Think about roommates. A lot of people live with roommates, and the question is, how should they divide their expenses. What’s the right approach?

So think about two extremes. One, we each pay for our own. I have my yogurt, and my laundry detergent, and it’s mine and mine and mine. The other one is, we live together. We share all the expenses.

Which one is better?

People often gravitate toward the “I’ll pay for my part” since they think it’s more fair. But you know what? It undermines, and it undermines dramatically, this ability of actually of living together.

Living together is not only expenses, it’s about joint living. It’s about cooking for another person, it’s about doing laundry together, it’s about enjoying life together.

So while the process of  “I’ll have my own yogurt, and you’ll have your own laundry detergent” seems like the right approach- it is not.

If you truly want to live with somebody, and take advantage of what it is to share part of your life with somebody, go for the approach where you each take the same amount of money and put it into a joint account, and use it for all the house expenses.

It might not be fair on any particular month, but the overall quality of your life will be much, much higher.