or Connect
AppleInsider › Forums › Other Discussion › AppleOutsider › Seperate or Joint?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Seperate or Joint?

Poll Results: How do you or would you maintain your finances within a relationship?

 
  • 13% (5)
    Entirely seperate
  • 39% (15)
    Entirely joint
  • 18% (7)
    Seperate main accounts and shared joint side account
  • 28% (11)
    Seperate side accounts and shared joint main account
38 Total Votes  
post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
Relationships and money

At some recent classes, some of my fellow students and I somehow got onto the matter of how finances are maintained within a relationship. My personal family is very traditional in that my wife and I are married in what has been the one and only marriage for each of us. Our children have occurred within that marriage. We maintain one joint household checking account.

However that arrangement is far less common today than might be imagined and while I have recognized the various family forms over the years this conversation with my contemporaries was very enlightening because I never realized that the financial affairs behind the non-traditional family forms were pretty unconventional as well.

I'll tell you a few of their stories and perhaps you will care to share your opinions or a bit about your own story.

First keep in mind that I'm an elementary school teacher so all the stories involve women since that is what makes up 90% of the people in my classes. Also please understand that the reasoning I give within the stories is not my own and thus if it makes or doesn't make sense, I have no control over that.

Student A was a married woman 27ish. Her husband and her had lived together for a number of years before marrying. Before marriage and after marriage they maintained entirely seperate checking accounts. This occurred for a number of reasons. One, he had never finished his degree and while he was making decent money working within a bank, the career prospects were limited without a degree. She had finished hers, was earning more than him and was now going for her masters on top of that. Second, although she loved him, he had quite an affinity for "toys" that often compelled him not to save. He had an entire room of their home dedicated to various collectible toys often stored in their original packaging. (action figures I guess?) His gaming needs demanded a large screen television, X-box and several games per month all on an already lower salary. My take was that basically the lack of growing up on his part wouldn't stop her ability to save.

Student B was a married woman in her early 30's. Her husband and her maintained seperate checking accounts. She had been previously married and also had a child from that marriage. She was receiving support from that child and wanted to insure it remained seperate for the child. She now had a second child with the new husband. I didn't really pry too much because people just shared what they wanted to share. However I will admit that I was very curious about the finances relating to the second child and how they insured economic equality between the two children.

Students C&D were a married couple taking the class together. They were married, had children together all within the marriage, both worked as teachers and had comparible salaries. They maintained seperate accounts and then a main joint account where they would deposit a portion of their salaries for things like mortgage payments, etc. From their comments, I got the impression that this allowed them to avoid arguments on matters like how big a car payment is too much since each person was paying respectively for their own tastes in these matters.

Student E was a married woman and her husband had a child from a previous relationship. They maintained seperate accounts because she did not want any contamination of her finances to the family courts where the husband had to deal with the ex-girlfriend.

Yes I was shocked to hell that my wife and I were the only total joint account.

Even if you aren't married or even planning to get married you can feel free to contribute what you would do in any of the scenarios above or if you and your imagined partner had a similar scenario. I'll admit that in several of them, I couldn't imagine marrying the person they had married. Does seperating the finances yet joining the love really avoid arguments or just put them off for another day? Can you really keep seperate but equal expenses for siblings from different people and not have fights occur? What if the former or current relationship loses a job or can't provide as well over the long run? Does only one kid get the new shoes for school or summer camp? Do both go without?

Lots of questions, lots of thought, please share.

Nick

"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

Reply

"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

Reply
post #2 of 12
We have joint accounts, and I think that it would be kind of wierd to have seperate accounts - every resturaunt bill would trigger a discussion of "who pays?".

Joint accounts seem to solve a lot of conflicts - and if that is the only way that you can stop your spouse from overspending, then maybe you chose the wrong spouse...

My wife and I each get a annual toy budget, and we both have veto power for anything over $100 that is outside that toy budget. The only time we overspend on stuff is when we both want something ("you can spend $5k if I can spend $5K").
45 2a3 300b 211 845 833
Reply
45 2a3 300b 211 845 833
Reply
post #3 of 12
ALL of our finances are totally joint. Even if we had separate accounts, I couldn't imagine buying big ticket items without joint knowledge (yes, I said "knowledge", not "approval"). Having separate accounts wouldn't prevent an argument in those cases.

But then, we also don't have his-and-hers cars.... we have two vehicles, they belong to both of us. Either one of us will drive whatever one we want to.

I do not understand MARRIED folks with separate accounts... regardless of religion, marriage involves making a PROMISE... if your word is good for anything, then you ought to be able to pool your $$.


Geez... I just went back and deleted a whole lot of opinionated crap out of this before hitting the submit button... Was really climbing up on the old soap-box for a moment
From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
Reply
From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
Reply
post #4 of 12
Both my family and my parents had a joint account plus a separate account for the wife (no separate account for the husband). In our case, it's purely to keep my wife's business stuff separate for accounting purposes.

I'm not exactly sure why my mom had a separate account though. My dad made 95% of the money, at least in the later years (my mom quit her job as a teacher when us kids were born). So it would have been ridiculous for them to have separate accounts, and it probably felt like it wasn't worth it to put the money my mom made into the pot, because it wasn't very much anyway. So they just kept that money separate from the main joint account.

Neither my parents nor my family has ever had any spending issues or "modern" family arrangements, so it has nothing to do with that.
post #5 of 12
Initially, my wife and I figured out how much our joint bills (rent, utilities, credit cards, etc) were and put enough to cover that into a joint account.

A couple of years ago, however, we switched that and dumped all but a couple of hundred dollars of each paycheck into that account and, now, use it to pay for mostly everything. What's left over is for individiual purchases (gadgets and whatnot).

We're both very happy with this new system.

I should say that we both make essentially the same salary (I make about $150 less a year than my wife).
Gangs are not seen as legitimate, because they don't have control over public schools.
Reply
Gangs are not seen as legitimate, because they don't have control over public schools.
Reply
post #6 of 12
Thread Starter 
Well so far the sample is small (you folks can vote even if you don't reply you know) but so far it appears that entirely joint is a minority majority. It has the largest number of votes, but still only 40% of all votes.

Interesting...
Nick

"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

Reply

"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

Reply
post #7 of 12
My girlfriend and I aren't married or anything but we do live together and have done so for years now.

We keep separate finances with each of us focussing on different areas. At the end of the month we settle up and one of us writes a check to the other for the difference. This way we split living expenses like rent, groceries, bills, etc. yet still keep our personal funds separate for the fun stuff.

For things like going out to dinner one of us just pays and that's usually me since I earn more.
Download BARTsmart BART Widget, the best BART schedule widget for Mac OS X's Dashboard.
Reply
Download BARTsmart BART Widget, the best BART schedule widget for Mac OS X's Dashboard.
Reply
post #8 of 12
100% joint.

If people both want to run it differently that's fine, but the only way you can stop an overspender is to confront it directly. I think separating finances for that reason is just putting the problem on the back burner and not dealing with it until it goes nuts.

But if it's just a matter of tastes that's fine. There's no way in hell that would work for me or my wife, but we are not everyone else.
proud resident of a failed state
Reply
proud resident of a failed state
Reply
post #9 of 12
100% joint.

I agree with groverat. Separating accounts is probably an attempt to avoid confrontation on an issue that is likely to come to a boiling point at some time in the future.

My 2 cents.
post #10 of 12
I have a relationship that 's getting pretty serious by now (we 've been together for two years something), but we 're both still students and don 't live together yet, so for the time being, it seems natural to us to keep separate accounts.

That doesn 't mean we never discuss this stuff, as we often go shopping together and most of the time, one of us pays for both. We never really pay each other back "formally", but in the end it gets balanced out because if one of us pays for x today, the other will pay for y tomorrow. Sometimes, it also simply depends on who 's still got money at the end of the month.
I have to admit this only works because we 're both not big spenders (we don 't have the budget to be so anyway), and because we 're simply being fair, so one of us won 't end up systematically spending more than the other. But that 's what love is all about, isn 't it?

In the future, I 'm sure our accounts will end up being joint, although maybe not 100%. My partner seems to be in favor of the 100% joint scenario, but my parents have always had a joint main account and separate side accounts, and somehow I think that 's not at all a bad way to do it. For instance, my father 's biggest dream is buying a Harley Davidson motorcycle some day, while my mother absolutely hates the idea. On the other hand, my mother recently bought a laptop, although my father thought she didn 't really need one. Still, thanks to their separate side accounts, they were, and still are able save up the money for their respective "dream projects" separately, without having to get in each other 's way.
Expenses like groceries, monthly costs for water, electricty, cable TV and the likes, furniture, clothes, my and my sister 's college fees, ... that kind of things, or then paid with money from their joint account.
The Sky Is The Limit
Reply
The Sky Is The Limit
Reply
post #11 of 12
Quote:
Originally posted by e1618978
The only time we overspend on stuff is when we both want something ("you can spend $5k if I can spend $5K").

Either way, that is one happy associate at the apple store, 2 $5000 tickets in a row
You can't quantify how much I don't care -- Bob Kevoian of the Bob and Tom Show.
Reply
You can't quantify how much I don't care -- Bob Kevoian of the Bob and Tom Show.
Reply
post #12 of 12
Where's the "Separate side accounts, shared joint main account, and secret island account the spouse doesn't know about" option. 8)

EDIT: Darn, choose the wrong option in the poll.
horrid misuse of cool technology
SSBA.COM
Reply
horrid misuse of cool technology
SSBA.COM
Reply
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: AppleOutsider
AppleInsider › Forums › Other Discussion › AppleOutsider › Seperate or Joint?