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Money and Marriage

After You're Married, Do You Join Your Money?

When you get married, it can feel so amazing to be in love and start your two-person family; but, it can also bring up a lot of questions, especially about money. In my parents' generation, it was just assumed that your finances would be combined, but things are a little different now. Since so many relationships are, unfortunately, ending in divorce, people want to have separate accounts (and sometimes sign a prenup) so they're protected — just in case. Another, more positive, reason that people aren't joining accounts is because women have a more equal role when it comes to salaries, so they aren't as reliant on their husbands income.

So what do you think? After you say "I do," do you feel comfortable pooling all your money together, with the idea that "What's mine is yours, and what's yours is mine?" Or do you think it's best to keep separate bank accounts?


Join The Conversation
enSue enSue 9 years
My husband and I initially wanted to write up pre-nups, but never got around to doing it. My husband and I have joint bank accounts. We had joint accounts years before we got married. Actually, we shared our money with one another years before we even opened a joint bank account. My husband handles most of the money managing, but does try to include me at my request. I would be fine letting him handle everything if it weren't for my fear that I might one day be a widow, and I'd rather be prepared.
Harmonie1 Harmonie1 9 years
Right now, I keep everything seperate between me and my boyfriend. But when we get married, I'm pretty sure we'll just join accounts. It makes things a little bit easier. Though I can see how it might complicate some things, like he might buy an expensive PC Game or I might overshop, but overall I think it's a good idea.
ovenmitt ovenmitt 9 years
my first husband and i had joint accounts. things got so bad with his spending that we had to hand everything over to a financial counselor. when we split i swore i'd not make that mistake again. then i found someone who was as meticulous about money as i was and after several talks we pooled accounts when we married. the first several months were VERY difficult for me. i didn't want to give up the control and process i had for my banking. we talked again and i thought it would be best to get my own accounts. i waited it out until everything got under control and now almost a year in i am so pleased we did it. our names are on everything and there's only one credit card between us both. i know a lot of people have said they keep their own credit card but i'm building my score after marriage number one and having the single card with his excellent score is helping mine too.
sunami sunami 9 years
We keep seperate accounts. I horde and he spends but what is mine is his and what is his is mine. When making purchases, we talk before we spend because if we know it will affect "us", it becomes conversation topic. We don't sweat the small stuff and necessities.
chancleta chancleta 9 years
pps i don't think it's a trust thing my husband has access to mine and i do to his it's about getting to spend what's left over on whatever we want without having to worry if there's enough in there
chancleta chancleta 9 years
ps we're married and didn't have anything joint till we got married
chancleta chancleta 9 years
we have seperate checking accounts and a joint savings when i get paid i transfer 1/2 of the funds for bills to his checking and he pays them from there BUT i will say this we did make sure we gave each other access/placed each other's names on our accounts that way (God forbid) if there's ever an emergency or something happens to one of us the other has access to each other's funds it works for us the bills get paid and we get freedom with our spending money with out having to check in with the other and if ones every low the other floats them
PinkSparkleGrl PinkSparkleGrl 9 years
I have been with my boyfriend for 8 years, not married and we just recently got a joint account. We still have our own accounts, but it is easier with bills to say "each paycheck please put 400 dollars in the joint account". This has actually stopped most arguing about money cause we know we are both contributing the same amount to bills, food, etc etc. I would never get rid of my own account and I would never ask him to either. I think it is important to have your own money for things like shoes, video games or whatever you are your bo want on your own (other than your own bills, med expenses etc). My boyfriend is not a planner, so I think this also helps him cause I added in a "savings tax" for him and I. We have a joint saving account so some of that 400 dollar a paycheck goes into a saving account for a vacation or other things that come up.
JaimeLeah526 JaimeLeah526 9 years
We have all joint accounts. It's easier that way so we can both deposit or withdraw money and not have to worry about signing papers or needing the other to do anything with the money. When we have cash we spend it on each other so why not do the same with bank accounts.
popgoestheworld popgoestheworld 9 years
I don't think anyone goes into marriage already planning to get divorced. I mean, maybe some crazy people. But the majority of people go into it hoping to be with the person forever. Yet, there is still a 50% divorce rate. You simply can't predict the future or know things will turn out. And people are NOT themselves during divorces when the gloves come out. Sad, but true. Nobody thinks it will happen to them, but it does. Keeping finances separate doesn't mean you are planning for divorce, that you don't love your spouse, or that you don't trust them. To me, it just means that you aren't all-knowing and that based on reality, it's smart to have something in place in case something unexpected happens.
bandages bandages 9 years
I think it's important that you marry someone that you can trust and not marry someone that you think you will divorce in the future. The only real cases where I can think of separating it is if one of the spouses has a real problem with money and needs to be limited.
