6 Tips for Couple Finances

Shared finances can be a major stress point for couples, but here are some useful tips that can help you both be the better half in your money-savvy relationship.

1. Establish similar financial goal

Couples may have different goals—you’re ready to buy a car, your spouse wants to save for a house. Sounds like a good time to discuss mutual financial goals. Learn to put your differences aside and work towards defining, then achieving your money goals. Then you’ll work together in a more coordinated, cooperative effort, and hopefully celebrate each other’s wins even more.

2. Plan early

Expecting a child? Want to remodel a bathroom someday? Start budgeting today for surprises down the road. This may mean cutting out some of your favorite expenses, but you can still go to the dinner and movies right in your own home! Saving money can be exciting when you realize you’re planning for things like diapers and baby clothes, or a new sink and bath tub.

3. Be open

When it comes to successful relationships, trust is always the name of the game. That goes for financial relationships, too. Learn to trust your partner and be honest about your income, expenses, and goals. Support each other, set budgets together, and prosper together.

4. Pay your loans on time

Loans can accrue interest over time, and those expenses may add up. As part of your family's financial planning, build in part of your budget for paying off loans as soon and as much as possible. Paying loans early can reduce your future expenses and leave you with more disposable income in the long run.

5. Budget for food

Grocery shopping is a recurring expense for every household. It’s hard to remember your budget when you’re in the snack aisle or your child asks for their favorite splurge snack. To avoid overspending on groceries, create weekly plans with specific recipes for your favorite meals so you can know what you're going to eat on specific days. Then you can budget for the ingredients needed for those recipes and keep side expenses at a minimum.

6. Budget for emergencies

Sometimes an unexpected event or two can happen. If medical bills add up, you may need to cut back on other expenses. Whenever possible, it's always good to set money aside for emergencies. Are there any expenses each week you can cut out? If so, start putting that money towards an emergency fund instead. Hopefully you never need it, but it’ll be there for you if you ever do.

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