Financial stress and money troubles are the cause of more breakups and divorce than infidelity. It doesn’t matter what kind of work you do, if one partner is a stay at home parent, a student or if you’re both in the workforce making good money at your chosen profession; money stress is a factor in every relationship. Here are some tips for avoiding additional stress on your relationship due to financial problems.
Assign one person to be in charge of the finances: This serves to avoid confusion about how the finances are handled, and streamlines the bill-paying process. Both parties should be contributing to the household expenses, but not everyone is great with handling money. The partner that has the best financial skills should be the one in charge of managing the money.
Each of you has your own “walking around money”: Neither partner should have to ask permission to spend on the small things. Both are contributing to the household even if only one person works outside the home.
Plan your budget together and review it twice a year: Make your budget and stick to it. Have a “nest egg” account. If you have income over what you’re budgeted for, that money goes into the savings account towards whatever it is that you’re saving for. This also serves as emergency money in the event that you have to make a major purchase like a car or home repair or have a medical emergency.
Set reasonable financial goals: Set short term and long term goals that you both agree upon. You’ll feel more like a team if you’re both working for the same thing. Celebrate those small goals being met. You’re both working hard!
Set a dollar limit on spending: Over a certain amount must be approved by both partners. You both decide on an amount that can be spent by each partner. Anything over that amount must be discussed and agreed upon by both of you.
Live within your means; don’t become overwhelmed by credit debt: One of the biggest sources of financial stress is credit debt. This can be avoided by only purchasing things on credit that can be paid off every month.
Save a little every month: Every dollar counts, and no matter what your income level, you can sock away a little money each month for your nest egg. If you’re faithful in doing this, you will be surprised how quickly those dollars add up.
Indulge in something extravagant together: Enjoy a nice dinner, see a show or have a romantic weekend. You deserve it! What are you working for if not to enjoy some of the fruits of your labor? Agree on a dollar amount that you can spend and take yourselves out on a date once in a while.
Life will be far less stressful if you can eliminate financial worries to some degree. The impact on your relationship will be more positive if you can see the progress that the two of you are making towards meeting your financial goals. You’re both in this together and working towards the same thing. You’ll get there if you stick together and stick to your budget!