to ask you what you consider 'essentials'

(91 Posts)
limon Sun 20-Jan-13 10:42:08

As long as you aren't really struggling financially, do you consider toileteries and hair cuts and clothes you don't actually need as 'essentials' that should come out of the family 'pot'.

MrsBW Sun 20-Jan-13 10:44:53

Toiletries and hair cuts, yes.

Clothes you don't need, no.

SavoyCabbage Sun 20-Jan-13 10:45:18

Some toiletries are essentials. And some hair cuts are as you might not be able to do your job if you were a right clip as my mam would say.

Clothes you do not need are not an essential.

Haircuts, clothes and toiletries for the kids, yes. For me or DH, no we use our own money for treats not 'family' money.

kinkyfuckery Sun 20-Jan-13 10:47:58

Why would something "you don't need" be an "essential"? Do you not know the definition of the word?

andtheycalleditbunnylove Sun 20-Jan-13 10:48:44

totally at a loss here.
struggling.

haircuts. everyone in the family will need hair cutting. they should all have it done professionally to keep hairdressers in business. it will need paying for. everyone's haircuts should be paid from the general income of the family. so budget for it.

yes that works for me.

clothes always have to be budgeted for, as do shoes, shoe repairs and dry cleaning.

toiletries? soap? shampoo? definitely.
make-up? who is wearing it and why? there is no need for the family to fund their teenage daughter's slap habit. mum working in an environment where make-up is part of the deal, and her wage contributing to family income, that makes make-up a family expense.

there. i tried.

YouBrokeMySmoulder Sun 20-Jan-13 10:49:49

Some toiletries yes and replacement school uniform, haircuts and new clothes? Nope. Anything you dont need isnt an essential confused

limon Sun 20-Jan-13 11:15:56

What I'm wondering is whether I should count my toiletries (including moisturizer - Avon, so not bargain price point), hair cuts, highlights (every four months) into what is essential each month - or whether I should exclude it and consider it should be bought out of "disposable income". Same with clothes - DP tends to buy lots of clothes which aren't really needed but are nice to have.

It shouldn't make a difference but I am bread winner and DP is sahd.

Skinnywhippet Sun 20-Jan-13 11:19:21

If I were struggling financially then I don't think I would consider haircuts an essential! For boys you can buy a hair trimmer from boots for circa £25 or less from wilkinson a etc and then do them yourself. Women could just grow their hair for a while until finances were better. Sanitary products etc are an essential. Cheap shower gel would do for all the family hair and body.

MrsBW Sun 20-Jan-13 11:19:24

Make up including moisturiser is not essential. Soap and shampoo are.

Hair cuts are essential (IMO). Highlights aren't.

Not meaning to be rude... But it really isn't that hard??

OptimisticPessimist Sun 20-Jan-13 11:20:28

I would consider basic toiletries, a basic, tidy hair cut and a basic wardrobe of clothes that are in reasonable condition and the correct size to fall somewhere in between "basic essential" and "luxury". Anything else - make up, extraneous toiletries, fancy hair cut or treatment, extra or expensive clothes - is a luxury imo.

Could you organise it so that you and DP each have an equal "personal budget" taken from your disposable income each month? That could be used for things like highlights, extra clothes etc?

MrsBW Sun 20-Jan-13 11:20:49

As Skinnywhippet says though... There's more than one way to get a hair cut, including buying clippers.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Sun 20-Jan-13 11:22:21

We each have spending money for haircuts, clothes and 'premium' toiletries - and socialising.

Basic toiletries like shower gel, toothpaste etc come out of the family pot. Also underwear comes out of here, winter coats and DH's suits for work.

I have more spending money than DH to reflect that my haircuts cost more, and that I am funding all my clothes (am a SAHM).

shesariver Sun 20-Jan-13 11:23:06

Well both me and my DH work and just have "family money" - there is no distinction and we buy our toiletries, haircuts etc from this. Apart from DHs haircut because hes nearly bald grin

TeWiSavesTheDay Sun 20-Jan-13 11:24:07

Well... if it's a problem area for the family you need to set a specific budget that covers it, imo.

HollyBerryBush Sun 20-Jan-13 11:24:26

I couldnt be quibbling over who had what and who had a hair cut that costs more.

