to expect DP to pay more rent as he earns more....

(95 Posts)
Jewels234 Fri 04-Oct-13 23:13:25

I have lived with DP for almost a year now. We earn about the same amount.

He has now got a new job and will earn about £20k more than me. We currently split everything 50:50. Friends think that he should pay more now. I don't know what the right thing to do is.

To give some context, we rent, and don't have children. Should he be paying more now? If so how do I broach the subject?

Darkesteyes Fri 04-Oct-13 23:21:09

Your friends have a point You should both be paying towards the rent in proportion of what you earn.
20k more than you is a huge amount

utreas Fri 04-Oct-13 23:21:15

YABU you should pay the same and not expect him to subsidise you.

LessMissAbs Fri 04-Oct-13 23:22:31

I wouldn't fancy being subsidised by a man. Its not the 1950's. It would make me feel bad.

Each to their own I suppose, but I prefer to pay my own way in life. If you can afford the rent, I can't see why you shouldn't pay half?

RevelsRoulette Fri 04-Oct-13 23:26:01

I think it's important to have a discussion about money. You live with him, you sleep with him, you can have a conversation about money with him.

You not only need to discuss a fairer way of organising your money now, but you need to discuss a way to organise the money if you have children. Who will pay for what? Will you have family money and be a unit financially or will you keep everything separate and pay amounts into a joint pot, etc.

Perhaps pay an equal percentage of your wages into the pot for now. If you pay 50/50 when he earns so much more, then you are paying a far higher percentage of your income and that isn't fair.

ChazDingle Fri 04-Oct-13 23:26:03

i think if you can both afford half the rent then continue as you are. If he is earning more then it will hopefully work out that in holidays, nights out etc he will start paying more, if it doesn't then you need to look at relationship

BillyBanter Fri 04-Oct-13 23:27:59

It depends. If you had children then I would say yes, for sure. But without kids then it depends on how you are comfortable between the two of you, what your future plans are etc.

As for subsidising you I'm not sure what the difference is between paying proportionate rent and, assuming you will be doing stuff together and he will want to spend his extra money, him paying more when you do stuff. He may wish to save the extra and then if you split that is his money not yours, which is fair enough. There isn't enough detail to say otherwise.

Either way it's up to you two to decide what works for you, not your friends.

Minx179 Fri 04-Oct-13 23:29:31

YANBU. I'm not sure how utreas thinks he would be subsidising you, when you are in a partnership. It would be an unequal relationship if you spilt all the bills 50/50 when one partner is earning significantly more than the other.

I'm not sure how you could broach the subject. Has your partner mentioned what he plans to do with the extra cash at all? Do his plans appear to revolve around benefiting you both or him alone?

Donkeyok Fri 04-Oct-13 23:31:51

Well you've only been together a year so I would think you need to retain your financial independence by paying the same. That's what I would advise my dd. However 27 yrs with my partner we have both had different jobs where our incomes and roles, children, caring for elderly parents etc vary. We have always had a joint account since we moved in together. Its worked for us but if you were the higher earner and you disagreed on how to spend your own money it could cause resentment.
Perhaps he could pay for things which you feel you couldn't afford but he wanted you to share such as a meals out, naice sofa or luxury holiday.

LessMissAbs Fri 04-Oct-13 23:33:57

Why would it be relevant if someone earns more whether or not their earnings "benefit" their partner?

There must be something wrong with me. I've never entered into a relationship thinking about what I can get out of it financially.

Pity, as I could have made a fortune...

bebanjo Fri 04-Oct-13 23:34:36

Some couples are like this, I nave never understood it and could not be in that kind or relationship.
If it works for you fine, if not tell him.

Caterpillar0 Fri 04-Oct-13 23:36:34

I definitely wouldn't ask for a bigger contribution from him now, if you've been going 50/50 in rent up to now and you can afford your share. One year in I would stay financially independent. The longer you're together the more your finances will merge and the higher earner will inevitably put more in. In the near term, as others have said, he'll probably put more into cabs, dinners, groceries etc.

BillyBanter Fri 04-Oct-13 23:36:58

I don't understand how splitting rent and bills proportionately rather than 50/50 is the OP revoking her financial independence?

Bearbehind Fri 04-Oct-13 23:37:09

I think the £20k needs putting into context. That's a hell of a pay rise if you are both on £15k now but if you are on a lot more than it becomes less significant.

Either way, if you mange by splitting equally now, my pride wouldn't allow me to take a back seat just because my parter had got a pay rise.

BeCool Fri 04-Oct-13 23:38:34

If you were struggling financially then yes, I would raise the subject of splitting rent/bills on a pro-rata basis. If you were married or had DC I would say the pro-rata route would be reasonable too.

But presumably as you've been OK with splitting 50/50 thus far, then I think it would be cheeky to ask. Any why would you want him to sub you just because he had a pay rise? What if you then get a pay rise?

Driz Fri 04-Oct-13 23:41:50

I would continue splitting everything 50:50. But I like my financial independence. Presumably you live somewhere affordable to both of you so why should he lose out by getting a better paying job?

Donkeyok Fri 04-Oct-13 23:42:15

I think independence is accompanied by legal rights if she is paying 50 % of the rent. For her own credit rating with bills and protecting her accommodation if they need to separate.

