I’ve been inspired by Kristy over at Master Your Card to write about my experience with joint finances.  She just wrote a post about all the negative things she has seen while working at a credit union when people have joint accounts.  While I can see the potential dangers involved, I’ve always been a fan of joint accounts.

My husband and I combined finances when we moved in together.  We were engaged and were having a house built together, clearly very serious about each other.  Oh, did I mention we had only been dating for 2 months.  lol.  It was what you would call “a whirlwind relationship”.  Obviously, not something that I would recommend to others but it worked for us.

My husband had never had a formal written budget.  He was good with his money, in that he saved a little, paid bills on time, had good credit.  He had just never written down, $200 for groceries, $300 for gas, ect.  I have always worked off of a budget and really couldn’t manage without one.  He was totally fine with that.  We make a new monthly budget at the start of each month.  We used to sit down and make it together.  But now he just does it.  It’s basically the same every month anyways.  If there is a problem or (haha) extra money, then we talk about it.

He does have his own checking account that he transfers his spending money into and technically so do, although I never use it.  He thinks it’s easier to spend out of a separate account, I think it’s a pain.

I perfer joint accounts because  then paying the bills isn’t about who pays what.  There’s no arguing about the fact that one person’s bills are more than the others.  There’s less mine and yours and more ours.  My friend and her husband have always had separate accounts and it has seems like a strain.  At least from my perspective, I don’t know all their details.  My friend complains to me about having to give her husband money to pay bills and she always feels like it wasn’t quite fair.  I think they split the bills evenly even though he makes more than her.  She is always borrowing money from her husband to cover bills and then having to pay him back.  It just doesn’t make sense to me.

How can you say “This is our house, our cars, our TV, our kids.” and then say “That is your money, and this is my money.”  “Those are your bills, these are my bills.” It seems like there would be so much time and effort making sure everything is fair.  And that eventually is going to build resentment.  Some is going to feel slighted.  It seems inevitable.

If we had always had separate accounts, what would have happened when I became a stay at home mom?  Would my husband have felt like he was doing me a favor by paying my bills?

Obviously, there are potential troubles with joint accounts as Kristy pointed out in her post.  But I think those horror stories comes more from choosing the wrong spouse than having joint accounts.  I trust my husband with my whole heart.  I can’t imagine him, or I, ever stealing each other’s money, even if things were to go south.  To me, not sharing something so basic doesn’t seem like marriage.  How can you say “you are not welcome to these resources” to your spouse?  Your partner in life.  The person you’ve chosen to stand with against the world, to build your life with.

Clearly, whether or not to have joint accounts is a personal choice.  This is just my opinion on the matter.

Pic by: Kumon

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