Troubles surrounding money can be a big issue to deal with within your marriage. So many marriages flounder and could end up failing due to financial problems that either don’t or can’t be addressed. But for many, these problems could have been avoided had they only taken the necessary steps to understand each other and their financial situations. So to help your marriage survive any financial environment, here are three things you should know about managing finances within a marriage.
Be Open About Spending Habits
Whether you’ve just recently tied the knot or have been married for decades, if you’re not being open about your spending habits and your financial obligations, you could be in for rough roads ahead. According to Jennifer Ryan Woods, a contributor to Forbes.com, couples should disclose to each other if they have debts, have taken out loans, have previous investments, potential dangerous spending habits, or financial obligations to someone outside your marriage. Until you know the full picture of your joint finances, you can’t have a true view of what positives or negatives you’re dealing with.
Make Big Decisions Together
While many couples who share their finances give each other leeway to make smaller purchases on their own, if one of you is planning on spending a large amount of money or doing something potentially risky with your finances, you should be making these big decisions together. According to Kathleen Burns Kingsbury, a contributor to CNBC, meeting with a financial or investment advisor falls under the category of big decisions. Even if it requires you to stretch your schedules so you can meet at the same time, choices regarding your financial future should absolutely be things that are discussed and decided upon by both partners.
Living Within Your Means
One of the greatest lessons an individual or a couple can learn is to live within their means. What this means is that you spend less money each month than you make during the month. And while this may sound easy, it’s actually more difficult than many people think because of the use of credit card and loans. To ensure you and your family live within your means, Emmie Martin, a contributor to BusinessInsider.com, recommends being very careful about how much money you spend on a home and mortgage so your monthly finances don’t start to spin out of control. This could also include getting rid of some monthly bills that are unnecessary or even changing your daily or monthly routines to spend even less money.
If you and your significant other are wanting to be sure you have a safe and happy future together, consider using the tips mentioned above when planning your finances with your spouse.