Do you and your wife have separate bank accounts? I need advice/help

Discussion in 'Social Life, Food & Drink, Travel' started by Timbaland, Oct 3, 2013.

Do you guys have separate bank accounts from your wife?

  1. Yes, we have entirely separate accounts

    8 vote(s)
    22.2%
  2. I have a separate and a joint account

    18 vote(s)
    50.0%
  3. We only have a single joint account

    10 vote(s)
    27.8%
  1. acidboy

    acidboy Senior member

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    it just feels awkward getting money from the joint account to pay for blow and strippers.....
     


  2. Cary Grant

    Cary Grant Senior member

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    Heh- I was more about what the PARENTS will say.

    One of the best things for us in that regard was moving 800 miles from the parents ;)
     


  3. JohnGalt

    JohnGalt Senior member

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    married 4 years - separate accounts. wife stays home with the kids and bills are paid out of my account. she is an AU on my amex and has checks for when they are needed.
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2013


  4. Sixracer

    Sixracer New Member

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    Only been married for a year but we have separate accounts. We split rent and divided up bills in a roughly equal manner. She buys a lot of home supplies but i get most of the groceries. I would not recommend such an ad hoc method. My wife prides herself on not wasting money so it was hard for me to not feel some resentment for paying for a lot of our supposedly joint expenses (such as car insurance) while my wife banked a spare $1000 a month. I have joked about charging her mileage when I drive her or for half the parking fees. She didnt laugh. Best to do joint or make sure nothing about a potentially inequitable separate arrangement bothers you.
     


  5. Gibonius

    Gibonius Senior member

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    My wife and I have been lazy about getting shared accounts going, but it hasn't been much of an issue. Finally opened one recently, slowly moving direct deposits and such into it. We've always just paid roughly equitable amounts out of our individual accounts. When I was making more, I paid (or saved) more, and vice versa. We have separate credit cards for gifts and such. I have financial software to keep track of all the individual accounts, so it's been easy enough to manage.





    Yeah, that doesn't sound good. Splitting rent and such is great for before you're married and are just living together, but afterwards it starts undermining the idea that you're a team now.
     


  6. hopkins_student

    hopkins_student Senior member

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    We've been married for five years and we have joint checking and savings accounts and she has individual checking and savings accounts that she's had since before we were married. I closed my individual accounts when we got married. The mortgage is in my name. My student loan debt is shared by both of us.

    My wife is incredibly low maintenance. She is unbelievably thrifty when it comes to spending on herself. She's also relatively ok with the fact that I'm not at all thrifty. So really there's no way that I would stand to benefit from having a separate checking account.

    Our arrangement is that she does all of the bill paying. For the most part I take the lead on financial decisions, but I have no desire and feel no need to participate in the accounting and she's perfectly content to take care of that.
     


  7. otc

    otc Senior member

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    People still do bill paying?

    I haven't paid a bill in years...once a year I go into my bank's website and tell them to increase the size of the rent check

    I bet she's got it all automated and shit...and once a month she says "I'm going to lock myself in the study and pay off the bills" while she climbs out the window, hops in the car, and drives to the spa.
     


  8. FLMountainMan

    FLMountainMan White Hispanic

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    Florida law is such that she gets half of the equity built during our marriage, regardless of whose name is on the deed or how much of the mortgage she paid. I think that's fair and wouldn't have felt right insisting on a prenup to prevent that.

    I'd advise you to do some preliminary research on the matter. Most states consider assets accumulated before the marriage to not be considered (at least directly) part of the divorce package. So for example, you have a 401(k) with $50,000 in it, you marry her, and divorce in ten years. The 401(k) at the time of your divorce is worth $100,000. You walk away with the $50,000 you put into, plus half of the increase value (i.e. equity built) during the marriage, which would be $50,000/2= $25,000. So you walk away with $75,000 total (irrespective of any state laws that may shield retirement accounts).

    I the instance of the property you share, any share you have, and have officially, not just an understanding, before the marriage would be off-limits to the divorce.

    This in no way constitutes legal advice, of course, and you should consult your own attorney before giving any merit to what I've said here. Also, boobies.


    LOL. I don't doubt some women do. For me, a year of extreme poverty and the subsequent climb out has made me extremely wary of automatic bill payments. If shit goes south, I want the option of easily being able to skip a payment on something. My wife thinks I'm ridiculous mailing in a check for the bills I pay (mortgage and Sallie Mae), but I don't give a damn.
     


