How do you split your money?

splitting money

There seem to be three major schools of thought when it comes to household setups. The first, and most traditional, is that one person stays at home and takes care of domestic duties whilst the other works. The second – which I feel is the most common these days – is a 50/50 split, where regardless of salary, everything is split down the middle. The last is one that is popular among modern couples or families. It has been nicknamed the “proportional to income” method, where bills and expenses are split according to income. 

There are various reasons as to why money may be split. Health issues, disabilities, children, lifestyle, career or simply by choice. The most important thing is that it remains an open discussion between you both as a couple or a family unit and you come to a decision that benefits you both.

When there is one primary breadwinner, and the other partner either works part-time or not at all, it can come with some advantages for that unit. It allows for the other partner to take care of non-monetary pursuits such as child-rearing, home-building or passion projects. This isn’t just seen in traditional hetero relationships, but it is also seen in childless relationships as well as LGBT couples.

Where both partners split the bills evenly, it is often considered the most ‘fair’ approach for cohabiting couples. Whether one person earns more than the other, in this agreement it isn’t considered and both parties contribute an equal amount to the household.

Then there is proportional income splitting. If you both have similar expenses, but very different salaries the 50/50 split can become a quick point of contention as one of you may have significantly more disposable income and the other may struggle to keep up. To mitigate this, some couples choose to split the bills according to a rough percentage according to income. 

My partner and I personally use a weird combination of all three. When work is slow, as she exclusively freelances, I’ll cover almost everything. When money is tight my end, she’ll cover more, and when we’re both earning a similar amount, we’ll split it a hard 50/50.

What do you do?

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