I suppose it's whatever works for each individual couple, but fwiw, Dh and I have always split our finances so that we pay bills, save and have spare cash proportionately to our wages. At times that's meant he's paid more, at others time I did. It's always worked well for us.

That said, we both see all the money coming in as jointly ours anyway, so it's not really an issue we think about - more of a habit, really!

LoopThePoop Fri 04-Oct-13 23:43:00

YABU about bill paying.

If he chooses to spend on meals or nights out I would accept.
Then again if you are referring to him as DP and not boyfriend I would expect finances to be joint and there to be no difference in any spending.

Finola1step Fri 04-Oct-13 23:44:48

I think you should stick with the 50:50 agreement and save some of the extra income. I do not see why you are discussing such financial matters with friends and not your DP. How would you feel if your DP was discussing your salary etc with his friends?

BillyBanter Fri 04-Oct-13 23:46:19

I think I'd rather rent split proportionately and discreetly and pay more on nights out rather than have him publicly pick up the tab every time we're in a restaurant. I think that would make me feel more self-conscious.

IMO, when you live together instead of apart, you have both chosen to become one household - an emotional, domestic and financial unit. When we moved in together, we didn't 'split' the bills. Our salaries went into a joint account, from which all joint household expenses were met. We both had the same amount of personal 'fun money' paid to our personal accounts from the joint account. Regardless of the ups and downs of our relative incomes.

How do you broach the subject? Well, you're living together - where do you see your relationship being in a year's time? Five years? Ten years? Have you ever talked about this with him? It could be time to be talking about absolutely everything, if you haven't already.

Depends how serious you are.

To put his side of it, if he did pay more, and you split after another year, he can't just claim it back, even if you instigate the split and he feels rotten about it.

So I think you need to discuss it quite seriously.

Justanotherforumname Fri 04-Oct-13 23:53:51

YANBU if its a serious relationship then i personally think bills etc should be split fairly. In context I earn more than my DH (not by anywhere near 20k different but a decent amount) and since we moved in together ive always paid more - at my insistence. Since we got a mortgage together we have had the exact same amount left in our personal accounts each month (of which we do whatever we like - the other has no visibility / say at all) and everything else is in the joint acct and we both have to agree what its spent on after the house, bills.
I know lots of couples who dont earn equal but pay equal and each to their own but personally i would never feel right having more money than my DP.
I do feel you should at least discuss it though, at the end of the day whatever works for the two of you is the right way no matter what anyone else says...

Jewels234 Fri 04-Oct-13 23:56:24

Thanks for all your opinions, it feels like everyone is a bit different and it's just what works for different people. At the moment we are so I might just see how it goes. Really appreciate your replies smile

olgaga Fri 04-Oct-13 23:56:28

I'd see if he volunteered to make a larger contribution to your joint costs - whether that was rent, bills, holidays, whatever.

If he didn't, I don't think I'd be able to ignore the creeping realisation that I was lumbered with an ungenerous bastard who didn't want to pay his fair share.

Then I'd LTB. wink

blueraincoat Sat 05-Oct-13 01:34:17

I earn a fair bit more than DP and despite his protests have geared the amount of rent I pay accordingly. We sat down and talked about it with me instigating it but I think if he came straight out and asked me I wouldn't have been happy about it.

lessonsintightropes Sat 05-Oct-13 01:35:49

Yep it's all different. I earn double what DH earns, the differential was still massive but less when we moved in together. He and I are both sensitive about it as I don't want to subsidise him nor he take more than his fair share but we do have shared expenses (i.e. mortgage and bills). What we worked out for us as being fair is that I pay 30% more of our shared expenditure and I get to keep some of my extra (which I almost always spend on stuff for us). This will change radically when we have DCs as he will be the SAHP. It's about what works for you both. We're all different and please don't listen to the inevitable shouty militants you will get telling you how to live your life!

Lweji Sat 05-Oct-13 01:45:32

What olgaga said.

From my point of view a partnership is a partnership.
Room mates should share 50-50.
Partners should end up with the same spending money.
It may seem fine for now.
What if he or you lost his/your job?
What if one decides to be a SAHP?
What happens if you decide to move to a more expensive place?

nappyaddict Sat 05-Oct-13 02:48:31

See I sort of think if you are thinking of becoming a family then that's the time the discussion of joint accounts, proportion of paying rent and bills etc should come. Before then I do think you should pay 50/50 unless the higher earner wants to buy things for the two of you that they maybe wouldn't have bought when there were on a lower wage, move to a more expensive house, change to a more expensive car, go on more expensive holidays, meals, nights out, take a taxi when you could walk/go on bus etc.

Idocrazythings Sat 05-Oct-13 03:17:05

I think if your rent contribution is not leaving you short then you should leave it. You haven't been together that long and you were managing before with what you were paying (I presume). If it's leaving you short or getting you into debt then talk about it. As soon as he gets a pay rise if you're asking for a cut of it you could look grabby. Sometimes well meaning friends and family can cause a lot of unnecessary problems in a relationship

dickiedavisthunderthighs Sat 05-Oct-13 03:29:02

My DP and I split the mortgage and council tax in half but he pays more on our household joint account as he earns a third more than me. Whatever we have left is our own. It works for us smile

livinginwonderland Sat 05-Oct-13 07:36:50

DP and I live together and split things according to what we earn. He earns twice what I do so pays more towards bills and rent, but I work in a supermarket and get a discount there, so I pay for groceries. You just have to figure out what works for you as a couple.

