How does your relationship stack up?
Incompatible financial habits are a leading cause of divorce. And not enough of us are having a good talk about finances with our partner before we tie the knot, join bank accounts, or move in with each other. Financial compatibility and honesty are important building blocks of a lasting relationship.
Whether you like your quiz results or want to change things, here are some tips to improve your financial health and compatibility with your partner.
- Be completely open and honest. Many troubles in relationships start with financial infidelity.
- Know each other’s credit scores and debt before you commit to marriage. Make it easy by making a night of it, planning/budgeting, then follow it up with a good movie. Keep up the transparency.
- Make financial decisions together. Different systems work for different couples. It’s usually healthy to budget a part of your income which you can each spend how you like with no judgment. The rest of it goes to bills and financial decisions you make together.
- Invest in each other and your future together.
- Even if you’re financially incompatible at first, you can work to be more compatible. If you’re a saver and they’re a spender, with honesty and transparency, you can work towards a place you both feel happy. Relationships are often about compromise. Just make sure you’re not the only one compromising.
Haven’t financially committed with someone yet? Keep these in mind:
- Find someone who makes responsible financial decisions and can carry their own weight in a relationship.
- Even if they made some financial mistakes when they were younger, that doesn’t have to rule them out. What you want to see is that they learned from it and are better for it.
- While self-less generosity is often seen as a good quality, you’ll want to watch out for people who end up giving most their money away to parents/siblings/friends/etc. Whether they’re being manipulated out of it or just can’t say no, this can be a financial red flag.
- Remember that your partner’s bad financial decisions can come back to haunt you if you’ve married or file taxes jointly. Ideally you trust your partner by the time you’re sharing finances, but people can be surprising. Keep up financial transparency and go over the accounts at least once a month once you’ve settled into things.
- Before you commit, go over finances together. While that might not sound like the most romantic date, it can actually foster closeness. When you’re ready to move your relationship to the next level, simply go over credit scores, accounts, financial habits, and debt. Discuss your habits, how you’re paying debt off and saving money, then watch a movie or do something else you both love.
What’s your story? Have you had a partner that didn’t fit the financial compatibility bill? Found the perfect system? Tell us about it in the comments below.