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Splitting Bills When One of You Is in Debt


Taking the cohabitation step with your honey is a big deal and it may take some time to adjust to the new arrangement. It also requires more thoughtfulness on both accounts, and inevitably more money talk is involved as bills and rent need to be paid.

A friend of mine is moving with her guy to another state in just a few months. Her boyfriend is working and going to graduate school and has accumulated debt in the form of student loans, while she works as a waitress and has an unpredictable income stream. She wanted my opinion about whether or not she should pay a larger percentage of bills or rent because of her boyfriend's debt. Find out what I told her when you read more.

I immediately answered that no, she should only be responsible for her portion of living expenses. I've seen women put their own financial goals aside in order to please boyfriends by making their lives easier, but there are just too many risks associated with this. How can she think of trying to help her guy when she's made it known to all of her friends that her own finances aren't healthy?

Simply stated, she needs to put herself first before trying to help out someone else. I asked my friend to pose this question: What would he do without her? Obviously, he would have to rely on himself to pay bills and rent. She shouldn't ignore her own rocky financial situation in order to feel like she's doing the right thing for him.

Do you think I'm too harsh? Have you ever faced this situation?

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