What does this mean?

You're welcome to stay with us as long as you share the expenses.

I don't understand share the expenses. What is this saying?

  • It means you pay your share and we pay ours.
    – Jim
    Sep 25, 2014 at 4:19
  • 1 more vote to close this question. This a question that can easily be answered by looking up two words in a dictionary.
    – user6951
    Sep 26, 2014 at 3:15

1 Answer 1


It means that you are welcome to live with them, as long as you help pay the expenses.

Usually this will mean, to pay an equal proportion as the other resident(s).

For example, if you are going to live with your friend and his wife for a few months at their apartment they're renting, and they say you have to pay your share of the expenses, it likely would mean you have to pay half of the bills. Since in most cases husband/wife are considered one, since they share the same bedroom.

So if the rent is $1500 a month, you'd have to pay $750 rent. If the electricity is usually about $150 a month, you'd pay $75. If the gas/water/cable/internet etc adds up to around $200 a month, then you'd pay $100 for that too. So you're total expenses would be $925, which is half of the total expenses ($1850).

In the case of moving in with 2 other people who are not a couple, it'd likely mean you'd end up paying 1/3rd of the total expenses which would be about $615.

In some other circumstances, like if you're going to be moving back in with your parents for a while and they say that, it could mean something else. For example, if say the house is already paid for, they may only expect you to pay half of the utilities and other services. And that you buy your own food and/or share in the cost of groceries.

The exact details are best worked out before you move in, to avoid unpleasant money controversies. So make sure to ask about how much they expect you to pay each week/month before moving in, so everyone is on the same page.

  • 2
    +1 because I think this is in the right direction, but I think you're being more specific in your interpretation of "share" than is warranted. "Share" simply means that you will take some portion, not necessarily half. The speaker's intent MIGHT be that you should pay half, but you'd need further conversation to determine that. Someone might say, for example, that he wants you to pay any extra expense that you cost him, like if before you came his electric bill was $100 a month and with you here it is $120 a month, then you should pay $20. If you make twice as much money as he does ...
    – Jay
    Sep 25, 2014 at 13:57
  • ... he might think you should pay more than half of the bills because you are more able to pay. Etc. There are many possible arrangements that are arguably "fair" in context. And for that matter, someone might demand an arrangement that is not fair if he thinks you have no better choice. :-)
    – Jay
    Sep 25, 2014 at 13:58

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