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Do you think it's healthy to have separate bank accounts for each spouse? There are definitely some pros and cons, but I'm wondering how do other professional moms feel about that? ”

12 replies so far...

  • I think you should do what works for your marriage. We began by living together and had separate accounts. Before we got married we opened a joint account, but kept our direct deposits going into our separate accounts. We still have your account, my account, and our account, but the money is all ours. It works out well. As far as paying bills we have it broken up so I pay some and he pays some.

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Christine on 3rd October 2007

  • Healthy or not, I am not sure, but this questions brings up a lot of emotion and lots of different answers. I have been married for 7 years now, and both of us are successful. We never considered separate accounts. We just created a "family" account. I think honesty plays the biggest part in marriage and finances. My husband and I are honest with each other about our family goals and our individual luxuries. We work make sure the family is secure and each of us gets to enjoy the fruits of working so hard.

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Lisa M. Nolan on 30th August 2007

  • My husband and I keep our money separate. Only we don"t consider it "mine" and "yours", it flows back and forth. We have never argued about money in our 20 year together. I work at a university. so I have a fixed income. He has his own architecture firm. Sometimes he has a lot of money, sometimes he has none. In very general terms, he pays the house bills and I pay for food and the daily stuff that goes with having a kid. This year we bought a horse. I pay for his board directly as I have to be sure it comes out of my stable income (snort).

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by KatieK on 17th August 2007

  • I think it's odd to keep your money separate. How do you decide who pays for what? What is a family expense, and what comes out of your own money when you run to target?? What if one of you makes almost all the money? Then the other person has nothing? We've had a single joint checking account since we got married. We have our own business accounts, but that is because businesses need separate accounts or you open yourself up to personal liability, not because we want to keep the money away from each other.

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Kristie McNealy on 17th August 2007

  • My husband and I have one joint account for the household that we both contribute to monthly. But we also both have private accounts and I have a business account and a savings account. And I have no idea what his personal balance is, nor do I care. Same with him. It allows us a lot of autonomy and we never fight about money.

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Jen Creer on 16th August 2007

  • When we first married, we had 3 accounts--his, mine and ours. He never liked it, and it was complicated and a pain to manage. When he went off to Saudia Arabia for a tour, we realized we needed to consolidate so I could manage all the money from home. We just kept the "ours" accounts. I still manage all the money, and he has no idea what we have in our bank accounts at any given moment (although I always do)! This suits us.
    He doesn't spend money without talking to me about it, and we have a limit of what we can spend for gifts and incidentals without prior discussion. That way no new cars show up or something like that. Hee hee.

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by spacegeek on 16th August 2007

  • I'm sure I'm not the norm but my husband and I have totally seperate accounts. We have a joint account, but don't really use it because it led to too many arguments due to differnt philosophies on spending. We just divided the family expenses - I pay some, he pays some and we have a savings and investing plan and this works much better for us.

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Dee Anna on 16th August 2007

  • I think these discussions are not only healthy, they're vital for the marriage! I our household, we determined how much we needed for all household expenses. We divided this amount up between us, so that we each contribute a set amount each month, proportionate to our respective incomes. We each have a personal account for the rest. The joint account pays for all the household expenses.

    Given our respective incomes, "the rest" may not be a whole lot, but I think it's important to have that autonomy. Besides, it's nice to be able to buy a little treat - for yourself, for your spouse - and not have the other guy know exactly how much it cost! It's a good system for us. We revisit the budget every year or so.

    If you don't talk about this up front, there will almost certainly be confusion, exasperation, hurt feelings, resentment - far better to hash it out than not! Then everyone knows.

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by MaryP on 16th August 2007

  • Victoria
    Thanks for clarifying the potential problems. I guess since we haven't had any, it was easy for me think this is great and it's how everyone does it. Actually I totally manage all the finances. So we don't have any issues about what amount gets put into which account or how bills get paid from where. My husband trusts me to make the right decision and it really works for us. He just brings home the bacon and I decide how to spread it around :-)

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by boysmommy on 15th August 2007

  • I have always kind of agreed with Dilek, but a few years ago we merged accounts because it just got to be too much to maintain his, mine and a joint. I needed to streamline. And especially when I began my business last year and my income took a cut, it was nice to know there was always money in the bank to cover the expenses - my personal account would have gotten really low!

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Danielle Walsmith on 15th August 2007

  • The problem that could come up when you have multiple accounts is how do you decide who pays for what? And also, if one spouse makes more $$ then the other, should the money be deposited in his or her own account or joint account? Who gets to deposit how much into joint account? Are these discussions healthy for the marriage? Or does it only create more tension?

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Victoria on 14th August 2007

  • Wow I'm surprised this is even a question. Maybe I'm living in a different world. I've had my bank account since I was 14 when I started working and I plan to keep it that way until I die. I like having my own account. It's mine. My husband and I share everything and keeping the seperate accounts, as well as a joint household account really makes our finances easier to manage.
    Even though I work PT and my salary is very different from my husbands (thank you husband ;-) I feel it's still nice to see that my professional efforts create income that our family can spend!

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by boysmommy on 14th August 2007