Post # 1
We’re getting married in 3 months and just had this talk last night. Fiance wants to share everything. I wasn’t raised in a household where this occurred. I prefer to keep our accounts seperate. Then he offerred to keep seperate accounts but make a new account for saving purposes. I’m not sure I want this. I like things to be seperate. I don’t want to merge accounts. Am I being unreasonable?
Post # 3
No, you aren’t being unreasonable. You should feel comfortable with the finances, however they are merged or divided. Fiance and I plan to keep our own accounts and then have one joint account in addition. That is what works for us, eventhough I know a lot of people would find it wierd. You and your Fiance should sit down and talk about it some more- till you can come to an arrangement that you both feel good about.
Post # 4
Not really. My parents have joint accounts, but it made sense because my mother didn’t work while we were growing up. FI’s parents have totally seperate accounts. Since we want to save up to buy a house though, I think I will suggest to Fiance that we open joint savings so we can put money into the same bucket every month.
Post # 5
I think you both need to go over your reasons for each feeling as you do. Once you hear his reasons, and he hears yours, you may be able to come to a compromise, or at least understand each perspective better. I don’t think you’re being unreasonable, but it’s definitely that you guys should discuss more, since you both seem to have strong feelings.
Personally, we’re sharing everything. We don’t have any reason to keep it separate.
Post # 6
So you are thinking to keep things 100% separate?
It might be more practical to at least have some shared money, for instance for paying the mortgage/household bills, or for going on vacation together, etc.
And what happens if you have kids, there will be a million little expenses and it’s just so much simpler to not have to figure out who owes what.
Maybe you could consider having a shared account for predictable monthly expenses (so that this account never really builds up a huge balance), and each of you can keep a separate personal savings account?
My Fiance and I will have most of our money in joint checking and savings, but we’ll each get a few hundred a month in our individual checking accounts to spend however we like (without having to check in with the other).
Post # 7
People do it in all different ways now. I think it is very common for people to have separate accounts and then have a joint account for joint expenses like house, groceries, utilities, etc. Then probably a joint savings for joint stuff like a house, vacations, etc.
How do you envision your lives together? Do you want to be constantly writing each other checks when you need to split things and trying to keep track of who pays for what? I think that however you do it is fine as long as you are both happy with it. I started off thinking I wanted a situation like I outlined above but after about 2 months of living with it I am pretty much over it and want joint everything!
Post # 8
I think this is a very personal decision between a couple. And it should be only what works for you both. If you are very uncomfortable with it because growing up your parents had completely separate accounts then I can see why it would be weird for you. But. If your Fiance grew up with exactly the opposite then he might find it very weird that you want to keep everything completely separate.
Personally in your situation I think your Fiance is trying to meet you halfway by being OK with the two seperate accounts and suggesting one combined savings account. It wouldn’t be a bad idea to meet him the other half. I mean you guys are starting a life together. Know what I mean?
But that is just my two cents.
ETA: This topic always makes me think of Lena St. Clair and her husband from The Joy Luck Club.
Post # 9
I don’t think there is necessarily right or wrong. But I would think it would be easier to divide up expenses by saying each of you put a certain percentage of your incomce into a joint account, that is used for mortage, bills etc. However else you divide those expenses would seem more difficult to me. But whatever works for the both of you…
Post # 10
Well here’s another question. For those of you dividing everything 50/50 .. FI makes twice as much as I do. Does your Fiance make the same or more? I understand 50/50 when you make the same amount. FI doesn’t have a problem paying more. But, I think I do. I don’t want him to think I don’t pay for things. I want to show that by splitting things. I want to pay for all household expenses. Everything from the trash to food to gardner fees and furniture. That’s huge! He would be responsible for the mortgage. Yes my fees will be less. But I’d feel like I’m running the household.
Post # 11
Well, Fiance and I make roughly the same amount of money- I think he makes about $200 more per month than I do. The way it works around here is- he pays for our rent every month and I pay for pretty much everything else. I do the grocery shopping, pay for cable, gas and electric, water, cell phones…it makes me feel a bit strapped for cash, but when we have big purchases (like our honeymoon) he has more savings and so we cover it that way.
