Couples sometimes find it difficult to talk about money before marriage. This is not always the best thing, since sharing each other’s perspectives about money can help couples resolve the financial problems that may arise in the future.
1. Be aware of each other’s money personalities. Not all of us have the same money habits. Some of us like to spend more and save less, others are the opposite. However, understanding your future partner’s background and values can help avert problems down the road.
2. Discuss your short- and long-term financial objectives. Setting financial objectives will help you develop priorities and define the type of lifestyle you will lead. It is important to break down your objectives into achievable goals. If you want to buy a house in three years, determine how much you need to save monthly to meet the down payment.
3. Make sure that you are financially literate. Financial Education is not always provided at a youth level. Couples must together develop their financial knowledge and improve their understanding by searching for information, and meeting with various financial planners.
4. Devise a plan to organize your finances. Couples can choose to either group their finances into joint accounts, separate accounts or a combination of both. There is no right or wrong way; the important thing is to come up with a plan that works for both of you.
5. Decide how to divide the money management tasks. It is important that you decide who will be responsible for certain financial duties e.g. keeping track of your investments, tax duties, budgeting and other financial responsibilities.
6. Developing a practicable budget. Couples without a sound budget are likely to live and spend from day-to-day. A good budget will help you save regularly whilst using your money wisely.
7. Know your future partner’s investment personality and risk tolerance. Not everyone has the same amount of risk tolerance. It can range from being very conservative to highly risky. It is important that couples establish a degree of risk tolerance where they both feel comfortable.
8. Know how much debt your partner is bringing into your relationship. Knowing how much debt each of you will bring to the marriage will help you eliminate certain financial problems which may arise in the future.
9. Make sure that you discuss money issues on regular basis. Couples may have different ideas on financial issues; however discussing such problems will help you make smarter decisions.