Marriage is about teamwork and compromise. Whether you have been married for two weeks or two decades, it is essential to be able to work together with your partner. The reality is that working together can be challenging, especially when it comes to your finances. In fact, the majority of divorced adults cited money as the reason for their separation.
You can tackle money as a team with honesty, communication, and dedication to a shared plan!
#1: CREATE A HOUSEHOLD BUDGET
A budget should tell you how much money you anticipate having and where it will go. Your income and expenses will change once you are married. It is important that you create a new combined household budget and revisit your Indvidual budgets to adjust to the marital shift.
#2: SET SHARED PRIORITIES
What do you value the most as individuals? What do you value the most as partners? Personal management begins with understanding your priorities and what you want. As you come together, you will need to merge those priorities and ideas to filter what you both believe in. These priorities will help influence your most crucial money decisions.
#3: SIT DOWN TO DISCUSS
It is unpleasant to talk about money during inappropriate times or when your spouse is not ready to discuss serious matters. Do not discuss money at random times! Pick a specific date to talk deeply about money. This mutual time for a meeting will enable you to stay on the same page. Feel free to raise your concerns to produce a shared solution.
#4: EMBRACE YOUR DIFFERENCES
Everyone has a different relationship with money. It is not a requirement that you understand how your spouse feels the way they do, but it is important to recognize and respect those feelings. Accept that differences are inevitable.
#5: ESTABLISH A JOINT EMERGENCY FUND
Once you and your partner are living together, you can both work on setting aside funds for any potential emergencies such as unemployment and sudden home repair. A high-yield savings account can be the perfect place to build this joint emergency fund. Set aside cash savings that is equal to about six months’ worth of your joint fixed expenses.
#6: HAVE A SHARED CREDIT CARD
Maximize the rewards you can earn on all your joint purchases by opening a joint credit card or having your spouse become an authorized user on your credit card. If you sign up for a rewards credit card, you can use your newly established joint checking account to pay off that credit card every month. This will increase your bonuses and rewards along the way.
#7: TRACK YOUR SPENDING
Another way to avoid fights about money is to track your spending. There are no surprises when you track your spending together. There is many personal finance management software available for free such as the Expensify, Spendee, Money Lover, or Mint app. You can also do the old school method by creating a ledger. Knowing where your money is going is just the first step! Working together is all about transparency.