MrsKeithRichards Sun 20-Jan-13 11:26:18

Dh and ds get their hair cut every 8 weeks, costs about £15. I could get mine cut fir £15 and could away with getting it cut every 12 weeks. That would be my essential hair money. The highlights, the colours, the flashes, the products and head massages I add on is not essential. When the money isn't there that doesn't happen, I might splash out on a box dye.

buggyRunner Sun 20-Jan-13 11:27:04

If people were really struggling and needed a budget to clear debts/ keep head above water

Tv lisence not SKY
land line if no mobile - mobile contract is not
haircuts- yes if ppl work in a professional enviroment- for children I dont think so
rent, bills -yes not necessairly a car
toiletries- basic gel and moisturiser
make up - only if in work and needed

If your not in financial trouble

TV, broadband (for us)
mortgage, bills
hair cuts
Make up basic yes
savings for rainy day
car
Clothes- basic quality yes

badguider Sun 20-Jan-13 11:28:35

Haircuts essential, highlights and other colouring not.
Soap, shampoo and moisturiser essential, make up and bath products not.
Work clothes, a warm coat and shoes essential, or when there's a big change in size making existing clothes unwearable, clothes bought for fun not.

MrsKeithRichards Sun 20-Jan-13 11:28:42

Oh aye we don't have family pots etc, it's all just money.

ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Sun 20-Jan-13 11:28:53

What is the actual problem here? Do you want DH to spend less on clothes because he's not working or are you spending more than you want to be over-all every month or what? Perhaps the answers would help you more if we knew the actual problem.

Viviennemary Sun 20-Jan-13 11:29:28

When we've been hard up I have put off going to the hairdressers rather than go to a cheaper place. But this is not really sensible. And put off buying clothes. Then when I do have money to buy some nice new clothes there is nothing much I like.

SirBoobAlot Sun 20-Jan-13 11:30:35

I don't consider a hair cut to be essential. I trim DS's myself, and lob an inch of mine when it gets into a bit of a state. Surprised how many people consider that essential.

sydlexic Sun 20-Jan-13 11:31:53

I think all money that comes in belongs equally to both parties.

limon Sun 20-Jan-13 11:32:40

I've drip fed a bit.

I am main wage earner, I work 4 days, dp works about two days (one regular) and l

BeanJuice Sun 20-Jan-13 11:33:33

I don't think a haircut is essential.

wanderingcloud Sun 20-Jan-13 11:33:52

like Alibaba we get basics, such as toothpaste, shower gel etc from household budget but make up, moisturiser, haircuts are discretionary spending so I have long hair I get it cut once a year if that but I like to buy more expensive moisturiser and make up. oh likes getting his hair cut at barbers every month and expensive moisturiser but he doesn't buy MAC lip gloss! We only buy clothes that we need out if the household spending, generally we agree on this beforehand e.g. I need maternity trousers for work, that would be household and I'd tell oh I was getting them out the joint account but if I want a pretty maternity top just for odd night out, that's discretionary, So I would pay out of "my money" as it were. We both work full-time so I don't know if that makes a difference.

bigbadbarry Sun 20-Jan-13 11:33:56

Are you struggling or just narked that he spends more on fripperies than you do? If the former, posh clothes and highlights would go, for me. Moisturiser is an essential for me especially in the cold weather. If it is just about fair division of spends, we go for the "big pot" approach but neither of us ever resents the other spending (but neither of us is a particularly big spender). Others go for the half and half approach, which is also fair.

HollyBerryBush Sun 20-Jan-13 11:37:03

Post this on relationships, switch so the woman is the SAH - and you'll be accused of emotioanl and financial abuse.

Frankly all this who needs what and entitled to what becaue they may or may not be physically bringing money into the house is hairy bolleux!

You are either a partnership and it is family money or you are aren't. If you aren't then you are treating the SAH as the lodger and doling out a bit of a wage IMHO

limon Sun 20-Jan-13 11:38:08

Whoops.

He works about 2 days and looks after ds's.

I earn about 4 x what he does.

His regular day brings in enough for him to pay our broadband, landline, half of elec/gas and his equipment insurances. His freelance income is his "disposable".

