Setting Financial Goals, Managing Bank Accounts & Investing; What Could Be More Romantic?
Tips for Managing Money as a New Couple
Money may not be the most romantic topic for Valentine’s Day, but the subject is something that inevitably comes up between new couples. This is especially true for couples who’ve recently moved in together or gotten married. Here are some easy-to-follow tips that can help both you and your partner start planning your financial future together.
The first and most important step to effective financial planning as a couple is to start the conversation. It may be uncomfortable at first, but you need to understand each other’s financial standing to create a budget, establish long-term goals and plan for retirement. This means talking about both of your income, assets, debts, spending habits and investment goals. With finances being one of the top relationship conflict areas, it is surprising how few couples actually discuss their finances in any details before getting serious.
Joint or Separate Accounts?
How you as a couple decide to share financial responsibilities will come down to what both of you are comfortable with. There are three common approaches to managing money together: keeping separate accounts, setting up a joint account for everything and having both separate and joint accounts.
Keeping separate accounts is a starting point for new couples that are accustomed to managing their own finances and don’t have many shared expenses. Separate accounts can also help resolve disparities in income, debts, and spending habits. However, this requires both sides to be transparent with things like splitting bills and joint expenses or hard feelings could quickly arise.
A joint account allows couples to pool their incomes together and pay for all expenses from a shared account. This can be helpful for keeping track of savings and spending, especially in the case of a couple with children.
Having both separate and joint accounts can allow for the flexibility of both approaches: separate accounts for individual expenses and a joint account for shared expenditures and long-term goals.
Setting Goals Together
Regardless of how you and your partner choose to manage your finances, it’s important to be on the same page with your respective financial goals so that money doesn’t get in the way of your relationship. With that in mind, we wish you all a Happy Valentine’s Day!