Whether you just got married, are thinking about it or you’ve been married for 10 years, like myself, this article can help. Today, I have my friend Andy Masaki from Pennyless Dad.
Andy is by trade a Financial Advisor and enjoys all things money! He also is a financial writer associated with the Oak View Law Group. He is a debt expert and a member of several online forums where he shares his advice as well as tips to lead a financially independent life.
So, you are in for a treat today with a few tips he recommends for newly married couples to consider after saying I do!
5 Incredible Money Tips For Newly Married Couples
Moving in with your significant other is one of the most significant steps of your life. While this brings in a plethora of joy and dreams of a bright future with it, a bunch of responsibilities comes along too. While there will be many fulfilments, there will be compromises too.
The biggest advice we were given before marriage was, “Do not go to bed angry!” Well, I have to tell you at the time I blew it off, until the night it happened. I woke up the next morning still feeling angry and I had a bad day that entire day, until I was able to actually talk about the issue.
Marriage brings along a lot of financial constraints. Starting from the day you tie the knot, you begin a joint venture where there will be no single decisions – including deciding on the household budget. On one hand, you’ll be splitting bills to save enough for a mortgage down payment, but on the other, you have to explain why you bought another leather jacket while you already had a few.
Budgeting is a very tough job that many couples face. You are not alone! Those that look like everything is OK, chances are they either 1- they have the money to spend on the material things or 2- they just don’t give a shit about how far in debt they. The ones that are stressed all the time are the ones that CARE! There is no shame in that!
The way you spend money after marriage directly affects your spouse’s financial well-being and vice versa. It’s very important that you come up with a dedicated plan soon and figure out how do you take care of your joint finances. To be successful in budgeting, you and your spouse BOTH need to be involved in setting the budget. If you both are not, one would feel that they are alone in the marriage and constantly stressed out about money.
Having The Conversation
Discussing finances is one of the least romantic and tough topics to most couples, including millennials. According to a recent study by the American Institute of CPAs and the Ad Council, couples aged 25 to 34 have not discussed long-term financial goals. Also, among the couples polled, just 42 percent discussed their financial goals. If we’re not having the conversations about money, how will that impact divorce rates?
It was polled at Romper.com, that 29% of millennials attribute their unmarried status due to the lack of financial preparation. As newly weds, look at your individual debt, your combined debt and start taking action early in your marriage to avoid financial troubles throughout your entire lives as financial stress is the one of the leading causes of divorces.
Making The Move
Moving in with a significant other can not be compared with sharing room with a stranger or acquaintance. Though we share bills with a roommate, splitting bills with your significant other can’t be the same thing. Your spouse is not just a roommate, they’re your partner in everything.
If your roommate fails to pay the rent on time, you can kick him or her out and find a replacement. However, if your significant other loses his or her job, you don’t end the relationship there. Rather, you simply step up to shoulder the burden.
It’s essential that couples in a relationship clearly communicate the household budget and respect each other’s goals. Setting up the rules of sharing expenses when living together are very easy. You just need to carve out time to talk about it. It’ll be much easier to stick to those goals.
Chalking out an effective budget is a huge step toward attaining united bliss. Figuring out how to split bills as a couple can clear up obscurity and make money talks less flickering in the future.
Here are few tips for couples to avoid financial discomforts
1) Share expenses. When one makes more, sharing expenses in a relationship is really meaningful – especially when one person earns much more than the other. If your spouse earns much less than you, and you are simply splitting bills down the middle, then you’re simply pushing him or her to the edge, and leaving resentful.
Being stingy with money can be a deal breaker. If you earn well but do not contribute as per proportions, you might come off as stingy. Communication is key in such a situation. Communicate your feelings and motives openly and honestly. Discuss with your spouse why you are doing this and what consequences it might bring.
2) Commit to your financial future together. Once you’re familiar with your finances after a few months, talk about tomorrow. Discuss what your bank account should look like after a few years, where do you want to live for the rest of your life, and if you’re renting, how would you approach for your own home.
If you have debt, figure out how would you get out of it. Creating an effective financial strategy together is a smart way to unify your future goals.
3) Step up for anything. Apart from just sharing the bills, you can assume additional household jobs to fill the gap. If there is any income disparity or one partner spends more time away from home due to work, the other one can do the chores and other household jobs in place of contributing money.
As a cleaning service might not be in your budget, yet, contributing to the household by cleaning, laundry or meal prep can truly help ease the marriage stress and budget by helping out in the absence of your spouse. It will be appreciated. (trust me!)
4) Save together. Another role that household budget plays is setting aside money for your goals, and that’s where the fun begins. Whatever goals you and your partner have set, create a strategy to accomplish them. You can do this simultaneously or play rock, paper, scissors as to which goal you work towards first. I don’t care which ever way you get to agreeing on the first goal, but get there together and then move on to the next.
5) Have Specific Goals. You should plan savings for both long and short-term goals. If you’re planning for a $2,000 vacation next year, you’d need to save $166 each month to meet that. Planning for long-term goals such as, building up for retirement, a house, or college tuition would require more saving discipline. I would recommend to start at a smaller goal. Having that first HOOORAAHHH under your belt really helps build up the momentum to continue on towards your goals.
Don’t let money problems become relationship problems. Money matters are one of the major stress builders of marriages. According to a survey by the AICPA and the Ad Council, 88% of adults aged 25-34 who are married or living with a partner cite financial issues as a source of tension in their relationship. Communicate freely and honestly with your partner to make sure money matters don’t take a toll on your relationship.
Hope you have enjoyed my tips today and please come over to visit me at www.pennylessdad.com.