Post # 1
How do you and your SO/FI/DH/etc handle finances? Joint accounts, completely separate? One joint account for living expenses (house, utilites, groceries) and separate personal “spending” accounts? Pros or cons to certain ways to handle money, what have your personal experiences been?
SO and I have briefly talked about what we’re comfortable with regarding our finances and I think we’re probably going to do the one joint account for our future home and those associated living expenses then each keep separate checking and/or savings accounts for spending. I’m curious to see what others do and the good/bads about each or just general feelings. I’m keeping my views open at this point to discuss more in-depth later on when we’re to that point in our relationship. Right now, we obviously have separate finances but are VERY open with what we spend, no matter the amount. We are not engaged yet and still will have the “hey, I’m thinking about purchasing this, what do you think?” talks.
What do you do regarding your finances in your relationship? Feel free to include tips/tricks you have as well.
Post # 2
Joint. Everything joint.
When you’re talking about money, you’re talking about more than money. You’re discussing your future and goals. I know people will disagree with me, but I believe you’re so much stronger as a couple when everything is combined.
Example: I was visiting this past weekend with my Mom and Sister in Seattle. I brought just the right amount of cash for myself as spending money, but thought it would be a nice gesture if I bought dinner for everyone. Hubs thought the same and gave me the ok.
This isn’t a big deal for most couples, but we’re putting EVERYTHING we have on our debt, and will be debt free by Christmas. But we will only be debt free if we’re communicating with each other on purchases like that. We also track our spending through an app to make sure we’re not spending too much in each category. When we do, we communicate and adjust.
I’m sure we’d pay off our debt with separate bank accounts. But not as quick and intentional as we are with a joint account.
Post # 3
kmmq72 : We used to keep ours separate, probably because I’m lazy, but it was a pain for us. I’d pay him sort of a flat fee and he’d pay all the bills. I had a couple of my own bills I just paid.
We finally got a joint checking and savings accounts and it’s just so much easier. We each have one checking account that’s all our own, but that’s just leftover single life stuff.
The savings account gets money each month to go towards house stuff. Repairs and renovations.
I kind of want one more account either for bills or a general savings.
Post # 4
Combined everything. We live and easily spend under our means. Retirement and desired savings is distributed before we even see our money. Anything that doesnt go to retirment or savings goes into joint checkings for all bills, vacations, cars, daily fun spending, etc.
Post # 5
We just got married a few months ago and are leaning towards the joint account for shared expenses (rent, groceries, car payments, etc.), with separate accounts for personal spending. But we have yet to make a move on it. For now everything is still divided and we just sort of take turns paying for shit. It’s not the most efficient method for sure.
Post # 6
we had our own accounts until we had a baby. we were planning on one joint account when we got married but somehow that never happened.
now with baby #2 on the way, we are pretty much all just one account. i still have my own savings and checking account that i left a couple hundred in each. Darling Husband doesn’t have any other accounts.
Post # 7
We have 100% separate, split bills 50/50 (transfer money between us if one of us pays more for the month so it’s totally even) it takes a bit of effort to add up all expenses but I love having separate finances. We only have mortgage debt and are totally open with our finances but each having our own money has always been important to us.
Post # 8
We got married in our 30’s and keep separate accounts since we’d had them open for so long already. But we know everything about each other’ banking, retirement, investment, and debt – i.e., I can’t just go buy a new car without involving him in the decision because even in separate accounts, it’s all OUR money.
We split household expenses proportionately to individual income – i.e. the spouse making 60% of household income pays approx 60% of the household expenses. We figure out the total annual “bill” for mortgage, property taxes, house bills, food, etc and divide the responsibility out by bill. One spouse pays mortgage, water bill, cable/internet and the other pays property taxes, all insurance, and food. No transferring money back and forth. We each pay our own car payments (when we have them) and for all of our own personal expenses like clothes or golfing.
It may not be for everyone but it works for us. We are also dual high earners so it’s not like dividing things %-wise leaves one of us with $200 left over each month and the other with $5,000.
Post # 9
My method may SOUND like a lot of work, but its really not, takes me about 20-30 minutes every month to reconcile. We split everything up the middle, things like the water bill, gas bill, property taxes, mortgage. One of us pays the bill and then it goes onto the “ledger” for reconcilation later under whoever paid for it.
I pay for the majority of the groceries and then I go through and itemize each bill and put the new total at the top of the receipt. For example, on the grocery bill, he’ll buy 3 packs of k-cups for his coffee. I don’t drink coffee and I’m certainly not paying $50 for k-cups! So that comes off the bill total and goes on to the “he owes me” side of the ledger. He does buy lots of stuff I don’t eat, and vice versa (i.e. he buys a lot of dairy, bags of milk, greek yogurt, etc, and i’m lactose intolerant so I eat none of it and I’m not gonna pay for it!).
I tally up my expenditures and his expenditures, cut both in half and subtract one from the other to get what’s owed. All the receipts go into the ledger envelope and they’re sealed and marked ‘settled’ when payment has been made to the other person. The upside is that all the receipts are kept in one place, so if we need to return something, they’re at the ready and if he has questions, all the math is right on the bills/ledger envelope.
Post # 10
Joint expenses and savings but separate spending money. I have neither the time no desire to check with Fiance if I want to blow £300 in one go on shoes, drinks or whatever else.
Post # 11
There’s no right answer. And making every bank account joint does not automatically make you a stronger couple. Ask all the divorcees that had joint everything why it didn’t help them. It isn’t a magical thing. So do what works for you guys.
We have two joint accounts that we each auto-transfer money from our own accounts into. One account pays everything regarding the house: mortgage, property taxes, insurance, repairs, and savings towards upgrades etc. The other joint account is for groceries lol. I asked for that account because I do the actual shopping and was getting tired of asking him to transfer his half of the grocery bill. So we instead sat down and estimated monthly grocery costs, increased that number to be conservative, and set up auto-transfers. Now I simply use that account to shop!
But that’s what works for us. We like it a lot. We’re one unit. One team. We’re working towards the same goals. But we still see ourselves as individuals.
We also have each other listed as “Payable on Death” (POD) on each of our individual accounts so that incase one of us dies, the other will easily have access to the money/accounts.
Post # 12
lostinparadise19 : have you ever just though of doing your own online food shops? I’m glad your method works for you but it sounds exhausting!
Post # 13
We are engaged. Our plan is to in theory do joint, but we already have things like direct deposit set up into our bank accounts and autopay for credit cards so even after we get married I imagine we will probably be pretty lazy in moving stuff over. We each buy and spend however we want and don’t feel the need to discuss with the other because we can afford it and have similae views on money and spending and earn similar amounts. We will discuss major items like car and property.
Post # 14
Separate. We have scheduled deposits arranged to each other’s accounts for the various bills that we split 50/50. We have discussed having one joint account that we’d put money in for various things, but we’re keeping our other finances separate and I’m happy that way.
Post # 15
My first marriage everything was separate. Honestly, I think that was part of our problem, we never really committed and had a combined life. It was weird, I basically paid rent to him. We were married. It was odd for me and made me feel like we weren’t partners.
My boyfriend and I just moved in together last week. I moved into his house and we are renting out mine. We opened a joint account for all living expenses, and a joint savings, and then we each have a ‘spending account’ which is basically our old accounts before we combined, just so we can buy little things or gifts for each other and also to establish what was each our own before combining (we both have significant savings as we are older). We didn’t have to do this because we’re not married and in our state everything before marriage is excluded form marital property, but we are both divorced and feel better about that.
It works for us. Every couple should do what works for them and they’re comfortable with.