Dear Dave: Should Finances Be Combined Or Separate In A Marriage?

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Posted: May 21, 2019 11:19 AM
Dear Dave: Should Finances Be Combined Or Separate In A Marriage?

Source: Chondon Photography via AP

Dear Dave,

Should my husband and I combine our finances?

Jenny

Dear Jenny,

If you want a quality marriage, the answer is yes. If you want a high probably of building wealth, the answer is yes. 

I read an article the other day about how you shouldn’t rely on joint bank accounts in marriage, because half of all marriages end in divorce, and the woman needs to be independent of her husband financially, so she won’t get messed over if the marriage doesn’t last. That’s an absolute load of crap, and here’s why.

How and where you spend your money is always a direct result of your value systems. Jesus said it this way, “For where your treasure is, your heart will be, also.” When you plan your finances together, and you’re sharing your hopes and dreams, you’re sharing your goals for the future. You’re reaching for those together. You each have a voice, you each have a vote, and no one loses their personal identity in this. So yes, married couples should combine their finances. They should combine their checking accounts and their decision making on finances. You’ll make better, smarter decisions that way, and it instills communication in a marriage. 

You know, when I first started teaching this stuff I didn’t realize that. I told couples to combine their finances, not from a relational standpoint, but because it’s impractical to run two sets of books in a household. But it’s very hard to hit the same goals and make good things happen together when you’re living separate financial lives. Since then, I’ve become convinced this approach builds stronger finances and stronger marriages.

Marriage is grand, divorce is fifty-grand, and when you live separately you’re going to end up living…separately. Combine your finances.

—Dave