Money can always be a very complicated subject more so within the context of serious relationships. While it is not exactly a pillow talk, it’s a very important topic for you to tackle in case you want to create a stronger foundation for your future together.
One common area of tension among most people is whether and when they should merge their debt and bank accounts, along with whether they should take on the shared expenses. Merging finances usually takes planning, compromise and some potentially uncomfortable conversations. However, if you choose to approach it strategically, it can always be painless. Here is how you can merge your finances with your new spouse:
1. Talk about it
We all know that the key to any successful relationship is good communication. When handling the finances, this is also important. Together with your spouse, discuss what each one of you thinks that is best on how you should go about finances. Will you just have a single account that is shared? Do you need one shared account alongside separate bank accounts? Or is it good if you just keep separate accounts and everyone pays for half of everything? Each and every couple is quite different. Decide together what is best for your marriage situation and always be willing to compromise.
2. Have a weekly meeting
Whichever method that you together with your spouse choose (joint account, separate accounts or both), you should have a weekly meeting so as to ensure that you are on the same page. My husband and I usually discuss our finances a weekly, if not on daily, basis. This makes sure that there aren’t any “surprise” purchases. In addition, we also have our very own separate credit cards. However, we tell one another before making any purchase
3. Work together to get out of debt
Debt is always a huge stressor in most marriages. In case one or even both of you bring debts into the marriage (car loans, credit cards or student loans), make a plan with your spouse on how to get out of the debt. Also, apart from a mortgage, do not add anything to your debt or even get into a debt together. Yes, the brand new furniture might seem appealing but do you want to pay for it 5 years down the line? Probably not.
4. Save together
It feels good for one to set goals and then accomplish them with their spouse. It shows that you are on a similar team and you’re working together so as to create the life that you want. Set up one savings account using both of your names and then commit to save each month. Start out small while also setting small goals. The small amounts will eventually become large amounts and it is nice to go to bed every night knowing that you have together set aside money for emergencies or rainy days.
5. Create a budget
Creating a budget shall force you together with your spouse to always be on the same page. For instance, I know that my husband is not just going to go blow 100 dollars at a bar in one night. As a result, we budget all of the money each time we are paid. In case he wants to go to the bar and then spend his free cash, then that’s great. However, it is a nice feeling to know that he is not taking out of the savings money or bill money so as to have fun.
6. Give and take — but mostly give
Remember, you are married now and life is totally different in many areas, particularly money as compared to when you were single. You might not be capable of getting daily coffees or weekly manicures anymore and that’s okay. You together with your spouse are working hard on building a better life together. As a result, you should be willing to make certain sacrifices just for the benefit of your marriage and your future.
Sourced from: sheknows