The numbers behind joint accounts: Is sharing caring? | finder.com

The numbers behind joint partner accounts

Sharing is caring … right? If you’re 1 in 3 Americans, the extent of that sentiment only goes so far.

Couples share their soft hoodies, the last bite of pizza, Netflix accounts and countless other parts of their lives together — so why not join forces financially?

Of the 183 million Americans who are currently romantically involved with a partner, 128 million are onboard with divvying up their dollars through at least one shared account.

Sharing more than just love

When it comes to sharing finances with your main squeeze, things can get sticky depending on the type of person you’re dating. Especially if they’re prone to scrutinizing the whereabouts of every last penny and you are not.

Turns out, though, that 66 million Americans don’t have to worry about keeping mental notes of their partners spending habits since they’re right there on the credit card statement. Accounting for 36.1% of better halves bound by budget, joint credit cards are the most popular shared accounts.

Just over a third of lovebirds feel more comfortable with one foot in and one foot out. So while 34.8% of Americans don’t mind stacking paper together, they still want a little nest egg for themselves.

Some couples are going as far as saying goodbye to their individual bank accounts altogether and opening a joint account with their partner — fingers crossed that it works out for those 34.8%.

Then, there’s the 18.5% of companions who are signing on the dotted line together for a joint loan. But that leads us to wonder: Are they taking out loans together because of a shared expense, or is it because one needs a cosigner to score a lower rate?

Lest we forget the 28.1% who adhere to the “What’s mine is mine and what’s yours is yours” maxim. There’s no budging for over a quarter of Americans who’d rather keep their finances private — you know, just in case.

Shared finances and gender: A line drawn in the sand

Women are 31% more likely to keep their finances under wraps and unshared, and 26% of men feel the same way.

However, when involved partners decide to go in on a bank account with each other, men are 40% more likely to have an additional account on the side all for themselves — that’s 10% more than women in the same situation.

When couples decide to truly go all in on a money merge, meaning no separate accounts, only 32% of men compared to 38% of women are ready to make the leap into a shared money pool.

If we’re talking plastic, men are 39% more willing to share their swipes with a partner. But when the paperwork for a joint loan is on the table, only 17% of guys are willing to be a cosigner. For women, 33% will share their Amex or Visa with their partner, and just 20% would cosign a joint loan.

What joint accounts do you share with your partner? Female Male
Joint bank account (i.e for expenses) plus additional separate individual accounts 30% 40%
Joint bank accounts only (no separate, personal accounts) 38% 32%
Joint credit cards 33% 39%
Joint loan (e.g house, personal, business, auto) 20% 17%
I keep all finances completely separate from my partner 31% 26%

Are shared finances an outdated concept?

Looking at our data, the numbers sure look that way. Only 19% of baby boomers keep their finances separate from their partner. Generation Y doubles that at 39%, and just over 1 and 4 of Gen Xers (26%) keep their green to themselves.

Across the board, Gen Y is the least likely demographic to share. Only 22% would share a credit card, compared to 51% of boomers and 37% of Gen Xers.

Joint loans make up the smallest form of shared finances that any generation would consider — 16% for both Gens X and Y and 25% for baby boomers.

Generation X is in the top spot (38%) as the generation that keeps a personal bank account on the side in addition to the account shared with a partner. For those abandoning their personal account for a joint account, baby boomers (46%) lead the pack for pooled prosperity.

What joint accounts do you share with your partner? BB Gen X Gen Y
Joint bank account (i.e for expenses) plus additional separate individual accounts 34% 38% 31%
Joint bank accounts only (no separate, personal accounts) 46% 34% 27%
Joint credit cards 51% 37% 22%
Joint loan (e.g house, personal, business, auto) 25% 16% 16%
I keep all finances completely separate from my partner 19% 26% 39%

For media inquiries:

Jennifer McDermott
Jennifer McDermott

Consumer advocate helping people improve their personal finances.

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