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Dilemma: Should My Husband and I share a Bank Account?

“Dear Kiki,

My husband and I have been married for 8 months now and just as we are about to hit our 1st-anniversary mark, my husband decided that he would like us to share a bank account.

Now the issue is that I am not only the breadwinner of the household, but before we got married, we already agreed that we should have separate accounts. The joint accounts are for the household expenses and children when they come. I don’t want it to be somehow so what should I do?”

When you are in a committed relationship, you are bound to share many things together, including your home, pet, kids, and in many cases, your finances. One of the most important questions to discuss with your partner is how household finances will be handled when there are two people at the helm, versus one.

So if you’ve ever wondered whether you should have joint or separate bank accounts with your partner? Let’s evaluate the pros and cons of merging your bank account with your partner together…

Pros of Sharing a Bank account with your partner

  • Everyday convenience

For many couples, a joint bank account is the ultimate symbolic gesture of their financial union. Sharing an account allows each partner access to money when they need it. Joint bank accounts usually provide each account holder with a debit card, a checkbook, and the ability to make deposits or withdraw funds.

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  • Two pairs of eyes for oversight

One of the main advantages of a joint bank account is that there’s a smaller chance of encountering financial “surprises” when all money goes into and comes out of one account that both of you can see. Couples with joint accounts may find it easier to keep track of their finances because all expenses come out of one account.

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  • Helps streamline legal affairs

Some legal affairs are also streamlined with joint bank accounts. In the event that your partner passes away, in most cases, the other partner will retain access to the funds in a joint account without having to refer to a will or go through the legal system to claim the money.

Cons of sharing a bank account with your partner

  • Loss of Independence

Some couples may feel a loss of financial independence with a joint bank account. With separate accounts, each partner maintains an individual degree of freedom over their finances. In other words, there’s no “checking up” from the other partner because transactions are private, rather than shared.

  • Entering with unequal accounts

Problems may arise when one partner in the relationship has outstanding debt, such as student loan debt, credit card debt, or even child support. If one of the account holders in a joint account owes money, a creditor can try to collect funds from the joint bank account.

  • Dangerous incase of messy break up

A joint account can also be problematic if the relationship ends. If the couple decides to part ways, the funds in a joint account can be messy to separate. Each partner has every right to withdraw money and close the account without the consent of the other, and one party can easily leave the other penniless. Separate bank accounts prevent that scenario and can allow for an easier break that often doesn’t involve a long fight to fully separate the finances.

So guys, do the pros outweigh the cons? Leave your opinion in the comment section

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