Shared economy in the bonus family
When you are a parent and meet a new partner, there are many things to consider. Like if or how to merge your finances and find balance in your new family so that your everyday life works.
In this article, Magnus Hjelmér, everyday economist at ICA Banken, gives tips on what a shared economy in a bonus family could look like and how it could work.
Summary of Shared economy in the bonus family at the bottom.
I want to start by saying that there is no right or wrong here. For example, it is common to have separate economy to begin with. After a while, it may feel better to have a joint economy in your bonus family. You need to try things out for yourselves to see what works for you.
Housing and food costs
It is most common that parents have different numbers of children. The children may also have different ages. If your incomes differ a lot it is possible that one of you has a lot of money left while the other has difficulty making ends meet. It is important to find a distribution that works for both of you and does not disadvantage the children. It is a good idea to make a budget to keep track of common expenses. If you have the same number of children of approximately the same age, it may be wise to divide the costs of food and accommodation proportionally according to how much you earn.
Weekly or monthly allowance
I think that children of the same age should have the same amount of pocket money per week or per month. This way you avoid comparisons and competition that can lead to unnecessary conflicts for the children.
Costs for travels and extracurricular activities
Here you can use the same division as when it comes to food and accommodation, provided that the whole family comes along. One option is that you share the cost between you adults and then each pay for “your share”. I would still like to give the advice not to count every single crown or activity, but to think in a broader perspective. For example, it may be worth sharing costs more evenly to be able to make the planned trip together. Perhaps it feels fair to the children even though their different activities cost different amounts? Maybe it evens out in the long run.
Presents and gifts
We all have different standards when it comes to costs and number of presents for our children. In addition, there are often more adults involved at birthdays and Christmas. It can be your co-parent and the child’s grandparents. The most important thing is to talk to each other and find a solution that works well for all of you!
It is important to talk about your joint economy with your current partner. Address the issues today – it is a good investment in your family and relationships.
Summary – Shared economy in the bonus family
- There is no right or wrong. You need to try things out for yourselves to see what works for you. After some time together, maybe shared finances in the bonus family feels most natural.
- Try to find a distribution that feels fair to everyone.
- It can be good if bonus children with the same age have the same level of weekly or monthly allowance.
- Do not count pennies when it comes to travels and activities. Try to divide as evenly as possible during shared activities.
- Regarding presents and Christmas gifts, talk to each other and you will most likely find a solution that works well for all!
Do you have questions or need help?
Do you have questions for Magnus Hjelmér, everyday economist at ICA Banken? Please send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Write “economist” in the subject line. Your question may be anonymized and published together with answers from Magnus in the app.
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