According to a study in the 2012 Family Relations Journal, arguing about money may be a strong predictor of an eventual divorce.
Other issues related to power or trust may exist, but arguing about money without being able to resolve the issues is never a good thing. When you are falling in love, money management probably isn't the first thing on your mind. If you want to stay in love, though, reaching a level of harmony about money is critical to the long-term happiness of your marriage.
One good pre-marital tip is to begin with a clear vision of what you'd like the money side of your partnership to look like.
Talk about your money successes and failures. For couples entering marriage in midlife after gaining assets and debts, it's critical to honestly disclose personal financial information. Sharing net worth statements and personal credit reports are great tools to start this discussion. Some couples also get legal advice regarding options.
Communication about money is the most likely culprit for lots of marital dissatisfaction.
Weekly money meetings are important for couples. Be careful not to point fingers and try to consider it a business meeting.
If couples have decided to merge household bill-paying duties, one person can manage that task, but it is essential to keep the other informed. Share and create goals for savings, home ownership, vacations, family needs and personal desires.
Shared goals and successes in achieving them can be an excellent way to improve your relationship.
Live below your means as a couple. Make a monthly budget and figure out how to stick to it. Track your expenses to know where your money is going and look for leaks. Save a portion of your salaries each month and decide together how you will do this.
If you have debts, work as a team to get them paid off. Agree about when and if credit cards are to be used. Credit card debt and overspending can add unnecessary stress to a marriage. If you have concerns about your budget or debt, get some advice from a GreenPath financial counselor on how to manage your money.
Confidential sessions that include the pulling of a credit report and creation of a budget will help you work together on a solution.
Decide together the ways each of you will have some money to spend as you wish.
Some couples have more than one checking account. Some use cash. Some agree on a certain spending amount, such as $100 per paycheck.
If your finances are tight, decide at the start of each month how much spending money each of you has and stick to it. Work out a system to allow both of you some freedom.
Make a date today to talk about the financial aspects and plans for your marriage.