pinkmermaid23 pinkmermaid23 9 years
I dread the day when that conversation will have to happen. I know my boyfriend and I are both HORRIBLE at budgeting and spending. I almost feel like it would be best to keep our money seperate in order to still have some! I think it is important to keep seperate funds and then decide which ones you will pull together to share economic responsibility.
Stupidasscat Stupidasscat 9 years
We have a joint account and we have even before we were married. We dont beleive planning for a future divorce I pay all the bills and he perfers paying for everything in cash sho I give him money every week and if he needs more he goes and gets it (after making sure ther is money to be had) and its never been a problem for us. Once your married your life is supposed to become one and that means everything.
Greggie Greggie 9 years
"I was told many years ago that you need to retain your name on things or you disappear from the credit records and if you do separate, you need something for credit checks." I was told this isn't true. It should be based on social security number overall, which would follow both names. My maiden name has most definitely not disappeared from records.
CaterpillarGirl CaterpillarGirl 9 years
Everything goes into a joint account, has since Day One of our marriage. There have been a few slip ups, when he didnt write something down, or didnt budget correctly, but you live and you learn. Its not Yours and Mine, its OURS. If we had seperate accounts it wouild seem like we didnt trust eachother, or that we were just waiting for something bad to happen in the future. Ash, we still buy presents for eachother, we withdraw cash and pay that way.
DCRoamer DCRoamer 9 years
I am intrigued by how many commenters share accounts with their boyfriends. I can totally understand doing that when you are living together. But does anyone actually have joint accounts with their boyfriend that they are not living with? It seems excessive and dangerous to me.
Lovely_1 Lovely_1 9 years
I live with my bf right now, and we keep everything seperate. Wehn i get married, I am sure we will pool some of our income together, but I also want my own money too so I can buy presents for him or myself etc.
lickety-split lickety-split 9 years
we have a joint account where all the money goes and the bills are paid from but then we each have our "dicking around" accounts. in other words, expenses paid first and then money into our individual accounts to buy what we want. his usually goes for electronic stuff for the house and my funds usually go toward extras for the kids. but the other person has ZERO say in how we spend that money so if i wanted to use my portion to buy diamonds or something i could. dh and i also have individual accounts that we had before we were married for retirement and savings. the rule of thumb at our house is that bills and basic expenses are paid jointly. we have had some "interesting discussions" over the years about the old accounts and what we should do with that money. so there it sits, which i guess is a good thing :)
samantha999 samantha999 9 years
Married 11 years with joint accounts BUT I have my own checking account and credit cards in my maiden name. I was told many years ago that you need to retain your name on things or you disappear from the credit records and if you do separate, you need something for credit checks. Its about trust and if you do not trust the other person - should you be with them? It also depends on who handles the finances - for us - its me.
ella1978 ella1978 9 years
I've been thinking about this very thing a lot lately, and mine actually goes a step further. I have my own personal money market account, 401k, Roth IRA & mutual funds, in my name. Money I have been saving for my whole life, and while I have no problems helping out my BF if he needs it, that's my hard earned cash. My problem is trying to anticipate the future. When we get married, should I change my name. If i do, and accept his last name, I have to change my accounts, then all that money becomes "our" money. And I hate to be cynical, and think about "if we ever split up" but it's a fact of life and stuff happens, and I don't want to end up high and dry if it does. I understand the dilemma.
alethia037 alethia037 9 years
My husband and I have have joint checking and savings accounts, but we each have our own credit cards for gift giving and emergency purposes. I am a spender who wants to be a saver, and he is a saver. Having joint accounts have helped to curb my spending into a reasonable amount. In addition, since he makes twice as much as me, it helps me to feel like we are both contributing to our bills and savings... it is BOTH of our money, not just one person's or the others. We have the same financial and life goals, and sharing money fits hand in hand for us :)
fadedblue fadedblue 9 years
I'm planning on having both a joint account and my own individual account when I'm married. My mother, being the cynical one she is, has always stressed that I should have my own account no matter what when I'm married, just in case anything happens. Of course I don't think that anything'll happen, but I still think it's not a bad idea to be saving in more than one place.
Brooklynbee Brooklynbee 9 years
We used to have separate accounts for years but my husband had issues with his bank and identity theft so I convinced him to use my bank, and now we have a joint checking/savings account - it's actually a lot easier for us. We have some separate accounts too, like retirement accounts, etc.
bbkf bbkf 9 years
My husband and I have our own accounts and also a joint account. The mortgage and bills come from the joint account, and fun shopping and gifts come from the individual accounts. I don't want to know how much he spends on me ;-)
shugahxnxspice shugahxnxspice 9 years
i think my boyfriend and i are leaning towards having individual accounts as well as a joint account. we discussed starting a joint account soon, but seeings as i'm still in school and may be heading into grad school, we're putting it off for a few more years.
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