Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Women's Money Week - Relationships and Money

This post is part of the women's week series to educate women on personal finance. Today's topic is Relationships and Money.

This is such a great topic to discuss considering money is the number one reason for divorce. Talking about money can be such a touchy subject, especially with a loved one. Let's be honest, nobody wants to tell someone they're dating that they've declared bankruptcy twice, their vehicle was just repossessed, they're late on their child support payments and their home is about to be foreclosed on. I'm being a bit extreme here, but these things happen to people daily.

As embarrassing as it may be to disclose all your baggage to a loved one, it would be much more embarrassing when they find out on their own. I am a firm believer in whatever is in the dark will eventually make its way to the light. So just tell the truth! Besides we all have baggage of some sort. For some it may be financial, for others it may be insecurities, trust issues or family issues. Whatever it is, transparency is the best way to go. I probably wouldn't talk about these issues on the first or second date, but if you're at the point in your relationship where you're discussing marriage, then there shouldn't be any secrets.

I was listening to a relationship expert some months ago and she said you should exchange credit bureau's with your partner before marriage. I never thought about that before hearing this, but I think it's a wonderful idea. This helps to lay it all on the table. I say both Equifax and Transunion credit bureaus should be exchanged because not all creditors report to both bureaus.

Here are some money tips that have worked for many married couples:
  • Set short term and long term financial goals
  • Do a monthly budget with your spouse
  • Try to budget some fun money every month, so you both have your own personal money to spend
  • Decide that you won't spend more than a certain amount without discussing it with your spouse first. Some couples use $100 while others use $1000. This is completely up to you
  • Check both credit bureau's at least once a year

What are some tips that you use?

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