I pay

Rent
Council tax
Tv Licence
Expenses for two cars
Food
Half of elec/gas
£400 per month into a joint account for his use (food shopping, fuel, days out with kids and anything else he needs)
The rest of my earnings goes into savings for the family and my only luxuries are toiletries, hair cuts etc and the odd lunch out.
Basically everything family related.

Every once in a while he ends up a bit short - but that's because he's

limon Sun 20-Jan-13 11:40:47

Does that sound like financial abuse? This is why I've posted I really want to know.

He flatly refuses to have a "family pot" into which everything goes in and everything goes out.

I think he's probably got more disposable income than me when you factor in his good earning months with his freelance work.

HollyBerryBush Sun 20-Jan-13 11:41:32

Based on what you have written, it comes across that you like the balance of financial power.

ImpatientOne Sun 20-Jan-13 11:41:55

It's all relative, what one person considers essential could easily be seen as extravagant by others dependant on levels of disposable income...

My DH and I do not have any separate money but we do not question each others choices. We would only discuss spending on a non-essential if it was a substantial amount around £300+

That said we are fortunate to have a fair income at present, things would be different if our situation changed.

MrsKeithRichards Sun 20-Jan-13 11:42:40

Haircuts are totally essential couldn't bear ds looking scruffy, I wouldn't attempt to go near anyone's head with a pair of scissors and I like my hair styles, I hate the look of long unkempt hair. I mean hair that's just what long for the sake of being long, no shape, structure, layers or anything. ugh.

limon Sun 20-Jan-13 11:44:41

No I don't ... I hate it. But DP won't take any responsibility. I've tried to show him the finances spreadsheet but he just won't engage in any discussion about family finance!

He is quite happy with the way things are and doesn't want to do things "jointly". I really hate that.

TeWiSavesTheDay Sun 20-Jan-13 11:46:44

It's really hard to say whether it's fair or not without knowing the actual sums involved.

It seems like you don't know exactly how much he earns and that's not right. No matter how you choose to divy things up you should both be clear on exactly how much money is going in and out.

limon Sun 20-Jan-13 11:47:12

Oh I didn't finish my post. The reason he ends up short some times
Is that he's uses all his disposable up and then has a bad month freelance wise.

Bearing in mind he has just spent £1k on a piece of non-essential hobby equipment. And I've just spent £600 on repairs/servicing for both cars.

IDontDoIroning Sun 20-Jan-13 11:47:33

Seeing as you pay the bulk of the day to day main living costs I think Thant it's only fair that he contributes his bonus pays to the family pot. Either that or you take more for yourself on a regulator basis and he tops up his with his bonus money. Seems to me he wants the penny and the bun.

zukiecat Sun 20-Jan-13 11:50:27

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

fuzzpig Sun 20-Jan-13 11:51:30

Haircuts not essential IMO, I do the MN haircut on myself and DD which works really well, and trim DS' hair (he is 3 and has what I think is referred to as an 'Eton flop'?!)

Have been cutting DH's too but now he is looking for work he is going to the barbers so ATM I suppose for him it is essential to have it done properly (and I'm too ill to sit there for half an hour and cut it anyway)

Anything beyond tv license is totally frivolous IMO, we did have cable before DCs but when we moved we didn't bother getting it again (in fact we had over a year without connecting the telly at all)

In our house though everything is basically the 'family pot', we share all money. DH and I have £20pcm each for really frivolous things like DVDs (we record it in a little book and everything blush) but stuff that is important (for a more comfortable life), but not essential, just gets paid for out of regular money just like proper essentials. I view work clothes (and shoes) as essential but regular clothes aren't really. We aren't big spenders on that sort of thing though - it is things like DVDs/board games etc that are our weakness, which is why we put our budget in place. Working really well so far.

