Josh and I started dating in January 2016 and under fortuitous circumstances we were able to move in together in August 2016 (both of our leases were ending and it was convenient because of our schedules if we both lived in the same place). Moving in with someone you’ve only dated for six months is a bit scary, but I felt, and still feel, very confident that Josh was the type of person who would always find a way to pay the bills. And I suppose I brought to the table a steady job, as reason enough financially, to live with me.
We decided to split our rent in our one-bedroom railroad style apartment evenly. As we also did with the costs of new furniture when we moved in, like a couch and air conditioner, and later on when we bought a second hand wing back chair from craigslist, and more recently when we upgraded our bed from a full-size to a queen.
In term of utilities, I pay for gas and electricity, and we use my mom’s Netflix account, and Josh pays for the internet and Hulu Plus. When we first moved in we were splitting every bill, but it got tedious to do this when the cost was almost even. The one thing that Josh pays for almost exclusively is laundry, he does it more often and he always has cash on him to pay for it. I just mooch.
With groceries, we try to split evenly if the cost is over $40, but if it’s under we usually don’t sweat it. Though, Josh usually ends up buying the food because he can go to the grocery store during off-peak hours (Trader Joe’s without a line? what a dream!). We’ll also alternate buying Seamless orders on nights we don’t feel like cooking.
We have talked about joint accounts, but we’re not really seeing the necessity of doing so. It’s not out of the realm of possibility, it just doesn’t make sense for the system we have. Plus, we’d still have our separate accounts and perhaps we would contribute to the joint account for bills and such–still keeping our main accounts separate. We also discussed possibly getting a joint credit card so we would get all the points for future travel, but we managed to split the costs for our trip to Europe next year so unless we make a major purchase sometime in the future, we probably don’t need to go down this road either. For our trip, I booked all our living, and Josh bought all the air fare. I do think one thing we want to combine is our cell phone plans. I have 5GB of data and rollover, and I think it would be beneficial to both of us if we were on the same account, but, naturally we’d split the bill.
Overall, we’re comfortable with the system we’ve created. It’s practical for both of our finances and for living in New York City, and it’s good for us when we do need to make financial decisions together.