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  • FIRST POST
    Woodsylou
    living together - how to budget
    • #1
    • 4th Aug 09, 3:26 PM
    living together - how to budget 4th Aug 09 at 3:26 PM
    Hi

    I wrote a few weeks ago about some problems im in, and you really helped, thank you! i'm slowly working through it

    now i have another question. my boyfriend and I are living together in my flat, but at the moment i pay all the household bills and then we kind of live togetehr and pay for bits as we go. obviously this isn't ideal because im skint!

    the problem is, he earns about 600 a month less than me (take home) and he has a lot of bills.

    how do we work it all out so it's all fair and we're both paying our way. i don't want him to pay half and be totally skint, but i need it to be fairer. any advice/help would be greatfully received!

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    Last edited by Former MSE Wendy; 11-08-2009 at 7:30 PM.
Page 1
  • bigmommamuppet
    • #2
    • 4th Aug 09, 3:40 PM
    • #2
    • 4th Aug 09, 3:40 PM
    Hi there,

    What we did when we didn't combine everything was to split the household bills etc 1/3rd to 2/3rds as I earned approx. double my DH's salary. Therefore for example he paid 1/3rd of the mortgage, electric etc and food. Everything else we wanted/ needed had to come out of our own salaries which include debt repayments.

    Becks
    LBM: 20/01/09 Total Debt: 104,050
    Curr Bal (25/08/12): 46,109 (55.6% Paid)
    DMP Start Date: 01/03/09
  • lindsloo
    • #3
    • 4th Aug 09, 4:02 PM
    • #3
    • 4th Aug 09, 4:02 PM
    Hi

    Me and my partner had similar issues when we moved in, unfortunately one solution doesn't fit all. The solution that suits us is as long as we both have the same disposable (if there is any) as each other we didn't have any arguments.

    Together we produced a sheet which listed of all the bills that came in, what our income for the month is and how much money we both have left. Every month we sit together and agree who is paying what bill so our disposable amounts are pretty much the same every month.

    This might not work for you but it does for us, we've been using it since October and since then we've never fought over money.

    PM me if you like and I'll email you the sheet we use.

    Good luck
  • Woodsylou
    • #4
    • 4th Aug 09, 4:05 PM
    • #4
    • 4th Aug 09, 4:05 PM
    thanks. that's what i was thinking, as long as at the end of the month the bills are paid and we both have a simliar amount left to 'play' with, that's good. thank you!
    • TotallyBroke
    • By TotallyBroke 4th Aug 09, 4:11 PM
    • 1,493 Posts
    • 982 Thanks
    TotallyBroke
    • #5
    • 4th Aug 09, 4:11 PM
    • #5
    • 4th Aug 09, 4:11 PM
    Because the flat is yours in name then you should be paying all related costs for it, so Mortgage/Rent and buildings insurance. Council Tax should be split 75% to you and 25% to him. All other bills should be split 50/50.
    When and if you choose to buy somewhere together then the saying "whats yours is mine and what's mine is yours" comes into play. If you sell your property to put as a deposit you can draw something up with a solicitor to say you own 20% more of the property than your OH as the deposit was paid solely by you.
  • Foobio
    • #6
    • 12th Aug 09, 9:52 AM
    • #6
    • 12th Aug 09, 9:52 AM
    My boyfriend and I have got around this problem by opening a joint account for any joint costs. All of our direct debits are set up from here, and we also use it for joint costs such as food and rent payments.

    Each month we each deposit money into the account proportional to our salaries. For example if we chose to put 50% of each of our wages in; If I earnt 1000pm I would contribute 500, whereas if he earnt 1500pm, he contributes 750.

    The total amount we contribute is sufficient to cover all expected bills etc + enough to account for an expensive month (eg high electric bill in midwinter). If we end up with a surplus, we can either choose to both put less in one month, or use it as spending money on a joint holiday.

    The rest of our wages can be spent on personal things/savings/paying off personal debts. It is our own choice what other bills we have in our names - if I want to have an expensive mobile tariff then that is my choice and I pay for it myself!

