Because people are inherently imperfect, all marriages are inherently imperfect as well. And although you and your spouse may try your hardest to get along with love and respect, there will be times where you disagree or have an argument about one thing or another.
For many marriages, one of the biggest sources of contention is money. And if you can’t get your financial issues under control together, you may find yourself discussing the best way to split up your assets with a divorce attorney. So to keep this from happening in your marriage, here are three tips for how to address financial issues in your marriage.
Be Transparent About Your Personal Money Problems
If you’re not married yet, now is the time to talk to your significant other about any money problems you’re currently facing. But even if you are already married, there’s no better time than the present to start being transparent about what you struggle with regarding money and where your finances currently stand. According to Jennifer Ryan Woods, a contributor to Forbes.com, the things you should talk to your spouse about include any debt you’re in, what your income looks like, if you have investments, or if you have any other financial obligations. Additionally, if you have plans for your financial future, you’ll want your spouse to be aware of these things as well.
Discuss Your Feelings About Finances
Regardless of what your current financial situation looks like, you and your spouse may have different feelings about certain financial principles. If you differ extremely and can’t compromise or understand each other, this is where issues can arise. To avoid this, James E. McWhinney, a contributor to Investopedia.com, recommends learning your significant other’s feelings and personality about money. They might be a spender while you prefer to save, which could cause strife. But if you start your relationship already aware of this information, you may have an easier time finding solutions to any problems you might face.
Create A Budget
So you and your spouse are both on the same page regarding your joint finances, Chris Arnold, a contributor to NPR.com, suggests creating a budget together that you go over each month. While this budget can be pretty flexible, it should help both of you to see where you money’s going and what financial responsibilities you have to one another. In an ideal case, you and your spouse should each have the freedom to spend some money on yourself each month without feeling like you’re blowing the budget for each other. If you aren’t at this point, try to set small goals until you can get there.
If you’re worried about how money could be affecting your marriage, use the tips mentioned above to make this topic less of a deal breaker for you and your spouse.