Mar 13, 2018

7 Ways to Successfully Manage the Finances in Marriage

Finances are very important for marriage. They are one of the causes spouses argue and have marital problems. Money issues are also the reasons people ultimately divorce.

Having different values and views of money can cause fights between anyone. Spouses are not excluded because of their bond and signature on the paper. After all, we are all only human.
However, as humans, we are also able to plan and compromise. When it comes to finances, these two can save you a lot of time explaining and discussing the expenses. With careful managing of family finances, couples can not only built a reliable system but also resolve their issues.

Even though it’s the leading cause of stress in marriage, money is something we can’t live without. A family needs to cover the basic needs like food, clothes, housing, and bills. These necessities can be expensive and, due to the economic system and financial status, even challenging.

That’s why you need to create your own system and here is how to do it.

Have an honest talk about your expectations

Money is one of the most uncomfortable topics for conversation, even among people who are close. But avoiding topics can bring a lot of trouble, so if you haven’t had this talk yet, it’s about time to do it after you wed.

Spending habits of each partner will affect the way finances are handled in the household. Additionally, you should start the savings account to buy certain big things in the future like a car or a house. Even paying for your children's education is an important issue to start thinking about early on.

Having an honest talk about the goals, dreams, and desires is not something to be afraid of. On the contrary, knowing what you expect can only help you create a financial plan and strategy to achieve it. This initial talk will build the foundation and safe environment to talk about money openly in the future.

Choose the best management system for your household

When we talk about money management system, it includes the way you perceive money in your household. That’s one of the topics you have to agree upon early on. It will define how you handle the earnings and mutual expenses, like bills and food.

There are several management systems. One is to put all the money in one place and spend it together as needed. The other one is to divide it into three groups – mine, yours and ours. Also, there are those couples that keep their finances completely separate even in marriage. No matter what you choose it’s important that the system works for your household and doesn’t cause any money issues.

Plan the budget for certain things

Money management system doesn’t prevent you to set up budgets for different expenses in your household. It will also allow each spouse to see where the money is spent and what it’s intended for. Additionally, every planning of mutual finances comes with an agreement from both parties, so it will certainly be something you set up together.

If you experience different goals for your money budgets you can settle them with compromising or simply use a system like Personal Capital. This type of software allows adjustments based on the preferences of each partner and will help you modify the budget to satisfaction of both partners.

Sign a prenuptial agreement 

Prenuptial agreements are often perceived as something bad and the sign of distrust. However, it all comes down to the way they’re drafted and on what partners agree upon before the signing. They are not an ominous sign that you will divorce but provide order and resolution of certain financial issues. 

To quote the Withstand Lawyers: “You need a lawyer when you are not able to come to an agreement with your partner.” With prenuptial agreement you can define the manner your money is to be divided, spent, saved and invested. For couples planning to extend their family, prenuptial agreements can save your children long agonizing battles and stress during the divorce.

Don’t avoid talking about the money

Money is not a subject to be avoided at any cost between the spouses. Hiding debts and spending more than planned can ruin the already established money system. From psychological point of view, it can lead to distrust and doubt in your partner and create serious relationship problems.

Act as a team and face the money issues together. This will help you to overcome the problem on an emotional and practical level. Sharing the incurred debt or any other money trouble is always better than handling it alone. Even if it’s not something negative in question, but rather buying a new car, this is still much easier if you sit down and talk.

Know each other weaknesses

Marriage is a bond between two people for better and for worse. This means that you accept the other person for who they are and try to make them a better individual. However, this romanticised idea of marriage seems impossible to some. But only when we know and can handle other person’s weaknesses, we can bond on the more mature level.

You may come from different financial backgrounds and have a different respect for money. This is all something that can be solved between you two and with professional help if needed. Overcoming these money weaknesses together will not only save your budget but possibly be a solution for having a better marriage.

Set a monthly allowances

Having a monthly allowance is not only something we experienced in our childhood. It is actually quite effective even when we grow up and get married. More importantly, it can even be rewarding and allows the freedom to spend your money the way you want to.

However, this allowance should be based on your earnings and fit into your budget in order to avoid debts. More importantly, you can make a joint allowance, too, which you can use for small things like spa day or dinner at the fancy restaurant.

In the end

Never forget that marriage is about sharing and handling responsibilities together. All this talk may sound too calculated for people who love each other. However, these tips are just something partners need in order to have a lasting and loving relationship unhindered by things that could be agreed upon in a civilized manner.

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