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    • Sea Shell
    • By Sea Shell 5th Jan 18, 7:54 AM
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    Sea Shell
    Keeping Money and Family Separate
    • #1
    • 5th Jan 18, 7:54 AM
    Keeping Money and Family Separate 5th Jan 18 at 7:54 AM
    It is often said that Money and Family shouldn't mix....but in reality are you ever able to completely separate the two, especially if there are discrepancies of wealth within the family?

    This can manifest itself in subtle ways.....meals out, lifts out and about, generally being expected to pay for/do things.

    As we've read, it can also manifest itself in less subtle ways.....the biggy being disinherited.

    How do you keep finances out of family affairs? Or do you think you shouldn't, and that you should distribute your wealth to them, without question?
    " That pound I saved yesterday, is a pound I don't have to earn tomorrow "
Page 1
    • thorsoak
    • By thorsoak 5th Jan 18, 8:00 AM
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    thorsoak
    • #2
    • 5th Jan 18, 8:00 AM
    • #2
    • 5th Jan 18, 8:00 AM
    So you wish to be part of a family yet keep your finances out of the family - correct? Why?

    There are no pockets in shrouds!
    • FBaby
    • By FBaby 5th Jan 18, 8:12 AM
    • 16,718 Posts
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    FBaby
    • #3
    • 5th Jan 18, 8:12 AM
    • #3
    • 5th Jan 18, 8:12 AM
    How do you keep finances out of family affairs?
    Very easily, expect nothing! So many people actually plan their lives around the money they will get from family members and then get angry when it is not forthcoming having grown in the expectation a sense of entitlement.

    My parents are at that age of planning what happens after they're gone and like to talk to me about it. I keep telling them that I don't want to hear it and don't care at all what they do with their money because all of it is what THEY accumulated through hard working all their lives. My dad mentioned doing a 6 months long cruise that would take a massive chunk of an investment he has and I shouted that they should go for it. My sister's face was something else though!!

    Same with paying meals out etc... in our case, it's a fight of everyone wanting to pay rather than nobody wanting to! Again, it's about expectation and appreciation. Don't expect anyone to pay for you, but if they insist and do (and should only do so if they really want to), then do show that you value their gesture.
    • DevilsAdvocate1
    • By DevilsAdvocate1 5th Jan 18, 9:24 AM
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    DevilsAdvocate1
    • #4
    • 5th Jan 18, 9:24 AM
    • #4
    • 5th Jan 18, 9:24 AM
    I don't expect anything from my parents or my husband's parents. However, as husband and wife everything is joint.

    My husband has earnt the bulk of the money during our married life - coming up for 23 years. However, I gave up a career to look after our children when they were small and although I work now its not in the same industry.

    My parents are quite elderly now and both have health issues. My mum is pretty much housebound and my dad is her carer. I help as best as I can. This means that they hardly spend any money as they own their house. My dad keeps telling me that each month he saves money and has offered to give me some, but I don't feel comfortable about this. Having said that, in November and December he transferred 500 in my current account quite out of the blue and told me to treat myself. He's never done this before and only had my account number because he once transferred some money into it so I could withdraw the cash when he lost his cashpoint card.

    Dad has also recently set up Help to Buy ISAs for 2 of my 3 children. The youngest is too young for this, so dad has put the same amount of money into a bond for him.

    I love holidays and we go away as often as we can. My eldest is getting a bit funny about this and told me recently that I should save the money as its his inheritence. Dream on son
    • Comms69
    • By Comms69 5th Jan 18, 9:54 AM
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    Comms69
    • #5
    • 5th Jan 18, 9:54 AM
    • #5
    • 5th Jan 18, 9:54 AM
    So you wish to be part of a family yet keep your finances out of the family - correct? Why?

    There are no pockets in shrouds!
    Originally posted by thorsoak
    I suspect the OP means extended family when he/she mentioned being disinherited
    • gettingtheresometime
    • By gettingtheresometime 5th Jan 18, 11:02 AM
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    gettingtheresometime
    • #6
    • 5th Jan 18, 11:02 AM
    • #6
    • 5th Jan 18, 11:02 AM
    There's too many variables to give a one size fits all answer.


    As an example my sister and her family are more wealthier than mine but mum treats us all equally in terms of birthday/Christmas presents.


    If we met up then the bill is shared 50:50.


