Once a couple gets engaged, the world should be sunshine and roses. As the excitement fades, reality will begin to set in as couples start to ponder their future. Exciting things are expected to occur in each couple’s future, there will be a wedding, new homes, and even children, but sometimes these things may cause great financial tension in relationships. Though fighting is perfectly normal for couples, a new trend shows that couples are mainly fighting about money.
Once a couple becomes engaged, many choose to combine their two budgeting styles into one cohesive plan that will work for both. As a couple, it is important to set up a financial plan as soon as possible so that they both feel prepared for life’s adventures. By taking these steps, couples will be on their way to understanding their finances better.
- Learn to Compromise. As couples enter into their engagement, they will have to learn how each person handles their personal finances. It is likely that both individuals will have different ideas on the best way they like to handle things. It is important to understand that individual budgeting tactics may not work for the couple. By listening to each plan, couples can merge together the ideas they like and leave out the ones that they do not. Try out merging accounts completely, or keeping some things separate. Couples might not know what works best for them until they try out their options.
- Get out of Debt. Student loans, mortgage payments, and car loans can add up quickly. As soon as a couple becomes married, debt will become a combined issue. Unfortunately, even if a couple keeps their finances separate and do not take on the extra load of debt, one person’s debt can affect both people if the couple applies for something together. In this case, couples should just work together and pay down the debt as quickly as possible.
- Stick to the Budget. Spending habits will vary by individuals, but it is likely that both parties in a relationship are spending too much money, just in different ways. By developing a budget the couple can be held accountable for daily expenses and big purchase buys. Find out when it’s best to buy certain items and plan ahead. That way when the “deal of the century” comes, there will be a game plan in place.
- Have a Rainy Day Fund. Sometimes a couple will already live on a budget and think that they are doing fine. However, what happens if a minor stomach ache turns into a major surgery? As a couple it is important to put money away in a fund to cover emergency expenses that are not covered in the budget.
- No More Hide and Seek. Keeping spending habits from a spouse could be a sign of a greater issue. It is important for couples to be honest about where they are spending money and what they are buying. If there is truly a reason to keep a purchase a secret, chances are there is no actual need to buy it