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Columns | Go Far With Kovar

Should We Merge Bank Accounts?

by Taylor Kovar

November 1 , 2022

Hi Taylor - My wife has been suggesting that we put all our money in the same bank account. We've had our own accounts for years and I'm worried this might create some unnecessary turmoil. What's your stance?

Hi Aaron
- My stance is a firm "yes" to joint bank accounts. I understand your angle—"if it ain't broke, don't fix it." From my perspective, there are so many good reasons to combine accounts, and there might also be festering problems you're not aware of that stem from keeping your money separate.

1. Eliminate questions and doubts. Obviously, separate accounts haven't ruined your marriage. However, storing your money in two different places does create an invisible barrier. It clashes with the idea of "what's yours is mine," which I think is an important pillar of a good marriage. Practically, it puts responsibilities on individuals instead of you and your wife as a team. Someone has to make sure these bills get paid while the other person is in charge of those bills. That kind of division is a breeding ground for mistakes and blame. If all your autopayments are set to draw from the same fund, that gray area gets eliminated.

2. Earn more. Even though you won't increase the amount of money you bring in, you can make a lot more on compound interest when you let your money sit together. Whether it's a savings account with a decent rate or buying a CD or a bond, the possibilities are a lot more appealing when you put all your money in one pot. It's pretty simple, really: two dollars can get a lot more done than a couple of single dollars fending for themselves.

3. Accountability. We all have good and bad habits. Whatever your Money Personality—whether you're a Saver or a Spender, or a Risk Taker—you are prone to making good and bad choices (and if you don't know your money personality, take the 3-minute test at www.5MoneyPersonalities.com). When you're the only one who checks in on your money, it's pretty easy to ignore those less-appealing habits. You might even convince yourself that those practices are wise and helpful. For example, compulsively saving your money without investing it is not a good financial practice, even though some people take great pride in piling up their wealth in one place. You and your wife are there to support and better each other, and letting your guard down so you can talk honestly about money really elevates that conversation.

I'm not saying it's all sunshine and roses; there are definitely some hurdles to overcome when you first merge your accounts. Once you work through those issues, shared money is a great way to go. Hope it all works out, Aaron!


Taylor Kovar
TheMoneyCouple.com
November 1, 2022 Column

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Legal Disclaimer: Information presented is for educational purposes only and is not an offer or solicitation for the sale or purchase of any specific securities, investments, or investment strategies. Investments involve risk and, unless otherwise stated, are not guaranteed. Be sure to first consult with a qualified financial adviser and/or tax professional before implementing any strategy discussed herein. To submit a question to be answered in this column, please send it via email to Question@GoFarWithKovar.com, or via USPS to Taylor Kovar, 415 S 1st St, Suite 300, Lufkin, TX 75901.

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