Whether you’re about to get married or move in together, have just started dating or have been together for years, money is one topic you cannot avoid talking about in your relationship. It might seem daunting, but chatting about money can be just as stress-free as debating who’s most likely to win Celebrity Love Island. And far less controversial…
Take it slow
Remember those painful ‘we need to talk’ moments with exes? Well having The Money Chat can seem like a re-run of one of those, especially if you go in all serious or accusatory. Instead, start it off lightly with general questions and talk about other people you both know and how they manage money – this will give you an insight into your partner’s money values.
List your goals
Do you want to own your home? Go on one holiday abroad a year? Have two children and a dog? Retire at 50? Talking openly and honestly about your future plans and dreams at the start of a relationship not only helps with compatibility but will also allow each person to solidify their own money goals. And once you know each other’s goals, you can plan your future together.
Lead by example
No matter how long you’ve been together, you probably have some critical things to say about your partner’s habit of splurging on clothes or one too many down the pub. But don’t. If you want to build mutual money goals then you need to create a feeling of trust. Start by being honest about your spending habits. Together you can decide if you’re each willing to compromise and how to begin cutting back.
Save for fun goals
If you’re planning a holiday together or would like to get some new furniture or a new TV, then start saving together. Make this fun by doing the 365 day 1p money challenge as a couple or agree to put aside a set amount each, such as £30 a month, into a separate bank account.
Lay your cards on the table
If you’re in a committed relationship or are about to get married or buy a house together, it’s important to be as upfront and honest about all your money ‘skeletons in the closet’. Whether you’ve had issues paying off your car loan or have had some problems with credit card debt, tell your partner about it and don’t judge them when they tell you about their past money woes.