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Discussing money with DH

(9 Posts)
GerbilsAteMyCat Wed 07-Jan-15 20:07:51

Hi,
I feel like I'm going around in circles a bit here.
I earn a decent salary, my DH changed career a couple of years ago and so earns a lot less. As he worked in another country and was paid in another currency for much of his previous career we fell into a situation where all the regular bills are in my name and come out of my bank account. Dh does pay towards childcare through childcare vouchers and will often go to Tescos for shopping. He also pays for the car insurance and petrol (not much these days as car is only driven at the weekend).
Last summer after he got a payrise I spoke to him about family money situation. I showed him a spreadsheet of all the outgoings and incoming. I had added everything together including money for the car etc and savings and divided it based on out relative income. Basically I expected to pay 70% of everything but also expected him to pay 30%.
He was shocked it cost so much to run the house. I offered to set up direct debits etc for him, but he said he would handle it himself.
6 months later he has not.
I'm not great with money, I can't save anything much because I'm paying for nearly everything in a family of 4 excluding the car and the occasional bag of groceries.
Is there a simple way of joining our finances so we can actually make use of the money he's earning and save it?

addictedtosugar Wed 07-Jan-15 20:26:33

Are you both earning in the same currency now?

Your way of splitting things is very common from what I've seen on MN threads.

Personally, we put everything in one account, and both take money out of the account for everything. However we are in the very fortunate position of having money left at the end of the month, rather than month left at the end of the money!

Does he have online banking? Can you sit down and get a standing order from his account to yours for the majority of the money - less than the 30% to account for the petrol and groceries?

CogitoErgoSometimes Wed 07-Jan-15 22:40:33

One way of organising things is to have a joint current account (and credit card) for all the regular outgoings, a joint savings account for bigger ticket one-offs like family holidays or home improvements, and then have a personal account each into which a similar amount of 'spends' are retained out of salary.

That way all the shared outgoings are covered and you build up savings proportionally. As you both retain control of a personal account for incidentals, the relatively small amounts make it easy to manage and no one is asking anyone else for money.

GerbilsAteMyCat Thu 08-Jan-15 19:16:06

Right, so have a joint account tht we both pay into a proportion of our income and all bills come from this.
So I could calculate the total, divide by the ratios and we could both pay in, as well as the savings.
Does that sound about right? We are both earning the same currency now.

OliviaBenson Thu 08-Jan-15 19:41:45

We have a joint account that both salaries go into. Bills are paid by direct debit, some gets transferred into savings and then we both get personal spends which transfer to our personal account. Much easier than the way you are suggesting.

Nolim Fri 09-Jan-15 08:20:51

Either get a joint account or grab him and don't let go until he sets up the direct deposit for his share of the bills.

gamerchick Fri 09-Jan-15 08:27:08

If he's avoided it for 6 months how are you going to get him to do it now?

magpieginglebells Fri 09-Jan-15 08:30:44

Our salaries go into our own accounts and then we transfer about 75% into joint account for bills and savings. The rest is for small incidentals through the month.

Petrol, shopping and anything expensive goes on a credit card that gets paid off monthly.

CogitoErgoSometimes Fri 09-Jan-15 12:42:16

"I could calculate the total, divide by the ratios and we could both pay in"

To a point. However, if you go strictly proportional, the higher earner will always end up with much higher personal spends than the lower earner. It's better to work out how much you intend to each retain from your salaries, make it a similar amount, and then put the rest in joint accounts or joint savings.

e.g .... Let's say total outgoings £1500/month.
- Person 1 brings home £1000/month
- Person 2 brings home £2000/month
- Total regular outgoings 50% of regular income

If you go by strict ratios (50%) Person 1 would contribute £500 and retain £500, Person 2 would contribute £1000 and retain £1000. Doesn't look fair.

Arguably fairer if Person 1 contributes £500 and retains £500 whilst Person 2 contributes £1000 to bills, puts £500 into savings and retains £500.

I don't personally agree with putting salaries into joint accounts for the simple reason that, if a relationship goes wrong, banks tend to freeze joint accounts. (Speaking from a bad experience) If your sole source of income is in a frozen account you've got problems, if some bills don't get paid on time from a frozen account, it's less of a train smash.

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