Thank you to Lexington Law for sponsoring this post. Thank you for supporting the brands I love to work with!! All opinions are my own.
Having a two year old I feel like we are constantly baby proofing things. We discover things daily that he can reach or get into that he couldn’t before. We take so much caution in making sure he is protected and safe. But do we do the same for our relationship? One of the biggest things couples fight about is money. One of the highest causes of divorce is issues surrounding money. So why not money proof your relationship? That’s exactly what I am going to share with you today: how to money proof your relationship.
How To Money Proof Your Relationship
Lay it all out there before: Listen we all go into relationships with baggage. Sometimes it’s past relationships or things about ourselves we want to change. Sometimes it’s money issues. I think in any relationship as things are getting serious you should be up front about things. If you have a bunch of student loans, credit card debt, a mortgage, an expensive car payment etc. These are things your partner needs to know about. Think of it as getting financially naked. I love this article on how marriage can affect a credit score.
Don’t hide things: So now you’ve gotten past the laying it all out there but your shopping habits are becoming an issue you don’t want your partner to know about. Don’t hide bags. Don’t hide bills. Don’t lie. The truth will always come out and it’s unnecessary. Sure you can hide a surprise or don’t tell them about a gift you got them but don’t hide a spending habit. When you hide things from your spouse you may end up in a situation where your credit plummets and that can really be an issue for your both.
Set a budget together: Andrew and I from early in our relationship have been super open about budgeting and our finances. We have a budget on Google Sheets (highly recommend) where we have all the bills that stay the same (mortgage, car, student loans, subscriptions, etc) and then at the end of each month we go in and put what we spent in other areas (entertainment, date nights, clothing, groceries, gas, wants, kid stuff). We try to stick to a certain number amount for all of those things and we roll things over from time to time. Say we had a $200 a month for entertainment but we didn’t spend it all we roll the rest to the next month or put it towards something like show tickets or a concert. Setting a budget together should really help any potential bumps in the road. Love these tips on how to save for your wedding.
Be on the same page about wants/needs: In any relationship there is USUALLY a spender and a saver. Sometimes that may go back and forth (it usually does for us). But try to be on the same page about wants and needs. Maybe something you view as a need is a want to your partner and vise versa. Sit down and really try to understand each others wants and needs in the ways of finances. Which brings me to…
Try to see where the other is coming from: We were all raised different and we all have different views and goals. That’s what makes our world such an amazing place. But in a relationship you always need to try to see where the other is coming from. Maybe you’re saving for a new house down payment and your partner is hyper focused on it and says “no wants for 6 months” and to you that seems a little restrictive. Sit down and try to explain that maybe you just cut wants in half or see why they are so concerned about it.
Ask the important questions early: This is a BIG one. Just like I said about getting financially naked you also need to ask the big important questions early. Do you want kids? Kids are expensive trust me. Do you want a house? How big of a house and in what location? Do you plan to drive your cars for a long time until there is no car payment? Do you want to go back to school at some point and may need loans? Do you financially support a relative? These are things your partner and you HAVE TO TALK ABOUT! It will save so much frustration in the future. This is a great post about debt and marriage.
If you are in a relationship OR NOT and find yourself in a rough credit situation I highly suggest checking out Lexington Law. These people are amazing at helping you figure out how to potentially improve your credit score and helping you out of some sticky financial situations. I so wish I had them in my back pocket as an early 20-something!
What do you think are other ways to money proof your relationship? Anything you want to add below?
*all photos by Jenny Havens Photography