One of my loyal and lovely Facebook fans (give us a thumbs up if you haven’t already!) asked me yesterday if I had any posts on splitting bills. I didn’t, but I’m about to now.
This is actually something I’ve been meaning to talk about it anyway, so why not now? This one’s for you Taiisha!
The Man and I moved in together very early on in our relationship for two reasons. 1. We couldn’t get enough of each other, we won’t lie. 2. The idea of saving money on rent and bills and such was too tempting to resist! #noshame
When we sat down to discuss the best way to do this we quickly realized just splitting everything right down the middle, as many couples do, wouldn’t work for us. Mainly because we don’t have the same salaries. I make more than he does right now (I love him for being 100 percent okay and comfortable with that, by the way) and when we did that math things really didn’t feel fair.
We came up with another idea. It’s probably not new or anything, but we gave it our own nickname anyway. It’s called “the same, but different” approach to bill splitting. We each spend 40 percent of our individual monthly incomes on household bills and joint expenses. Because I make a little more, I’m putting in a little more, but proportionately speaking we’re both taking the same “hit” each month.
We include rent, utilities, car notes, insurance (home and auto), groceries, and pet costs in this total, and lucky for us, it equals out to be the combined sum of 40 percent of what we each make a month. Gas and any other personal spending is reserved for the 60 percent of our pay checks we each have left when all the bill paying is done. We don’t stress each other about the rest because together we make sure the money that’s needed to run our household is put aside each month.
We call that total our “magic number”. Each time I get paid I put in what I need to to ensure that my piece of the magic number is ready to roll when we need it; he does the same. I haven’t a clue what Suze Ormen or Oprah would have to say about our methods, but I do know they work for us – very well, I might add.
How do you and your spouse split and pay bills? Share your tricks of the trade. I’m sure we can all learn a thing or two from sharing when it comes to financial know-how.