(Closed) Bank Accounts, how do you do it?

posted 5 years ago in Married Life
  • poll: Do you and your significant other have a joint account?

    yes, joint savings

    yes, joint checking

    yes, joint checking and savings


  • Post # 46
    3067 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: September 2014

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    daniellemc:  we have separate accounts. and separate credit cards. We have one joint credit card. I am in charge of saving money as he pays more bills ( mortgage, utlilities ect) so I have the savings. The only bills I pay are food, my student loan, and car insurance, gas and cell phones

    Im not opposed to having joint accounts we just havent gotten around to it yet. We’ve been married 1.5 years  If I needed money for somethign and didnt have it I would put it on the credit card we jointly share and he would pay it off as needed. Or hell give me cash ( he makes twice what I do)

    Also as far as wedding money, we just deposited in his bank and then used it accordingly…we still have tha whats yours is mine mentality just was in his account.

    IDK works for us!

    Post # 47
    366 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: July 2021 - Black Mountain Lodge at Arapahoe Basin

    Not married yet but we have joint everything – checking, savings, we are authorized users on each others credit cards and beneficiaries for our insurance and retirements plans.

    Our paychecks go into the joint checking and all bills get paid from that account. We use our credit cards for almost everything (can’t wait for Costco to accept Visa in April!) to get the rewards and then pay them off every month. The joint savings holds our emergency fund and savings for a house currently.

    We track our expenses through Mint, so we’re both able to use the app on our phone or online to check how we’re doing that month and spend/not spend accordingly. We definitely live by the phrase “what’s mine is yours” but we don’t check with each other if one of us needs a new pair of jeans or wants to grab a bite to eat for lunch. We just check Mint, make sure the purchase won’t push us over our clothing or restaurants budget. We also have a budget in Mint for each of us that is “fun” which we treat like fun money (some couples use seperate account for this, we find a seperate “budget” in Mint works just fine for us). As far as big purchases, we talk about them. We don’t have a set number per se where we have to talk to each other before we buy, but we have a pretty good sense of when we should loop the other person in.

    Doing it this way works really well for us; it allows us to work towards our financial goals together and we feel like a team. Personally, it would feel odd to me that I still had to pay my SO rent or split the grocery bill or worry about who paid for the last date after five years together but I know it works for some couples (including my aunt and uncle who have been happily married for thirty five years) and that’s awesome – it’s important to do what works for you!

    Overall, I think the main key behind any financial setup is communication. We are very open and honest about spending habits, what we like to spend our “fun” money on, future goals, etc. and I think that is why this works for us. We sit down every couple of months or when our financial situation changes (raise, bonus, rent increases, etc.) to re-evaluate. Good luck with your decision!

    Post # 48
    422 posts
    Helper bee

    We are joint everything. To me, marriage is about uniting in all fronts of your life. He had to take out student debt for grad school? I help pay it back. We make all financial decisions together – at the end of every month we review our budget, and *we* decide how much to put in savings, *we* decide how much extra to throw at debt, etc. etc. 

    Post # 49
    1444 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: May 2014 - Paradise Gardens

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    daniellemc:  So I selected the “yes, joint checking and savings” option but we actually have a variation. We both had our own checking accounts coming into the relationship. When we started living together, we put each others names on our individual account. This basically allowed me to get a debit card for his bank account and vice versa. That being said we transfer money between accounts often. In addition we have a joint savings/checking account via an online bank. That account is where aour savings funds go and also where all the large household bill come out of.


    Hope that makes sense, in short we have visibility/access to eachothers accounts we jsut tend to only manipulate the online bank account as we see fit. The accounts we had previous to marriage are essentially our own, we have visibility but don’t tend to manipulate/spend each others money.

    Post # 50
    308 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: April 2015 - City Hall NYC

    Hubby and I have seperate checking accounts from before we even got together and we opened at joint savings account when we got engaged.  All wedding related gifts go into the savings account and we contribute some money from our checking into there.  We also split all bills right down the middle.  It works out good for us.