LondonMan Sat 05-Oct-13 08:18:04

There's nothing wrong with 50:50 as an arrangement, in appropriate circumstances. Both earning, neither short of cash for spending, and not significantly different appetite for joint spending.

Circumstance in which contributing in proportion would make sense is where there one is earning much more than the other, and consequently wants more expensive house/shared car/holidays than the partner can afford.

Circumstance in which equalising spending income would make sense is if one is not working or has insignificant income.

I think OP will look grabby if she suggests a change now. The time to negotiate a change is when marriage or children are on the cards. Between now and then sound him out on other options so that the ground is prepared in a non-threatening way.

Blokescantbuypressies Sat 05-Oct-13 08:19:18

At some points in our relationship I've been the sole earner, and therefore paid all the bills. I still earn much more than DW and pay all the mortgage, utilities, insurance, etc and most of the food, petrol. Oh, and one lot of private school fees.

As this means that DW can save a bit more she has paid for the last few holidays we have had.

Swings and roundabouts, and it's all our money. We're twenty years and two children in though, so you and your DP might take small steps towards this attitude.

Jaynebxl Sat 05-Oct-13 08:27:49

I think it depends on whether you both see this as effectively a flat share bit where the two sharers are romantically involved, or whether you are both seeing it as a long term committed relationship leading to kids, marriage etc. Idf it is the former then you should split it all 50 50 buy if it is the latter then hopefully he would take more financial responsibility as he now earns more.

Jaynebxl Sat 05-Oct-13 08:28:22

I think it depends on whether you both see this as effectively a flat share bit where the two sharers are romantically involved, or whether you are both seeing it as a long term committed relationship leading to kids, marriage etc. Idf it is the former then you should split it all 50 50 buy if it is the latter then hopefully he would take more financial responsibility as he now earns more.

Jaynebxl Sat 05-Oct-13 08:29:20

Hmm and I clearly felt my post was so important I managed to post it twice grin

MimiSunshine Sat 05-Oct-13 08:33:36

To be honest I'm not really sure what it's got to do with your friends?
Was your BF there when you were discussing his finances?

I'd say if the 50:50 arrangement has been affordable so far then stick to it. I can't see why you'd suddenly need to change things and it just seems a bit grabby.
If it's not comfortably affordable for you (and presumably your BF would already know this) then discuss it.

FWIW I earn a lot more than my BF and we split everything 50:50 I suggested a percentage split but he said no. So I am left with a larger disposable income but ultimately that benefits us both as we're saving for a deposit so it all within reason wink goes in to savings to try and catch up to his amount

2rebecca Sat 05-Oct-13 08:37:39

2k isn't much of a difference.
I think long term if you are going to be partners rather than just flat mates then pooling income is part of being in a serious relationship for me. I wouldn't marry or have kids with someone without pooling our money and assets.

bearleftmonkeyright Sat 05-Oct-13 08:38:51

I think if you're living together you should be able to talk about this easily with him whatever you decide to do tbh. If you decide to have children together then things get evermore complicated and if you give up work to be a sahp and he then sees his money as being "his" then that could leave you financially vulnerable. I would definitely, definitely talk about it in terms of planning for the future if a long term future and children is what you envisage with him. But as previous posters have said, there is nothing wrong with splitting the rent 50-50 at the moment. DP and I did exactly that when we bought our first house together and we now have three children and I am a part time working SAHP. He supports us all happily as did I when we had our first and I worked full time. It has to be a partnership of equals regardless of who earns the most.

2rebecca Sat 05-Oct-13 08:39:27

Sorry just saw 20k not 2k. I'd be discussing that if together long term, not for the rent as obviously the rent hasn't changed so no logical reason for him to spend more but if he starts spending money just on him and not on the 2 of you then you are just flat mates not a partnership.

DontmindifIdo Sat 05-Oct-13 08:47:21

See, if you are just living together, no dcs, not married (or engaged), and not been together for a long time, then you should pay half the bills like you were flat mates.

Saying that, when dh and I first moved in together, he did pay more of the rent, but then I was happy to rent a smaller property, he wanted a second bedroom as a study (for him) and a garage (for his bikes, the car was on the road). I told him what I could afford, if he wanted a bigger place, he had to fund the difference. We paid all other bills 50/50. At the time, I was earning £18k, he was earning £70-80k (self employed so varied). But before living with him, I'd rented a house with a friend and paid half of everything, I didn't see that moving in with a bloke should mean he subsidises my lifestyle. Once you've made commitments like marriage and/or dcs, then that's different, but when you are first living together you pay your own way.

Fairylea Sat 05-Oct-13 08:56:06

Well I may be quite old fashioned (maybe) but having been married to someone who was truly selfish and awful with money I think I would if you have plans to have dc in the future then I would want to see a joint pooling of money and an equal split of spending money left over in a trial run of sorts for having children. If I had done this with ex dh it would have showed me what a selfish idiot he was.

I am now remarried and dh and I have a joint account and put all money in, pay all bills together and split whatever is left. He works, I am a sahms. We have two dc.

carabos Sat 05-Oct-13 09:11:25

I have a radically different approach to this. Having done the shared money, joint account thing in my first marriage and got royally shafted because I was the higher earner, I have no shared money with my DH of 20 years.

