Combining your finances with a partner can be a great way to cover the cost of household expenses fairly and easily. If you're planning on opening a joint account with your partner, there are some key things to think about before you do.
Decide whether you really need one
Before setting up a joint account, it’s worth taking some time to decide if you and your partner need one. While they do have many advantages, there are some risks that merging your money can have. For example, if one of you make the account overdrawn, you’ll both be responsible for repaying the money.1
Set some rules for how you'll use the account
Making rules for how you’ll both manage your joint account will help things run smoothly. You may want to make rules like:
- you'll both pay in the same amount every month
- the account is only to be used for paying bills and rent
It’s useful to agree things upfront, so you’re both clear on what's expected.
Regularly communicate about your joint account spending
Agree to keep on top of your cash flow by communicating regularly. If you’ve spent some money out of the account that may not have been expected, let your partner know. By doing this, you’ll both have a clearer idea of how much you’re spending and how much money is in the account.
Think about a joint saver
Opening a joint savings account is ideal if you have any money left in your joint current account at the end of the month. You could put this money towards a holiday together or something for your home. It’s always worth agreeing what the money will be used for upfront. If it does need to be used for something else, speak with your partner.
Explore more: Money saving tips for couples
Manage any existing debt
If you or your partner have any existing debt, you’ll need to sit down and discuss how this will be managed going forward. Will you both work together to repay the debt? Or, will the debt be the responsibility of the person who accrued it? Be aware that you will be ‘co-scored’ on your credit rating which can be affected if one of you has a poor credit history.1
If you’ve agreed to open a joint current account together, find out what you need to do.