    Post # 51
    6516 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: September 2013

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    daniellemc:  we have a joint savings account and then seperate checking accounts. He makes more than I do, so he pays the bigger bills (rent, car lease, cable/internet/phone, cell phone and grocerceries). I pay for daycare, utilities, and anything the baby needs. I agree with
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    passthepeas:  we had seperate accounts before we met, so I didn’t see a need to combine credit cards, or my checking account. I guess the same question can apply to couples who have joint everything, why does everything have to be joint?


    Post # 52
    1989 posts
    Buzzing bee

    My husband and I have everything joint. Checking, savings, credit cards, etc. We budget each month pretty much down to the dollar (savings, mortgage, grocceries, utilities, car payments, clothing budget, etc etc). We each have a ‘fun money’ budget that we get in cash each month (same ammount for each of us). This ‘fun money’ is what we use to buy gifts, I grab coffee on my way to work or get my nails done, he goes to hockey games or to the bar to have drinks with his buddies. 

    We do cash fun money so the other one doesn’t see where the money goes. For example: I don’t get annoyed that he spent $75 going to the casino with his friends, and he doesn’t care I got a $100 facial. We just know each other gets the same amount each month and that’s that. 

    Everything else we track down to the dollar– any left over money at the end of the month goes into our join savings account. We decide what to do with our savings account together– upgrades at the house, vacation, etc. It does sometimes cause arguements, but I prefer to share everything versus keep things in individual accounts. 

    I think by having everything in 1 account, we’re able to get a more clear picture of our overall financial situation. We can track better, and figure out where to save more easily. We have friends who keep their money separate, and they seem to have arguments over money, too. So I don’t think keeping finances separate prevents 100% of arguements. For example-she gets frustrated at him for leaving lights on at the house, taking long showers, etc, because ‘she’ has to pay for it. He gets annoyed when she makes multiple trips to stores because he pays their gas bill. Either way— arguements to be had. 

    Question for those with everything separate: what happens if one spouse stops working (maternity leave or Stay-At-Home Mom for example) or if one spouse loses their job? What if you wanted to take a lesser paying job for more career satisfaction? I am just curious how that would work. 

    Post # 53
    1066 posts
    Bumble bee

    We each have our own account but they’re both joint. We also each have our own credit cards that get paid off in full each month for the rewards. He makes more so he takes care of the bills and I take care of groceries and frivolous stuff. I think it would stress him out if “his” account fluctuated as much as mine does lol When it comes down to it everything is ours and we balance out the bigger stuff so both accounts have a chance to grow.

    Post # 55
    1989 posts
    Buzzing bee

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    daniellemc:  To even add on to my question… who pays for kid things, if the couple decides to raise a family? Do kid related purchases come out of the joint account?

    Personally, I’d be frustrated if kid-related purchases came out of my account (assuming separate accounts), if that meant my options were purchasing new clothes or toys for the baby or using my fun money on myself, if my husband’s fun money was purely his money. Maybe that is selfish, but I think I would have resentment towards my husband. Likewise, even if he paid for everything kid related, I might be frustrated with some of the things he picked. ie- what if he chose to send the kids to public school, but I really wanted them to attend private, but couldn’t afford it out of my personal account. 

    Genuinely interested to hear how others make it work!

    Post # 56
    2111 posts
    Buzzing bee

    SO and I have discuss what we will do once we get engaged and it will work like this:

    We will each keep our personal accounts that we get paid into. Our personal bills will come out of this account such as mobile phone, his child support payments etc.

    We will have a joint expense account where things such as rent, utilities and groceries come out of.

    We will have a joint savings account where we save for our elopement, vacations, new car etc.

    The amount that goes into these accounts will be proportionate to our wage – I earn 1/3 of what SO earns so his contribution will be greater to each but will roughly be the same % of wage.

    It’s important to us both that we have some financial independence from each other. We are both divorced and have had the “everything is ours” blow up in our face so we think this will work best for us.

