I talk about personal finance issues with my friends a lot and that means that we also talk about couples finance issues. It’s one thing to try to come to grips with your own spending and debt problems, but merging finances and dealing with it for two people is doubly difficult. I have never met a couple that completely agree on their spending habits and personal finance goals when they first get together. Most of my friends, and myself included, had a lot of adjusting, fighting, and listening to do when merging finances with their spouse. Even if you keep separate bank accounts you are a team and have to learn to act like it.
This is especially hard when there is a big income gap between the couple or when there is only one income split between two people. Also, your personal views towards money and how you were raised also effect how you view your finances individually and as a couple. Who’s the spender and who’s the saver? Can you view your money as “our money” or is it all your money? All kinds of emotions come into the mix since no one likes to be told how to spend their money, likes to share, or wants to plan ahead. We are all still six year olds who want instant gratification and don’t want to share. But, alas, we are adults now, and some of us are married to boot, so what do we do about our money? How do two people learn to work as a team and get on the same financial page?
I dug up some online resources that may be helpful. Check them out and let me know what you think. Read them with your significant other. Hope these help you get to a better financial state!
Dave Ramsey: Financial Peace University
This is Biblically based but even if you aren’t religious I have heard good things about it
Suze Orman: A Couple’s Guide to Managing Money
Money Management International: Love & Money
This is a debt consolidation company so they may try to sell you their services but I have heard that they are a reputable company and have been recommended by leading financial institutions. They offer lots of free courses online.
Check out your local library for many of these!
For Richer Not Poorer: The Newlywed’s Financial Survival Guide
What resources have helped you and your partner deal with your finances and get on the same page? Share your experience in the comments!