I am entirely financially independent - if we split up tomorrow nothing would change in my world. I can pay my rent, car, household bills without any input from him and that is the only way I can be comfortable. I have no idea what he earns (could make an educated guess) and I don't care what he does with his money.

We NEVER argue about money. The bills get paid, everyone eats. There is NO way I could look at a partner who was fortunate enough to earn themselves a big pay rise and think "I'll have a slice of that thanks very much" and anyone who tried that with me would find themselves quickly kicked to the kerb.

That's what independence is about for me - however, I don't know anyone else with the same attitude.

2rebecca Sat 05-Oct-13 09:19:53

I earn more than my husband but couldn't imagine having lots of money to spend whilst he has none.
We both work though and I can imagine I may feel resentful if he was at home all day whilst I worked, unless we had agreed he'd be at home to look after the kids. I don't want to subsidise someone else's idleness.

HappyMummyOfOne Sat 05-Oct-13 10:31:00

Given the relationship is still new, no children or marriage then YABU to expect him to support you when you are perfectly capable of paying your share.

Its far better to retain your financial independance as no relationship is cast iron.

DontmindifIdo Sat 05-Oct-13 10:34:34

2rebecca - while that's fair enough, the OP isn't in this situation, they rented a place together and set their budgets on paying 50/50 when she was earning the same as him. She was quite happy with the budgets and her disposible income, it's only now that his income has changed that the idea of changing the budgets has come up, essentially, nothing will have changed for the OP, although if her DP wants to have a more lavish lifestyle now he has more money (such as renting a bigger place or eating out more often, buying new furniture for their flat/house, going on posher holidays) then he has to fund the difference as her budget is the same as before, he can't expect her to match increased spending, but it's perfectly reasonable to expect her to continue to match her previous spending as nothing has changed in her earning potential or expenses.

It woudl be all up for review if htey got engaged or married, or had DCs, but for now, I don't see why an adult with no dependents working full time should expect someone else to fund them.

middleeasternpromise Sat 05-Oct-13 10:53:07

I doubt this issue is so much about what you do now with money but how you actually feel in your relationship about financial matters. When you got together you were equal financial earners and the 50:50 split was logical. Beneath that you need to think about what you expect and he expects about money and other resources. Your friends have told you he should contribute more and this clearly strikes a cord with you. Apart from who has what - what has this year together told you about your individual financial priorities? Do you spend similarily? is there broad agreement on purchases or major disputes? do you each have to conceal some financial decisions otherwise it starts a row or does the boat travel smoothly? If you plan to stay together you do need to have a shared understanding about money and an attitude you are both happy with.

ShoeWhore Sat 05-Oct-13 11:12:51

I think what's really important here OP is not how you decide to organise the finances (lots of different perfectly valid ways to do that) but how the two of you approach and discuss it. It should be something a committed couple can have an open honest discussion about imho.

I used to earn significantly more than dh and therefore paid more into our joint account and used spare money to save, pay for hols etc. because I love him and wanted us to share those nice things together. When we got married we simply pooled everything. I've since been a sahm and because we've always had a joint approach I don't feel any loss of having "my own money"

That's just our approach though. The key is to find a solution that feels right and fair to both of you.

(In contrast we have some friends whose finances are totally separate and he earns lots more and buys himself lots of gadgets, expensive clothes etc while she scrapes by. I've heard him say things like "we wanted to go to x on hols this year but dw can't afford it" To me that seems a bit unfair, esp as there are children involved and she works part time! shock That's clearly rather extreme though!)

Jewels234 Sat 05-Oct-13 11:42:26

For context, I earn £40k, he now earns £60k. He has said that when we buy (fingers crossed next year!) he will be paying more for the mortgage, and when he first got the job and I told him that I was a little worried about the difference in salary he told me not to worry as the extra would go on saving for a deposit so would overall benefit us both.

I think I'm just being swayed by friends who don't understand our situation!

On another note, I think (know) that he has just bought an engagement ring smile

Oriunda Sat 05-Oct-13 11:55:33

I agree with carabos. I'm a SAHM but DH and I keep separate finances (I have rental income from my old flat). I don't know how much he earns nor do I ask. We each have enough money to pay bills and buy we want/need without recourse to the other.

If I were OP's partner I would be furious knowing she'd discussed my finances with her friends and was planning to grab some of my only just increased salary. Big red flag.

OP presumably the rent was affordable before? If so I would leave it for now. A year living together isn't that long and I'd wait to see if your partner spends some of his increased salary on treats/holidays or savings for your future together. If he keeps it all for himself then you will have a clearer idea of what he'd be like as a husband/father.

Ignore your 'friends' (are they jealous?) and carry on being happy together.

Oriunda Sat 05-Oct-13 12:02:12

Just posted before seeing your update (would have been useful to have at the start). Not such a great disparity between 40 & 60k. When I worked DH's salary was about 4x mine but I never felt bothered by it. He's already discussed plans for future so I would really not rock the boat or I think you risk him seeing you in a different light.

Bowlersarm Sat 05-Oct-13 12:02:27

Op - don't discuss your personal finances with your friends! It never ends well. Seriously. Keep personal financial discussions between yourself and your DP (and MN of course grin)

HappyMummyOfOne Sat 05-Oct-13 12:10:19

I cant imagine having a payrise and being told by my partner that they were worried about the difference in salary! What on earth is there to be worried about in an increase!