    Post # 57
    589 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: September 2015

    All of our accounts are joint. I do still have a credit card in my name only but mostly because I’ve been too lazy to close it I don’t think I’ve even used it since we got married. We adhere to everything is “ours”, we don’t divide anything. 

    Post # 58
    10635 posts
    Sugar Beekeeper
    • Wedding: January 2011

    We don’t actually have a joint savings account.  We view everything as our money, but before purchasing a house we didn’t bother making the accounts with the online banks joint.  We just did check ins to see how things are going.  Now our TFSAs aren’t maxed (a fair bit from them was for the downpayment) so there’s no point in having a joint savings account.

    In our minds it’s all joint.

    Post # 59
    1150 posts
    Bumble bee

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    italianbride0508: Question for those with everything separate: what happens if one spouse stops working (maternity leave or Stay-At-Home Mom for example) or if one spouse loses their job? What if you wanted to take a lesser paying job for more career satisfaction? I am just curious how that would work.

    That is a great question. If the wife went on maternity leave and she’s no longer able to pay for her portion of the bills what then? Would she then have no “fun money” if she wants to go get her nails done? Or what if the husband is on sick leave? Would you share your “fun money” with him and would you expect him to pay you back?

    I can actually answer this because I have taken a lesser paying job for more satisfaction 🙂  The short answer is that I just pay for a smaller chunk of our expenses than I used to.  When I first took the lesser paying position I had a few payments left on a medical bill which was set up for autopay with my checking.  So for a few months my husband just transferred cash from his checking to my checking to keep my checking account stable.  Now with that bill paid off I am able to cover almost the same expenses that I used to-which never were as much as he does.  Fun money goes on the shared credit card which he pays every month.  

    So even though our actual monies are kept in seperate places it is still “our” money.  I don’t have to forego a manicure or girls night out just because I’m not left with a whole lot after paying *my* part of the expenses every month.  My part of the expenses and his part of the expenses were determined in the beginning based on our respective incomes.  Since my income has changed, who pays what has changed.  My fun money used to go on MY credit card (not shared) which was paid by me.  Now my fun money goes on his credit card (I’m an authorized user) which is paid by him.  

    Our deal works because we are very like minded when it comes to money/spending.  And because we are relatively comfortable with just my husband’s income.  We do not *need* mine.  Once my car lease is up we are going down to one car between us and at that point my entire paycheck will go into savings and all expenses/fun money will come from my husband’s income.  


    Post # 60
    9795 posts
    Buzzing Beekeeper
    • Wedding: September 2013

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    italianbride0508:  we have separate accounts but we really consider all of our money joint.  We do have a joint credit card.  We have 1 child.  The way it works is that DH gives me virtually all of his “income” and I do all of the spending (pay bills, LO’s new clothes, food, etc).  He just maintains a portion of discretionary money in his own personal checking.  But he gives me almost all of his income and I do pretty much everything from my account (which he doesn’t have access to- we just like it that way).  But like I said above, we put all (everything we can anyway) expenses on a joint credit card.  So really, I am doing all of the spending on that (he does a little bit but normally very minor things like lunch) and I pay it off every month from my checking.  It also works because he hates shopping and doesn’t want any part of buying groceries, clothing, toys, gifts, etc.  Even his own clothes I often end up buying if he needs something new.  And I like being in control lol. Even if he does go out with friends, he usually puts that on the cc we I would pay it from my checking.  He is pretty frugal and not a spender so that also helps because I can trust him and he doesn’t go out much anyway (we have a kid remember).  His personal account is really just for playing poker (something he enjoys when he can get the time) or maybe something big like a new computer.  He does give me part of his winnings though, which I enjoy and will either spend a little bit on myself or put into our savings/checkings.

    I would expect it to be fair to treat all child expenses (clothing, swim lessons, etc) like a joint expense just like a mortgage, water bill, or daycare costs.  I mean, schooling could be a big expense and I would think you would treat that purchase just like you would a house- compromise.

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