My boyfriend and I have been together seven years, and in that time I bought a house. I used my own savings and spent about $10,000 on renovations. My house is a three-bedroom family home, and the tenants cover most of my mortgage. I still have other bills, two cars, insurance, utilities, cellphones, etc.
I have both cars in my name; my boyfriend is working to pay one off. He pays the $300 car note and insurance, and gives me $300 toward “rent.”
I feel like he should be paying me more, but he feels like he’s helping out enough and shouldn’t have to pay more because the tenants cover the mortgage. I tried to explain that I have more costs as a homeowner than just a mortgage, but he doesn’t seem to understand.
“‘He is terrible at saving money and constantly between jobs.’”
We keep having the same argument that he’s “saving up to buy a house.” However, he is terrible at saving money and constantly between jobs (that’s his own problem). Although he’s not good with money and has a hard time staying at one job, he’s always paid his half even though it’s not much.
I think $800 a month is a good deal to have all his bills paid besides the car and insurance; he disagrees and wants to continue to only pay $300. I do make at least twice what my boyfriend makes, so it’s not like I need the money. I just think it’s fair that he pays his way.
I feel bad that I’ll be taking most of his income, but feel like I can invest it better than him. What do you think is fair?
Dear Hard Working,
We could go back and forth about what would happen if you were married, or if the gender roles were reversed, but the bottom line is you are entitled to ask your boyfriend to pay a fair market rent, or a rent that is more than $300 a month but still less than the market rate. In many housing markets right now, $800 is a bargain.
Here’s the takeaway: You don’t have to justify the reason you would like him to pay more than what most people pay on an average cable bill ($217) and electricity bill ($115) combined for the average American household, with an Amazon Prime
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