Taking these money vows can help you stay financially strong as a couple
Sure, you marry for love, but being on the same financial page is just as important to achieve relationship success and bliss. Stressed-out spouses frequently cite money matters as one of the main causes of discord and divorce, but taking these money vows can help you stay financially strong as a couple.
- We will share all money decisions.
We assign money all sorts of power. One partner makes more than the other, and that somehow gives him or her the ability or right to make all the couple's money decisions, right? Wrong. That's crazy, and no relationship can succeed with that kind of power imbalance.
Part of merging your financial lives is learning to make decisions together. This creates a united financial partnership. Create a workable system that is based on equal shares, not equal portions. For example, add up your shared expenses, then total your combined take-home pay. If your combined expenses are half the combined pay, that means each partner contributes 50 percent of their individual take-home pay to the community pot. It is the fairest and most respectful way to divvy up financial responsibilities, and it gives both partners power.
- We will share finances but still keep our own financial identities.
Sharing some of your finances is imperative, and keeping everything completely separate usually indicates an underlying issue with trust. It is also important to maintain your own financial identities. Find middle ground by sharing a credit card and a checking account for household expenses, but also maintain an individual credit card and bank account. This will ensure you maintain your own FICO score, which can be very helpful if you divorce or become a widow.
- Sign a prenuptial agreement.
It may not be the most romantic way to start a marriage, but some spouses opt to signing a prenup before saying “I do.” The reality is that nearly half of marriages end in divorce, and a prenup is just a contingency agreement, not a sign that the relationship is doomed. It is about hoping for the best but planning for the worst. Creating a prenup also forces you and your partner to talk candidly about financial issues before you walk down the aisle. It is a smart step to make, another way to learn more about your partner and a way to work issues out before the marriage.
What other money vows do you think are important in a relationship? Let us know how you handle money as a couple in the comments below.