When it comes to having certain conversations in your committed relationships, money is definitely a big one that may make or break your relationship. Money is a difficult topic to talk about, but like anything else, it needs to be talked about.
Will you be having a joint savings account?
Will you set aside individual emergency funds for a rainy day?
Will you keep budgets of whatever you both choose to purchase?
These are all questions that you need to consider when entering a committed relationship and they definitely need to be discussed.
Couples fight about money. A lot. It can be a touchy subject for those who don’t make much of it.
According to a study by Jeffrey Dew at Utah State University, couples that fought about money more than once a week were 30% more likely to end up in divorce. So money talk can really change up everything in your relationship. Here are ways to approach the topic without fighting.
Book in a Money Date Night
If you’ve been interested in your financial status and finding out ways to save for your future, you’ll know of The Barefoot Investor. One of the first steps he recommends you do is schedule date nights – nights where you and your partner sit down with a glass of wine and dinner and talk about your weekly spendings and savings.
The Barefoot Investor says that you specifically should make time to do this money date night so that you and your partner are held accountable. Talk about the bills that may be coming up, the money you’ve put away that can contribute to this and your budget for anything else that needs spending on.
We, not I
When it comes to talking about money with your partner, you should think about it in terms of ‘we’. Sure, you want to have your own money in case (god forbids) something happens in the future. That’s okay, you should have your own money for a rainy day. But as for saving for a house, holiday or any other major ticket items for the both of you, you need to tackle it together.
It also means not going out and buying a $5,000 TV without discussing it with your partner first. Make sure it’s something you both want and more importantly, can afford.
Respect Each Other’s Earnings
Not every job earns the same amount of income. So don’t feel disheartened if your partner earns more than you or don’t flaunt it if you earn more than your partner. You should get into the habit of respecting each other’s earnings and this means not questioning what each other have spent their personal savings on. Once you’ve put away your joint savings (if this is something you’ve chosen to do), then each to their own when it comes to money.
It may sound controlling or OCD, however keeping track of your spendings via a budget spreadsheet is extremely effective. Having the numbers structured in front of you will help you reach money goals as well as keeps a record of what you regularly spend on. There are numerous templates available online for you and your partner to input numbers and start savings towards your future!