(Closed) Paying My Husband Rent?

posted 9 years ago in Money
Post # 32
501 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

@PamelaBrit:  The only thing I can think is that we set up a joint account that we each pay a percentage into and that this account be used for all living expenses (bills, groceries, etc).  Then, we keep our private accounts for personal payments (credit cards, cell phones, fun)…Any other ideas?  Do you or your husband pay the other “rent”?


We have been doing this for about 4 years now and it works just fine. We will probably adjust our banking situation in the future, but for now it just works for us and we aren’t rushing to join any accounts exept for our one joint checking. Just talk to him and see what works for y’all.

EDIT: Just to be clear, we each have accounts individually, but we have 1 joint checking at a mutually shared bank. When we need to pay bills, on of us will transfer money to it.

Post # 33
159 posts
Blushing bee

And I should add as far as for saving – we use stocks, IRA’s, two retirement funds and short money market accts to store money. We are both savers so it works well that way – we do not have any mortgages, car payments, farm implement loans – we pay cash out right for large things and if we cant we dont buy it.  We both only have one credit card each that gives the best return on expenditures and has low rates – these are paid off each month. The business has its only card and that is used only for business items to keep records pure. We think of it in these terms – the business is like a child; it is its own separate entity that needs to be cared for.We treat it as such, so that its never neglected, nor used as a backup plan for the household (“robbing peter to pay paul” type of thinking – NO!)

Also, it is never too soon to talk to an acct about what you can do to save money on your taxes!!!

Post # 34
333 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

View original reply
@indiblue:  I totally agree. My fiance and I are the same way. 

Post # 35
2597 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

crayfish is right. 

If I were in your situation, I would first ask to have myself added to the title, which you can do in CA and it’s fairly straightforward. Then you’ll be on more equal footing to deal with sharing the mortgage payments. 

Most couples, myself included, have a joint account as PP have said, and we use a percentage of income to figure out with the contribution is, which goes towards utilities, food, gas, etc. 


Post # 36
878 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

Basically my Fiance and I have an agreement of how much I will give him each fortnight that covers rent and all other bills.  This amount is a figure we came to taking into account that he earnt more then me.  So I guess its almost as if I am paying him rent.  But I see it as me putting my share into an account, he then puts in his share and pays the bills.  And this has continued pretty much the same even though I am now earning almost doube what I used to.  I have been putting the extra into savings.

BUT he has recently lost his job. So I guess very soon that position will be reversed, I will be the one paying all the bills with him pitching in what he can.  To be honest thats a scarey prospect for me, I liked paying my share and knowing he would take care of it.

But in realtiy we share all our resources.  If one of us runs out and the other has funds then we share without the thought of paying it back.  In the end it all goes towards running our household and keeping our family, and we both try to make sure we each have a little in the kitty after everything is said and done.

Post # 37
2819 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: February 2013

FH & I are going to go completely joint. We MAY each have a small savings account for “just in case” something happens and arbitration takes forever.

But yeah. I’d get your name on the house somehow for ownership, especially if you’re going to be paying for part of it.

Post # 38
2465 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

My fiance and I have always been very transparent with each other about our finances. We have separate accounts and will continue to do so even after we’re married. The only change will be adding each other to our respective accounts (in case something happens to either of us).

I pay him a portion of our rent (online banking makes this a breeze) and we divy up household bills based on our respective incomes. We each pay our own bills (taxes, credit card debt, auto loan, etc). While we make budget decisions jointly, we implement them independently. It works for us and we enjoy the security of having someone else there to turn to in case of emergency, while maintaining a bit of autonomy. Granted, we both have pertty solid backgrounds in finance and management thanks to our respective jobs.

The biggest thing we focus on when discussing finances is being completely honest about everything (income, debt, spending habits, etc). I’m as familiar with his financial situation as I am with mine and vice-versa. 

Post # 39
494 posts
Helper bee

i think the joint account is the best idea. That’s what we plan to do. We’re putting a set amount from each of our checks that much and that’s where all of our bills and other living expenses will be paid from

Post # 40
104 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: December 2012

Unless you have some compelling reason not to, you need to discuss having your name added to the deed/title.  If the unexpected happens and your husband (or FH) dies or is gravely injured or ill, you need to have legal rights to the home.  You should also be on the insurance policy.  Not sure about where you live, but where I live, as a spouse, you can also be added to the tax digest information.


I purchased the house FH and I live in before we were together.  We plan to continue living here indefinitely.  I have significantly more money in the bank due to wise investments and an inheritance BUT he earns a far higher salary than I do, so FH and I have had to really sit down and talk these things through on more than one ocasion.  What we do is this:

When I purchased my home, I set up a “house, utilities, and services” account that automatically withdraws money from my checking and automatically pays out for the mortgage, insurance, taxes, utilities, and services (cleaning service, cable/phone/internet, landscaper, newspaper subscription).  When FH moved in, we figured out what half of the mortgage and taxes came to and he set up an automatic transfer from his own checking into mine.  I didn’t really need him to contribute (but it sure is nice :-)), so I set it up so his contribution goes into a special savings account that we both have access to that is our “rainy day” fund–we only use this money for emergencies and, honestly, it is so nice to know it is there.  I pay for the utilities and services and he buys the groceries and does the handy stuff that I am total cr** at.

When we get married, we are planning to keep most of our accounts separate (some of mine have to be kept separate for legal reasons) and keep up this model, but we are adding a joint checking account that we will each contribute X percentage to, monthly.  We have discussed adding a joint credit card, but I’m not keen on the debt.  We will, of course, revist this issue as problems or changes come up, but, so far, it is working well for us.


