This week I’m handing over the reigns to Thando from Skilled Finances. By now, I’m sure you all know that I’m a big fan of talking money, so I’m really excited about this post.
Thando will explain why you should talk money with your partner and how this has benefited him and his wife.
I’ll pass over to Thando now.
I’m Thando from Skilled Finances where our passion is to equip you with the money skills to achieve your financial goals. Skilled Finances is run by my wife Lindie and I, plus we also create content on our Instagram page.
Talking about money with your partner will greatly enhance your relationship.
However, for some couples the money conversation may not be the easiest discussions to have.
To avoid awkwardness or tensions you may avoid talking about money with your partner altogether.
Or, the only time money is spoken of is when something’s gone wrong.
These six tips will empower you to confidently discuss money with your partner in the right way.
The six tips are:
Talking money – Start off light hearted
- Talk about your money journey
- Discuss Your Life And Money Goals
- Talk Value Not Just Figures
- Avoid Agreeing to Disagree when talking money
- Be H.O.T (Honest, Open and Transparent)
How to Talk To Your Partner About Money
First, I want to clarify one thing. Money is just a tool. The aim is to use this tool to build your relationship, not to build your relationship around money.
As you’re talking about money with your partner, aim to enhance your relationship. This could be learning something new about your partner or making a financial decision together.
Here are six tips that have worked well in my relationship with our money talks.
Talking money – Start Off Light Hearted
When talking about money with your partner, it’s sometimes good to start off light hearted. There’s a tendency for us to become serious when money enters the chat. If the money conversation always feels like an interrogation it’ll be hardly fruitful.
The main purpose for talking about money with your partner is to grow financially intimate together. Intimacy is an environment where there’s closeness, trust and oneness, sprinkled with some fun.
I encourage you to talk about money as freely and casually as you do about a Netflix series.
Key tip: talk about money over lunch or dinner, it lightens the mood.
Talk About Your Money Journey
We are all on a money journey. A journey that began the moment we had cognitive understanding of the world around us.
Open up your world to your partner and talk about that journey. This includes talking about how money was handled in your family growing up. Tell them about the financial wins you’ve had and money mistakes you’ve made.
Talk about your money mindset such as your thoughts on wealth or giving money to charity. Discuss your habits, are you more of a saver than a spender?
This is a way of getting to know each other as you build your financial intimacy.
Key tip: listen attentively! Your partner’s experience heavily influences your financial intimacy.
Discuss Your Life And Money Goals
Speaking about journeys, we’re all heading somewhere too. Goals determine your direction of travel and the life you’d like to live.
The level and status of your relationship will determine your approach to this conversation.
If your relationship is still in its infancy this discussion may be a simple fact find. Finding out what they want to do with their life and what they aspire to achieve.
On the other end if you’re building a life together this would be much more significant. You’ll be planning your present and future together and discussing how money plays a part.
If you’re in between these two sides, you’d discuss what feels right to the level of your relationship.
Goals may vary from wanting to own a home to wanting to start investing. Knowing these goals is important as they have an impact on money decisions you make. Furthermore, you’ll have the foundations to develop a financial plan together.
Key tip: think about your individual goals, then discuss them together.
Talk Value Not Just Figures
As much as you love each other, you’ll have different value systems. You’ll agree on a number of things, but not everything.
As a musician I value a good pair of headphones with top sound quality. On the other hand, Lindie is super content with any old pair as long as she can hear the music. So you can just imagine her reaction to me spending £200 on headphones.
But the way I listen to and value music is in a much different way than she does. On the flip side, Lindie only chooses to stay in four or five star resorts when we go on holidays.
Not knowing what you each value can easily lead to money fights in your relationship. You don’t have to agree but you should aim to accept and understand your partner.
Key tip: Look at where they choose to spend their money to learn about what they value.
Show me your calendar and your bank statement, and I’ll show you what you really value – Peter Drucker
Avoid Agreeing to Disagree when talking money
Some people think agreeing to disagree is a way to resolve your differences. I argue it isn’t. It’s a phrase people say to stop talking or arguing about their differences.
It’s okay to agree to disagree about pineapple on pizza, but money is different. This particularly pertains to financial decisions you have to make.
Let’s say you need a car and you want to buy one on finance because your savings is for your house deposit. But your partner wants to buy the car with some of your savings to avoid getting into debt. Agreeing to disagree means no decision is made to resolve the matter.
What I’ve found is that it’s generally easier to agree on the big things. It’s things like subscribing to every single TV streaming service where disagreements come up. Coming to an agreement ensures you’re both on the same page with what’s going on with your money.
Key tip: Discuss the pros and cons of each option and make a decision together
Be H.O.T (Honest, Open and Transparent)
This is the foundation of talking about money with your partner. To be honest this applies to your relationship as a whole.
There is such a thing as financial infidelity. Financial infidelity is ultimately being dishonest and secretly hiding finances from your partner
This may seem harmless since you’re not emotionally or physically cheating but this money issue can ruin relationships. Truth and honesty is how trust, intimacy and oneness is built in your relationship.
Talk about your complete financial picture including credit scores, salaries, savings and debts you have. Being honest about any money worries or concerns you may have. And being upfront about certain decisions you want to make that will affect your relationship.
You don’t have to discuss everything in one sitting.Talk about what you’re comfortable with to begin with and develop it as you go along.
Key tip: Calculate your net worth together. This one act lays all your finances on the table.
If you found this post interesting, please like it and share across social media or send it to your friends. I’d also love to hear your thoughts and experiences. What do you think about this topic? How do you go about talking money with your partner? Comment it below!
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