NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- For many, merging lives via marriage or other long-term commitment means merging everything, bank accounts included. Then again, others prefer the "his, hers and ours" approach. Which is best?
It turns out that many couples prefer to keep independent checking, savings and money market accounts even if they use joint ones for things they share, including mortgage payments and other household expenses.
A TD Bank survey of 1,000 couples that had joint bank accounts found 42% also maintained individual accounts. Among those with both, 38% cited a desire for independence as a top reason. That was more pronounced among women, with 43% citing independence versus 34% of men.
Some 20% said individual accounts ensured they had money available for emergencies and personal spending, while 16% citied convenience for such things as budgeting and bill paying. Few, it appeared, use individual accounts to hide spending from partners, as only 7% said privacy was a top goal.online or through a smartphone app, you can transfer cash easily from one account to another. And you can choose whether each partner can see activity in all three accounts or just the joint account and his or her individual account. In describing its survey findings, TD Bank recommends that couples talk with the bank about the best way to set up this multi-account system, especially if it involves savings aside from simple checking. With the right mix, you can minimize fees and maximize interest earnings, and perhaps get benefits such as reimbursement for out-of-system ATM use. Of course, you could keep your individual accounts at separate banks. That might seem like a simple option when two people just getting together already have individual accounts at different banks. But moving money among accounts will probably be quicker and easier if all the accounts are at one institution.