    However my mum has been more generous to us in non monetary ways perhaps because we do a lot more for her.


    When the time comes, she will treat my sister and I equally
    Lloyds OD / Natwest OD / PO CC / Wescott / Argos Card cleared thanks to the 1 debt v 100 day challenge


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    • NineDeuce
    • By NineDeuce 5th Jan 18, 11:18 AM
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    NineDeuce
    • #7
    • 5th Jan 18, 11:18 AM
    • #7
    • 5th Jan 18, 11:18 AM
    I spend all of the family's money. Then they dont have any money to moan about....
    • jackomdj
    • By jackomdj 5th Jan 18, 12:03 PM
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    jackomdj
    • #8
    • 5th Jan 18, 12:03 PM
    • #8
    • 5th Jan 18, 12:03 PM

    This means that they hardly spend any money as they own their house. My dad keeps telling me that each month he saves money and has offered to give me some, but I don't feel comfortable about this. Having said that, in November and December he transferred 500 in my current account quite out of the blue and told me to treat myself.

    :
    Originally posted by DevilsAdvocate1
    My parents are in a similar position, i had a big conversation with my Dad about it and now and I am happy to let him give me/spend money on me and my family since he says he would rather see us enjoy it and share in enjoyment than wait until he is dead when it will come to myself and sister anyway. He has sufficient money that what he gives us won't effect his day to day living, if it did that would be a different matter.

    He bought my eldest niece her first car (plans on doing the same for my other niece and my two children), he has paid for my sister to go on holiday and is paying and coming with us this year (although we have paid for him in the past).
    • TBagpuss
    • By TBagpuss 5th Jan 18, 12:47 PM
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    TBagpuss
    • #9
    • 5th Jan 18, 12:47 PM
    • #9
    • 5th Jan 18, 12:47 PM
    It depends on how you are defining family, and what you class as finances.

    The advice normally refers to things like loans to family members, or buyimng/owning property together, because of the difficulties and resentment it can cause if the borrower doesn't pay back the loan, or if the lender has to enforce it, or if one joint owner wants to sell and the other doesn't.

    I don't think it would usually be interpreted to mean that you shouldn't (for instance) take family members out for a meal and pay the bill.

    making gifts isn't the issue, nor is taking into consideration the other family members' financial position when suggesting joint activities, it's more about entering into financial transactions with family members.
    • TBagpuss
    • By TBagpuss 5th Jan 18, 1:30 PM
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    TBagpuss
    I think when it comes to inheritance etc FBaby has hit the nail on the head.
    Expect nothing, demand nothing, and if you are given something, accept it gracefully.
    I do think that if you are the one with money and are considering treating (say) your children differently to each other, it is a kindness to provide an explanation, either by discussing it with them ahead of time, or by leaving letters with your will, as what may seem obvious to you, isn't necessarily obvious to others, and if a child is left out of a will without explanation, or treated differently to their siblings, it can be very hurtful as it can be interpreted as meaning you loved them less.
    • Pollycat
    • By Pollycat 5th Jan 18, 1:38 PM
    • 20,182 Posts
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    Pollycat
    It depends on how you are defining family, and what you class as finances.
    Originally posted by TBagpuss
    Precisely.

    OP - maybe you could be more specific to elicit more relevant responses.

    Is it you who is being asked to pay for meals and provided lifts?
    Or is your question purely hypothetical?
    • svain
    • By svain 5th Jan 18, 1:44 PM
    • 353 Posts
    • 624 Thanks
    svain
    Inheritance is a funny one .... Its the people less affected by inheritance that tend to shout the loudest about not wanting any of it ... its their way of feeling superior (holier than thou syndrome) or just covering their jealousy (imo).

    In the real world many parents work all their lives, not to just make their lives comfortable but to provide an inheritance for their children, its their motivation, their goal in life and there is nothing wrong with that. Some families talk about this openly ... others tend to let their parents get on with it. Having vultures circling beforehand though is a very unpleasant look.

    On a day to day basis ... most families can communicate or at least recognise when their is a disparity in incomes between members and adjust expectations for costs of getting together accordingly (ie eating at a Beefeater instead of The Ritz etc).

    Being in a family doesnt always have to be difficult ... be honest of you cant afford to go to an event etc and make your excuses. There will be other events or suggest an alternative that fits your budget. Never go to an event expecting someone else to pay, unless pre-arranged beforehand.

