Whether you’re newly dating, head over heals in love, or have been together forever, there’s one topic that’s bound to create some challenges… money. Let’s face it, bringing up finances can be awkward, but while asking about the balance of your date’s savings plan on your first date is a little too soon, it’s important to that you don’t wait until after you’ve settled down to talk finance.
Here’s the why, when and how to talk finance at each stage of your relationship.
Article originally posted in Financy.
Talking finances isn’t just good for your peace of mind; it’s also good for your relationship:
While “life admin” may not be sexy, studies show talking finance as a couple sets clear goals and helps clarify financial values, dreams and aspirations.
Money issues can be a source of stress, but working together to keep life admin, like finances and life insurance, in-check can reduce conflict and stress — significantly improving relationship health.
How to talk finance at each stage of the relationship
The honeymoon period
While it’s early on in the relationship, it is important to start introducing money discussions — particularly as the level of emotional intimacy increases. This ensures you are aligned, helping to avoid conflict and address red flags.
Transparency is key during this phase to be honest about your spending style and financial values. In the honeymoon period, you can ask:
- What does money mean to your partner?
- What is your partner’s greatest financial worry?
- Is your partner a spender or a saver?
- What is your partner’s financial goals?
- How important to your partner is having emergency savings and paying off debt?
- What is your partner’s view on joint finances?
The nesting period
This is where “I” becomes “We”. You’re nesting and deeply in love, but don’t become complacent!
During this phase couples often begin to pool finances. To increase financial harmony and reduce conflict it is important you communicate financial expectations, create a budget and set mutual financial goals.
It is also a good idea to consider your bills, savings, retirement plans and insurance policies. Think about what policies are contributing to the creation of a solid relationship (like life insurance) and what bills are placing undue stress (perhaps high mobile phone bills).
In the nesting period, you can ask:
- How do you feel about shared financial roles?
- What are your, and your partner’s, financial concerns?
- How will you split the finance roles? For example, this might include bill paying, budgeting and long-term planning.
- Will the finances be pooled? If so how will you negotiate spending and saving?
The life-long period
Your relationship has weathered life’s storms. You’re a team, and you’re in it for the long-term. With that in mind, it’s time to think about your mutual financial goals and long-term financial planning.
In particular, this will include thinking about the future — no matter what might happen.
Putting life insurance in place may not seem like the most romantic topic of conversation, but looking out for your partner’s long-term needs and financial security reduces stress and shows that you’ll love and care for them even after you’re gone.
Once the day-to-day and future “life admin” are taken care of, you’re free to inject a little more passion and adventure into your life and romance!
Katia Loisel is working alongside ANZ on their Love Insurance campaign during the month of April. Love Insurance helps put into perspective that we all want to look after our loved ones and life insurance is a way of showing you’ll be there for your loved ones.
Katia Loisel is an internationally recognised dating, relationship and body language expert with over 19 years experience in the TV Industry. She is the co-author of the bestselling How To Get The Man/Woman You Want and has conducted a widely published five-year global study into dating and mating patterns.
A sought after media commentator, spokesperson and host, Katia has been interviewed over 1,000 times by media outlets worldwide. Her production credits include programme creation, development and production of various dating and relationship related TV shows for the Australian and US market and a global online ‘how to’ campaign for the dating and relationship market that generated over 12 million views.
Katia is the Founder of The Love Destination, and is on a mission to empower and inspire, bringing more love and good news into the world.