Couples & Money: 7 Tips to Help Newlyweds Be More Financially Compatible by 30Seconds Mom
It's summer wedding season and many couples are tying the knot and saying I do. They are probably compatible in many ways, but what about when it comes to money? Do your financial habits match those of your new spouse? Marlow and Chris Felton are authors of "Couples Money," and a husband and wife team who help other couples overcome their biggest financial challenges. They offer these tips to help newlyweds be more financially compatible.
- Start seeing money as ours: No matter who is the breadwinner or how much debt your spouse is bringing to the relationship, you need to start looking at money as "ours." Just like everything else in a marriage is two becoming one, it’s the same with your money.
- Do separate money for fun: The only time funds should be separated is for fun, or what we call a “fun fund.” This is a small percentage of what the couples brings in and is split equally. He can use it to play golf or buy season football tickets. She can go shopping at the mall or get her hair and nails done. It’s your individual money to do whatever you want with.
- Understand each other’s priorities: Sometimes people have different priorities when it comes to spending. While some may think they shouldn’t spend money on anything short of a life-threatening emergency, others may feel like they are not living unless they invest in interior decorating. Have a discussion and draw up a realistic set off what you need and what you can do without.
- Focus on the psychology of it: Money is often times a game of psychology and mindset. Whether you have the same outlook about money as your spouse or if you’re living on different financial planets, try to focus on improving your money mindsets. Quite often, people who have a negative outlook about money struggle with it. Couples who see the good in money and hold positive beliefs about it tend to be better off financially.
- Talk it out on big purchases: We all drop a few bucks here and there on little things, and generally speaking you don’t have to get your spouse’s approval for this. But when it comes to a big purchase like a car, for example, talk it over with your spouse and make a decision together.
- Budget for fun: It’s important to live within your means, but it’s also important to let loose once in a while and have fun especially as a newly married couple. Since you want to have enough to pay your bills, be sure to have a realistic budget for how much you can spend on entertainment, vacations, etc. The key is planning ahead and allocate funds for this purpose.
- Plan for the worst: If you or your spouse gets ill or passes sooner than expected, how will that impact your financial situation? If one of you becomes disabled, can you live on one income? Do you have life or disability insurance? Have you created a will? It’s extremely important to plan for the worst while you are still young and healthy.
Learn more by visiting CouplesMoney.com.