“I don’t like having to ask for money for living expenses”: my husband for a year pays half of my mortgage – but not utilities

Dear Quentin,

My husband and I have been married for a year, but we have been together for over seven years. We’re in our late 50s, early 60s, and we each have a small business.

Neither of us makes a lot of money, but we’re happy to help the other when times get tough. (Think of the coronavirus.) The house and all utilities are in my name and are set up for automatic payment through my checking account. I also buy most of the groceries.

He never hesitated that I asked him for money to help him. We have never had a cost sharing system. He thinks that unless I’m specifically asking for money, I shouldn’t need the extra funds. He goes on with his life and doesn’t think about it.

After two or three months with only an automatic check from him for half the monthly mortgage, I think it’s not my job to remind him that utilities aren’t paid for by themselves. I don’t like having to ask for money for living expenses. Do I also have to take on this job?

I can’t imagine living in his house and not meeting my share of the expenses. For me, it is the principle of matter. He is a wonderful man and I love him very much. I wish I could get this problem off the table for good.

Is this problem still mine to deal with?

woman wonders

YesYou can email The Moneyist for any financial and ethical questions related to the coronavirus at [email protected], and follow Quentin Fottrell on Twitter.

Dear request,

People will fly by the seat of their pants, if you let them.

You and your husband prepare for failure by making decisions about your household budget based on the direction of the wind. Discussions about housing, utilities, whether or not to have a joint account, and even shopping should be done before you move in together. Waiting for your husband is as unproductive as if your husband is waiting to be asked to pay. He may think, “I’m paying half of his mortgage. Why should I pay utilities too? “

Create a joint account for your groceries and utilities, and each contribute a certain amount each month. Have you ever been on vacation with friends and each put $ 200 in a jar to pay for everyday expenses? Now, you pretty much do the same here. Obviously, you should never pay your mortgage from a joint account with your husband or accept money to pay for renovations to your home. Otherwise, you will mix this asset.

On this last point, know that the appreciation of your home can also be considered a common good. Royal law and mediation describes the law in California: “Separate property is property you owned before marriage, including any inheritance or gift you received during the marriage. Separate property is not subject to division in the event of divorce, however, the appreciation of separated property that occurs during marriage is considered common property.

The Lesson: # 1: Don’t be a mind reader. # 2: Put everything on paper before you get married. If you decide not to enter into a prenuptial agreement, list your respective financial obligations on a notice board in the kitchen. No. 3: At the risk of sounding like Mike Brady, people will hesitate if you treat them like a roller coaster, and the more you get upset with yourself for allowing such a situation to continue, the more bored you will be with your husband! In this case, no one wins.

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