We aren't well off at all but if things were tighter I guess we would move more of the 'not really essential but important for comfort' items into the 'frivolous' camp and budget accordingly I suppose?

mademred Sun 20-Jan-13 11:59:22

Years ago when my ex got us into a financial mess , I went to the cab for advice, they listed our income and outgoings, and on their list of essential items that they send to your debtors, was clothes, fags and alcohol and lottery.i suppose to many people they are essential as food and a roof over their heads. If I had the money to waste then I would buy all sorts , but now im on a strictish budget, we get things as cheap as possible without crompromising too much on qaulity.

limon Sun 20-Jan-13 12:00:27

I think for my own peace of mind I might record my frivolities for a
month to see if I'm taking the lions share or not.

FredFredGeorge Sun 20-Jan-13 12:01:39

Haircuts cost 7 quid though don't they?

Moisturiser is an interesting one that everyone says is essential - petroleum jelly is just about the best moisturiser you can buy as a moisturiser, it's just gross and smelly so it's not very nice to use so most people spend more on stuff that isn't gross. The essential is dead cheap though.

If you're short of cash and feel upset, why save so much - what are you saving for that your DH doesn't appear to agree with saving for if he's not using his extra money? It sounds like your choice is to save.

I couldn't care less if DP has more disposable income than me (I'm sole earner at the moment) as long as the family is living within our means we're fine. Of course any family where money is more of a struggle or different people have very different ideas on money then there's more likely to be conflict.

newNN Sun 20-Jan-13 12:01:55

If he won't agree to share everything and have one family pot from which all things are paid, then I suggest you pay him half of what it would cost to pay childcare for the days he has ds and then insist on a proportional split of all bills. You would pay a higher contribution because you earn more, but he would only have money left for non essentials after he had paid his share of the bills. If he won't agree to share hid bonus, then I would literally split the bills 50/50 and only give him half the cost of childcare for th days he has ds, rather than the proportional split. I was all prepared to say you are being U, but your layer posts sound like he wants you to pay for everything, leaving him with more spare cash than you, which is unfair.

PackItInNow Sun 20-Jan-13 12:04:28

Roof over heads, clothes/bedding, heating, food and electricity, fridge-freezer, toothbrushes, toothpaste, toilet roll, washing up liquid and soap are the basic essentials. The other 2 essentials are the NHS and state education. Anything else could be counted as a luxury because I could quite happily get by without anything else.

Luxuries IMO are:
1. Haircuts at the hairdresser,
2. Toiletries such as shampoo, shower gel (hair and body can be cleaned with soap) etc,
3. Make-up,
4. Internet (can go down the Job Centre to look for jobs or the library for information on different subjects)
5. Dishwasher
6. Microwave
7. Satellite TV (Sky etc)
8. TV (can make our own entertainement by playing I-Spy etc,)
9. Games Consoles
10. Beauty Services (Spas and nail bars etc)
11. Holidays

I can think of loads more luxuries, but it would take too long to list them all grin.

MerryCouthyMows Sun 20-Jan-13 12:08:15

Haircuts essential. Toiletries essential. Basic makeup (eyeshadow, lipstick, eyeliner, mascara) essential.

Clothes you don't need - not essential.

helpyourself Sun 20-Jan-13 12:12:20

Unless DH is 'bad with money' I'd put it all in one pot and everything, including highlights comes out of it. But that works best if you both have the same goals. We pool all money, but both hate spending it.

limon Sun 20-Jan-13 12:18:38

Fred overall, we aren't 'short of cash'
We run two cars, can pay the rent, eat well etc.
newNN if we did that, he wouldn't have enough money to cover his proportion.
helpyourself he's 'bad with money' in that he doesn't save or budget - when he has it, he spends it.

limon Sun 20-Jan-13 12:19:19

oh, and we have Freesat which costs nothing now we've bought the box.

limon Sun 20-Jan-13 12:21:05

Fred it's not that he has more disposable income than me that worries me. It's whether I am being in some way unfair.

Also, we need to save. We have a small child, and two cars. Our child will need to have school trips, potentially braces, maybe university one day. The cars need servicing and repairing from time to time. That's why we save.

Lueji Sun 20-Jan-13 12:24:32

If he's bad with money, then agree on a monthly budget for personal expenses (essential or not) and put it into a separate current account.

Maybe you should put it all into one common pot and then divide?

BeanJuice Sun 20-Jan-13 12:47:52

MrsKeithRichards haircuts aren't essentials just because you hate long "unkempt" hair grin

FredFredGeorge Sun 20-Jan-13 13:00:10

limon The what are essentials etc. or fairness is a red herring I think, you clearly have different ideas about money and that needs to be resolved. You'll resolve that through discussion with DH, there is no fairness, just what you both feel reasonable, DH presumably thinks your saving level is unnecessary, you think his spending level similarly. When you have the spare cash, both are reasonable in isolation, but not if you disagree.

ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Sun 20-Jan-13 13:09:36

I'm a bit confused now.

He doesn't want to change anything, but you worry that you are being unfair?

Could you spend £1000 on a new 'toy' if you wanted to?

lljkk Sun 20-Jan-13 13:13:11

If your appearance is an important part of doing your job the way your employer expects and ensuring your future job security then the moisturiser-make-up-hair-cuts-highlights-office-clothes count as essentials, absolutely yes.

I haven't had my hair cut by anyone but DH (badly no doubt) in 10 years. As soon as I get an interview I'm going to get a proper cut. I will doubtless hate it as much as I've disliked almost every hair cut I ever paid for, but it will be expected so I have to suck it up. If I actually get a job I'll have to go clothes shopping, too (blech).

limon Sun 20-Jan-13 13:44:38

We've finally had a comversation about it smile

He now understands where the money goes.

And doesn't want to have an all in pot as that would mean he couldn't spend his disposable so freely, he says.

But he now understands the family budget and what we can and can't do.

Understandably he struggles with not earning a decent wage and what he perceives as "living off" me. I don't see it as that but he does. I see it all as "ours" bit what's important is reaching agreement on what's important.

MrsKeithRichards Sun 20-Jan-13 14:09:36

Beanjuice nothing chills my spine more than they fucking mumsnet hair cut, people cutting their own hair. It does always, without a doubt, look shit, people are just to polite to tell you!

Not looking like a tramp is essential therefore haircuts (I'm talking trims by someone who actually knows what to do. Not tipping your head upside down and attacking it with your kitchen scissors) are essential.

ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Sun 20-Jan-13 14:10:09

So - do you have as much 'disposable' as he does?

ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Sun 20-Jan-13 14:11:15

Why not put it all 'in one pot' then have an equal amount transferred to 'personal' accounts for 'disposable' spends - or does he like his disposable income to be 'secret'?

ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Sun 20-Jan-13 14:13:00

Gee - MrsKR - if nothing chills your spine like and MN haircut you live a very sheltered life. Try reading the Relationships board if you need a wider outlook on life.

MrsKeithRichards Sun 20-Jan-13 14:44:28

Gee chipping, no thanks. I'm sure you fully understood my turn of phrase, if not well, I'd worry.

BeanJuice Sun 20-Jan-13 15:35:54

MrsKeithRichards letting your hair grow a bit is really NOT that bad, and I don't know what this mumsnet haircut thing is, but it's incredibly easier to trim your split ends or get someone to help you do it.

Looking like a tramp indeed hmm

BeanJuice Sun 20-Jan-13 15:36:01

*easy

YouBrokeMySmoulder Sun 20-Jan-13 15:39:11

Mrskeithrichards am not sure how rock and roll it is to need a cut and blow dry every month.

PaellaUmbrella Sun 20-Jan-13 15:41:09

Toiletries are essential. New clothes for growing children are essential - but rarely for adults. I bet most of us don't actually need new clothes.

Haircuts - depends. We're struggling financially atm and I haven't had my hair cut or coloured since September (as was getting married). I would really like to get it done again, but can't really justify the expense right now. But as I'm a sahm, I can get away with just tying it up, it doesn't really matter that it's getting a bit straggly and I have roots like motorways.

If I was working though, I think it would be more of a necessity to have had it done by now in order to look presentable.

SirBoobAlot Sun 20-Jan-13 15:47:36

MrsK I think you need a reality check, tbh.

MrsKeithRichards Sun 20-Jan-13 16:18:42

Who said anything about a cut and blow dry monthly? I said at the start that my bare minimum in hair maintenance would be a trim every 12 weeks. That's essential basic grooming to stop you looking like a tramp with unkempt, scraggly hair. Bit like trimming your nails. And seeing as hairdressing is quite a skill, best leave it to the pros, home haircuts are shit. You don't need to book into tony and guy for 3 hours every month, just go see someone with a decent pair of scissors and some training.

