Managing Finances As A Couple – Guest Post
It’s a fairly well known fact that one of the top causes of trouble in romantic relationships is financial strain. Of course, this isn’t the only problem couples face, but it is a big problem, and because of that, it’s best to try to avoid it altogether in your own relationship by inviting or helping your spouse to handle some of the financial responsibilities. Here are a few tips to help you achieve this goal.
The most important part of developing a good financial situation as a couple is to make sure you both have a good system of communication. Without communication, you cannot work out your goals, you cannot talk through some expenses, and you cannot make sure you are on the same page. There has to be open communication in order for the financial situation to get better.
Take a weekend to sit down and go over your finances together. Ask yourselves these questions. What goals do you have regarding your financial independence by the time you retire? What can you live on comfortably while still saving for that retirement? What are essential expenses and what are expenses due to entertainment? What will you have to do in order to reach some of the goals you set out? Answer these questions and more and then begin to put together a long term plan, which will then help you figure out what you need to be doing in the short term.
Another good thing to do is to share financial responsibility with your partner. For example, you can alternate months balancing the checkbook. Or one person can be in charge of short term expenses while the other person handles the long term investments. In any case, make sure that you communicate about whatever responsibilities you have in order to keep your partner informed of the situation. One person shouldn’t have to do all the work here.
Hold Each Other Accountable
Because you’ll be communicating with each other, this is an easy step. You simply have to work to hold each other accountable for the finances and for each other’s spending habits. By checking on each other’s work and planning and spending, you can encourage smart money habits. There will be less of an opportunity to spend wastefully because you will constantly be thinking whether or not this purchase will please or disappoint your partner. This system of accountability should be administered respectfully. If done well and if communication is a strength of yours, then you can really succeed in keeping your finances on track.
Finally, don’t be afraid to celebrate every now and then. You have to have certain treats to keep your spirits up. Of course, you shouldn’t go overboard, but at least agree on a way to treat your good financial smarts. Go out for a nice dinner every now and then. Buy each other smart gifts. Just do so with your long term goals in mind.
This guest contribution was submitted by Raine Parker, who specializes in writing about accounting degrees. Questions and comments can be sent to: email@example.com.