Joint Budget?

Jordan and I were talking the other night about the possibility of getting a joint credit card (not tomorrow - but one day). We thought we could use this joint card for things like: groceries & shared fun stuff. When the bill comes in, we could split it right down the middle. This way we don't have to worry about who's paying for what, and who's turn it is to buy what. He recognized that I often pay for things and he's often forking over cash. I don't like keeping tabs and asking for money, and he doesn't like asking me how much he owes.

So - I kind of like the idea of a joint card - we talked about how it would not be used for any personal items, no gas, no gifts ect.

We then got to talking about what things could look like if we put all of our finances together in the future. I put together a spreadsheet of what it COULD look like.

* Savings would be bi-weekly corresponding with pay periods; which is why amounts are $55 rather then $50. This is to acount for the few months where there are 3 pay periods
* RRSPs, Efunds, Cfunds, would each be $25 bi-weekly for both him and her
** Personal accounts would receive $175 each week (rotating weeks)
*** Joint Fun - would be taken out in cash, represent a credit card, or be tracked by hand and spent via debit. This would probably also include 'other' house related items, when we buy things for our hobbies (fish). ect.

I wouldn't want to join our finances until I had accomlished the following:
  • Paid off my credit card
  • Saved $3000 in my emergency fund
  • Saved $5000 in my RRSP
What do you think? Have you joined finances with someone before?


  1. Jessie, I would suggest a joint bank account as opposed to a joint credit card. If someone doesn't have the money to pay that month and you don't pay it off on time, there's interest that has to be paid - is that going to be split 50%/50% even though one person paid their share? A joint account where both of you have auto payments going into the account on paydays and then both of you have a debit card makes more sense to me. You may want to decide on how much each of you can spend without consulting the other or does every purchase have to be a joint decision.

    I had a joint credit card and bank account with someone that I'm no longer with. With the bank account one person alone can close the account while both people have to sign to be taken off the credit card. AND the balance HAS to be brought down to $0 before you can remove the other person!

    I would talk to someone at the bank to see what the conditions would be for joint accounts and credit cards then have a long discussion with your BF before signing the papers.

    Good Luck! ~ Jamie

  2. Hmm.. those are good things to think about, thanks Jamie!

    Perhaps we could have 4 accounts (so many accounts)

    1. joint, the hub of all the $$ (no debit access)
    2. Jessie personal account (debit access)
    3. Jordan personal account (debit access)
    4. Shared spending account (debit access)

    We could possible have those four as the basis - and then a myriad of other RRSP/Emergency/Christmas Ect. funds

    hmmm.. *think *think *think
    (that reminded me of winnie the pooh)

  3. If you haven't shared accounts before then I agree that a joint account is a much better starting point than a shared credit card. Far less risk if your philosophies are not in harmony.

  4. Right now, we just have one joint account - the House Fund.

    Thanks for weighing in! We've been trying to decide the best route to take.

  5. If you just added one joint debit account that you each contributed to equally on your paydays it wouldn't be too complicated. I would vote for the debit account too. Jaimie made very good points.

  6. Besides interest and whatnot, you will want to make sure you're ready for something as big as a joint credit card. That is a lot of suck if something happens. I can see how an account makes more sense as there isn't usually an actual bill involved.

  7. My fiancee and I recently joined finances. We hold a joint chequing account as well as our own personal accounts.

    Each pay period we "pay ourselves first" by putting aside the money for savings, put aside money in the joint account for our monthly expenses, then the rest is kept in our personal accounts for spending. So far it works nicely for us!


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