Can you balance love and money? I think so. Is it easy? Not always, especially if you two have different financial habits. However it is possible to get on the same page. You have to be willing to be willing to be honest and open to adapting to one another.
Let me show you what helped us and if you have any tips or stories, please share them in the comments.
Do You Need Help with Money?
The first step is having a open and honest conversation about money with each other.
- What are your financial goals and philosophies?
- How will you handle bank accounts? Will you have joint or separate accounts?
- How are the expenses to be divided?
Though you may not like the answers; it’s better that you know upfront what you’re getting instead of finding out later. You should also have a plan to review the budget regularly; after all, things change.
Relationships and Money – Making It Work
What happens when the two of you decide to get married? How can you make the transition as smooth as possible?
When we were engaged my husband and I talked about our finances – sharing all of our assets and our debts. I also resolved to pay off my credit card debt. We started to plan the wedding and worked to keep it affordable. We also created a basic financial game plan.
Why should you two come up with a financial game plan together? Besides to getting to know each other better, creating a game plan also helps you to develop a way to communicate about money constructively. It’s not about blame or on upping each other, it’s about finding a way to bring your different perspectives and strengths to help both of you to succeed.
- Make debt reduction your mutual goal (if applicable). If you two have any debts, you should come clean on them.
- Build an emergency fund. Things happen, so be prepared and have some money deposited in savings.
- Keep your monthly expenses under control. Keep your housing affordable. If you can, have a goal to have your essential expenses covered under one income. Use second income to pay down debt, save more, or invest for your retirement accounts.
You’ll most likely have other goals besides the ones above. Each couple is different, so your list may include travel, starting a business, or donating to charity.
Thoughts on Love and Money
Are you juggling relationship with money? Don’t forget to check out my post, Would You Date a Cheap Person? and share your take on the topic.
Photo Credit: giumaiolini