Aside from that i'd find it very grasping and like Oriunda wouldnt appreciate everyone knowing private details and how to spend it.

BillyBanter Sat 05-Oct-13 12:11:38

I disagree with not discussing financial stuff. Secrecy is where abuse hides.

I would call not knowing what your partner earns and a partner being furious at me discussing it a big red flag.

BillyBanter Sat 05-Oct-13 12:13:59

Anyway, OP, your plan sounds good. Early congratulations

whois Sat 05-Oct-13 12:15:07

You aren't married, you don't have children.

I don't think he should pay more rent than you, why should you be subserdised. If he was asking you to move to a more expensive flat or something then that would be different, but your outgoings haven't changed.

whois Sat 05-Oct-13 12:16:37

Oh, yeah, missed the update.

Nice about the ring :-)

Pobblewhohasnotoes Sat 05-Oct-13 12:17:33

Your plan sounds good OP, and it seems like he's already thinking along the same lines. Just make sure if you decide to have DC you aren't caught short by being on maternity leave. He will need to contribute more. As long as you discuss things you'll be fine.

How do you know he's bought a ring? How exciting for you!

Bearbehind Sat 05-Oct-13 12:23:09

I think you should be very careful what you discuss with your friends OP.

I'm assuming that your parnter hasn't just said this morning the bit about using his pay rise save for a deposit and make a higher contribution to a future mortgage?

If this was his plan all long and you knew that, I am completely baffled at your AIBU question.

You manage by splitting the bills 50/50 at the moment, your partner is planning to use his pay rse to secure your future- what more do you want?

I don't mean to sound harsh but I think you might want to grow up a bit and stop asking your friends opinions on things that really don't concern them and where you don't seem to be telling them the full story.

Viviennemary Sat 05-Oct-13 12:26:56

No. I think you should both pay the same. Unless you come to an agreement that your finances should be pooled completely ie joint account. Or if you have children. I think it depends on how permanent and serious your relationship is. Nevertheless if he decided he would keep all his extra money to be spent only on himself I wouldn't be too happy with that over any long period of time.

Oriunda Sat 05-Oct-13 13:04:41

Billy ... Who said anything about secrecy? I don't know what DH earns because I haven't asked him and don't care/need to know! We're comfortably off and I have a rough idea that he earns over X amount, but as to the exact figure, I'm really not interested. Equally he doesn't ask me how I spend my money or the money he puts into my account. We trust each other. People bandy the word 'abuse' about too readily IMHO to the detriment of those who really are being abused.

I said that, if I were the OP's partner, I would be furious with her discussing my finances with her friends. Obviously the OP should be able to discuss finances with her partner, that's different.

DH and I always split bils proportionaly. Now we've got kids we just pool money into one. No secrets, no hidden finances etc.

There were times he earned more but then I earned more. I'm part time, he's full time and I earn more. But I don't get hung up on splitting or who pays more for the simple reason that we're married, we have children so what we earn goes into the pot. I'm not worried about maintaining a secret fund because quite simply I have a good job and would rather put any savings I did have towards my children.

ImperialBlether Sat 05-Oct-13 13:10:07

I would be furious, too, if I were the OP's boyfriend, to hear that she's been discussing my salary with her friends AND that they were saying she should get a reduction in rent as a result.

OP you do sound grasping to be honest. The poor guy's only just got the job, hasn't he? You're on decent money - if you want more, why not go for a better paid job?

marriedinwhiteisbackz Sat 05-Oct-13 13:51:19

I think that if you could both afford the rent when you bought the current flat you should continue to pay half each - that was how the initial decision was based. I think if due to your partner's higher earnings you make a joint decision about moving to a more expensive property because that is what you both want then you need to review the finances then.

I have been with my dh for 25 years OP. When we met I earned more than him, he then started to catch up and I became a SAHM. He then completely overtook me. However, we have always had separate finances and that works for us. In the early days when I gave up work and resources were finite we had a very tight budget for a few years.

We have always had some money of our own that we have kept ringfenced and even now I'm not quite sure what DH has salted away and he will have some because that is his nature; but on the other hand he's not too certain exactly what I've got either. But family expenditure is always agreed and we are both careful with money. If I chose to blow a hundred on a pair or shoes or a bag or a jersey that's my concern; likewise I know he will do similar on upgrading his football season tickets but we don't need to consult about those things.

It works for us.

olgaga Sat 05-Oct-13 14:09:34

Thats great Jewel. Sometimes its best to have patience and trust that your partner will show that they have the right attitude, as in this case.

Congrats in anticipation!grin

LessMissAbs Sat 05-Oct-13 15:59:35

I'm often quite surprised by some of the things I read on here, often with regard to how some mumsnetters seem to think of and treat their DPs/DHs. And this thread is one of those.

I really struggle to think of a single person in real life who would think like the OP. To suggest that you cannot pay an equal share of your own rent implies to me that there is something wrong person that prevents them paying their own way in life, such as addiction, illness or unemployment. Different if you have a family together or have been together for years, but I just cannot think of anyone I know who would suggest their boyfriend subsides their rent. I do know a couple of women who live together with their boyfriends, who gave up their jobs on moving in and are financially dependent, but tbh most of us dont take them very seriously and feel sorry for their boyfriends.

Admittedly, my female friends nearly all come from a similar background to myself - uni, then scraping your way up the career ladder, rather than looking for some male version of a fairy godmother.

