When you get married, you and your spouse have plans for the future. Maybe there's a vacation you'd like to take, or maybe you're thinking ahead to retiring together. Either way, the two of you need a savings account to make your financial dreams a reality. Managing a joint savings account with a spouse is a little different from building your savings as a single person. Here are a few friendly reminders to keep in mind during the process.
- Be honest about your current financial status: You should be honest with your spouse about how much money you have, as U.S. News & World Report advises. Holding information back for your spouse to find out later can lead to anger and conflicts. No one wants to put all her savings in a joint account only to learn that her spouse had another account he didn't share with her. And it's equally important to disclose debts.
- Negotiate: You and your spouse may not agree on everything when it comes to spending. Remember that it will be important to be willing to compromise so that both partners can agree on the final outcome.
- Find Out Who Will Inherit Money From the Account: Most joint savings accounts for married couples give the account owners rights of survivorship, as Bankrate explains. This means that if one spouse dies, the other inherits the money without having to go through probate court. That's usually convenient, and you may not want to make any changes to that arrangement. However, if you and your spouse want another relative to inherit the money, you may need to set up a different type of account because survivorship rights generally aren't affected by what's written in a person's will.
- Have a Money Date Night to Look at Account Statements Together: Plan a regular date, such as one evening a month, to look at account statements, discuss your goals for the account and transfer money into it. Use this time to create a budget and check in on how you are doing. Also, this date night gives you an opportunity to communicate and work toward your financial goals together. It also ensures that you don't forget to add to your savings. If each spouse thinks that the other is managing the account, you won't meet your savings goals. You could also be hit with an inactivity fee if you let the account sit for too long without depositing or withdrawing any money.
When you're ready to set up a joint savings account, learn about the accounts Coosa Valley Credit Union offers.