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Old 01-31-2017, 11:54 AM   #41
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The DW and I get some "mad money" every month that neither of us are accountable to the other for. Other then that we work the budget.
This is exactly the way DH and I have done it from the day we were married (32 years ago). All income goes into the joint checking / savings / investment accounts. I manage how much goes (used to go) into retirement accounts. We each get "mad money" (which we actually do call our "allowance"). Over the years the amount of that allowance increased as our salaries increased. Each year on Jan 1 we determine if we need a raise (we haven't had a raise in our allowance for 5 years). All expenses come out of the joint account(s). All savings belong to both of us and we spend based upon budget, which we have both reviewed / agreed to.

Division of labor is another thing. He does yard work and laundry. I do cooking, cleaning, grocery shopping and investment management. Occasionally we will do the other persons work as a gift to the other.

Its worked for us all this time. Not so sure it would work as easily if we had started this after several years of marriage.
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Old 01-31-2017, 01:25 PM   #42
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We did use an allowance system but it was for both of us and not just my wife. We pooled everything we earned and took out for all the budgeted living expenses - rent then later mortgage/taxes/insurance, grocery/household, car, vacations, etc. It was all done with a yearly budget in an envelope style system using Ing accounts to track it all with automatic withdrawals filling the accounts.

There were then three allowance accounts - mine, hers, and ours. The money in our allowance accounts could be spent on anything we wanted with no questions asked. The "ours" account was for us to spend on dinners out, concerts, etc.

Everything beyond that was saved though in the yearly budgeting process the max was always pre-allocated to the before tax accounts, ESPP if there was one, etc. Bonuses and stock grants weren't included in the planning and were always saved. Anything left over in the regular salary after the budgeted items was saved as well.
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Old 01-31-2017, 05:27 PM   #43
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When we married all my money and earnings became our money & earnings. We just made sure we communicated on any large purchases. An allowance would imply she was not equally entitled to our money which is not true.
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Old 02-01-2017, 12:25 AM   #44
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We have always kept our finances fairly separate. ..... As well when we were first together I was going through a messy divorce. This encouraged us to keep things .... separate........
We are still separate finances, and just have an informal "my turn" to pay system. It's close to equal, but nobody is really counting. We take turns on the estimated tax bill, and I do all the grocery shopping while she pays utilities, and I pay for 2x/wk lunch and trips so far.

In fact I have started tracking my spending to know how much do I really spend including Fed and State taxes, just so we can have better idea for SWR.
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Old 02-01-2017, 09:53 AM   #45
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When I was first married in my 20's, we were starting out to build a family and a future for ourselves. Everything was now 'ours' and I was happy to do that even though I had more financial assets than she did.

Today, if I ever have a new wife (Most 60+ women aren't interested in taking that final step to marriage anymore from my experience) we will probably keep most major assets split if for no other reason than fairness to our individual children. Some smaller assets would be joint because we are married and I would like to act like that. I still think marriage means something - old fashioned as that might sound to some.
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Old 02-01-2017, 11:57 AM   #46
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Not sure what for? I pay all joint expenses.

This works very well as she doesn't need to get my acquiescence to buy whatever she wants, (often shoes and bags). I think it makes her feel a little independent as well. A good thing, I think.
Ours are all separate except credit cards. She has her own with me as partner and I have mine with her as partner. I pay all the bills but alternate fairly between accounts. The only discussion about expenses is to validate charges but she is totally independent.

I have more equity because of my pension and higher earnings when working. But for SWR we just have one budget which is covered by 3 pensions and a low draw on the portfolios. All gifting to my kids comes from my own equity.
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Old 02-01-2017, 03:08 PM   #47
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Ours are all separate except credit cards. She has her own with me as partner and I have mine with her as partner. I pay all the bills but alternate fairly between accounts. The only discussion about expenses is to validate charges but she is totally independent.

I have more equity because of my pension and higher earnings when working. But for SWR we just have one budget which is covered by 3 pensions and a low draw on the portfolios. All gifting to my kids comes from my own equity.
I think it works best if you can find a way to keep things fairly separate. The more transfers of funds between parties there is, the more chance for conflict, I think.
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Old 02-01-2017, 04:15 PM   #48
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We got married when we had nothing.. (grad school). The only time we really had a budget was when we had effectively nothing. For many years we kept 2 joint accounts; one I used and one she used.
When we did trusts... everything was separated, but I seemed to pay for everything. She charges on cards that I'm primary on. Well are the cards we have I'm primary. I pay all the bills at the end of the month. I do the investing and will periodically shuffle $ so our individual net worth is approximately the same. Note, I can only add to her accounts. To shift $ out, she must be involved.
We have never discussed the idea of an allowance. It's always been our money. We don't really discuss much of what we are spending it own. She had my shopping gene removed and she never had one. We'll discuss a purchase like a new car... what do we want, what options, etc. We own them individually... but that doesn't determine who drives it most. We alternate who gets to drive the next new car. When my older son moved out and took a car with him, we got out of sync and we drive the car owned by the other.
I have some friends who set allowances and try to control what the other can spend. It seems to create some stress and tension in the relationship. I'm not sure we could work that way. We do just fine having many common goals and using a very loose adhoc arrangement. It seems to me that working as a team... or a couple ... is better for us. A formal process or constraints enforced (allowance) seem counter to our marriage.
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Old 02-02-2017, 09:48 AM   #49
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I think it works best if you can find a way to keep things fairly separate. The more transfers of funds between parties there is, the more chance for conflict, I think.
I agree. In fact our sharing is just paying credit card balances, taxes and transfers to her Mexican bank account (or mine) from her Cdn account. We use her Mexican account for cash and mine to pay utilities.
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Old 02-02-2017, 03:21 PM   #50
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My wife lets me know what she spends, so that I can keep track of our spending. There is not a "limit" but she understands that if we really blow through our expected spending amounts, it will have to come out of our travel budget (but the travel budget is large - 25% of our planned spending, and we likely won't spend it all on travel in any event). Just finished first month of retirement, so we'll see how this goes in the first few years.
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Old 02-05-2017, 09:02 AM   #51
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Married young with limited resources. We enjoyed finding ways to pinch a penny and enjoyed building up savings. We always had joint accounts. Over time I ended up handling bills, budget and investments as I am the reader and enjoy the details. He is more of a "big picture" kind of guy. No fights about money other then DH would like me to splurge on myself occasionally. We have always discussed larger purchases and have had limited arguments about money or spending.
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