Finances are one of the primary sources of conflict for couples and one of the leading causes of divorce. Even though you may struggle to manage finances, you should not shy away from discussing money matters. While love might not cost a thing, relationships require resources.
Here’s how finances can impact romantic relationships, plus a few tips on successfully navigating roadblocks.
Mismatched Financial Priorities and Opposing Attitudes Toward Money
Solution: Communicate, communicate, communicate.
Is one of you a saver and the other a spender? Maybe you want a big wedding, and your partner wants a small one. Mismatched needs and wants can lead to increased feelings resentment.
Aligning your financial priorities can save you from future headaches and conflict. Therefore, discussing your financial priorities, spending habits, and opinions on money is essential. Don’t be afraid to get deep and talk about your personal and familial history with money, too.
Overconsumption, Impulse Purchases and Overextending Finances
Solution: Create a budget and stick to it.
As the saying goes, people who fail to plan plan to fail. Couples should devise a financial plan and start by creating a budget. While budgeting may not sound sexy or appealing, its an essential tool for you and your beau to get on the same page.
Perhaps you set up automatic payments and withdrawals, so that as soon as you get paid, your money gets directed to the right places. Additionally, set a percentage of your finances to pay off debt and another to rent and bills. Even more, allocate funds toward your savings and miscellaneous fun.
Overextending your budget can lead to undue stress and cause dissatisfaction in a relationship. Avoid unnecessary arguments by sticking to the budget.
Hidden Credit Card Debt or Poor Financial Decisions
Solution: Set measurable and time-contingent goals to pay off debt.
The first step to paying off debt between you and your partner is to acknowledge it. (Refer back to No. 1 on communication.) Once you expose your debt, it’s time to create a plan pay it off aggressively. Also, discuss each persons credit card debt. If you want to tackle debt together, consolidate existing debt and pay it off together. Without conversations about credit scores and debt, you are setting yourself up for disagreements in the future.