    If someone is taking advantage of your good nature then stop letting them. It doesnt need to be a slanging match. Just be calm and firm with your reasons and move on.

    Loans within families are the trickiest imo .... It can be the most destructive if it goes wrong. The only advice i can give in them circumstances is dont loan or be a guarantor on any amount you cant afford to lose. I have lent to my children in the past and apart from the occasional skipped paymet (pre-arranged) it has thankfully always worked out ok.
    Last edited by svain; 05-01-2018 at 2:16 PM.
    • Lover of Lycra
    • By Lover of Lycra 5th Jan 18, 1:48 PM
    • 163 Posts
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    Lover of Lycra
    For my family it's difficult to separate the money aspect if my brother's family are to be included. I have never know them to contribute a penny towards family meals out or the one disastrous family holiday we had (the highlight was my brother shouting at me and calling me a selfish !!!!!!!!). They don't have a car either so not only do I end up footing the lion's share of the bill but I'm usually the designated driver too.

    Why do I put myself through it? Well each time I tell myself a little lie and say, "it wasn't that bad last time."
    • AndyBSG
    • By AndyBSG 5th Jan 18, 2:36 PM
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    AndyBSG
    I don't let my family know about my finances so that way they have no grounds to make assumptions on how rich/poor I am.

    Likewise, my brother, sister and myself all get treated equally when it comes to presents, family meals, etc.

    That said, both my bother and myself earn double what my sister does, are both married to partners who also work full time and are homeowners while our sister is single and renting due to being unable to afford to buy(and showing no sign of that ever changing as she approaches her 40's).

    I suspect that when my parents do pass away my sister will want their home as it's right by where she works, is probably her only chance of getting on the property ladder and not really any use to my brother or myself.

    Never spoken to my brother about it but I certainly won't be expecting her to pay me anywhere near a third of the market value of the property and doubt he will either.

    That said, I do think that is a decision myself and my brother should make... I would probably be upset if my parents just left it all to my sister simply because she was poorer than either of us.

    That caveat is the only exception I think any of our family make to each other regarding finances.

    If we're clubbing together to buy our parents a present we all expect to put the same money in, all expect to equally foot restaurant bills, spend roughly the same amount on birthday/Christmas presents etc.
    • Sea Shell
    • By Sea Shell 5th Jan 18, 2:51 PM
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    Sea Shell
    That said, both my bother and myself earn double what my sister does, are both married to partners who also work full time and are homeowners while our sister is single and renting due to being unable to afford to buy(and showing no sign of that ever changing as she approaches her 40's).

    I suspect that when my parents do pass away my sister will want their home as it's right by where she works, is probably her only chance of getting on the property ladder and not really any use to my brother or myself.

    Never spoken to my brother about it but I certainly won't be expecting her to pay me anywhere near a third of the market value of the property and doubt he will either.

    That said, I do think that is a decision myself and my brother should make... I would probably be upset if my parents just left it all to my sister simply because she was poorer than either of us.
    Originally posted by AndyBSG
    This is what i mean by mixing family and money, that decisions may be made based on who has or hasn't got money. Should that even come into it.
    " That pound I saved yesterday, is a pound I don't have to earn tomorrow "
    • Pollycat
    • By Pollycat 5th Jan 18, 3:00 PM
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    Pollycat
    A bit of both really....just wanted to gauge peoples opinions as to their level of generosity, and where their boundaries are.

    An example then.....say your MIL wants to go browsing/shopping, for non-essential household items, but they don't drive (or use the internet), so they ask you to take them, which involves a 60 mile round trip (from your house to theirs, onto the shop they want to visit, and back again) You don't mind doing it once, maybe even twice, but with no offer or the hint of any petrol money (or a Costa coffee) for your trouble, at what point do you say, no sorry!

    this isn't finances as such....but it does have a financial element. Like a said, subtle things.
    Originally posted by Sea Shell
    Does this MIL have other children who live closer who drive?
    If they do, I'd have said 'no' at the first asking.

    If they don't have, does your MIL say 'thank you'?
    If she doesn't, I'd say 'no' at the second asking.

    But it doesn't matter what I'd do.
    What does your husband/wife think?
    Do they not drive?

    ETA:
    Are the places your MAIL wants to 'browse' easily accessible? e.g. in the next town a (say) 30 minute bus ride away?
    Or on a Outlet type of place which is harder/impossible to get to if you don't have a car?

