Valentine’s Day is around the corner and whether you like this day or not, it’s a good reminder to examine the role that money plays in your relationship.
Unlike that gift-wrapped box of heart-shaped chocolates that will be digested in a flash, making some sensible financial decisions now could improve the chances of you and your partner enjoying many happy years together. Here are six love languages to commit to with your partner:
- Firstly, it’s important to understand your own feelings about money before talking to your honey. This topic can be very emotional for some and trigger deep-seated feelings such as fear or guilt.
- Some people believe that they don’t deserve wealth or feel guilty when they do well while knowing that others are struggling. Balancing emotions and money is important as this will filter into your well-being or detriment of your relationship.
- As in love relationships, opposites attract, and a big spender could partner with someone who’s frugal. Tensions can mount when partners have different financial incomes, expectations and priorities. This is exacerbated when they’re faced with a large, unplanned-for expense. There could also be the heart-wrenching discovery that a partner has secret spending habits or is deep in debt. Do you know your partner well, financially?
- In your money discussions aim to be open and truthful, avoid being judgmental, and try to compartmentalise your financial challenges from other issues in your relationship.
Communication is key. A regular money date sounds scary, but it could be as simple as spending 10 minutes a week discussing the family finances. Ignorance isn’t bliss, and it’s important to establish a solid financial foundation. What happens if one of you loses their job, or a family business goes under, for example?
It could be worthwhile making an appointment with a financial adviser or family lawyer if you’re considering a major life change such as moving in together or buying a property.
Remember, when making a commitment to one another, you need to know what assets your partner has and what debt they owe. Keep in mind that there’s good debt like a home loan, while trouble could be looming if your partner has hooked up with a short-term, high-interest loan. Revenge spending is never a good idea.
Words: Sarah Nicholson, Justmoney commercial manager
Do you discuss finances with your partner? Share why or why not in the comments below: