Money troubles can make or break a relationship so if you’re about to move in together and club your finances into one it can be a big step.
We’ve got some great finance tips for couples about to take the plunge from Lloyd’s Banking Group.
1. If you’re thinking of sharing your financial arrangements with your other half, or if you already do, the most important thing is honesty. Be open and honest at all times and discuss any issues as they arise so that money doesn’t affect your relationship.
2. Make sure you talk to each other regularly to discuss money highs and lows. By talking about successful monthly saving or over spending you will be able to work together to plan long-term goals – and avoid a possible argument!
3. Before deciding to join your finances, sit down together and have an open conversation about income, any existing debts you’re managing, any savings you have and whether there is something in particular you’re currently saving for – such as a new outfit or holiday. This will help make sure you are both on the same wavelength and will help reduce problems as you combine finances.
4. If you want to combine your finances, make sure you give it careful consideration before taking any action to avoid being compromised by your partner’s lack of financial awareness. Check their budgeting skills, look at how they manage their finances and see if you can spot any bad habits (e.g. spending beyond their means) that you can sort out now to ensure you don’t run into problems down the line. It might also be worth considering checking your partner’s credit score for an accurate view on things.
5. When considering a joint bank account, check what benefits the banks give, and who has the best deal. Compare and discuss the pros and cons of each account before you decide which one to go with.
6. If you have a savings account with money you’ve saved up over time, make sure you’re happy to put this into a joint account and don’t rush into it. Don’t feel obliged to combine everything; if you want to keep your savings in just your name and combine only day-to-day finances, that’s perfectly acceptable. If you decide to keep some money in your own name it’s best to be honest about this so your partner doesn’t think you’re trying to hide something from them.
7. When it comes to moving in together – either renting or buying – make sure you don’t push yourself too much in terms of your monthly budget. It’s always worth considering how you’d be able to make the payments if one of you lost your job or needed to spend money on an emergency expense.
8. As well as thinking about rent/mortgage payments on one salary it’s also worth checking you can afford your lifestyle on one salary. This will avoid financial stress when it comes to redundancy, maternity leave or sickness. Extra stress at these times will undoubtedly put a strain on your relationship, at a time when you both need to pull together and be stronger as a couple.
Have you got any money tips for couples? Let us know by commenting below or tweeting us @FemaleFirst_UK