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Discussing debt with my partner

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  • We don't have a car so there's no petrol costs or anything like that. All our food shopping comes out of the joint account (we class it as another bill, it's just easier).

    BrassicWoman - my partner doesn't have a hankering for a £2,000 bag either! Her latest clothes purchase was a second hand dress for £7.

    I've spoken to her about it and she didn't realise her overdraft account was still linked up to Amazon, Uber, Just eat and a few other websites so she didn't know that account was being used. We have agreed to cancel the debit card to make sure it becomes unusable on all the websites and once the new one arrives it's being locked up at home.
  • paddy's_mumpaddy's_mum Forumite
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    she didn't realise her overdraft account was still linked up to Amazon, Uber, Just eat and a few other websites so she didn't know that account was being used

    What you and your fiance do, and how you choose or agree to handle this is entirely your own business. However, one thing jumps out at me and using a lifetime experience of people and their all too human frailties, I hope you will allow me to comment.

    It would appear that you still don't know where or upon what this large sum of money has been spent. It must be nightly caviar and champagne from the local takeaway to rack up that kind of debt. If the costs have been met from the (overdraft) account, then the money has not been taken from another account which will therefore plainly have the money still in it unspent...no?

    Not knowing, for you, is dangerous territory since you plan to marry next spring. You have only to read a few threads on the Debt board to learn where obsessive spending takes the debtor's loved ones.

    There is no rule that says you must be like an Agatha Christie plot and "reveal all" to us on here but I do most sincerely urge you to make very, very sure that you know exactly what is going on and where the money is being spent before making decisions that can affect you, your marriage, future children and your own wellbeing, potentially for the rest of your lives.

    I wish you well with something that clearly is very worrying to you but also remind you that where debt is concerned, ignorance is not bliss.

    Good luck.
  • KynthiaKynthia Forumite
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    We don't have a car so there's no petrol costs or anything like that. All our food shopping comes out of the joint account (we class it as another bill, it's just easier).

    BrassicWoman - my partner doesn't have a hankering for a £2,000 bag either! Her latest clothes purchase was a second hand dress for £7.

    I've spoken to her about it and she didn't realise her overdraft account was still linked up to Amazon, Uber, Just eat and a few other websites so she didn't know that account was being used. We have agreed to cancel the debit card to make sure it becomes unusable on all the websites and once the new one arrives it's being locked up at home.

    So she's not a gambling addict or being deceitful. Perhaps you should talk to her before jumping to conclusions. If one morning a month you go through finances together it would becomes a regular thing rather than it only being brought up when you're worried about something. Just make sure your discussions about money are truly on a equal footing with you both discussing an issue and coming up with solutions together. You coming up with a proposal, telling her why it's a good idea and asking her if she agrees is not the same thing and won't have her buying in to what is agreed in the same way. Plus there's no point agreeing a figure if she cant stick to it, so make sure haircuts, makeup, gifts, socialising, clothes, etc are fully understood. It's better to save slower than have one person feeling too restricted and resentful, and another annoyed that the plan isn't being stuck to.
    Don't listen to me, I'm no expert!
  • FBabyFBaby Forumite
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    She is a careless spender. You can bet she does have things to account for it, she is just keeping it from you. Very easy to do or will pretend whatever she bought was 1/5th of the price.

    She is who she is, you won't change her, and clearly its not impa ting on your feelings for her or your desire to marry her, so that's just the way it.

    Personally it would be a huge turn off and as a matter of fact, one thing that really attracted me to my DH is his attitude to money. I was with a spender before who go into serious debts as a result, keeping it all from me. Thankfully not married. I certainly made sure the man I was marrying was money savvy, but that's me.
  • We don't have a car so there's no petrol costs or anything like that. All our food shopping comes out of the joint account (we class it as another bill, it's just easier).

    BrassicWoman - my partner doesn't have a hankering for a £2,000 bag either! Her latest clothes purchase was a second hand dress for £7.

    I've spoken to her about it and she didn't realise her overdraft account was still linked up to Amazon, Uber, Just eat and a few other websites so she didn't know that account was being used. We have agreed to cancel the debit card to make sure it becomes unusable on all the websites and once the new one arrives it's being locked up at home.

    Sorry but I don’t see how that explains £2200 in less than 4 months. That’s a lot of taxis and takeaways.
  • edited 14 December 2018 at 2:15PM
    getmore4lessgetmore4less Forumite
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    edited 14 December 2018 at 2:15PM
    IN a lot of cases the problem is motivation.

