The Best Shared Bank Accounts
Comparing mobile-first joint bank accounts in European banks
You might be moving in with your partner, or are actually friends with your housemates with whom you share expenses with. Either way, it’s only a matter of time when some petty arguments over expenses ruin a good thing. Whether you’re banking while still in college or are already a responsible working citizen making a living for yourself, many mobile banks in Europe offer solutions to this problem. Solutions either come in a form of extremely convenient features or even specific products aimed at making shared budget less of a nightmare. Read about important aspects to consider when choosing a shared bank account, subtle legal differences in their types and find our suggestions on what the best joint bank account is below.
How to select the best bank for your joint account?
Sharing a bank account is certainly a bit of extra responsibility for everyone involved, so make sure you do not take this decision lightly. Here are three things we suggest you consider when making your choice:
How do you want to use your joint account?
First of all: do you want to be able to pay from this account? Some mobile banks have features like "Group Vaults" from Revolut: these help you manage shared expenses or start saving together. However, it is not a "real" bank account, therefore you won’t be able to set up a direct debit for utility bills or make a big purchase from it directly. Therefore, you would also not be able to get a bank card attached to it either.
How easy is it to get one?
Surveys say that many people never end up opening a shared bank account because of the traditionally inefficient and time-consuming process of getting one. Luckily, that is no longer the case - thanks to digital banks, a large portion of complexity involved in opening a joint bank account is now gone! You no longer need to find a time that fits everyone to visit a branch during a work day - it is as easy as downloading an app and verifying your identity from the comfort of your couch.
The legal implications.
Not a lot of people know that, but there are two main types of shared accounts: an account that is co-owned by multiple people, and the account owned by one person that the other(s) have access to. Are you comfortable having all the shared funds reside in a bank account you own? On the other hand, co-ownership means that if you wish to close the account, the approval of all co-owners is required as well.
Our Verdict: The Best Banks for Shared Banking
Below are three digital banks we recommend if you are in the market for a solution to manage your shared expenses or saving together! We also provide links to our in-depth reviews of banks we mention so you can learn more about each individual solution's pros and cons and check out our personal bank account comparison overview to find the option that suits you best yourself. With low switching costs in the financial services category thanks to things like Bank Switch Service, and the convenience of fully-online identity verification, it might also be a good time to find a better bank for your personal banking needs. At the end of the day, switching to a better bank can save you both time and money, so it is something that is well-worth an hour of your time!
bunq is the most flexible mobile bank when it comes to sharing an account. It offers full-fledged joint bank account, as well as smart features for group expenses. There is a variety of options that can fit your needs: for starters, you can open a joint bank account directly from the bunq app - whoever you’re sharing it with won’t even need to be there! Alternatively, you can also share access to one of your personal accounts with someone while maintaining the full control of the account. This works particularly well if you are a parent who is in search for a solution to have your kids use an account you can keep track of. Moreover, you are able to share a shared bank account with up to 10 people - this creates an impressive range of options: use it with all your housemates, a close circle of friends, your family or your partner! Last but not least, bunq users enjoy up to 3 cards included in their subscription, and you can have a separate card that is linked to your joint account, so you can be sure all of the expenses come from exactly the account you want them to.
Instead of offering a basic joint bank account, Revolut gives users features that directly address the issues you'd otherwise solve by having one. For couples, this is a great option to do a step in the right direction in case you do not yet feel ready for the legal commitment of sharing a bank account. The "Group Bills" feature works like a charm when dealing with expenses. All you need to do is to just add your friends to a Group Bill, and that's it - everyone can now add expenses to the bill which can be split and paid for in an instance. This is a very useful feature for a common "pot" of money when going on a trip with your friends or pitching in for a birthday present. You can also create a "Group Vault" where you and the people you add can start saving for a big purchase together. All in all, Revolut is a strong contender for our "best shared bank account" nomination, thanks to a wide range of options and the additional flexibility provided by these.
Looking for something simple? Monese should do the trick. It is very easy to start a joint account when you have a Monese Personal account. Once you invite your partner to join, both of you receive a bank card specifically for purchases your shared bank account. The cards have a split design which makes the bank's logo when put together, which is a nice touch! In addition, you can create a pot in your joint account to save up for something big with your partner. And that’s about it: Monese offers a simple solution for shared expenses and savings. If you’re not too concerned about having the most powerful and loaded with features account there is, Monese could be a great choice!
Joint Bank Accounts: Convenience or Extra Hassle?
There is no shortage of options available on the market right now, so your best bet to approach this decision is in clearly defining the requirements you set for this account first. Would this be an account you make frequent purchases from? Do you need multiple cards? If so, do you need one for each person who uses it? Or do you simply need a single card? After that, you need to decide if you want a standalone bank account, like the ones bunq provides - complete with a separate IBAN and maybe even a personalized link to easily request money after picking up a bill from the restaurant. Alternatively, you can opt for a "virtual" account - essentially, Revolut "Group Vault". There is also a concern of ownership rights, especially relevant for tax purposes. Do you want an account that is owned by a single person, while everyone else simply has access to it, or would you rather prefer an account that's jointly owned by everyone involved? The devil truly is in details, so make sure to read our reviews and comparisons of banks you felt intrigued by before you make the decision!
Was this guide helpful? We hope you have already found the shared account solution that suits your individual (and common!) needs the best. Did we miss any great mobile banks that offer shared accounts in Europe? Let us know so we can update this article with your suggestions.