  9. otc

    otc Senior member

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    The value of my free time FAR FAR exceeds the limited utility of knowing something won't go wrong with the transaction because I am doing it myself by hand.

    I mean, I still see the payments show up so I can check their value, and I have the option of cancelling/changing/postponing a payment until the day the bank cuts the check. If I do happen to have a billing error that goes uncaught, it would have to be pretty damn large to hurt me more than the amount of time not paying bills has saved me. It would have to be like...my rent check getting sent twice (not that I couldn't make that mistake by hand, especially if it was me and a wife thinking about the bills) and then I would notice it eventually when my annual rent expenditure (should be a fixed expense) was 8% high...
     


  10. Journeyman

    Journeyman Senior member

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    It's interesting to read about the varied arrangements that people have.

    I have a rather Asian arrangement as, although I'm not Asian, my wife is. We have separate bank accounts but on the day I get paid, my account automatically transfers most of my nett pay packet over to her bank account, leaving me with some money to pay for public transport, lunch, and discretionary spending.

    My mobile (cell) phone bill is deducted automatically from my account, but my wife handles all of the other payments - council rates, electricity, internet, insurance, school, extra-curricular lessons for the kids etc etc.

    I can't complain because as a result of my wife's financial management we're debt free and we've got the equivalent of over two years' nett salary stashed away.

    So, whilst I've surrendered a good measure of financial independence, I still have some money to use every fortnight (or to save up for bigger clothing- or shoe-related purchases) and we're in an excellent financial situation, so it's the arrangement has certainly worked for us.
     


  11. Medwed

    Medwed Senior member

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    I have been in a relationship for 8 years, first we got married due to legal issues of work permits and permanent residency (she is Swedish citizen)and then once we established that for my then wife we promptly divorced due to tax penalty. We we awestruck how much our taxes skyrocketed (no kids no mortgage) in a first year, so we decided then that we are not going to throw money at Uncle Sam.
    I wonder why people who do not fall into my scenario even consider marrying before they have kids or joint property?

    To your original question; I don't remember once discussing who pays for what with my girl. If you are living paycheck to paycheck or worse then perhaps. But if you are two earning adults ...I honestly think all these negotiations and discussions about money spells trouble in a relationship. Who pays for entertainment? It is an absurd question just like who takes the trash out or who takes the car to a car wash? It is something you do when you alone don't you? Well just continue to do it and if your partner never offers you any help or to pay for your dinner or to pick up groceries on a way home then she is not really your partner, it is that easy.

    If marriage requires contracts and negotiations it is a financial partnership and it will end badly as most financial partnerships do. That is why there is a saying: "Never do business with your friends, if you don't want to lose them".
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2013


  12. FLMountainMan

    FLMountainMan White Hispanic

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    How long, exactly, does it take you to write a check? I get my month's bills done in maybe two minutes at most. And you may think you have the option of cancelling etc... but I think you'll find out you've overlooked a lot of fine print when you actually go to do so.
     


  13. VaderDave

    VaderDave Senior member

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    My wife and I have been married for almost 24 years. We got married when we were in college, and we didn't have much of anything. So we've always had joint accounts. I can't even imagine having a separate account where I kept money that I considered "mine."

    I can see (especially after reading some of the posts here) how it might have been different if we had married later or if we had been further along in our careers, but everything I have at this point I owe to her support during college and law school, so I'm happy to give her everything I earn now.
     


  14. Michigan Planner

    Michigan Planner Senior member

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    We've been married just over 5 years and we each have a personal account and then one joint account together.

    When we first got married, I still had a bunch of student loan debt and wasn't making too terribly much. She on the other hand had a high paying job and a ton of money in various accounts and trust fund payments coming in regularly. We figured it was easier to just keep things separate for a while and she paid the rent while I paid the utilities and for most of the groceries. After a year or so (not long after buying a house), at her request, we got a joint account and each contribute a portion of our paychecks to it as well as any annual gifts or anything like that we receive. These days we use that account for mortgage/insurance/taxes, utilities, house maintenance, groceries, gasoline, and child expenses (we have a 3-year-old). Anything else, comes from our personal accounts and over the past couple of years we've been slowly increasing what % goes into the joint account and decreasing what goes into the personal accounts.
     


  15. aravenel

    aravenel Senior member

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    We also have a joint and each a personal. All paychecks etc go into the joint which is the primary account. We then each get a set amount each month transferred into our personal accounts for discretionary spending. Has worked well for us.
     


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