I also am a small business owner and I would NEVER have only a business account.  That is asking for some serious IRS trouble.  Please, please!, suggest, that your husband (or FH) consider discussing separating his personal finances from his business ones with a trusted accountant or financial planner.  It is definitely worth his time and trouble.


Post # 41
7976 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: July 2013 - UK

I second the others… get your name on that deed!

The way Fiance and I sort our finances is that we calculated how much the house and joint bills cost (mortgage, plus bills, plus a few hundred a month extra for emergencies like a burst pipe etc). We then worked out how much we both made after tax, and paid the same propartion of our salaries into a joint account monthly, by direct debit. All the bills then come out of that account. Anything extra, in our personal accounts, is ours to spend. Saves arguments!

Example: Expenses are £750 a month.

Person 1 makes £15,000 a year after tax. They pay in £250 a month into the joint account.

Person 2 makes £30,000 a year after tax. They pay in £500 a month into the joint account.

Note: Figures above are plucked straight from the realm of fantasy. I wish our incomings and outgoings looked like that… they don’t!

Post # 42
466 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

Personally, I think if you are married everything should be joint, but thats just me and I know it doesnt work for everyone. Whatever works for you as a couple is best… but I really dont think  ‘we set up a joint account that we each pay a percentage into and that this account be used for all living expenses (bills, groceries, etc)’ is a good idea. What happens when one of you earns a lot more than the other? Do they get oodles of free spending money and the other has to budget? How is that fair?

I personally think a better way is that both incomes go into one joint account (which you pay ALL bills from) and whatever is left over gets split evenly and goes into personal accounts. That way you are both equal.

Post # 43
826 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

We are combining all finances (other than already established 401k, IRA’s, 403Bs) once married. Our financial goals are to support children (hopefully) and be able to retire comfortably and I firmly believe that we should be making financial decisions together to achieve those goals. I’m sure my thinking comes from growing up with parents who had all finances combined and me thinking that’s what all married couples did- which is obviously not the case as evidenced by this thread. I understand the reasoning behind keeping separate accounts, but it’s definitely not for us! 

Post # 44
10 posts

hmmm its so interesting to see how much variety there is in the way that people handle this!

we had separate everything and paid bills and rent and all of that 50/50 until after we were engaged. i was really hesitant to combine finances at first, but really it just made my life so much easier. i think of any money that i make as being for both of us anyway, and he seems to feel the same. as a doctor ill end up throwing more into the pot than him for the time being, but it just goes into the savings for our future or to pay off my massive education debt or whatever anyway. all of our cash bills are auto debited from that account. the rest of our bills and other expenses go on our joint rewards credit card. then we just look over it together once a month to make sure nothing crazy is going on, and pay it off. with the other credit cards and bank accounts that we had before, we just put each other on all of the accounts in case we ever wanted to use them for any reason – like now we have a separate account with our wedding fund vs our other money. 

i dont really see the point of having separate spending money…but im curious to see if that will become an issue some day ? hehe

Post # 45
395 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 1969


We do it the same way as Rachel631: each pay a percentage of total household bills based on income, and keep the rest of our cash separate.

So when DH was earning 70% more than me, he paid 70% of the household budget. Thus I kept most of my income to save/spend as I pleased. Household budget is calculated after we both put 15% of our pre-tax income into retirement savings, and the budget includes long- and medium-term goals (like vacations and house savings).

This system works best for us, and I feel it has made our marriage much stronger and helped avoid all of the financial problems other couples have. We have NEVER, not once, had a disagreement about money. Here is why I like this system:

1. We never stress over how the other spends their money. Sure, I still discuss big purchases with DH, and he with me, but in the end it is totally my call if I want to buy an expensive new dress or if he wants a new iPad. Him buying an iPad doesn’t upset me, because it has NO impact on my ability to buy things or our future savings together.

2. We maintain our independence — my money is MINE, his is HIS. If I want extra spending money, I pick up extra work (which also benifits him bc then I contribute more to the household budget). We are loose with this idea, however. If our household ever needs extra cash, we are not stingy with our separate money.

3. It allows us to buy gifts for each other. I got DH a very expensive xmas gift, which I had to save for. My saving for it, sacrificing my own wants for his gift, gave that gift more meaning. He’s doing the same for my anniversary gift this year. 

4. It’s fair. If one person does earn oodles more money than the other, then that person pays oodles more into the houshold budget.

I also like the idea of dumping all income into a joint account, paying bills, then each getting $X equal spending money. But the problem with that system is that you are giving up independence, the sense of having earned your spending money yourself (which surely works for many people, but not for us).

If one person is working their ass off to earn a ton of money, and the other has an easy job, or is in school, it’s not really fair for them both the have the same amount of spending money, imo. Similarly, if I had bought a house before meeting DH I would view that as MY investment, and would not want to just hand it over to him immediately.

Anyway I don’t think it really matters what system you use OP, provided you discuss it regularly (at lease once a month) and are each in agreement. If paying rent to your husband works for you guys, do that. But it sounds like you have reservations about that arrangement.

Post # 46
826 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

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@Jade33: ‘ If one person is working their ass off to earn a ton of money, and the other has an easy job, or is in school, it’s not really fair for them both the have the same amount of spending money, imo. Similarly, if I had bought a house before meeting DH I would view that as MY investment, and would not want to just hand it over to him immediately.’

I make a good deal more than my Fiance, but he works his butt off to earn the money he does. I work 5 days a week and have lots of vacation time, he works 6 days a week and gets 1 week vacation  a year. I could never do his job because I’d be mentally and physically exhausted.  I’m just pointing out that your statement is not fair- working hard does not always translate into high salaries.

One more thing, I bought my condo and I don’t feel like I’m handing it over to him when he get married, it just becomes ‘ours’ then. I don’t want things to be ‘mine’ or ‘his’, we believe marriage is about ‘us’.

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