Help with joint account setup in MS Money RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hi there,

    I'm wondering what is the best way to setup and manage a joint account in Money.

    My ex-husband and I have a joint account, that we both transfer money into for purchases and expenses for our children. His percentage is higher than mine.

    The money that he transfers into the account isn't 'mine' so I wouldn't want my end of day balances showing up higher, due to the amount sitting in that account. Although, I would like to track the children's expenses.

    Does anyone have any suggestions?

    Thank you :)

    Wednesday, October 20, 2010 6:59 AM

All replies

  • With just a moment or two thinking about it, here's what I get to:

    I'd create an account with JUST your deposits and all expenses you want to track. Its balance will trend negative by the amount of the dad's contributions less available balance. You can keep it in a single income transaction entry (don't even need to categorize it if you don't want) at the end of the register--keep changing the date--to offset that to $0 representing dad's deposits.

    Wednesday, October 20, 2010 12:34 PM
  • Hello, and thank you for the quick response.

    I'm thinking that that could work. As a bookkeeper who is studying accounting it's very easy for me to get caught up in big ideas with my own personal finances, and I auto-pilot to thinking from accounting terms.

    I got to thinking that I could track the children's account in a separate file, store the file on Live and then he can access the file and do his own updates. Then I can allocate my transfers from my own budget to the children's account, and post through all the expenditure at my percentage rate. That way it never goes into the negative, we can have live data from their file, and my budget is accurate to date.

    Sometimes there are large purchases that my budget won't allow for, so Dad pays the amount into their account, then the purchase is made. I then pay extra into the account ongoing to equal my share of the expense. I could also track my own "debt" to that account through both files.

    I don't know, what do you think?



    “Your future is created by what you do today, not tomorrow” Robert Kiyosaki
    Thursday, October 21, 2010 7:00 AM
  • I'd suggest you determine what is most important to accomplish here and let that guide the solution. I'm reading that you really want to track the separate contributions to maintain the proportionality. That seems more important than, say, detailed accounting for the spending--categorization/payee, etc.

    Sharing a Money file back and forth would, I'd expect, be problematic. It requires, for instance, that both of you have the same passion for collecting the data in a timely fashion and doing it the same way and using Money to do it. Good luck with that one. It'd also be easy to get conflicting files/updates that Money will make hard to sort out. You'd also have to maintain operational Money setups of identical version.

    How about just doing the accounting for the shared account in Excel? That way you can keep track of your contributions to it in your Money world and be done with that portion. It's a 7 column problem: date, mom's contrib, date, dad's contrib, date, item description, spent.

    I also think, with considerable experience, that this porportional spending on actual expenses approach will get messy in a hurry because the finances of raising kids gets messy. You hand the kid a $10 bill from your pocket for soccer dues while rushing out the door to go to work, say. Are you going to track that? I could go on with lots of other scenarios that don't easily fit your framework. (E.g., roof over kid's head and utilities to keep said room lit and heated.) Unless you agreed to this scheme in a decree or similar, I'd be thinking that parent with kid most of time gets $x per month from parent without kid most of time and that's just the way it is would be easier. Handle huge, discrete, expnses (e.g., braces, education, summer camp) separately.

    Thursday, October 21, 2010 11:26 AM