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really naive question about marriage and money matters

(12 Posts)
fluffles Thu 15-Oct-09 11:15:54

I feel really stupid asking this as i feel i should know...

We're getting married next year, does that mean we'll automatically become jointly liable for all of each other's debt and jointly entitled to all of each other's savings?

We currently have a number of accounts - a joint house account, seperate current accounts, he has shares, i have an ISA, he has a work pension, i have a small work pension plus private pension, he has an endownment...

Wigeon Thu 15-Oct-09 12:16:01

No! Many couples maintain separate accounts in their own names.

KSal Thu 15-Oct-09 12:23:31

We have kept everything separatem apart from two joint accounts, one to pay mortgage, bills and shipping and one to jointly save up for stuff.

Eveything else is as it was and salaries are still paid into personal accounts etc. It makes sense to have savings and investments separately as it spreads the risk

MrsBadger Thu 15-Oct-09 12:51:41

our setup was and is similar to yours -
Separate personal current accounts for salaries,
Separate personal instant-access savings for shoes and presents
Separate pensions.
Joint house account for bills and stuff for kids.
Joint instant-access savings for holidays and nights out
Long-term joint savings and investments (Isas, shares) are in single names for tax purposes but the money is joint money eg new car / boiler / house.

remember to amend your wills though.

Wigeon Thu 15-Oct-09 12:52:03

(maybe I should have added that we have joint finances for everything though). It's up to you both to decide what you want to do.

Wigeon Thu 15-Oct-09 12:58:19

I do find it a bit bizarre when married (or those living as married) couples keep finances separate, even when they earn different amounts (I earn substantially more than DH so it's not just that I want to have my grabbing hands on his cash!). Sharing our money is quite an important principle of our marriage actually.

We know what the other person has spent on presents, and we discuss any large-ish expenditure whether it's just for one of us (eg DH bought a guitar which is definitely just for him), or for the house / family.

But nevertheless, getting married doesn't automatically mean that all your assets and debts are shared.

MrsBadger Thu 15-Oct-09 13:07:32

Yes, sharing our money is an important part of our marriage, it's just that managing and administering it jointly is not, iyswim.
The vast majority of each of our salaries goes into the 'joint current' and/or 'joint savings' accounts, but both of us like to feel that we have can (eg) save up independently for a party dress / guitar / spa weekend / beer festival without depleting the joint funds, even if the net outcome is the same.

fluffles Thu 15-Oct-09 13:08:43

Thanks everyone, we will share all our money but just not necessarily keep it together in the same place - e.g. what would be the point in having my name put onto an endownment he took out ten years before he met me? i trust him to use the money for both our good when it matures.

also, he's a higher rate tax payer and i'm not - i don't want to be taxed at his rate!

his shares are through his company, my stocks and shares isa is my own.. again, we'll share the money but i don't see the point in putting it all into joint names.

on a more daily level, he is a rubbish saver and spends all his 'leisure' money in the first weeks of the month and then is broke near payday whereas i like to be a bit of a control freak about budgeting... putting our household necessary expenses into a different account and leaving the rest sepearte means i don't have to get stressed everytime he buys a new bike part!

fluffles Thu 15-Oct-09 13:10:58

x-posts with MrsBadger but we're saying the same thing grin

we've actually sort of earmarked different accounts for different things anyway - my ISA is saving for maternity leave, his endownment for university fees (if required) smile

nearlyfree Thu 15-Oct-09 17:24:09

Let play the devils advocate here...imagine it all goes pear shaped after several years of marriage...I can tell you from hard experience that it is totally irrelevant who's name the monies are in! it is a joint pot and will be assessed as such...shares endowment inheritances xmas savings etc etc even down to what is in your own day to day cash account!! be warned if you are saver and your partner is a will lose out big style you might as well spend it as you go along....

fluffles Thu 15-Oct-09 17:50:35

nearlyfree i thought that was the case, but by encouraging him to pay into his endownment for example it means that even if his current account is in a bad way overall he (and there fore we) is ok.

he's not that bad with money and is only a spender with what he has available so i'm encouraging him to pay into savings and endownments by DD so the money's not there to burn a hole in his pocket grin

nearlyfree Thu 15-Oct-09 19:49:29

my ex was a great one for gadgets and money burned a hole in his pocket...on an average of anywhere between 25k and 35k over 10 - 12 years he only managed to save £150 a month and that was money i basically forced him to hand over I on the other hand bought my and the kids clothes from supermarkets, primark or matalan - saved £75 a month for xmas ran a car put money toward the cost of running the house and paid ALL my own expenses, saved to take us all to florida for 3 weeks!! & saved a bit for the kids future. Now all and any money i have (including my monthly wages child tax credit and working tax credits have to be included in the pot he came to the table with a grand total of 7.92 in his current account!!! take my advice make sure all savings etc is done equally!!!

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