    Budgets are about planning what you want to spend money on in advance.

    In the plan there needs to be goals that have a higher priority than all the other stuff that money gets spent on.

    Are there any goals that need a proper budget that is stuck too that might motivate the change a habit.

    the usual ones are kids,deposit for a house, new cars, holidays.

    You have the house so bigger house/mortgage free can substitute.

    pick ones that might be motivational and work back from those.

    do you have a proper budget yourself?
    do you have 5 and 10 year plans with longer term goals in it.

    The plan was:
    1) Setup a new current account with no overdraft facility for her everyday spending.
    2) Leave the debit card of the overdrawn account at home and stop using the account.
    3) Her salary gets paid into our joint current account that we both have access to - each month I send money to her overdrawn account, her savings account, keep enough in our joint account for her share of the bills and then send the remaining £300 to her new current account.
    4) The £300 which goes into her new current account can be spent on anything, it doesn't matter as allowances have already been made for her overdraft, savings and essential spending. Once the £300 has gone it's gone

    What is this savings account for?

    if you have joint goals make sure the accounts for those goals are not joint you save your agreed shares and track them separately.


    I have to say that £300 does not go far, my beer budget is bigger than that.
    I've spoken to her about it and she didn't realise her overdraft account was still linked up to Amazon, Uber, Just eat and a few other websites so she didn't know that account was being used

    she needs to start a spending diary so she can track her spends to her plan.
    I earn £21,500 and she earns £28,000

    that's going to be about £1,500 and £1,800pm depending on pension and deductions.

    Why not try working through a proper budget for 2019(needs to be a full year) and see how you both want to prioritize the 2019 spending.

    by normalizing on a full year you get a much better picture.

    don't dwell on what has gone, make a plan on what you want for 2019 and beyond.

    The SOA format might work(it does the adding up) or get something like MSMoney that can do a proper job or write yourself a simple spread sheet.

    some bit will be easy(spend 1 is usually mortgage followed by spend 2 council tax
    total income : £18,000 £21,600
    spend1 :
    ....
    ....
    left over : when the left over has gone negative you are not earning enough so have to look for cutbacks.


    ..........................................................
    Since we came up with the plan earlier this year (August/September), about £1000 has been paid into her overdrawn account and £1,200 has been paid into her new current account. As the debt has increased this means she has spent £2,200

    She earns £1,800, there is £300 spending money, £250 for the overdraft, that leaves £1250 for the savings and the Joint bills.


    I think you need to have a close look at your joint bills thats a lot of money(doubled) to just run a house.

    Edit:
    another thing I would probably do is have a less aggressive initial target for the OD.
    £250pm would have been 6months(£1,500) I would drop that to £100pm or even start with zero reduction(just cover the fees), stopping it getting bigger is a major step forward. once it is no bigger for a few months look at reducing the debt.
  • HampshireHHampshireH Forumite
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    Who doesnt notice when their uber, takeaway and amazon purchases don't come out of their very tight budget each month.

    This really doesnt sound legitimate. She must have known. How else did she think they were being paid for.
  • bouicca21bouicca21 Forumite
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    If you've been together fir 8 years how come the overdraft problem seems to be recent?

    It's one thing being !!!! at budgeting and living pay cheque to pay cheque, but building up an overdraft is different. And if it is a relatively new problem then there must be a reason

    It's also about attitudes. I couldn't bear the thought of having an overdraft but I know plenty of people who think it's no big deal. If you have a horror of debt and she thinks differently then it's easy to see that she will perceive you as controlling. The first conversation has to be about that. Only when you understand each other's attitude to debt will you be able to budget properly.

    Being me, I'd just pay the overdraft down rather than save, but as I say, it's all a matter of attitude.
  • getmore4lessgetmore4less Forumite
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    there are 2 good good sayings that cover the basic issue.

    You can only spend each pound once.


    this is about balancing the budget, the plan allocates ech £1 of income to what it will be spent on(some may be future==savings)


    borrowing from your future self.

    this means if you spend more money than is coming in you have to earn that money in the future.
  • Pixie5740Pixie5740 Forumite
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    HampshireH wrote: »
    Who doesnt notice when their uber, takeaway and amazon purchases don't come out of their very tight budget each month.

    This really doesnt sound legitimate. She must have known. How else did she think they were being paid for.

    Not everyone reconciles their bank statements. It wasn't until I worked in a bank's internet banking call centre that I realised just how few people have a clue about what's coming in and going out of their bank accounts.
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