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Love and Money

This is the time of year that many couples are taking their relationships to a more committed level.  With Valentine’s Day being this week most couples probably talked about love but for long term relationships a discussion about money is critical.  Following the money relationship advice below might be just as important to your relationship as expressing your love for each other.
Why are financial matters so important to discuss early on in a relationship?
Money issues are still given as the number 1 reason that marriages end in divorce. Many times, having an honest discussion at the beginning of a relationship can be helpful. Just overlooking financial habits in your partner that are really upsetting to you is not a good foundation for a long term relationship.
When should couples start discussing financial matters?
You probably shouldn’t discuss credit scores on the first date but as the relationship moves to being more serious, start talking about easy subjects such as:  how much debt is too much; is it important to pay bills on time; willingness to live on a budget; easy questions that help you understand their money personality.
What are subjects to discuss if the relationship becomes more serious?
As you feel more comfortable with where the relationship is heading you should then move into discussing each other’s current financial situation in depth.  This is when credit score and current net worth are important to understand about each other.  You don’t want to find out after you are married about a financial situation that could stress your marriage from the very beginning.
What are some of the bigger reasons married couples have relationship difficulties related to money?
One of the biggest, yet easy to address is the feelings about when each other needs to be consulted on a purchase.  Some people think anything over $100 should be discussed.  For others that limit is $1,000.  If you don’t talk and agree on the amount that is okay to spend without talking to the other person, it creates friction that can grow over time.
Do couples have to have similar financial habits to have a successful relationship?
Most definitely not.  There probably are as many couples who are polar opposites on financial matters as there are those who agree on everything. The key is understanding your differences and being willing to work together towards a common goal.
Why is developing a long term financial plan so important for couples?
A long term plan helps couples make every day financial decisions easier especially when they have different money personalities. Either it is part of your plan or it is not. If provides a great roadmap for how much they save, to the type of house they own to the number of vacations they take.
Should couples expect their financial goals to change?
Yes, plans made when you are 20 something will change as you grow together. What seemed important at 20 might of less importance when you are in your 30’s. Goals can significantly change when it comes to having a family and other life events that have significant financial impacts.
What is the most important advice for couples to avoid money fights?
When it comes to financial matters, it’s not about getting your way or winning, it’s about doing what is best financially and emotionally for the both of you.  Don’t keep score.  You are a team and each decision is a point for the team not you or your significant other.  With that mentality, money troubles are less likely to happen.

Posted: 2/17/2017 with 0 comments

Categories: Financial, Money, Money Matters, Relationships, Spending

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