Being single is kind of expensive. It’s not quite as cheap for two to live as one, but to be honest it isn’t that far off. There are few perks to being single. You can get a single person’s discount on your council tax and that’s well worth having, but it won’t make up for losing out in other ways. In any case 75% of the bill is still more to pay than 50% if you are able to share the costs. I guess you might save some cash if you don’t have presents and cards to buy for a romantic partner, but again that’s probably not that much.
When you are in a relationship with someone or just live with someone else in your household who contributes to the finances, you are automatically better off than someone living alone. All the bills get cut in half in one go. You are heating the house as much for one as for two, but you can halve the cost. Yes you might spend a bit more on electricity to power devices etc. but this is likely to be dwarfed by the opportunity to split that bill in two. TV license is another that there is no extra cost for additional people in the house, but you get to halve it immediately if you are splitting the costs. The mortgage or the rent is likely to be the largest payment though and being able to share this will make the biggest difference to your finances.
Then think about food and other household products. If you are able to buy larger pack sizes, things tend to work out more economical.
Holidays will be more expensive – think single room supplements here. They can be anything from 10% to 100% of the cost of bringing an extra person along.
Car insurance is often cheaper if you have someone else to put on the insurance. Even if they almost never drive the vehicle, it’s still worth doing and you will benefit from the convenience of being able to swap cars if it suits.
You could end up paying more tax if you’re single than in a relationship. Every one of us has a personal allowance, which is the amount you can earn before you have to pay income tax. If only one of you is working or one of you earns less than the tax threshold, you can transfer savings accounts to the person who doesn’t work, so that you pay less tax overall as a couple, but you can’t do this if you’re on your own. As a singleton, you’ll also miss out on the marriage tax allowance, which is due to be introduced next April. From this date, married couples can transfer £1,000 of their personal tax allowance to their spouse or civil partner, provided one is earning less than the personal allowance.
It would appear that, overall, single life is more expensive than if you can split costs with someone else. That said, plenty of people who value their independence, or who perhaps just aren’t ready to commit, may consider it a price worth paying.