That’s not a very practical answer but I hope that helps a little.
Post # 12
Well, my parents have pretty separate finances for the sheer fact that dad is retired and mom makes “fun money”.
You should both be comfortable with your finances. What makes you sketchy about sharing finances completely?
My husband and I will never share conmpletey. We both need some of our own financial independence so we’re going joint+separate. However, when I go back to school, there’ll be some transferring of “his” pre-wedding savings into our joint account so that when I, say, grocery shop, we use joint money since i’ll obviously have no income.
For my parents, they pay certain items each. My mom is an activities director (for funsies…she likes having her own money and for her to have mad money she needs to work). So she pays for things like the cell phone, the internet, some groceries, etc. But my dad (who is retired) pays for everything else. Their house is paid off, so “he” pays for the landscaping they do, the vacations, the boat, other stuff to ‘run’ the household. My mom has her own credit card (dad doesn’t believe in them, haha) so if he NEEDS something, he pays her for it when she charges to it since it’s her own personal card.
I’ve seen separate finances work just fine for my parents. They do have a lot of joint money, though. The money coming in each month goes tot heir joint account but they do pay for a lot of things separately. Like if mom buys books online…she uses “her” money. That kind of stuff.
Since i grew up with somewhat joint money it’s weird for me to go 100% joint. I can’t. Dh knows that…we’re just being open minded and flexible based on what we have going on in our lives. RIght now I support him while he looks for a job. In August, he will support me.
Post # 13
No, we are having a joint account that we will pay our bills from. Other than that, we will keep things seperate… It’s all about compromise, right! Good luck, I hope you can figure that all out! If it helps, you could always go see a financial consultant and talk it over with him/her.. could make you both feel at ease.
Post # 14
like a lot of the bees, Fiance and I have a joint account and will be keeping our individual accounts. not that we are hiding money from each other, but we each have our “individual bills” (ie. student loans, his stock investments, etc). and we also want our own spending money not to be recorded to the last penny (esp when we spend it on each other!)
Post # 15
I must agree with Gerbera
It must work for BOTH of you. I don’t think it’s fair to just stick to your guns in saying No way we’re not joining anything. Everyone was raised different and has different things in mind. What are the reasonings behind not wanting to join your earnings? For us we put our money together. We make about the same. He makes probably $250 more per month than me. We keep our finances together because I don’t understand how we would pay for things with seperate accounts. I don’t want to write Fiance checks every month and I don’t want him to have to either. I think having an account just for Joint expenses would be the easiest then your extra is your extra in a seperate account. I don’t think you should feel like you have to prove to your Fiance that you earn enough. & you said that he would be paying the mortage and you would cover everything else. But you also said that what you pay is still going to be less anyway; so I guess I just don’t get it. Can you afford 50/50? If it was me and I couldn’t afford 50/50 anyway then I would probably just put all expenses together. But like said above every relationship is different. What works for me or anyone else here may not work for you.
Post # 16
The concern I would have would be if the two of you made different amounts of money – as the two of you do. Money usually determines lifestyle and it’s hard for a couple to have different lifestyles without resentment and weirdness. What if he wants to go on a vacation you can’t afford? Are you supposed to raid your savings and thus hurt your financial future while it’s just a blimp for him? What if he wants to buy organic food and you can’t comfortably afford your half?
It’s also important to remember what is legally true. If you live in a community property state than – no matter what you agree to – all the money earned while you are married is the legal property of both of you. This can be overruled by a prenuptial agreement and contracts but you should be aware of it.
Personally the financial support of each other was a large part of my definition of marriage so I have no problems with merging finances and looking at the money as “ours” though I do want to keep my own account for my personal spending.
I don’t think what you want is unreasonable but it is unusual and has its own set of problems (as do joint accounts of course!). The key is that the two of you come to an agreement.
And don’t be afraid to give something a try and then change it if it doesn’t work well. Maybe give joint accounts a try and then go back to separate or vice versa. Nothing is set in stone.