When I was using Billmonk a few years ago, my wife and I started out with separate accounts, but since we share finances, often times we'd be repaying debts for one another (since we have the same friends) and it got confusing. My solution was to just turn my account into "Joe&Jane Smith" and have all our expenses go through one account and removed her account completely.
I'm not sure the ideal implementation for this situation. Perhaps a "family account." Perhaps the ability to add multiple email addresses would work (but unlike a previous feature request, this application would be such that a family could share an account under different members' email addresses). Then if people tried to add the husband or wife as a friend via email address, it'd add the "family account" instead and work accordingly.
Splitwise has some basic support for this now, depending on what you’re looking for. We now support multiple email addresses for a single account, so you can more easily share one account with multiple people.
However, we won’t automatically adjust how much you should owe as a “couple”. For example, if “Bob” adds an expense with “Sue and John’s Couple Account”, then the bill will be split 50/50 between those two Splitwise accounts. I can definitely see how it would be useful to automatically make Sue and John pay for 2 shares, but we’re unlikely to add that feature in the near future. For now, you can still work around this by manually using the “Split by shares” option when adding a bill, and assigning 2 shares to the relevant account.
+1 for a feature to combine debts from other accounts so one person can pay them or be paid for them!
Bernard Siebens commented
We would love a feature like this. We have used 2 apps in the past, Splitwise on iOS and Settle Up on Windows Phone. Splitwise is better, except for this feature. In Settle Up you can have an event with people, and then "group" people together just for the settle up part.
This means that you have all individual members in your group that you can select for the different payments, but you simplify the payment structure by only showing the "grouped" couples (and thus eliminating the need for one person of a couple to pay to another)
You should make it so that AFTER having amounts divided among all of the various parties, that you can combine people into a group.
This is useful when a couple is involved. For example, a group trip where there's 1 couple and 2 single people.
It's easier to have them separate to start, because they each have stayed at the hotel or eaten the meals as individuals. But then paying, it is easier to have them as 1 entity.
Elias Bouquillon commented
I'm curious if the best implementation would be to have a different option when recording bills and payments. For example, if I need to record a payment made by a couple, I can say that Joe and Sue paid me and it would uncheck Joe and Sue for me and automatically reports the payment to each person equally until one reaches Zero and the remainder goes to the partner until they are both at Zero.
This would allow each person the ability to have separate IOUs and accounts, but it would make it easier to report things that they do share.
In the end, this is essentially what I'm doing in one of my groups where my sister and her husband pay shares towards our Family Plan phone bill. I need to keep them separate in case one goes over his or her limit. It is also helpful for being able to keep records of what features were added or removed from specific lines, etc. . .
Basically, having distinct individuals who can "flock together" feels like a more elegant solution that just shoving two people into one Splitwise account.
Just my two cents on the matter. Thank you!
We experience the same issues, but in reality, my husband and I do need separate accounts. It would be great to link accounts, and allow re-payment from multiple accounts. Husband and Wife repays Brother, etc.
Hugo Vacher commented
Adding the possibility to define a default share per user would be a good start, but for me the good and classy solution would be to add the possibility to share money between two users, then when using the dept simplifying system, the two users would be considered as one.
Sometimes we do things as families (trips etc) so we need to account and settle by a family rather than an individual, and keep all adults in the family informed. Family could consist of a few individuals. Expenses or payments recorded against a family should appear on each member's account, but counted only once (may be called out separately as a family expense or payment).