Your hair will thank you, I promise!

LaQueen Sun 20-Jan-13 16:29:21

Oh God, I would die a little bit inside every time if DH and I were reduced to quibbling over who paid £18 for a hair cut (him) and who paid £42 (me).

Conversely, he spends probably £20 a week on coffee at Costa, whereas I just don't.

Whether it's essentials or not, it should work out evenly and fairly. And it's really neither here nor there who earns what. It should be deemed Family Money, to be shared fairly and equally.

ENormaSnob Sun 20-Jan-13 16:36:12

I think he's taking the piss.

limon Sun 20-Jan-13 17:06:15

"bare minimum in hair maintenance would be a trim every 12 weeks. That's essential basic grooming to stop you looking like a tramp with unkempt, scraggly hair"

Wow, really? Perhaps you have particularly unkempt, sgraggly hair. I have mine cut about once every six months ish - I often leave it longer.

MrsKeithRichards Sun 20-Jan-13 17:18:02

You missed out the my in that quote.

My hair is styled, I like to keep it that way. It's also long. Long hair =\= never needing cut!

HecateWhoopass Sun 20-Jan-13 17:21:59

What about putting all income from both of you into the family pot and setting aside the same amount each for your personal stuff?

So if he has a thousand - you do too. If he wants to spend his on some hobby and you want to spend yours on clothes and shoes and hair then fair enough.

But I tell you what's NOT fair - him spending money on himself and you spending money on the family.

That's called Taking The Piss.

TalkinPeace2 Sun 20-Jan-13 17:30:21

I have my hair cut professionally about every five years.
It is up and smart for work. Most people do not know how long it is.

Ladies haircuts are a LUXURY
ALL hair colouring and perming is a LUXURY
all clothes over and above 2 sets school, 1 set warm, 1 set smart, 1 set cool are a LUXURY
Shoes above wellies / school / trainers are a LUXURY
restaurant meals / takeaways / eating out = LUXURY
pay tv = LUXURY

people in this country utterly forget how little one needs to survive.
Learn to be happy in your skin (as my BiL so rightly nagged me today)

mrsjay Sun 20-Jan-13 17:36:32

extra clothes or not an essential buying an outfit because you like it is a want not a need so isn't an essential imo,

Well if Im not struggling financially then i dont need to consider if anything is essential. I suppose nice but not essential items would probably be things like decent shampoo,nice juice, decent food instead of whats reduced. Probably make up too. Actually make up even if i am broke i would rather not eat than go without. Decent moisturizer too. My hair highlighted. So nice but not essential.

If i am struggling though

Hair cuts are not essential. God no never. Ive done it myself plenty of times when i was too poor to afford to have it cut. So just toothpaste, shower gel/soap and some kind of shampoo. Moisturizer and eczema cream too i guess at least for me as its a health reason. Basic but healthy is food. The electric bill and the water bill.

HomeEcoGnomist Sun 20-Jan-13 17:41:06

But I tell you what's NOT fair - him spending money on himself and you spending money on the family.

^^this

I bet he bloody doesn't want to contribute to the pot if it means he spends less on himself! I earn more than DH, we decided a long time ago that we would both put into the family pot in proportion to our net take home pay. We then use whatever we have left to pay for what we individually want. So if your DH earns 40% of your joint net income, his contribution to joint/family costs is 40%. easy

I would class haircuts as essential, but going to the priciest salon as a luxury

StuntGirl Sun 20-Jan-13 17:56:57

fred Vaseline and the like aren't a moisturiser hmm They just act as a barrier to stop moisture escaping.

Soap, shampoo, conditioner, toothpaste, deodorant, occasional hair cuts are essentials. Basic clothes are essentials.

Extras like hair dyes, styling products, perfumes, additional clothes/shoes are all luxuries.

FredFredGeorge Sun 20-Jan-13 20:12:18

StuntGirl That's what most moisturisers do too, I've never found one that doesn't include a product that does that aswell as other things. And yes, while it doesn't penetrate the skin, it does a very good job of moisturising by preventing loss.

