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Can I ask about your financial arrangements?

(277 Posts)
Writerwannabe83 Mon 07-Oct-13 14:18:38

I hope this isn't of a too personal nature but I'm just curious as to those who live with their partner/husband manage their finances?

When I moved in with my partner a few years ago we agreed I would give him £500 a month to cover half of all the expenses a month and that was fine. We are now married and the arrangement hasn't really changed but now it just sits 'weird' with me. I have spoke to him a few times about it and that surely most married couples have a complete joint account and all finances are shared. He is happy with the idea of having a joint account but says we should sit down, work out the running cost of the house each month and only put that amount of money in the account, 50/50. He said that way, the rest of our salary is ours to spend how we like without feeling like we have to justify our expenditures to each other etc. I am now recently pregnant and so again have discussed having one joint account with all our money in it but he doesn't seem to see why it should be necessary. His parents are not too impressed with his attitude.

To be honest, I'm happy with the joint account for all 'house stuff' and we have the rest of our money to ourselves, but I'm just curious as to what others do?

When I say that most married couples have complete joint sharing of the finances my husband tells me they don't. None of us have anything solid to base this on though, we just both want to be right smile

jasminerose Thu 10-Oct-13 13:28:59

I didnt have a cot. I had a sling until she was 6 mths then a £30 stroller from mothercare. The sling my friend gave me, baby bundles of clothes are a fiver on facebook. I did end up buying a travel cot off there for 20 quid, but other than nappies I didnt yse anything else.

ShoeWhore Thu 10-Oct-13 09:22:20

I'm not sure about that estimate of the cost jasmine - do you mean after you've bought the big items like the pram, car seat, cot etc?

A biggish pack of nappies is about £5-6 so that's £250+ before you've thought about clothes, food (it's cheap to feed them yes but not free!), toys, highchair. We had noone to pass things on to us so had to buy everything ourselves and it can easily rack up.

MarjorieAntrobus Thu 10-Oct-13 08:41:19

Oh, OK, jasmine, I found it emotional though. I was very happy to be back at work once I had got over the initial hurdle, but I did find it difficult at first.

jasminerose Thu 10-Oct-13 08:27:24

I have 2 in childcare and it isnt that emotional leaving then in childcare. Your only gone for the day not forever. Its never bothered me, and I havent ever cried or got upset about it.

jasminerose Thu 10-Oct-13 08:25:29

If you bf baby will cost a few hundred first year. Other than nappies and a couple of baby bundles I didnt buy much. Its cheap having a baby.

MarjorieAntrobus Thu 10-Oct-13 08:23:21

Eek, all the best to you with that conversation then. The one about childcare costs, I mean. Be aware that it'll all feel quite emotional when it comes to leaving your pfb. I am not being patronising at all. The business of finding the right nursery (or CM) to leave your baby with is fraught enough without having to grapple with a partner who has only just realised how much money is involved.

Writerwannabe83 Thu 10-Oct-13 08:05:01

I reckon it will come as a far bigger shock to his system than mine marjorie - I look forward to the realisation dawning.... smile

Writerwannabe83 Thu 10-Oct-13 08:03:48

Yes Vicacia - it was part of the clause, I'm only happy to compromise if he meets me half way smile

After all this stress and worry I honestly don't understand how some people afford even one child, let alone more grin

MarjorieAntrobus Thu 10-Oct-13 07:18:49

after looking at our income we will have about £900 a month spare to spend on what we want.

Quite a bit of that £900 spare each month will go on childcare. The maternity leave period is only the start of the issue. It seems like you have a plan in place for your maternity leave, and that is good, but you really need to be talking about the reality of living with less money to "spend on what we want" once your maternity leave ends.

Vivacia Thu 10-Oct-13 06:29:56

Sounds as though you've sorted this out well. My only concern would be when your pay falls and his contribution increases. Will you still end up with the same amount of personal spending money each?

Writerwannabe83 Wed 09-Oct-13 22:34:33

Things may have improved by taking a direction in the same way you have pizza

New plan: We each put in £800 (as a rough guide) into a joint account for the mortgage, all utilities, other house costs, food costs and baby purchases. The rest of our salary is our own. Hubby is aware that as my pay is reduced due to maternity leave then my contribution to his pot will dramatically reduce and his salary will bear the brunt. However, alongside this, we pay off our £3'000 Wedding Bill with the money we have sitting to one side that was originally planned as a big mortgage payment. We currently pay off £300 a month of that bill so the idea is that we still put £300 aside each month (£150 each) and keep it in a separate account and this will be our 'Maternity Cover Fund'. That way, by the time the baby is 4 months old we will have at least £3'000 saved. Up until the baby would be 6 months old my pay won't be dramatically affected so at least having that £3'000 (and more if we can contribute more on some months) it will make things much, much easier for the planned time off when the baby is 6-9 months old. Who knows, we may even be able to afford for me to stay off for a whole year if we really cut back.

Then, once I'm back at work and on full pay we will re-assess our outgoings and name amendments to our joint income contributions as needed.