Any man who suggested I subsidise their rent on moving in with me would be given short shrift as well.

OP - your friends are strange. Really strange.

LessMissAbs Sat 05-Oct-13 16:11:18

I also forgot about the mumsnet obsession with joint bank accounts. Again, I wonder if they are over represented on here because there are not so many women on full time salaries. Just a thought. There's no way id start paying my salary into a joint account with a man id only known a year. To me, that is something that comes in time, if at all - DH and I dont need to subsidise each other, and id find it terribly limiting if I couldn't make a quick decision to make an expensive purchase but had to ask someone else first - i dont see how sharing your life and experienced has to confuse sharing your money. Sounds like something from an era when married women weren't allowed their own bank accounts or something!

Trills Sat 05-Oct-13 16:16:54

DP and I split all household/joint bills proportionally by our takehome pay (this would not quite be 40:60 for you, but similar).

Our salaries go into our personal accounts. We have a joint account that we both put money into, and we agree how much it needs and what counts as a "joint" expense (food/rent/bills/insurance/etc). Our remaining money we can spend as we please, and the other person has no say in it.

I always recommend that if you have children the split should be done such that you both have the same amount of spending money left at the end (so not precisely proportional to income).

I never recommend having all money be joint because I feel that it would cause more stress than necessary if you have different attitudes to spending or saving.

jasminerose Sat 05-Oct-13 16:20:43

Everyone does thinks different. Dh and I got 1 joint account after we had been together 6 months and all our money goes in there. Sometimes one makes more and sometimes the other does. Why dont you talk to him about ur

Trills Sat 05-Oct-13 16:26:21

My attitude is that how much you earn is down to circumstance and luck more than it is down to "how hard you work", so in a partnership I don't feel that one of us "deserves" to have more money than the other.

I would be happy to go to the "equal spending money" model even though we don't have children, but DP would rather not do that. When we chose to do the "proportional split" model we earned about the same amount. Since then there has been a time when he earned more than me, and now I earn more than him.

Jewels234 Sat 05-Oct-13 16:28:16

Thanks all for sharing your experiences.

LessMiss - me and my friends sound the same as your friends. I suppose it was one girl in particular who was very surprised that as we are (hopefully!) about to get engaged we wouldn't just pool everything together. I would hate that for the same reasons as you...if I want to spend £300 on a coat for example I can. I don't have to run it past the OH. I think the implication from the friend that my OH was being tight made me unsure of what the right thing to do is.

Trills Sat 05-Oct-13 16:28:59

I absolutely would not like to have my "disposable income" be joint.

Mandy21 Sat 05-Oct-13 16:44:25

I think it depends on individual circumstances. After a year, I knew I was going to end up with H, he was the same, we moved in together. We were both just starting out in our careers, but he was officially a year in front of me (in terms of training). For the first few months of renting together, we were both trainees (so similar salaries), split everything equally, he then qualified and his salary doubled overnight (whilst mine stayed the same). He offered to pay more of the expenses, so we split it proportionately. We carried on like that, paying expenses proportionately to our income, for a couple of years. At points, I was earning more than him so paid more, other times he was earning more so he paid more. I've never expected it, or felt "subsidised", it just made sense to us as a couple. When we bought a house, everything became joint.

On a separate note, I think its very important to discuss finances (and to know what your H earns).

" i dont see how sharing your life and experienced has to confuse sharing your money."
And there is the fundemental difference - I don't see how sharing your life (as in seeing your future as growing old together; rather than just spending time together, living in the now) can possibly exclude shared finances. And shared finances doesn't mean I can't spend £300 on a coat, we both have personal funds (a standing order from the joint account, we both get the same amount of fun money).

I think Jaynebxl put it well (Sat 05-Oct-13 08:27:49) - "I think it depends on whether you both see this as effectively a flat share but where the two sharers are romantically involved, or whether you are both seeing it as a long term committed relationship leading to kids, marriage etc." I have lived with someone but not seen it as 'forever' - we split 50:50, paying the same amount into a joint account grin (from our personal accounts, into which our salaries were paid) to meet the bills. With DH, both salaries went directly to the joint account with money transferred from there to our personal accounts. Similar, but very different.

But now would be a good time to talk money, to find out his attitudes to it and to explore your own.

34DD Sat 05-Oct-13 16:53:33

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Bearbehind Sat 05-Oct-13 16:57:41

I think the implication from the friend that my OH was being tight made me unsure of what the right thing to do is.

How could your friend possibly have thought your partner was being tight if you had explain his plan to use the pay rise to save for a deposit and then contribute a higher amount to the mortgage payments.

I don't agree with you talking about it in the first place but if you are going do, at least do your partner the courtesy of giving them the full picture.

How do you think he would react if he knew your friends thought he was 'tight'?

Conversations like that have a habit of coming back to bite you on the arse, as does saying you know he has a ring and you are about to get engaged, when it hasn't actually happened yet.

In your partners shoes I'd be proper pissed off that you were portraying him like that.

LessMissAbs Sat 05-Oct-13 19:30:59

WhereYouLeftItI dont see how sharing your life...can possibly exclude sharing your finances

You need to stretch your imagination a bit then. To include where both spouses are in very well paid jobs, each with a house - one sometime used as a holiday home. In fact, its far more tax efficient on resale if you maximise your cgt allowance in this way.