Adversecamber Sun 20-Jan-13 20:29:01

I have never understood people needing huge amounts of clothes. Doesn't a bloke just need a couple of pairs of jeans and trousers , one decent suit, and a few work and casual shirts and a couple of jumpers and sweatshirts, some t.shirts and shorts.

Highlights are not essential, depending on what you hair cut is makes a huge difference to how often it needs cutting.

He sounds a bit self indulgent to me

BooCanary Sun 20-Jan-13 20:30:58

DH and I have a joint a/c for general household spend. This includes:
Food incl bog standard toiletries (ie.g. shower gel, shampoo)
Bills incl Mortgage
Petrol, car tax/repairs
DIY/tradesmen
Xmas Presents (not each others)
Items for DCs (clothes, shoes, hobbies, school trips etc)

We keep an equal amount of personal spends (despite DH working FT and me working PT), which includes:
Clothes, shoes and specific toiletries
Holidays
Haircuts (for me, DH has v little hair grin )
Hobbies
Anything else we fancy!

StuntGirl Sun 20-Jan-13 20:47:26

I can't think of many workplaces that would be ok with staff working with a sticky sheen of vaseline over their face...I'll stick to proper moisturiser thanks.

Xmaspuddingsaga Mon 21-Jan-13 08:59:14

There is a world between Vaseline and £30 a pop moisturizing. I buy whatever is on offer in the sm ditto shower gel, shampoo, deorderant and razors. It adds roughly £3 to the weekly shopping.

Similarly bog standard underwear and plain t-shirts , basic work clothes and uniform for the dcs.

Anything over and above this we pay for ourselves.

zoflora Mon 21-Jan-13 09:04:14

we buy basic shower gel, toothpaste, mouthwash, shampoo etc. from the grocery budget.
Clothes and any other toileteries come out of our personal spends as do kid's haircuts. He takes eldest to barber with him - I take younger to hairdresser.
You will never get any agreement on what is essential. Depends on people's jobs, lifestyle and the value they place on appearance.

Hair cuts no. Haven't had a haircut in 6 years, just trim it myself. OH shaves his own head and beard.

Toiletries are essential though - not the fancy schmancy face creams however!

expatinscotland Mon 21-Jan-13 09:06:37

Hair cuts essential, IMO, if you are working and have ratty hair like mine.

We don't have a 'family pot', everything just goes into one pot.

Toiletries - we use basic brand of everything.

Mind is boggling at Vaseline being used as face cream...wouldn't your hair just stick to your face?? Much better to just buy a cheap or special offer proper face cream.

ooer Mon 21-Jan-13 09:16:02

Oh dear ... all our money is the family "pot" and everything comes out of it ... including my non-essential clothes, cosmetics, terrible magazine habit and sweeties. DH brings in more money than I do but we cream a lot off to savings accounts and I certainly don't spend more than I earn.

expatinscotland Mon 21-Jan-13 09:19:54

Vaseline on your face instead of moisturiser?

We're pretty skint, but you can buy real moisturiser really cheaply.

hmm

I tried cutting my own hair - it doesn't work. My hair is greying, coarse and straggly. A hairdresser mate cuts it at home for a tenner. Well worth it, IMO.

jessjessjess Mon 21-Jan-13 09:32:07

I think he is just bad with money by the sounds of it.

valiumredhead Mon 21-Jan-13 10:55:29

IMO a haircut is a pretty basic essential - nothing fancy and no colour.

We just have everything in one pot, I can't begin to work out how people do otherwise.

Andro Mon 21-Jan-13 11:35:50

Interesting one...

What DH and I consider 'essential' and what comes out of the 'family pot' are two different things. The 'family pot' covers household bills, food, basic toiletries and medicines. We also have a 'house account' which covers car repairs (work cars), household items (white goods/furnishings/etc) and savings for when we replace our work cars.

Everything else is paid for by the person buying it, the children's things are bought by whoever is there at the time.

I think the thing that is essential is fairness. Where one person is earning vastly more than the other, that person is going to pay more in absolute terms. What needs to be avoided is anyone being taken advantage of/feeling as though they are being taken advantage of, hence communication is such a vital part of a good relationship.

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