I have been giving Maaser based on the Chofetz Chaim Ahavas Chesed Chofetz Chaim in Ahavas Chesed (2:18:3) is to deduct all non-discretionary household expenses and to give Maaser on the net income.
This is what I have been doing and I am then able to give even 20 percent of Maaser.
I have recently learned about giving Maaser without deducting non-discretionary household expenses. I didn’t know about this until recently. Do I need to hold to this or may I continue the ruling from the Chofetz Chaim? If I do not deduct the non-discretionary household expenses, I will not have enough for my basic needs and household needs. Rent, food, clothes and cleaning, car expenses to go and buy food, etc. I will come up short and will not have enough for the household basics.
Thank you Rabbi for your help and I want to give Maaser and do the right thing
The generally accepted custom is not to deduct standard household expenses from the maaser accounting. Business expenses and taxes are accepted forms of expenses which are deducted. However if you will not be able to give maaser otherwise, you can rely on the opinions which allow for such deduction, in order to fulfill Maaser Ksafim.