Finances are always a sticky issue when it comes to splitting bills especially as a couple. Things get more complicated and a bit blurred especially as the relationship progresses (e.g. having children or un-employment).
Some couples may choose to pool all their money into a joint bank account – but some couples prefer to keep their money separate and chip in for shared expenses e.g. mortgage or rent – even after marriage.
There are several methods of splitting bills but which method suits you as a couple?
50/50 split (The Capitalist)
Regardless of income earned by each person, both people pay the same amount of money and keep their left over money separately to use as they please. It seems to be the simplest way of splitting bills fairly and to maintaining your own bank account. This can also ensure that the couple isn’t living a lifestyle that the lower income earner can’t afford.
Merge of Income (The Communist)
Consolidated accounts give clarity of funds available for you as a couple, which means you’ll better understand your financial situation. It will mean paying for all expenses will come from one pool of money. Don’t forget that once you merge incomes, the pool of money belongs to your partner as well; so if you enjoy your financial freedom and want to be able to spend your money on whatever you like, this may not be the best choice for you.
Income based on percentage split (The Socialist)
Expenses split based on income is becoming popular among couples. Incomes can vary significantly in some relationships and some people feel it’s fairer to split expenses based on the ratio of income. For instance if one person brings in 70% of the household income then they contribute 70% to the expenses. Bills like rent, utilities, and groceries can all be easily split this way.
The commitment of couples shouldn’t be based on if you have a joint bank account or not. I think every couple needs to look at their own situation, communicate with each other and ensure you do what is right for you as a couple and not what ‘others’ are doing!