Hooking up with someone permanently means working through financial logistics. Before joining households, talk about whether to merge finances. Should you join accounts? Generally, if couples act as a team, either strategy will work.
The benefits of combining accounts, loans and assets are: fewer accounts to monitor, easy sharing, transparency (helps with budgeting, taxes and communication), and reduced banking fees. But, often when couples pool money, it creates the perception they’re flush with cash, which triggers overspending. Couples can also disagree on spending habits which can translate into nasty money fights. Plus, if the relationship ends, one partner could take off with the financial resources (this would be settled later on in court).
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Who’s going to pay the bills? Legally, the person whose name is on a bill is responsible for paying it. List the bills in the name of the person who will ensure they get paid in full and on time.