There are strong feelings on the pros and cons of sharing checking and savings as a couple.
The latest episode of the Couple Money Podcast shares some tips on how you can go about on combining your finances and how to start your first budget as a couple (you can listen to it below).
For now, though, I want to pitch to you how they can boost your marriage and your finances.
- Catch the podcast on iTunes: Simply click on this link and you’ll be taken to Couple Money’s page.
- Listen on Stitcher: Please click here so you can catch all episodes.
Less Hassle with Bills
By combining our money into one pot, we can simply schedule our bills from a central location. Mortgage, utilities, and savings are scheduled and we only check on the accounts just to verify everything has been paid. Using an online bank like Capital One 360 has made it even simpler to stay on top of our finances.
Having joint checking and savings is handy for us because we both can see where we can improve on with our finances. It’s a safety net to protect both of us – two heads are better than one so we can catch any crazy double charges that may pop up from a bill. We can also bounce ideas off of each other on how to better optimize our system and save some money.
Makes You Face Issues Upfront
When you two share bank accounts, it also makes you more aware of the big issues in your marriage (money and otherwise). I know for some couples, that possibility alone seems to push them to separate accounts, but believe it or not, this can be a wonderful opportunity for your marriage. Having the money talk can be a turning point for the both of you.
Derek Olsen from Better Conversations on Money and Marriage made an insightful remark about how joint accounts can help the two of you with your marriage:
Combining money within a marriage does not cause problems, it might uncover a few and dealing with them now is a good thing. Most problems are already there, not created. There is no sense in avoiding what is already there.
With financial problems being a huge factor with martial stress and divorces, its crucial to try and get things sorted out sooner rather than later.
Are Separate Accounts Bad?
Does that mean that individual accounts are toxic to your marriage? Should you close all of your individual checking and savings? My answer is – it depends on the two of you and your personal situation.
Personally we have checking accounts that we use for personal expenses like gifts, lunches out during the week, and small purchases here and there that make us happy. For my husband, it’s coffee visits and for me it’s usually books or something to read. That said, we do have access to one another’s account if we need to get to it and when we review our finances we have a clear picture of the totals in the accounts.
Thoughts on Joint Bank Accounts
Enough about us, I’d like to hear from you. How do you manage your finances? Do you combine most of your money? Why or why not?