Episode 9: Managing Money When You’re Single vs in a Relationship

February 5, 2018

Quick Recap:

  • Liz is single, Melissa is married
  • Paying for vs receiving home goods as gifts
  • Savings in being single, vs married or in serious relationship
  • Evil vs Awesome: The olympics
  • Making financial decision
  • Which is easier when it comes to managing money, single or married?
  • Which is better when it comes to managing money?
  • Evil vs Awesome: Valentines Day


The Show:

Today we're talking about managing money when you're single vs. in a relationship.

Melissa + her husband = DINK = Dual Income No Kids

Liz = SINK = Single Income No Kids

J$ over at Budgets Are Sexy has a list of various acronyms describing  money and status

Paying for Home Goods

Do you guys remember that episode of Sex & the City, where Carrie has to go to a baby shower and is asked to take off her shoes, and because it's Carrie it's $600 shoes, and then someone takes them?

And out of all the baby showers and bridal showers and everything I've gotten, I've paid myself. For single people, their home is furnished with all things they had to get/buy.

So in the SATC episode, Carrie decides to "marry" herself and only registers for the pair of shoes that was taken and the friend is forced to buy them for her.

Liz is happy to celebrate her friends babies and weddings etc, but at the end of the day she's paid for her own shit.

As for Melissa, she was one of the last ones of her friends to get married. But she found lots of her friends would throw housewarming parties to get shit that way. 

Liz thinks those are fun, but many time a housewarming gift is more like a bottle of wine rather than something for your home.

Also baby showers are a little different, because especially for the first kid, it's not like you had any of that stuff before. Whereas when you're getting married, you're more likely just upgrading from what you currently have.

The money dance at weddings is something in certain cultures, where as Melissa's family was horrified about the suggestion. So she felt the only option was to register for gifts, even if those things weren't necessary. So it felt a little disingenuous. 

It does kind of depend at what age you're getting married. 

Where are the Savings?

Liz thinks the only time she really saved in being single, is when it comes to what it costs for her to go on vacation, obviously paying for one person costs less.

As Liz doesn't live with roommates anymore, have had some terrible roommates, including one who turned out to be a diagnosed pathological liar, she doesn't save on housing or food really.

As someone that is single, everything is on her.

Whereas, when you have a partner you're sharing those financial responsibilities, also two people doesn't necessarily mean double the cost. 

Melissa goes back an forth on this, because she feels like a lot of things were cheaper for her when she was single. Part of that is the choices that you make. When she got married she went from a cheap apartment to a house with more expenses, she also ate a lot less when she was single.

Melissa and her husband just have to buy more of some things, and sometimes it is double the cost.

Making Financial Decisions

Liz as a single gal, pretty much gets to do whatever the fuck she want's within her monetary limits.

She thinks that those with partners often need to check in and work to make those decisions together.

Melissa agrees, but one thing she does miss is that when she was single she would totally eat cereal for dinner, and now it just makes sense to make dinner which costs more than cereal but it's all about the decisions you make. 

One place she feels she and her husband have saved is living in a house. Melissa located in Phoenix and Liz in Raleigh with very similar cost of living, have very different home expenses.

So Melissa living in a home with a mortgage vs Liz paying rent for an apartment. In many locations, the cost of a mortgage could be significantly less than renting an apartment.

Liz, on her own, cannot afford to buy a home anytime soon. So it's deciding the quality of living with the apartment she decides to live in. And while Liz may have less square footage, she also has a much smaller utility bill.

Melissa, who has over 2,000 sq. foot home agrees, and adjusting to the higher utilities was a big thing to do. Over the summer she had a $400 electrical bill, whereas Liz has never had one over $90.

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Evil vs Awesome: The Olympics


  • Huge financial burden for the host city
  • Expensive to go as an athlete or spectator
  • Rio's olympic facilities are not wasted
  • The debt incurred to host is not commiserate with the tourism income.


  • Financially beneficial to cities that have previously hosted.
  • Patriotism and International unity
  • Sportsmanship

Overall: Financially evil, super awesome in other ways

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Which is Easier? Managing Money When Your Single or as a Partner?

Liz thinks it easier managing money when single, but better managing when in partnership because there is more money to manage. 

Melissa, notes that there are definitely some single people out there that make more than her and her husband.

Couples vary in how they manage, as his, hers, and ours, some just share everything, some keep everything completely separate.

Melissa and her husband keep money separate, not because of anything in particular, it's just how they've always done it, even before they were married. 

When do people have the time to commit financial infidelity and how do they have the energy to hide it, neither Melissa or her husband, or Liz could manage it.

Evil vs Awesome: Valentines Day


  • Liz isn't phased by it


  • Fun, Melissa got married in Feb, so it just a way to celebrate overall.
  • Liz loves the 1/2 off chocolate on the 15th

Overall: Awesome, but not necessarily financially wise

What do you think?

Thanks for joining us!

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