Money advice for couples for a better financial future
Money is one of the biggest stress factors in any relationship, and unless handled carefully, it can lead to ugly fights and divorce. On the other hand, if couples work together as a team, they can share a beautiful marital and financial relationship with each other.
Here is some money advice you would better keep in mind to improve your financial well-being and strengthen your marriage.
Compete with each other
Have a fun competition with your spouse. The competition is on saving money, and whoever saves more money in the next 30 days is the winner. The loser has to give a treat.
The competition helps both of you to come up with innovative ideas to save money.
If you want to have a fair competition, the winner is the one who saves a higher percentage of monthly income. It is better to avoid declaring results based on the total money saved due to the income differences.
Avoid financial infidelity
Follow 'honesty is the best policy if you want to save money together. Don't hide your expenses if you want to keep your spending in check. If you spend $600 or more without informing your spouse, it's financial infidelity.
Financial infidelity of this nature might hinder a couple's efforts to save.
If you believe that every dollar you spend must be 'authorized' by your spouse, you may think twice before spending a penny on an unplanned expense.
Live off one income
When both of you are working, you can live off of one income and save your partner's income in a separate account. That would help you save money.
Explore and grab fabulous deals
Taking advantage of deals sites like Groupon is a terrific way for couples to save money on dining out, vacation, and more. You can find many Valentine's Day deals and freebies from various websites. All you have to do is explore them.
Many of my clients have received up to 50% off on everything from dinners to spa packages to hotel stays.
Watch movies at home.
Be it Valentine's Day or any other date, watching movies at home can save you a lot of money.
There are numerous free entertainment options and ways to "go on a date" for no cost. Borrow DVDs from the library, cook our popcorn, watch a free movie, spend quality time with each other, and save money.
Share meals with your partner at restaurants
Sharing is caring. It also means saving money.
Sharing meals at restaurants can help you save hundreds of dollars. Share an appetizer and an entrée at restaurants, not only on Valentine's day but also on other days as well. It will help you avoid wasting both food and money.
Buy gift cards
When you're buying household items for two people, the costs can rapidly pile up. There is, however, a simple way for couples to save money on the things they require.
Websites like CardCash.com help you save money on everyday items. The website resells gift cards at a lower cost. You can buy gift cards for stores where you shop frequently and save up to 20% or more on the cards since you pay less than face value.
Plan meals in advance
One of the surefire ways to waste money is to buy whatever comes into your mind.
Buy groceries in bulk at a discounted price and plan your meals. That helps to reduce the total cost of your meal.
Find the right health savings plan.
Take the time to assess which plan delivers the best value for you as a couple if you both work and are granted health coverage via your employer.
Discuss with your spouse if receiving insurance via one of your workplaces is preferable to sticking to separate coverage.
Sometimes employer-sponsored health insurance plans save you more money than individual plans.
Take advantage of the tax breaks.
Although the maximum federal tax rate will remain at 37% in 2022, you will find that this tax will affect less of your income. If you are married and pay your taxes jointly, this 37 percent tax rate will not apply to you until your taxable income exceeds $647,850 in 2022.
So the bottom line is to file your income tax returns together.
Track your income and expenses
Track your income and expenses together. It will give you a clear financial picture. That may help you change your spending habits and increase your savings. You don't have to think of it as budgeting; rather, it's about making a spending plan that prioritizes saving.
Download a budgeting app
If a couple doesn't monitor how they're both spending money, sticking to a household budget might be challenging. Technology, thankfully, can help with this.
Download a budget-tracking app that you can sync between your smartphones. If you share the facts, you and your partner will be held responsible for your expenditures.
You might spend money wisely when you know your partner can track your expenses.
Paying down debt
Calculate how much you owe
Be honest with each other and reveal how much you owe on your credit cards, personal loans, mortgage, student loans, medical bills. Note the number of delinquent accounts and how much you pay on interest and monthly payments.
Set a financial goal
Make a list of the financial goals you and your partner want to achieve. Goals could include when you want to get rid of debts, how much you can afford to pay and save each month, and how you want to set up other accounts like an emergency fund and retirement savings plan.
Consider your financial goals as a team, including what you can each contribute individually to pay off debts. If you have children, your shared financial goals should also take them into account, such as college savings and other child-related expenses.
Explore debt repayment plans
There are various debt repayment plans like the debt snowball method, debt avalanche, debt settlement, debt consolidation, etc. Discuss with your spouse about the best option in your current financial situation. Each method has its pros and cons. Have a debate with each other before making the final decision.
You can consolidate your high-interest debts like payday loans into a single affordable monthly payment plan. That would help you get rid of high interests, reducing your debt burden. For federal student loans, you can consider the direct consolidation program.
Have weekly financial meetings
Sit together once a week to check your progress on budgeting, saving money, and debt repayments.
Go through the numbers and discuss your financial goals. Talk about anticipated bills and any purchases that may be necessary. You can't expect to achieve your first financial goal if you don't discuss your planned expenses.
All couples need money advice to build a strong financial house. I hope this money guide will help you get closer to your financial goals.
Best of luck!