Should You Keep Your Money Separated After Marriage?

Written By Jeff Hindenach
Last updated February 2, 2021

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Personal Finance
May 6, 2016

Simple. Thrifty. Living.

One of the top issues that can cause friction in a marriage is money. Couples who haven’t taken the time before marriage to discuss how they will handle their finances together are no doubt headed for a few arguments.

However, with a little bit of planning, finances and marriage don’t have to be a cause of concern. Take the time to determine the best course for keeping finances separate or combined.

Keeping in mind that your marriage is a partnership between the two of you, why wouldn’t your finances also be a combined partnership?

1. Simplicity, openness and efficiency
For some couples, it may just make more sense to have everything run from one joint bank account. You will always know how much money is left in the account, what your budgeting needs are and where the money has been spent. It also makes it easy to pay bills from one joint account and to add to your savings.

2. You are building a life together
In an ideal marriage, the wealth belongs to both of you, and you don’t need to argue about who pays for what and who owes money to whom when you have a joint account.

3. Tax purposes
You may also benefit more from filing your taxes jointly.

4. You can more easily support each other
If both of you work, but one loses his or her job, or one doesn’t always make the same amount of income, then it is easier to sit down with a joint account and work on the monthly budgeting together.

Even in a marriage, maintaining a sense of independence and self-worth is very important to some.

1. Maintaining your independence
So long as it doesn’t cause any arguments, it is sometimes a good idea to keep one joint account and one separate account in order to feel a little independent now and then.

2. You don’t need to ask permission to spend your money
Provided there is always enough money to handle the daily finances and other marriage-related expenses, you can spend your own money without guilt.

3. Taxes, again
Depending upon your income and assets, it can be beneficial to maintain separate accounts and file separately. Talk to an accountant to see how either situation can affect you positively or negatively.

Finances and marriage is always a tricky, stressful situation to discuss. There are pros and cons to both of the above options, and talking things out in a calm and rational manner will enable you to make the best decision for your marriage.

About the Author

Jeff Hindenach

Jeff Hindenach is the co-founder of Simple. Thrifty. Living. He graduated from Bowling Green State University with a Bachelor's Degree in Journalism. He has a long history of financial journalism, with a background writing for newspapers such as the San Jose Mercury News and San Francisco Examiner, as well as writing on personal finance for The Huffington Post, New York Times, Business Insider, CNBC, Newsday and The Street. He believes in giving readers the tools they need to get out of debt.

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