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6-1-2018 • Communicate Before Combining Finances

With June being the most popular month to marry, it is interesting to note that many couples tend to shy away from discussing money before walking down the aisle.

According to an American Express Spending and Saving Tracker poll, 66 percent of American couples pay all their monthly expenses together and most maintain joint ownership of at least some household accounts, but only 43 percent talked about financial plans before they married. Even though they’re not communicating about money, couples are stressing about it. According to Money Magazine, 70 percent of couples report fighting over money. About 30 percent of respondents in the American Express survey said finances caused the most stress in their relationship.

Financial experts advise couples setting aside time to talk about money before tying the knot. It’s important to get on the same page about how you’ll treat finances as a couple.
Bills and spending might not seem like romantic topics, but if you’re heading toward a life-long commitment, finances will become a part of your relationship whether you talk about them or not. You might need to furnish a new home. And you’ll definitely need to pay for household expenses, such as utilities. The following are tips for a healthy financial discussion with your significant other:

Talk with your significant other about any possible financial sticking points before they become a problem. Emotions will be lower, creating conditions more conducive for a constructive conversation than a fight.

Keep emotions at bay. Money is an emotional topic. Most people have opinions about what they earn, spend, and save. Try to stick to the facts. Be sure to acknowledge his or her feelings as well as explain how you feel. If you both remain calm, you’ll be able to reach a resolution more effectively.

Don’t try to hide purchases or lie about financial mistakes you’ve made. The more transparent you are, the more both your finances will benefit.

Ask for your partners’ input—even if he or she isn’t volunteering it. Please remember your finances are now a team effort. Your significant other might have a point of view you hadn’t considered; and it’s important you both feel a valuable part of your home’s finances.