Mixing romance and finance
Sitting down to discuss money matters isn’t anyone’s idea of a romantic date, but it could be a crucial investment into your relationship. Misunderstandings can add extra strain and pressure to any couple, so it’s best to get it out in the open.
Taking the time to have a candid conversation about money can also create a deeper level of trust between you and your partner as you discuss what’s important and learn to compromise.
This month, book a money date in the diary. There’s no need to get too heavy; just pick a few questions and get a conversation started. Remember, any issues that you uncover were probably there already so at least now you can decide how to move forward.
1. How do you spend your money? Everyone has different ideas about how much money to spend on different items and what hobbies are important to them – make sure they don’t become an area of conflict.
2. What is your view on credit cards? For some, cash is a rare sight in their wallet, whilst for others credit cards are strictly for emergencies. Do you need to come to a compromise on using credit?
3. Should we have joint or separate accounts? Sharing money is not for everyone, but discussing how bills get paid and who pays for what, is a must! If you choose a joint account and there is a big difference in your earnings, will you pay in an equal amount or a percentage of your income?
4. Should we save and how much? Most would probably agree that savings are important, but for some, that looks like a set amount every month whilst for others it’s whatever is left over – if there’s anything at all.
5. What are our future priorities? Buying a house, saving for the kids’ education, investing in a pension – there are lots of considerations to be made for future needs.
6. Do you have any debts? People’s views on debt vary and it’s important to know if your partner is bringing debts into the relationship.
7. How are your finances right now? This is great open-ended question to bring up from time to time that helps highlight any issues that might need nipping in the bud.