How do you (want to) use Joint Accounts?

In a recent discussion with my (younger) colleagues it transpired that we thought of Joint Accounts in rather different ways and I wonder how it is that you might use these - if you’ve ever done so?

If you share your income and expenses with someone else, how do you arrange your accounts?

  • There’s My Money / Your Money / Our Money
  • There’s only Our Money
  • There’s only My Money (send me a request if you need something)

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I have to admit I think of having a Joint Account as an alternative to having Personal accounts, but I can see the benefits of running it as one of several accounts.

Essentially, would you see the need for such an account as a way of combining all income and expenses, or as a way of segmenting them?

Conceptually it is interesting as it means that you might need to ‘Track’ more than one account to know how you are doing, but it also makes it easier to separate personal from shared expenses.

I’d be very interested to know if you’ve had one, and how you use such an account.

If Dozens were to offer these sorts of accounts (don’t get too excited yet, I’m not announcing anything - this is just for interest and discussion), how would you imagine it working best for you?

Our joint accounts are for specific purposes. One for all the house costs, one for all the child stuff, one for shared income.

I’d love to see a UK institution copy bunq and let you set up a large number of full accounts, any of which could be joint. I think encouraging people to organise spending by account is also incredibly powerful when it comes to budgeting.

So, you might set up an account priority and select an account for essential costs with at least a three month horizon, so any incoming money is automatically assigned to your next three months of bills…

Thinking of joint accounts just as a way of combining finances is a bit old school. They’re really just a way to organise spending efficiently

I have a joint account, which goes for household stuff, to which we contribute in proportion of our income. But the personal accounts are not remotely linked to that.

The whole joint account concept is well overdue an overhaul.

Some sort of “joint account agreement”, setting out the purpose of the account, how it will be funded and what will happen if either party wants to close it would be incredibly helpful for flatmates, couples etc.

I doubt that’s remotely possible though. It would take some very elegant legislation, plus governments have persistently avoided looking at the mess that is the law around unmarried couples, family carers, cohabitees and so on.

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My wife and I have the same arrangement. Allows for sharing of monthly expenses (such as household, childcare supermarket costs) but allows us the freedom to use our own accounts for personal spending. Best of both worlds!

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