How do you handle finances? Split.. joint..?

posted 2 years ago in Relationships
Post # 120
Member
293 posts
Helper bee

We have joint checking and emergency savings account, as well one an additional joint “targeted savings account” that we use to save for specific things – right now it is targeted at my spring tuition bill which will be about $4000. We have no separate accounts save for each having our own credit cards – I use mine to pay two bills and he uses his to pay two bills (to keep our credit up), and we pay them off each month out of our joint checking.

We sit down every two weeks and do the budget together so we both know where our money is going. We bring home almost the exact same amount of money and get paid on the same day, so it works out well. I came into the relationship with a mortgage, a car payment, and student loans; he has no debt. We definitely had a sit-down talk about this before we joined accounts and he had no problem with “his” money going towards “my”debt since we are now married. I did not put him on my mortgage, since we are planning on selling the condo in the next year and stand to make quite a bit of money on it which we will both benefit from towards our new house.

We are pretty similar in our “spending styles”, though he definitely spends more of our leftover/discretionary income than I do on things like lunches out or sports memorabilia. I can’t imagine taking an attitude of his/my money. Right now, for example, I am on medical leave from work due to pregnancy complications and am not getting paid until my maternity leave kicks in (at delivery). If we had the his/my money mentality, the mortgage would go unpaid as well as my student loans and car payment (since all these things are “my” debt), not to mention groceries, doctor copays, etc. When he had to visit the ER a few months ago, we just worked the (large) bill into our budget, no thought at all to the fact that is was “his” medical visit. It is so much easier, in my opinion. But everyone has their own system! 

Post # 121
Member
1090 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2017

Kslim13 :  I don’t like the idea when it comes to money that once you get married you should feel the need to share your hard earned income with spouse because of some unwritten rule that its the right thing to do or that its a part of being married….

But that’s the whole point of getting married! What’s mine is yours, what’s yours in mine and now you become one. I now pronounce you husband and wife.

You become a teammember with your spouse. I really and truly believe that extends to your finances. It’s a household income now. What happens when one of you wants to take a step back in their career to focus on kids for a couple of years? Does the stay at home parent just not have money?

Post # 122
Member
2018 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2016

cbgg :  i guess me and Darling Husband are in the minority, i actually brought up the whole joint account thing over lunch today. He doesnt get the point of it till we at least have a kid. 

he simply put it as “if you need money, just ask me, i dont care….” 

i do get the simplicity of a joint account, that way its not a constant asking game. 

Darling Husband and I are HUGE savers though, we save more then we spend. We’ve never had issues openly communicating about splitting bills or who pays for what. We just straight up tell or ask eachother. 

maybe its a generation thing, im a 90’s kid/millenial so to speak. My parents, Darling Husband parents, and im sure a good portion of people in my parents generation possibly have joint accounts and get the financial side of it. 

Dh and I are pretty much on the same page, when it comes to pointless-ness of having one. 

Post # 123
Member
2018 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2016

anthonyswife :  DH is kinda against the whole “whats yours is mine…” mantra when it comes to strictly money. 

im a super simple chick, like the most laid back person you could ever meet…. call me crazy, but i didnt get married to inherit his wealth, or his stuff/crap. I got married cause i love the man. 

Post # 124
Member
1533 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2015

Kslim13 :  I just want to say that it is surprising to me how people can have a sense of superiority about everything.  When it does not affect them in the least how another couple chooses to manage their money.  

It makes for a stronger marriage“–No, it makes for a stronger marriage FOR YOU.

I don’t see why you got married then” — OK? They don’t have to see why you got married, you’re still just as married whether your marriage is fathomable to them or not. 

So yeah you do you because this is not something on which you need to defend your choice.  I’m sure to a lot of people, to have to speak Chinese at home and to eat rice every day, three meals a day, would never work out, but it works just fine for me and this is the same.  

Post # 125
Member
1090 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2017

Kslim13 :  I didn’t get married either to inherit wealth. But I do intend on building wealth with my husband. It’s not about being grabby, it’s about building a future–working together as a team and making decisions together. 

We trust each other to know that we won’t be irresponsible. That we will stick to our agreeed upon budget. 

Post # 126
Member
5876 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: April 2013

Kslim13 : 

I do think that it’s a generational thing for sure.  Not in that “millenials are like this” kind of way, but just becasue people these days get married younger and are more likely to marry someone with a similar income level.  Back when there was a strong expectation that marriage meant a woman would stop her career and take care of the children, joint finances was really the only way that made any sense at all.  Now that there are a lot more choices around family and career, it opens up seperate accounts as a legitimate option.  

That said, it seems like about 75% of the people responding are saying that they are all or mostly joint or that they plan to go that way once they get married.  This board is mainly American women in their 20s and 30s (millenials) so clearly even young people precieve that joint makes sense for them.  But it’s nice that we live at a time where there are choices and couples can decide to do whatever works for them.

Post # 127
Member
5876 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: April 2013

anthonyswife :  “You become a teammember with your spouse. I really and truly believe that extends to your finances. It’s a household income now. What happens when one of you wants to take a step back in their career to focus on kids for a couple of years? Does the stay at home parent just not have money?”

This is exactly how I see it in my marriage.  We are a team.  Our goals (spending, savings, earnings, investing) are decided as a family.  This isn’t relevant to us yet, but will be especially important if we have children and our career dynamics change or if we’re hit with a job loss or other unfortunate event.  Joint finances work really well for us and help to reinforce our team efforts.

I don’t say that to judge others who keep their finances seperate.  If that works for them, that’s cool.  But if a friend were asking if I would recomend joint or seperate, I would almost always recomend joint. 

Post # 128
Member
2018 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2016

anthonyswife :  bottom line at least in what i believe in is, a joint account isnt going to make a marriage any more or less stronger. Were still eachother’s biggest supporters even with seperate banking accounts. 

i have nothing against joint accounts. What works for one person or couple, may not work for another. 

in our financial situation, having a joint account isnt going add anything to our lives, spending or how we pay for things. Unless we strictly used it as a way to SAVE money. 

Post # 129
Member
900 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2015

kmmq72 :  our pay goes into our personal accounts and then we transfer over probably 3/4 of our pay into a joint account. Some of that goes into savings and the rest on mortgage and other bills/ household stuff. We have free reign spending on the joint and don’t check before we buy stuff on there unless it’s over £100 probably, then we check first.

Car payments/ personal training/ phone payments/ any personal spending comes from our personal accounts. I always try and save some money myself too, just in case.

Post # 130
Member
1923 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2017 - Pearson Convention Centre

We have everything joint and we have had it joint since we started our first jobs

Post # 131
Member
78 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: May 2017

We have seperate accounts that each of our salaries go into, then we both pay into our offset account to cover our mortgage, bills and a little extra to build an emergency fund.

We put all our bills/shared expenses into a spreadsheet (including once a year things like car rego, servicing etc.) then worked out the fortnightly amount we’d need to cover it all. 

As awful as it is to consider, please think about what would happen if your partner died tomorrow. Usually (or at least in Australia) when a person dies, all of their accounts (including joint) are frozen until the estate can be sorted out, even if you do have power of attorney, it will be frozen. So if you are putting everything into a joint account, then what do you do for money? This is not something you want to be dealing with at such a horrible time.

Please make sure you you also have wills, powers of attorney and enduring guardianship set up. If you are combining finances, then you need all these other things. I know a lot of people don’t like to think about the worst case, but better to have it sorted now, rather than deal with the headaches later, I have seen too many people caught out by this.

Leave a comment


Find Amazing Vendors