From Citi Personal Wealth Management
Whether you have been married for decades, or are still celebrating anniversaries in the single digits, it's important to stay financially in "tune" with your partner. Consider these five money management tips to help you create financial fidelity in your relationship:
- Common vision and goals – You both need to be on the same page about the "big" things like your house, the kids' education, major purchases and retirement—and then translate that shared financial vision into a budget, regardless of whether you have merged all your money or not.
- Clear roles and responsibilities – You need to have absolute clarity on what each of you will contribute financially to the household and who will be responsible for what chores, from paying the bills to monitoring investments to dealing with the taxes.
- Open, ongoing communications – You need to make money part of the daily conversation and not just a topic when a "crisis" surfaces. Truly listen to each other's perspective and don't let emotions get the better of you. You also need to know when to back off and re-visit the topic another day.
- Commitment to follow through and transparency – Put all the financial facts on the table and working from one set of books: no secret spending or hidden stashes of cash. As importantly, once you come to a decision as a couple, you need to follow through and, if you have children, present a united front. No undermining each other.
- Compromise – Give each other some financial flexibility to spend on personal passions or "allowable luxuries," without consulting each other.
Of course, there's no guarantee that putting these tips into practice will make for a relationship free of financial pitfalls – but they may help you reduce financial friction in your relationship so that you can focus on other "important" issues -- like how to get your partner to "properly" roll up a tube of toothpaste!
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