexpected sum (cover from insurance aside), would she expect you to contribute to that, and if so, would you be happy to? If the answer is no perhaps it's better not to rock the boat, so to speak, and stay where you are.
  • Consider doing what we do. The house is mine therefore I pay all the household bills, mortgage, utilities, insurance, council tax etc. Plus any bills I incur personally. Himself pays for everything else, food, clothes, holidays, plus any personal bills. Makes sure you get a decent solicitor to write your wills.
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