It's the rough outline anyway and something we would both be happy with which I think is important when it comes to financial issues.

pizzaqueen Wed 09-Oct-13 19:34:08

Yes exactly vivacia we're both saving for mat leave. We don't even know if i will take the full time off I might take 6 months at the beginning and dp take 3 or 6 months on the end. Depends how bf goes and how much I want to go back to work. Dp wants to stay homewith kids as much as I do. Shame its a necesnecessity for us both to work. Our system works well for us but it won't be for everyone.

Vivacia Wed 09-Oct-13 19:05:02

Ah, so it's not just you saving for maternity leave, you both are? And it's both of your savings which will cover the shortfall?

pizzaqueen Wed 09-Oct-13 17:27:21

We use savings to cover my half during mat leave. DPs wage alone wouldn't cover all of our outgoings so we have been saving to make sure we can cover the shortfall whilst I'm off work. If we haven't saved enough DP will take more shifts and pay in more. We are both contributing to the 'baby fund' but I've added a little more than him as my parents often give me gifts of money and dp has paid for some extras recently like holiday spending money and his car needed work which ate up his extra cash.

Whilst we both earn roughly the same we both contribute the same to the household pot. Obviously we'd need to review this if one of our incomes changed dramatically.

Vivacia Wed 09-Oct-13 16:36:34

pizzaqueen how does fifty:fifty work when your income decreases due to maternity leave? Why have you been busy saving in order to pay your way later?

CloverkissSparklecheeks Wed 09-Oct-13 15:15:24

I didn't contribute anything during my career break but I don't think it would have been fair for me to be given an 'allowance' as I was not working due to looking after the DCs so we shared all of DHs wages and just spent what we needed.

CloverkissSparklecheeks Wed 09-Oct-13 15:08:04

Complete joint account for us, we have an amount left over for just going out which we share as and when we need it then bigger purchases come out of our joint savings we put away each month. The reason we did it this way is because I was on maternity leave then a career break so wasn't earning. I now work as well but it seems so much easier to keep it that way.

DH has his own business so has a business account and sometimes he uses that for buying extra bits or additional weekend trips etc. I have no idea what is in it but he would be happy to tell me and if I needed some that would be fine too.

pizzaqueen Wed 09-Oct-13 13:33:29

writer before mat leave I had saved a wee pot of money to live off. I had also put down a big deposit on our house which dp wasn't able to do at the time so during my mat leave he contributed more to the joint account as he saw it as 'paying back his share.' Although I couldn't care less whether he paid it back or not

we're ttc no2 now and have been saving like mad to afford to cover my half of the bills while I'm off work. We've both contributed to the savings pot (not equally, me more than him). DP will also take extra shifts to top that up if need be.

Although we will save a fortune on childcare for ds1 and my commute whilst I'm on mat leave anyway...

You need to work our what will be best for your family and your circumstances. Splitting household costs down the middle (including childcare) and keeping the rest for ourselves is what works for us.

sebsmummy1 Wed 09-Oct-13 12:10:17

Sorry TFI, bad turn of phrase xx

HanShotFirst Wed 09-Oct-13 12:06:34

All money goes into a joint account, which all expenses come out from. Any big purchases are are discussed, but otherwise we just spend as we wish. (I am a SAHM if that makes any difference)

Writerwannabe83 Wed 09-Oct-13 12:01:37

He has actually been pretty good actually as he is Captain of our local football and cricket team and a few days ago he handed in his 'badge' for both teams and told them that as off next season he won't be playing for them anymore. He said that he'd always known that when he became a dad that would be his priority and he wanted to spend his weekends with me and the baby. He wants to take us out to farms and zoos apparently smile I would say that quite a bit of his social expenditure was on after-match and after cricket drinks (Saturday and Sunday) so at least I know those costs will no longer be there... smile

There's a chance I might not be able to breast feed for medical reasons but I'm trying to remain positive and am not allowing the alternative to factor in my plans at the moment, lol smile

JRmumma Wed 09-Oct-13 11:55:44

Don't get fooled into thinking the baby wont cost much in the first 6 months! You might not be able to breast feed (i couldn't) so needed bottles, breast pump, formula etc. You might also need things you haven't bought in advance which were unforeseen too and these do mount up!

I think your DH is overestimating how much he will be able to go out, as well as how much money he will have to spend on said nights out!

TheFabulousIdiot Wed 09-Oct-13 11:53:52

They won't be raising your child, just looking after him/her - and if you choose carefully they will be doing a really good job of teaching him/her all sorts of lovely stuff.
I can't fault my nursery and the people there who my son has formed strong attachments with. Never regretted him being there so really do your research and make a decision you are happy with.

Definitely get the finances sorted though.

sebsmummy1 Wed 09-Oct-13 11:47:18

Good idea. If you absolutely have to return to work, then it's a no brainer. But it definitely becomes much more difficult to go back when you are working to pay someone else to raise your child with little left over at the end of the month.

Writerwannabe83 Wed 09-Oct-13 11:33:02

Ideally I would love to take a year off for Maternity but I just don't think it is feasible. We couldn't afford to run our house/lives on just my husband's wage either. At the minute we have it set in our minds that I will return to work after 9 months but depending on how are finances are I might see if that can be extended nearer the time. I have considered returning to work but cutting down to 3 days a week, but again, I don't canoe if we could manage that. I think the decisions will be easier to make once i have been in touch with Payroll and can get the true picture of what my Maternity Pay will be as opposed to making estimations.

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