Money lessons for married couples
Begin your marriage out right by eliminating debt and not tormenting it up again. Come up with a way with your partner regarding how to get rid of debt. The most commendable book to read is The Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey. Living a debt-free life is not only strong for you monetarily, but it is also strong for your marriage.
It’s best to do this before you get married, but if you have not, talk about finances with your partner as soon as possible. You’ll need to go over what accounts you have and how much debt you carry. You’ll also want to be clear on how you expect money to be handled.
For example, let your partner know if you expect him or her to discuss purchases over R1000 with you first. Make sure each person has a good understanding of where you stand financially as a couple and the expectations that the other holds.
After you have determined your baseline financial status, converse your long-term financial goals in-depth. For example, do you plan to give up work at a certain age? Do you want to get out of debt and become a millionaire?
There are advantages and disadvantages of opening a combined bank account or to upholding your separate accounts after you’re married. You can even do both. Joining accounts can streamline your finances and may help raise trust in a marriage. Furthermore, it may be particularly valuable when one spouse decides to take on more household or child-rearing duties than the other and as a result there is inequality in income.
That said, some level of independence may be preferable to you both, though it can also make it easy for you or your spouse to hide certain purchases or spending habits. Plus, given the high divorce rate, keeping separate bank accounts can provide you some measure of protection should your spouse decide to “take the money and run.” Discuss this at length with your spouse to make sure you’re both comfortable with whatever you decide.
If you don’t already have an emergency fund, consider making this a top priority. An emergency fund is money that is set aside in case something expensive happens unexpectedly, such as a lost job, family illness, natural disaster, or a major home repair. Aim to save about 6 months’ worth of your household expenses in case the emergency is that you have no income. Building an emergency fund should be a priority because it will bring financial security and protect your relationship in case disaster strikes.
As said, one of my goals with my husband is to ensure that we are within budget each month. So we don’t go into debt, we limit how much we’re allowed to spend in certain monthly budget categories, such as food, dining out, and entertainment.