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Saving as a couple

Are you ready to take the plunge? We’re talking about saving as a couple. Here are some tips to get you on your way.

More than just combining your money, you’ll also have to potentially deal with differing opinions and emotions about finances as well. It doesn’t have to be daunting though – the key is to keep the lines of communication open, set some ground rules, decide your goals and get saving.

Laying the groundwork

If you’re about to embark on saving with your partner, kick it off with an honest discussion about where you’re both at financially, keeping in mind that you or your partner may not find it easy to talk about money and finances. Points you may want to cover include:

Will you both contribute the same amount, or if one of you earns more than the other will they put in more?
Are you only combining your savings or will you combine other expenses as well?
What happens if either of you are unable to keep up with the contributions you’ve decided on?
What sort of account will you be saving in and will you both have access?

What are you saving for?

It might seem obvious, but make sure you’re on the same page about what you’re saving for. Is it a holiday? A deposit on your first home? Maybe it’s a new car. Whatever it is, make sure you’re both clear about what the endgame is – and even better still – both feel enthusiastic about achieving it. By having the same level of commitment, you’ll both be far more likely to have the drive to work towards it.

Get specific

Once you know what you’re saving for, it’s time to put some actual figures next to it and build a savings plan around it.

Review your spending

When you know how much you need to save – and how often - it’s an ideal opportunity to review your spending. Our budgeting calculator could help you identify where your money is going. When you’ve got a fair idea, you’ll be in a good position to look at where you could make some potential savings.

Setting up a joint account

You’ve worked out what you’re saving for, have opened the lines of communication with you and your significant other and have laid down the ground rules. The next step may be to consider a joint account.

At the broadest level, a joint account is a savings or transaction account that is held in both names. However some accounts will require account holders to approve transactions, whereas others will only need one account holder to approve them.

Some savings accounts may benefit you for regular saving by offering bonus interest when you reach certain conditions, such as making a minimum deposit and not making any withdrawals within a month.  

It’s worthwhile looking for a savings account that pays bonus interest when you meet certain conditions. For example, a Westpac Life account offers both a competitive base rate as well as bonus interest at the end of each month when you make a deposit into the account and the account balance has grown by the end of the month.

When your savings reach a certain amount you might want to consider a term deposit – not only will a term deposit give you the certainty of knowing exactly what the return on your savings will be, it can also remove the temptation of dipping into your savings as your money will be locked away for the length of the term you’ve chosen.

Keeping tabs of your progress

Watch your balance grow and see how much interest you’ve earned by regularly checking your savings account – it’s a great way to motivate you both to keep going.


Things you should know

This information does not take into account your personal circumstances and is general in nature. It is intended as an overview only and it should not be considered a comprehensive statement on any matter or relied upon as such.