So stretch your imagination thus far.. Two generous salaries, one mortgage each - is that really so inconcievable?

What on earth would be the point of a joint bank account? If both party is happy with the status quo and doesn't feel the other is taking advantage/not paying their fair share, what exactly is the purpose of joint bank accounts when there is plenty if money to go around?

You can always pay into a third account if you want to pay bills from that - we dont - opened one, never used it, closed it.

I know perfectly well that my DH would be happy to pay my way through life, and I've fought hard not to fall into that particular pit, but to retain my financial independence.

Alisvolatpropiis Sat 05-Oct-13 20:52:38


50:50 has been comfortable until now. It is unnecessary for him to now contribute more.

When I met my dp, and now, I simply am unable to contribute 50:50. So we do it in relation to our salaries. However as mine increases, I contribute more. We are moving towards 50:50. Granted less slowly than I would like. But still, that is the aim. I don't like not being able to contribute equally at all. But that's how things are for now.

Your friends sound grabby and this seems to be influencing your thoughts.

Oriunda Sat 05-Oct-13 21:24:58

Agree with LesMissAbbs. Sometimes financial circumstances are more complex than 1/2 salaries and one mortgage. My DH is a partner in a (family) business and also for that reason prefers that our finances are kept separate, so that if his business ever got into trouble we don't get involved. My DS is only 1 and has already got his own Isa and pension plan. Separate finances can be a good thing. If something awful happened to DH tomorrow, it's reassuring to know I could access money from my own accounts and not have cash frozen in joint accounts waiting for a death certificate.

jeansthatfit Sat 05-Oct-13 22:24:25

Everyone's circumstances and personalities are different. There is no one 'right' solution.

A warning - don't use friends' opinions as lobbying material. If your DP came home and told you several of his close friends had decided you were a freeloading lazy woman, how would you feel?

Don't just think about now, if you want to have a serious think about shared finances. Think about (and try budgeting for 10 mins) having a family. You taking x months/years maternity leave. Him taking x months/years paternity leave. how would you divvy things up then?

What happens if he announces he wants to give his job up, retrain and take up a less lucrative but more rewarding job? Would you take over more than 50 percent contribution towards the household? temporarily or for good? would you think he had a right to ask it of you?

If you put your mind to it, would you be able to switch jobs/get promoted and earn more? if not, why should your partner subsidise you? If yes, why should your partner subsidise you?

I suggest this only because the 'you earn more, you pay more' equation is very simplistic, and often short term.

Good luck, and use your friends with caution.

" Two generous salaries, one mortgage each - is that really so inconcievable?"
Not in the slightest, LessMissAbs - it was the position DH and I were in when we met. We sold both houses and bought one together, combining finances at that point.

"what exactly is the purpose of joint bank accounts when there is plenty if money to go around?"
Can you conceive that most people don't have plenty of money to go around? Finances are a bit tight for most people, and 'partners' jealously guarding 'their' funds from the family pot can break the partnership. Also, I look to the long term. One of us will predecease the other, a joint account (jointly and severally, either or survivor) ensures that the survivor is not locked out of funds while probate is sorted out. That might not seem important right now, but grieving partners don't need avoidable hassle.

Oriunda Sun 06-Oct-13 07:08:36

Actually, with a joint account you will be locked out of the account until you can produce a death certificate. It doesn't go into probate, but will still be frozen until the certificate is produced. So always worth having an individual account with at least enough money to cover the essentials.

JumpOnIt Sun 06-Oct-13 07:42:32

YABU-ish. Depends on the situation. My DH earns about 20k more than I do too but this wasn't the situation when we first moved in. We have always paid 50/50 for household bills and still do. The sticking point came when we had kids and I started working part time so I could take them to school. My DH works away for 42 weeks of the year and working part time actually meant i had more money left over than if I had stayed full time and paid for childcare. Which DH refused to help towards. And we're still 50/50. Queue lots of resentment and no quick way of fixing it.

Talk about it before you get that far. If it's on your mind, bring it up. It's much healthier all round!

festered Mon 07-Oct-13 03:04:41

No straight answer to this, It's subjective.
Personally I think that as a partnership, you should both have the same amount leftover each week/month-so IMO he should pay more, not necessarily so he ends up paying almost all of it, but he has more income so it should make you BOTH better off financially.
But then it could be you both just come to a natural arrangement that now he has more £, he should pay more for other things, rent isn't the only thing he could do-so again, you're BOTH better off not just him. His circumstances are yours too, his fortune should benefit you both.

That's my 2cents though, It's up to you to decide what you agree with.

LessMissAbs Mon 07-Oct-13 09:05:08

WhereYouLeftIt can you conceive that most people dont have plenty money to go around again, entirely different demographic. Many of the people I know do have plenty of money to go around, but then I would say there is a higher pemroportion of them who both have full time jobs than is usual on mumsnet.

Particularly in the demographic which the OP is discussing - a relatively new relationship with no DCs. The only ones who struggle to get on the housing ladder, have foreign holidays, etc are the couple where the girlfriends gave up work on moving in with their boyfriends.

But then many of my friends come from the same background as me - university, work in one of the professions, pretty quickly if you keep your head down and work hard, you become financially comfortable.

As mentioned above, I also know people who are partners in their business, who make a point of seperating bank accounts and even placing the ownership of the family home in the non business partner's name, in case of bankruptcy.

