Ask Zeta: “I don’t want to split the Netflix bill. Am I wrong?”

Aditi Shekar
February 26th, 2021 | 3 min

Got a tough love and money question? Email us at editor@askzeta.com.

"My partner and I disagree over shared expenses. For example, he watches Netflix and I don't. Am I wrong for not wanting to split it?"

Here’s the TLDR: On some level, I'm not a fan of sweating smaller shared expenses because getting too nitpicky can lead to negative feelings on both sides. At the same time, I want to make sure you’re seeing the forest for the trees here. Yes, one Netflix bill may not break your bank account, but a slew of these kinds of expenses can add up. So, in my opinion, it's completely fair to point out that not everything needs to be a shared expense.

One of the biggest myths of our generation is that shared expenses are an all-or-nothing game. But based on our conversations with couples, we've found that sometimes having a personal pool of money (whether within the same account or as an entirely separate account) is a great way to help with situations like these. In this model of combining finances, couples might pool some funds in a joint account and then have a small allowance or fully independent accounts for their own spending.

By setting things up this way, you give yourselves some financial independence, making it easier for one partner to spend where the other person may not or even giving one partner the ability to save more than their partner might want to.

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