    I should add that I don't think this arrangement will suit us forever. When we become more settled eg buy a place together / get married / have children, then I believe that all wages should be centrally pooled - especially if one of us were to go part time / give up work to look after children!
  • Woodsylou
    • #7
    • 12th Aug 09, 9:54 AM
    • #7
    • 12th Aug 09, 9:54 AM
    this is where i have problems, because of debts, if we were to do that (50% wages thing, proportionate, which i think is a great idea!) my other half would end up with about 10 left a month, because he has more loans/debts than me. so we've done it so that we both have the same amount of disposable income left at the end of the month, but that means im paying about 85% of all costs, which i have a feeling i will end up resenting. and i don't really know what to do about it.
  • MyopicMoo
    • #8
    • 12th Aug 09, 10:09 AM
    • #8
    • 12th Aug 09, 10:09 AM
    Could you try pooling your money? Cover bills and debts and then have whatever is left split between you? It depends really on whether you feel your relationship is a very long term one and therefore you won't mind covering debt payments together. If you don't want to do this, then perhaps he can look at trying to increase his income so he can pay his way. Good luck - I know it can be tricky.
  • debtmuncher
    • #9
    • 12th Aug 09, 10:15 AM
    • #9
    • 12th Aug 09, 10:15 AM
    how about going to a budget planner over at cccs/payplan to see how much you need to be setting aside for all the various bits and pieces then decide what you want to do with the remainder.
  • Woodsylou
    Could you try pooling your money? Cover bills and debts and then have whatever is left split between you? It depends really on whether you feel your relationship is a very long term one and therefore you won't mind covering debt payments together. If you don't want to do this, then perhaps he can look at trying to increase his income so he can pay his way. Good luck - I know it can be tricky.
    Originally posted by MyopicMoo
    yeah that's basically what we are doing, and it's definitely long term. i think i should just get used to it now, eventually when we have children my wages will drop dramatically and he'll be paying for the both of us (once loans are settled of course!!!) so it's give and take.
    • Katie-Kat-Kins
    • By Katie-Kat-Kins 12th Aug 09, 10:23 AM
    • 1,681 Posts
    • 1,780 Thanks
    Katie-Kat-Kins
    When DH and I first moved in together we worked out what all our household bills would cost, added on the shopping and a contingency fund and agreed to pay that money into a joint back account out of which the direct debits would be paid. Initially we paid the same, our salaries weren't so different that they weren't largely accounted for by my higher commuting costs.

    We have kept the same principle of paying into the joint account and the remainder is pocket money ever since but the amoounts and proportions change.

    You could try it the opposite way round, if you wanted to where you take out a set amount of pocket money.

    What you do about the debts and your different income levels really depends upon the relationship. Not sure how comfortable I'd feel in your position subsidising your OH when you already own the house etc. Looks like you are putting significantly more into the pot than he is...... does he make up for this in anyway?
    • nitr02007
    • By nitr02007 12th Aug 09, 10:28 AM
    • 323 Posts
    • 419 Thanks
    nitr02007
    What works for us is to have our wages paid into a joint account. All the joint bills are paid from that. We have standing orders set up to pay ourselves "spending money" back to our individual accounts. We can do what we like with that money.. with no arguements!
    For us it was quite easy to set the levels as I earn about 50% more - so I get 50% more spending money than my partner.
  • Woodsylou
    When DH and I first moved in together we worked out what all our household bills would cost, added on the shopping and a contingency fund and agreed to pay that money into a joint back account out of which the direct debits would be paid. Initially we paid the same, our salaries weren't so different that they weren't largely accounted for by my higher commuting costs.

    We have kept the same principle of paying into the joint account and the remainder is pocket money ever since but the amoounts and proportions change.

    You could try it the opposite way round, if you wanted to where you take out a set amount of pocket money.