And if you are going to plan for death, you might as well plan for divorce as well, since staistically its likely to hit you earlier, and seoerate finances will be easier and therefore cheaper to unravel.

Tailtwister Mon 07-Oct-13 09:16:05

Personally, I don't think it necessarily follows for the higher earner to pay more. We always paid exactly the same into the joint account up until we had children. When I went part-time, I reduced my contribution in line with the reduction in my salary. We have always earned fairly similar amounts though.

Trills Mon 07-Oct-13 09:24:02

The only ones who struggle to get on the housing ladder, have foreign holidays, etc are the couple where the girlfriends gave up work on moving in with their boyfriends.

I'm very confused by this sentence.

Do any women give up work on moving in with a boyfriend?

Do you think that "getting on the housing ladder" is equivalent in difficulty to "having foreign holidays"? They are on a very different scale! (this is a separate discussion I suppose, the one about why aren't young people living on lentils ad never going out, until they have a deposit? )

LessMissAbs Mon 07-Oct-13 10:59:05

Trills Do any women give up work on moving in with a boyfriend?

There seem to be quite a few, which surprised me. Granted, when I lived in Scotland, I lived in quite an old fashioned area, but apparently the "You'll be giving up work now you're a bidey-in" attitude is not unheard of and I was quite surprised when I learned of it.

Do I think that getting on the housing ladder is equivalent to having foreign holidays? Why are you asking me this? I gave it as a rough example of people of the few young couples I know who struggle financially because both are not in full time employment, through choice, not looking after dependents. Please pick whatever examples you find more equivalent yourself if these do not suit. However when you compare these couples to those on two salaries, they do seem to struggle financially.

I simply find it more polite to give those example than to make assumptions about how they have to budget to pay utility bills for example, as I know that when we invite them to join us on holiday, they can't afford it. Paying £700 for your holiday is affordable and doable if you're on a decent salary, I know though I'd be struggling if I had to pay £1400 for the same holiday, if I had a partner who did not earn any money from working. And yes, if a colleague at work on the same level as you lives in a one bedroom rented flat while most other colleagues are at the stage of buying family sized houses, I should think having a partner not in employment is similarly comparable, as its the same reason behind it. For example, if someone is on a salary of £50,000 and living with a partner who does not earn, that's quite tax inefficient and gives them less money as a couple than two people on £25,000. And its a bit telling if someone on a salary around that mark cannot afford foreign holidays or to buy a small property.

The point is that the OP does work full time and has no dependents, there is absolutely no reason why she should not pay her full share of the rent. She is roughly her DP's equal, despite the difference in salaries. And one year into a relationship is way too short to start talking about an official arrangement for one paying more than the other. I was really shocked to read those "ltb because he's mean" type comments. I should imagine that the her partner's reaction on getting a salary rise was not to immediately adjust his rent contribution! Why some posters think that make him a bad person says more about them than him I guess.

Trills Mon 07-Oct-13 11:36:57

Wow, I'd be surprised too if I heard anyone say that!

I commented on the holiday vs housing ladder thing because I think there is a pretty large in-between area where you have a "decent salary" and can afford to go on holiday, but couldn't get on the housing ladder because a 2-bed house in your area costs 8x or 10x your "decent salary".

I agree that it's unlikely that it has even occurred to him that he might put in more money towards the rent, as has been said the OP is not losing out at all compared to how things were a month ago. I just struggle to think of when would be the appropriate time to bring it up, if not "at the point when one person starts to earn more". In another year or two it would feel odd to say "now we are serious we are going to have a talk about finances" if the situation is exactly as it is now.

comingalongnicely Mon 07-Oct-13 11:38:27

Interesting, does he use more of the house than you? If not, why should he pay for more of it?

If you were financially unable to pay 50% then fair enough, but as you can do so & have been why would you expect him to pay more?

1 rent divided by 2 people = 50%. Anything else would be unfair so YABU

marriedinwhiteisbackz Mon 07-Oct-13 12:20:44

Looking back when DH and I got married moons ago (didn't live together) I was earning more and at that time he was insistent on paying his half of the living costs. Had he done anything else he would have been "freeloading" and I probably wouldn't have respected someone with that nature enough to marry him. We have never felt the need for a joint bank account and have never discussed you pay this and I'll pay that. In the early days we kept a note of the bills and DH paid me half. When I stopped working DH picked up all the bills. When I went back part-time I just picked up the DC's activities, clothes and household purchases. As I worked more I pay a bit more but we don't actually count who pays for what.

kennypowers Mon 07-Oct-13 12:30:38

I earn approx. double what my wife earns and am currently waiting to hear about a new job that will give me an extra 10k+ per year.
I'm also 'in charge' of the household finances.
The way I work it is proportional i.e. we both have the same amount left over once all of the bills are dealt with (at the moment I pay two thirds of the bills and she pays a third).
If/when my new job comes through, we'll both have more spending money available. Seems fair to me.
One small exception - I don't micro-manage the bills. For example, if my wife buys clothes via a catalogue for herself, I expect her to deal with those bills. On the other hand, we use the Next card regularly, mostly for DS and I include that in the household bills.
I think living together qualifies as a serious relationship...but as others have said, it also depends on both your incomes and financial situation (e.g. personal debts)...

Lweji Mon 07-Oct-13 15:31:46

I think that sounds reasonable, Kenny.

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