How to merge finances as a couple?

posted 3 years ago in Money
Post # 3
Member
3280 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

We have a combined checking account and combined savings account. There is not mine or his, the bills come out of the checking and a weekly savings goes into that account. That’s really the only way we ever thought of doing it but I know my parents have about 5-6 accounts together so it depends.

Post # 4
Member
6812 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2014

It’s whatever works best for the couple.

FI and I consider everything to be “our” money. We have a budget for everything we spend money on, a joint bank account all our money goes into together, almost all our CCs are joint and we have online access to all of them. We discuss all major purchases together (some couples sort of do monthly “allowances,” but we don’t – if I want to buy something that we didn’t budget for – any sort of unnecessary expenses – I just say, “Hey, I want to buy X and it costs $X, do you think we have money for that?” or whatever. And he does the same. We just combine everything and discuss everything, but our spending habits are VERY similar and so it works for us.

Post # 5
Member
2831 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

FI and i each have our own accounts. we had a savings account with both our names on it, but we closed it a few months later due to fees. we haven’t “merged” finances yet. but when we do, we will have joint checking and joint savings accounts. but we will also keep our own individual accounts.

my parents have joint accounts, and separate accounts. mom’s paycheck goes into her account, which is where her car payment comes from. the mortgage comes out of their joint account. dad’s car payment comes out of his account. utilities, groceries, etc come out of their joint account. mom pays all the bills, and just moves money around as needed.

Post # 6
Member
1681 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

@inspiration86:  I’m biased, but I think we have a great way of doing things:

We have a joint checking and savings as well as individual checking/savings. We deposit 75% of our individual incomes to our joint account. All bills (food, gas, home purchases, etc) comes from this account as well as agreed purchases (new car, furniture, vacation, dinners). We keep our own accounts for private purchases with 25% of our individual income. If I want to blow $200 on a spa day with the girls I don’t have to “ask” and if he wants a new tree stand or a hunting trip with his dad he knows if he has enough money saved for it. Plus if we want to buy gifts we’re actually sacrificing something of our own for each other. Instead of, “Oh hey, I took $500 out of our life savings to buy you this snazzy new kayak that you totally could’ve bought yourself with the same money.”

Post # 7
Member
2319 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

We hae separate checking accounts, and a joint savings account, but we frequently share money betwee our checking accounts.

Post # 9
Member
209 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

We are not married yet but we recently merged our checking and savings together. We live together so everything comes out of the same account. There is no separation between “mine” and “his”, it is ours in every sense of the word. We both make roughly the same amount of money. It has actually become more convenient for FI and I now that we merged accounts. We say that any single & out of the ordinary (meaning not bills) purchase over $200, we make sure we can afford it. We talk it over, not necessarily ask for permission. I do all of the actually financial tracking for us, so I am like the gatekeeper. I keep a spreadsheet of every expense we make to track where our money goes – which will help us in the coming months as we are planning to start investing/doing future planning.

As finances can cause major problems for couples, make sure you are on the exact same page and agree with everything. Do what is best for you.  

Post # 10
Member
6073 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

@inspiration86:  Here’s how we did it.

 

I moved into H’s house (I had my name put on the title too by the way).  All his bills were already being paid from his checking on auto withdrawal.

 

I deposited my monthly paycheck into his checking which already existed.  I closed my old checking.

 

Most of the bills are on auto, so we don’t have to think about it who has to pay it.  But for the one manual bill that needs to be paid, I am the one who remembers to pay that one.

 

We have a pre-determined amount that would need a discussion before hand.  It’s $500.   Normally we don’t spend very much on ourselves, so overspending has not been an issue so far.  If I go out to lunch with a girlfriend, it comes from the same joint pot.  Lately I’ve been buying a lot of shoes and dresses.  I want to revamp my waredrobe.  He knows that I searh for deals and never pay retail price.  This is kind of new for me to buy myself clothes!  H knows this but I go slowly – just a few pieces each month.  There are no issues with this.

 

The checking kind of serves as the savings as well.  We max out several retirement accounts from this joint cheking, and what is left over just sits in the checking.  We like to have a buffer in the checking account.

 

As far as roles?  I like to keep a daily spreadsheet of all of our expenses and track them.  I do some forecasting stuff with this, like what it costs us to live, etc.  We both to the long term stuff like seeing what money we have and how we’ll divvy it out in retirement.  I like to send him an “end of month” report on what we spent and where it went.  I do it in graph form.  Seems geeky, but he likes it!

 

Post # 11
Member
279 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2013

@OnceUponATime:  I really like this idea! I do have a question though. When you put the 25% in your separate accounts is it 25% of what the individula makes or what you both make?

Post # 12
Member
1681 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

@kryren:  We do 25% of what we make individually. This was, we’re proportionally saving the same amount.

@inspiration86: Glad I can help! Make sure you do whatever makes the most sense to you! 

Post # 13
Member
931 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

We chose to combine everything. Because we were LDR up until a few weeks before the wedding, we waited until we were married.  It has taken a few months to get merged with everything, and for us it works quiet well.  At this point in our marriage, I earn a lot more than DH, but once he finished his phd, he will earn a lot more (hopefully).  

Post # 14
Member
1549 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

Joint Checking and Joint Savings. We make a budget every month and we keep track of our spending so we know how much money is actually going out and when. We have a common goal in mind and we work toward that goal together. Right now that goal is to be debt free. We don’t make mindless purchases period. If we know we need to buy something we bring it up when we are discussing the budget so we know to plan for it. Nothings a surprise. We each have monthly “spending money” so we can buy what we want so long as we don’t spend more then we were allotted for the month.

Post # 15
Member
434 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2013 - Tybee Island, GA

At first, he was paying for this and i was paying for this… and honestly it wasnt fair, since i was paying more than he was, yet he makes more money than i do! So I transfered ALL my money over to his bank account, and got an extra debit card, and everything comes out of one account. Now there is no “you pay, I pay” crap if we go out to eat;) Its the way to go!!

Post # 16
Member
8916 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2013 - Rocky Mountains USA

@OnceUponATime:  +1. That’s what we do too, except we only give ourselves about $400 a month each for personal spending. (And it’s a new system so we’ll see – even that might be too much)

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