It’s okay if the man you love has a tonne of money or is comfortable enough to take care of you but the truth remains that money is an important factor in any relationship or marriage.
This means your man’s pocket should not be overlooked and this includes how he handles his finances because you don’t just marry a man, you marry his finances and debts (if he has any).
Catherine Donaldson-Evans of She Knows lists five tips on how to handle money issues with your man.
Talk about money openly: It’s crucial that you chat about money with your significant other, even though it can be a sensitive, hot-button topic or you think it doesn’t matter to you. “You may not care about money, but you still need to discuss it,” says Gabrielsen. “It may not be the easiest subject to broach. But you always have to discuss money, ideally before you get married.” Those conversations should continue after you tie the knot, too. Many couples hold regular “money meetings” to discuss the state of their finances.
Make money a factor when choosing a spouse: If the man who’s won your heart is a major spender or has a mountain of debt, that could be a red flag. “If you marry someone with a significant amount of debt, that debt becomes yours as well,” says Gabrielsen. So figure out where you both stand and be honest about whether it’s a good match. “Part of being compatible with someone is having a financial path and agreeing on how to achieve it,” he says. “I don’t think it’s the number one thing you should look at, but being compatible from a goals and financial standpoint is important.”
Understand where your money is and what to do if something unexpected happens: Too often, says Gabrielsen, he sees one spouse running the show when it comes to household finances and the other having no clue about where the money is going. Big mistake. “Even if you don’t want to be in charge of the money, you need to know where the assets are and whether you have an estate plan,” he says.
“You need to know what to do if something happens to your spouse.”
Compromise: It’s highly unlikely that the man you marry will be identical to you in his approach to money. That’s OK. Couples need to meet in the middle when it comes to financial decisions they don’t completely agree on. “It comes down to black and white numbers if you want to save a certain amount for retirement,” says Gabrielsen. “But when you’re deciding things like what kind of house to buy and how many vacations a year to take, it should be a compromise.”
Be a team with a plan: Don’t just wing it when it comes to tackling your finances. Instead, be strategic about it and work together. “You need to have a game plan,” Gabrielsen advises.
“Understand where you want to go and how you want to get there. That should be done jointly as a team. Both members of the team should agree to the plan. When you do that, it leads to a lot less fighting.” Marriage is a meeting of the minds. And your finances should be, too. So yes, money matters in love — quite a lot, as it turns out. “Having a good financial strategy is part of a good relationship,” Gabrielsen says. “It’s important to be on the same page, especially when it comes to marriage.”