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To think living on one salary is difficult and understand why women end up in unsuitable relationships

(64 Posts)
Itsallexpensive Mon 02-Nov-15 15:46:29

My new job pays very well (£45,000) and that's all good.

I was musing. If I was with a man who earned even the average salary for the UK which according to google is £26,000 - as a household our income would be over £70,000 which would obviously mean riches beyond my wildest dreams.

As it is, as a single parent, I am restricted - if I mentally 'divide' my salary in two it's more like £23000 which is below the national average.

I understand then the desire to have a relationship - any - due to the costs associated with living.

Is there a way round this?

DieRosen Mon 02-Nov-15 15:50:10

Why would you mentally divide your salary in two?

NickyEds Mon 02-Nov-15 15:51:52

I think you've found the way round this haven't you? You earn enough to cover the costs of living on your own.

I'm not really convinced many women start what they know are unsuitable relationships just for a dual income. Am I naive???

Itsallexpensive Mon 02-Nov-15 15:53:06

Largely because I was imagining what our household would look like if it was a two income one!

To explain a bit more clearly (sorry - shattered today for some reason!) - I consider myself fortunate and I consider myself to be well paid.

However, most household expenses tend to be the same however many people live in a property - mortgage, repairs, decorating and so on. Of course, there's a small reduction for council tax but that is only 25% which isn't really fair.

So if I was to assume 2 adults lived in my property that would give us an income each of 23000, which isn't much.

EnthusiasmDisturbed Mon 02-Nov-15 15:53:55


I get what you mean and I know women who have been sp and ended up in rather crap relationships because their is more security in some ways their life is easier

I can understand why

Itsallexpensive Mon 02-Nov-15 15:54:24

I don't think this is done consciously either Nicky, but I do think many women feel pressured to start a family and money is obviously a big part of this.

Then they feel pressured to stay in s bad relationship.

19lottie82 Mon 02-Nov-15 15:54:37

I'm not sure I totally understand your question.
However I don't think it is as simplistic as you are making out. If you moved in a partner who was unemployed...... Why would you "divide your salary in two"?

Likewise if you cohabited with someone earning 26k, of course you'd be a bit better off but your bills would increase (food/utilities/council tax), as would lifestyle expenses for 2 people instead of 1......

Itsallexpensive Mon 02-Nov-15 15:54:50

*stay in a bad relationship, sorry.

Itsallexpensive Mon 02-Nov-15 15:56:07

Utilities probably wouldn't increase dramatically - after all, it costs the same to heat a house with one person in it!

Council tax is another murky area: the discount single adults get is 25% so we are still paying for a quarter of a non existent person!

Groceries would go up of course.

EnthusiasmDisturbed Mon 02-Nov-15 15:58:43

I think also the shared responsibility of paying for everything having to arrange everything it feels heavy at times

Of course that is in an ideal relationship where all will be shared

Murdock Mon 02-Nov-15 15:59:21

My own salary is OK (35k-ish) but would seem like a king's ransom if I was unattached and had no dependents! ;)

NickyEds Mon 02-Nov-15 16:00:45

We live on a single salary (dp's- I'm a SAHM) similar to yours and I suppose it's different as it's a choice . I agree that it really doesn't cost twice as much for the two to live than one I'm just not convinced people use that as a reason to enter unsuitable relationships!

Itsallexpensive Mon 02-Nov-15 16:02:25

But even without dependants people do have to live somewhere, they have the responsibility of keeping that property maintained and reasonably well decorated, they have to pay electricity and water and council tax, Internet and TV licences.

All the above are not added expenses that come with having another person in your household!

Booyaka Mon 02-Nov-15 16:03:03

Why wouldn't this apply equally to men?

QforCucumber Mon 02-Nov-15 16:04:11

Living on one salary is difficult, living on 2 salarys which total your lone one is also difficult (as DP and I do now)

Will I go looking for someone who earns more to make it easier? Will DP? No. it's not all about the salary.

I'm not sure how you can say most household outgoings are the same though, ours are under 1k a month for a 3 bed mortgage and all bills and car loans etc.

Itsallexpensive Mon 02-Nov-15 16:04:28

I think it's a reason.

I think for many people, living alone is an emotional barrier - they are scared of it - but also a financial barrier - how will I afford it?

I am not entitled to TC or similar for example but if we were a two parent household earning just over £20,000 each we almost certainly would be. If I was earning £20,000, I just wouldn't be able to be a single parent - I couldn't afford it.

Itsallexpensive Mon 02-Nov-15 16:05:29

I mean by saying household outgoings are the same that many are not dependent on the number of adults in a property.

If a mortgage on a 3 bed semi is £600, it is £600 whether that's split twice, three times, or four.

NotMeNotYouNotAnyone Mon 02-Nov-15 16:10:55

I don't think its a reason people get into unsuitable relationships but I think it often is a factor in why people stay in them. Stepping down from dual income back to one has to be harder than just having one all along, and I say that as someone who's always just struggled by on one income.

NickyEds Mon 02-Nov-15 16:13:06

Ah.. but if you were in a two parent household earning £20K each you'd also be working twice the hours as a couple. I know what you mean though- I know of a few people who have split up but can't afford to live separately so have continued to live together. Are you perhaps talking about a partner "forgiving" an affair or something similar purely because they want to remain in a two income household?

I'm not sure you would get Tc s in your example- with a £40K household income???

lorelei9 Mon 02-Nov-15 16:16:26

OP, i think people of both genders end up in relationships because they will be better off financially.

But your comments are confusing me. What an odd way to think of council tax, paying for a quarter of a non existent person. Yes we get a rubbish discount but it should be per head anyway if you ask me.

Why are you mentally halving your salary?

If you're really thinking that you'd like to meet someone but they need similar earnings in order for you to stay as well off as you are, agree.

Murdock Mon 02-Nov-15 16:17:55

*But even without dependants people do have to live somewhere, they have the responsibility of keeping that property maintained and reasonably well decorated, they have to pay electricity and water and council tax, Internet and TV licences.

All the above are not added expenses that come with having another person in your household!*

But if you are on your own, you could live in a smaller, less expensive property (which could attract less Council Tax). You use less electricity, gas etc. With fewer people in the house there is less wear and tear on the property.

Plus, you would spend much less on groceries, clothing, etc.

NewLife4Me Mon 02-Nov-15 16:19:24

I don't understand neither tbh.
I have yet to meet a person who is staying in an unhappy relationship because they have a dual income.
We are only a single income family below the average and do quite nicely.
If we had a dual income we would be rich too, but we'd still be together.

AutumnLeavesArePretty Mon 02-Nov-15 16:21:46

I do think a lot of people stay in relationships for the financial side of things but I would say more do it where the other person is the only or main earner.

If both earn similar amounts then neither has to worry. Both can share the expenses so gain from that and if things go wrong both know they can survive financially.

It's a factor, sadly, for many when choosing a partner. Salary or earning potential is so something many take into account.

DeoGratias Mon 02-Nov-15 16:22:00

Obviously the more people sharing the costs of a home the cheaper it is per person and some people (usually women, not men ) marry for money. I don't even get the 25% single person council tax discount as I am kind enough to house my student age/ adult son as well as the teenagers.

AnyoneButAndre Mon 02-Nov-15 16:24:46

Ignoring tax credits, one person on 46 grand has a take home salary of 34 thousand. Two people on 23 grand have a take home income of 37,400. That's nearly 300 quid to pay for the extra person's food, clothes and councils tax.

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