We’ve all heard that finances can be a main reason why couples argue or get divorced. In marriages where there is massive debt or great financial strain, couples report lower levels of satisfaction. Money can feel like an all-encompassing thing and it can be overwhelming when you don’t feel in control of your finances. Taking two separate people and expecting them to handle their finances together once they get married is a recipe for, well arguments. Not to worry, finances and budgets don’t have to be scary things. Listed below are a few tips to follow to reach financial bliss in your marriage.
Put everything on the table
Starting a marriage with complete honesty is always the best policy. According to Forbes, sitting down and having a frank discussion about your personal finances with your partner can save your marriage from arguments down the road. This doesn’t mean that you won’t argue about money, financial arguments are almost a rite of passage for any marriage; you just won’t go into your marriage with any financial secrets. Not only is it smart to talk about your current financial situation, it is also a good idea to talk to your spouse about how they were raised. This can give you a good idea of how they see and value money. Knowing your partners attitude towards money can guide you in making decisions regarding money in your marriage. This could mean that you handle your financials together or maybe one person takes over paying bills and balancing the checkbook. There is no “right way” to handle finances in a marriage. Putting everything on the table at the beginning and then finding a system that works for both of you is a great place to start!
Create a budget
Creating a budget with your spouse can help you both get on the same page and hold each of you accountable. Try to create a realistic budget that both of you can live within. There are a ton of budget apps out there that can track your spending and show you at the end of the month how well you did. Set a spending limit; this means that you have an amount that you don’t exceed without talking to your partner. This is a guaranteed way to make sure you and your spouse communicate about finances. If you agree to never spend more than $20 without talking to each other first, both of you will always feel in control of what is happening with your money. This article has more ideas and tips on creating a budget.
Plan for the future
After you are communicating and you have a working budget, it is smart to plan for the future. Create a savings account and decide how much money you want to put away each month. Start to pay off any debt you might have. Getting out of debt is one of the best things you can do for your relationship. You won’t have the crushing weight on your shoulders and you will be able to save more money or potentially invest. If you find that you need to save more money for a goal or to get out of debt there are always opportunities to save or make extra money if you are creative! You can even get great services from companies like ACN to help you lower your bills while still being able to afford entertainment. It may seem impossible, but where there is a will there is a way! Planning for the future will keep you and your partner focused on common goals.
Finances can be very daunting to a new couple. Don’t keep wishing that you made more money, start making your money work for you. Sit down and communicate about your financial situation with your partner. From there, create a budget that will work for both of you. Don’t get discouraged if your budget doesn’t work the first time, it can take months to attain a working budget. After you figure out a budget, look for opportunities to save. Have goals that you want to reach to consistently motivate you. If you can find a way to implement these things, you will have a happier marriage.