How do you handle joint finances with a partner or spouse?

Hi everyone

I wanted to start a thread about how you handle joint finances with a partner or spouse. Everyone has a different route that works for them and I am curious what that is and how Emma fits into that?

We use Splitwise to split joint expenses, as they have way more options. I then keep a manual offline current account called “Splitwise”, where I periodically update the balance to match the total of what is owed, in order to keep my personal net worth accurate.

I guess it’d be slicker if the whole process was more integrated within Emma, provided that;

  • The kickass splitting options from Splitwise existed within Emma; and
  • Pending transactions can be split instantly without the hypertensive “Hey slow down :roll_eyes:” message; and
  • Switching my partner over to Emma wouldn’t be too much friction (protracted account setup / email activation processes, premium subscriptions, etc)

That’s great! I think splitwise does have alot of great features some of which we hopefully will be able to incpororate into our Spaces down the line!

I think now that Splitwise has started to push people towards their Pro subscription very hard (10 second countdown nag screen for each expense, limited to 3 expenses per day), I’ve noted a lot of people, myself included, looking for alternatives. It’d be a good opportunity for Emma to snag some of these evacuees by investing more in the bill splitting and sharing functionality.

1 Like

Ah didn’t know about this!

Can you post a screenshot?

Sure; now, each time you go to add an expense, you get this nag screen, with a 10 second timer at the bottom:

Trying to exit the screen will remind you that there is no escape:

After adding 3 expenses per day, you get a dead end screen, forcing you to upgrade to Pro:

They made this change so quickly, they haven’t had the time to update all the Pro marketing messaging to reflect these limits. Apparently, their customer service has also been told to pretend that this is an innocent anti-spam measure (???).

Worth noting that as their App Store ratings (and DAU, too, I’m sure) are plummeting because of this change, they’ve changed the limit from 3 to 4, and are experimenting with different price points for Pro, from £1.99/mo to £4.99/mo.

Personally, I’m not against paying (and in fact, have paid for a few months of Pro in the past), but nowhere near £4.99/mo (which is starting to rival the price of some streaming services), and definitely not to reward this shareware nag screen tactic circa 1998.

Ah, interesting to know!

Thanks for sharing, I’ll give it a try.

1 Like

About joint expenses,

Me and my wife used to use our joint bank account to spend for shared things like groceries, eating out, etc., but now we exclusively use our personal Amex cards for rewards, which makes it harder to keep track of things.

So we get together every month and update a Google Sheets doc with our joint expenses (that we made using our personal cards), and based on the sum, one of us pays the other.

This is one reason why Spaces doesn’t work very well for me; it’s account-based. But because I use my personal accounts/cards for joint expenses as well, it would be awesome if I could pick an “owner” for each individual transaction regardless of its account, kinda like how I can pick a category.

I vaguely recall reading (maybe on the roadmap?) about a potential feature that might extend categories to allow some of them to be treated as Excluded. But I think what a transaction is (groceries, eating out, transport) and who owns it (me, my household, my company, no one) are fundamentally different concepts which should probably be kept separate.

Solution idea:

Concept of “transaction owners” that I can define and then pick per transaction regardless of the transaction’s account and independent of its category. Examples: Personal, Joint, Work, Excluded (which would no longer be a category).

Concept of “named entities” with individual Net Worth values computed based on transaction owners. Examples: Bob (me), ACME (my company).

Net Worth calculation for each entity could be configured like this:

[Bob]‘s Net Worth includes,
• 100% of transactions marked as [Personal]
• 50% of transactions marked as [Joint]
• 0% of transactions marked as [Work]

[ACME]‘s Net Worth includes,
• 0% of transactions marked as [Personal]
• 0% of transactions marked as [Joint]
• 100% of transactions marked as [Work]

Anyway, looking at how incredible Emma is today, I’m sure you’ll find a much neater solution than my ramblings.


Hey Safak,

This approach is impressive! It’s great to see how you’re thinking about improving the joint expense tracking experience.

We appreciate your kind words about Emma! Rest assured, we’re always working on making Emma even more awesome, and your suggestions are a fantastic addition.

Cheers! :rocket: