If you’ve recently committed to your partner “for richer or poorer,” you may be wondering exactly how that will play out over the coming decades. Hopefully, you will never have to experience poverty, but in the interest of keeping your marriage strong, healthy, and happy, you may want to spend some time talking about money.
Money can be a sensitive subject, especially if the two of you have spending and saving habits that aren’t similar. While your marriage is young and tender is an excellent time to take stock of your current financial situation, set goals for the future, and decide how you want to achieve them. By establishing a smart financial plan early in your marriage, you may find yourselves with some real wealth in the future, both in your bank account and in your relationship.
Be a Team
An important part of marriage is teamwork. Whether you’re shouldering wage-earning responsibilities, dividing household chores, or taking care of children, working as a team is fun, fair, and effective. Likewise, deciding how to handle your finances should always be a team decision. Consider these topics when you have a conversation about money:
Do you want separate or joint bank accounts?
How much money can one partner spend on an item without the other’s consent?
How will you handle supporting each of your parents when they grow older?
A list of pertinent money questions could be much longer, and will vary from couple to the next. When you have your money talk, be honest, and discuss the topics that matter the most to you. Because you love and trust each other, honesty is the glue that binds you together.
Living within your means, or better yet, below your means, is the best way to stay out of debt. By budgeting your monthly take-home pay, and sticking to it, you can avoid the credit card trap and enjoy living in financial freedom. Creating a budget will be easiest if you both have the same priorities, but in case you don’t, be prepared to make compromises. For example, each of you may need to give something up, such as weekly manicures or weekday lunches with a buddy.
Stay on Track With a Monthly Checkup
Having a conversation about money early in your marriage is just the beginning. To keep your finances and your relationship healthy, plan a monthly checkup with each other. Discuss the prior month’s spending, and pinpoint where you can do better as a couple in the coming month. Review your goals and track your progress in achieving them. If you’ve done well, reward yourselves with a fun night out or whatever you would enjoy together.
Ensure Your Future With Adequate Insurance
Preparing for the future is important for couples of all ages. Once you are married and your assets have been combined, your insurance will need to be updated. Auto, home, health, and life insurance are all critical to maintaining healthy finances until death do you part and beyond. Click here to learn more.
As newlyweds, you may have a lot on your mind, but be careful not to overlook the importance of talking about money. Just remember to keep your conversation honest and loving, and form good financial habits early so that you can live happily ever after.