Getting married is an exciting and wonderful time, especially for those who want it. You get to build a life together with hopes for a better future. However, approaching a new life requires sacrifices and changes you need to handle together.
For one, understand that your finances will be much more different now than when you were single. More so if you decide to have kids later on. Unfortunately, money is the most common problem married couples face, leading to trust issues, long-term conflicts, misunderstandings, and even separation.
Thus, you’ll have to make crucial decisions to ensure you live a comfortable life even after your retirement years.
Merging Your Accounts
Couples nowadays have most likely established their careers before moving in together. Thus, it doesn’t come as a surprise if both ends bring in their income and savings into the mix. However, because marriage requires a team effort, you have to work on your short and long-term goals, especially with the increasing cost of living.
This includes your emergency funds, mortgages, household expenditures, retirement goals, and educational plans for your children. Discuss whether you want to merge accounts, keep separate ones, or mix both for your family and personal expenses. Understand which ones work for you best and work your way through them.
However, it shouldn’t stop there. Having a merged account also requires you to set a percentage of how much both sides can share. Studies show that unfair household and shared expenses can affect relationships and intimacies. With this, you need to agree on common ground and consider factors that can affect both ends, including income differences.
It’s essential to be more receptive to economic changes and prospects as you work your way through married life together. Eventually, you would want to settle down and invest in your own properties. This could mean looking for a safe neighborhood such as Manor Lakes where you can raise your children and grow as individuals.
Consequently, you may want to make your money work for you to help with the expenses. Whichever investment you would like to pursue, remember that your money isn’t yours alone anymore. While you can make individual investments, it pays to discuss them with your spouse to avoid misunderstandings.
For example, suppose you want to invest in cryptocurrency using your personal funds. In that case, you may need to inform your partner about the adjustments to your share of the expenses to avoid confusion. On the other hand, you can’t agree or sign any papers with your names on them without informing the other.
Know that investment is a crucial process that involves sacrifices. Therefore, consider getting your partner’s insight and lay down all the pros and cons of investing your money. Then, discuss where the funds will go and understand how it will affect your lives as you move forward.
Dealing With Debts
At this point, it’s important to come clean with your partner, especially if you are bringing in debts into the marriage. But while this can be a sensitive topic, you need to deal with it immediately. Prolonging or hiding it from them can cause more harm than good.
It doesn’t matter whether those were acquired before or during the marriage. What’s important is you understand that the only way out of them is to settle your monetary issues once and for all. Hence, although your partner is not liable to save you from debt, being honest with your current financial situation will give you the chance to discuss your best course of action.
Ensure that you are on the same page with your spouse and come up with plans and goals to pay them off. This could mean putting off buying expensive furniture, keeping track of your expenses and cash flow, or getting side jobs and starting a business to help with the bills. Find the best plan that can help you towards financial freedom.
Marriage does not end with vows, and I do’s. Moreover, love alone does not guarantee you an instant happily-ever-after anymore. Because the truth is, it will take a lot of work, pressure, stress, and uncomfortable discussions to achieve that.
Therefore, while it can be an uncomfortable topic, addressing your financial expectations early on will make your marriage easier to manage. In addition, this will save you from arguments and falling into spirals of blaming each other. And while there isn’t a one-size-fits-all technique to financial management post-marriage, planning and communication will give you a head start towards a better life together.