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In a roundabout way, I have some tax advice, since taking it will make your laudable goal a little easier: move beyond keeping accounts on each other. For example, why not base your allowances on your needs rather than your incomes? You'll really find this task of minimizing prepayments easier if you think in terms of "ours" rather than "his and hers."

As simple as that suggestion sounds, it just does *not* work for us. We have some different interests and hobbies, and we have *very* different spending patterns.

We *don't* keep accounts on each other's personal spending -- and the allowances are the primary reason why. I watch the communal household spending very closely because my hubby is something of a spending addict, but, he's free to do whatever he wants with his allowance.

Basing the allowances on earnings really seems the most fair and friendly way to do it between us. It's very difficult to balance "needs" when they're really "wants" (which is the purpose our allowances fulfill). Do I "want" to have my hair colored 'more' than he "wants" a new memory card for his Lyra?

Things we do "together" are paid for out of the communal account and are based on sharing and compromise. It's only spending on things we want for ourselves as individuals that the allowance is allocated for.

I realize that the suggestion was friendly and certainly I appreciate the thought that went into it.

Gwen
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