    What you do about the debts and your different income levels really depends upon the relationship. Not sure how comfortable I'd feel in your position subsidising your OH when you already own the house etc. Looks like you are putting significantly more into the pot than he is...... does he make up for this in anyway?
    Originally posted by KatP

    he has more debts than me, and earns less than i do. if we did it like that, ie both paying 50% of our wages or whatever, after he's then paid his debts etc he'd only have about 50 to live on in the month. and i'd have around 500. and we can't really live like that. I mean it would be alright for me! but awful for him! i think me supporting him now is hard, but im sure he'll be doing it for me when i have to stop work for children eventually.

    he's a police man, so he can have a good month and earn a lot more cash, when that happens he always transfers money to my account so we go 50/50 on it and treat our selves, or pay things off, that kind of thing.

    What works for us is to have our wages paid into a joint account. All the joint bills are paid from that. We have standing orders set up to pay ourselves "spending money" back to our individual accounts. We can do what we like with that money.. with no arguements!
    For us it was quite easy to set the levels as I earn about 50% more - so I get 50% more spending money than my partner.
    Originally posted by nitr02007
    that is an idae i had thought of. it's good it works
    • edinburgher
    • By edinburgher 12th Aug 09, 10:35 AM
    • 11,280 Posts
    • 60,509 Thanks
    edinburgher
    When my GF and I moved in together two years ago, budgeting wasn't really an issue for us as we both earned buttons

    From day one we've split things down the middle (50% for everything, with me rounding down to the nearest penny in her favour as a token attempt at gallantry).

    It works great for us and we never argue about money (although we often grumble about the lack of it!) That said, it depends upon the couple and a similar arrangement with my ex always led to arguments that seemed completely uncalled for. As a side note, my GF has about 150 a month more than I do.

    Some couples that we know do things differently and one of her relatives pays considerably less of a mortgage bill than her boyfriend as he has a stable job and was earning a good amount more than her. They seem happy enough, but unless I was married (and this is only a personal opinion), I wouldn't want to be a burden to someone else.

    It's a tricky one and there is no right or wrong answer. As others have advised, figure out which costs you have in common (i.e. council tax, utilities etc.) and try to split these somewhere that assures that you're both paying your way without either of you struggling.
  • Woodsylou
    i think that's the key. working out the shared bills and splitting them. and then finding out what's left.

    at the moment i am paying 100% of the mortgage, but that's my choice because the flat is mine, and the profit/loss when i sell willl be too.
  • debtmuncher
    i would go for the joint account too and pay yourself both back your individual spending amounts.

    to be honest if you are in a long term relationship then hte money should just be pooled and no his n hers spending money.

    we are married and dont do his n hers pocket money,if there is something we fancy then we talk about it. hubby probably gets more stuff than i do cos i am not bothered about it.

    it would make sense to get rid of all debts before kiddies come along so the quicker they are paid off the better lol

    hope you both manage to come to a happy agreement!
    • nitr02007
    • By nitr02007 12th Aug 09, 10:57 AM
    • 323 Posts
    • 419 Thanks
    nitr02007
    I agree - the priority should be to pay off the debts. Its important to be completely open about money in a relationship. You dont want to find out after a couple of years your other half has been building up more debt you didnt know about.
  • Woodsylou
    deffo. we've been honest, we've written it all down, how much we owe and who to etc. we're getting married next year, so at the mo all our spare money is paying for the wedding. after that, we're going to continue saving and then pay off as much debt as we can. once we're in a better financial position we can consider children.

    it's hard cause i can hear my biological clock ticking, but we can't do it any sooner
  • debtmuncher
    congratulations on the forth coming wedding!

    while you want your wedding to be a happy day, thats understandable, please dont go and make extravagant plans. the fact that you are getting married is enough for folks, but if you go spend 10,000 pds on top of the range flowers then that is just going to be a waste of money, people are not going to be impressed by it. thats just an example!! not meaning to be a kill joy its just that the money could be better used paying your debts off and then towards savings.

    i cringe when i hear of marriages that have fallen apart less than an year and they have gone and spent loads of money on . people say they can afford it but to me i would rather see the happy couple getting married and having savings than spending money on something thats just "ouch" to me lol
  • debtmuncher
    out of interest how old are you?
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