    How old is the MIL?

    What do you class as 'non essential household items'?

    Does she go with the intention of buying or just to look?
    Last edited by Pollycat; 05-01-2018 at 3:26 PM.
    • Tabbytabitha
    • By Tabbytabitha 5th Jan 18, 3:14 PM
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    Tabbytabitha
    A bit of both really....just wanted to gauge peoples opinions as to their level of generosity, and where their boundaries are.

    An example then.....say your MIL wants to go browsing/shopping, for non-essential household items, but they don't drive (or use the internet), so they ask you to take them, which involves a 60 mile round trip (from your house to theirs, onto the shop they want to visit, and back again) You don't mind doing it once, maybe even twice, but with no offer or the hint of any petrol money (or a Costa coffee) for your trouble, at what point do you say, no sorry!

    this isn't finances as such....but it does have a financial element. Like a said, subtle things.
    Originally posted by Sea Shell
    Although I'd expect to be thanked, I certainly wouldn't dream of taking petrol money for running my MIL round.
    • thorsoak
    • By thorsoak 5th Jan 18, 3:23 PM
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    thorsoak
    A bit of both really....just wanted to gauge peoples opinions as to their level of generosity, and where their boundaries are.

    An example then.....say your MIL wants to go browsing/shopping, for non-essential household items, but they don't drive (or use the internet), so they ask you to take them, which involves a 60 mile round trip (from your house to theirs, onto the shop they want to visit, and back again) You don't mind doing it once, maybe even twice, but with no offer or the hint of any petrol money (or a Costa coffee) for your trouble, at what point do you say, no sorry!

    this isn't finances as such....but it does have a financial element. Like a said, subtle things.
    Originally posted by Sea Shell
    Surely that is a case of spending TIME between daughter/mother - do you begrudge that? A round trip of 60 miles would take between one and two gallons of petrol - is that a deal-breaker?
    • svain
    • By svain 5th Jan 18, 3:46 PM
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    svain
    Surely that is a case of spending TIME between daughter/mother - do you begrudge that? A round trip of 60 miles would take between one and two gallons of petrol - is that a deal-breaker?
    Originally posted by thorsoak
    If your driving a tin can maybe. Could be double that in fuel cost alone. Possibly as much 25-30 per round trip in fuel alone
    • engineer amy
    • By engineer amy 5th Jan 18, 4:43 PM
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    • 1,127 Thanks
    engineer amy
    My elder brother and I are both accountants, so our parents would frequently discuss money matters with us to ask advice or just to gauge our point of view on their financial decisions. our sister, an admin clerk, often feels out of the loop but does state that she doesn't understand the finer financial or legal implications. The two of us know exactly what is in our parents wills and who gets what, but as everything is to be split equally, it wont be any big surprises or cause upset.


    Since my father died this year, I know the balances in my mothers bank accounts, as I help her reconcile them monthly, sort out her budget, and also do all her self employment books. There have been times she has asked me to order something online for her (she doesn't trust online shopping) and I have put it on my card simply for ease, I often "forget" to tell her that she owes me, or if she asks I will tell her we will sort it out later. I suppose its my way of looking after her.


    My sister earns significantly less than me and has more financial commitments so less disposable income. She has told me she feels guilty because she cant afford to reciprocate at Christmas and birthdays if I buy her an expensive gift, or spa break. I always say its not the cost of the gift that matters. I would appreciate a handmade scrapbook of photos that didn't cost anymore than the materials to make it, far more than an expensive gift, because it shows a bit of thought and effort put in. I wouldn't want her to get into debt buying me something that she couldn't afford.


    I have a fair amount of disposable income. As long as my bills are paid and I have my emergency fund which creeps up a little each month, I have decided to spend my money and enjoy myself. My parents struggled for a number of years while us kids were young, on a tight budget and working multiple jobs. In recent years, they discovered a forgotten investment had become significantly large, and plus a few other factors, they turned out to be quite wealthy. They started making plans for retirement to enjoy it, bought their dream home then my father got cancer and died less than 6 months later....just 2 months shy of his 65th birthday. He never got to enjoy his money so I will enjoy mine. if that means spending it on people (family and friends) who cant reciprocate, so be it. it is the memories of times shared that are treasured, not the amount of money spent.
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