Managing your own money can be hard enough, so throwing another person into the equation can make things downright chaotic, according to findings from TD Bank’s 2016 Love & Money survey. But managing your money as a couple has its benefits, too. Plus, it isn’t as hard as you might think.
“Managing your financial health is not much different than managing your physical well-being,” said “Master Matchmaker® Steve Ward, founder of LoveLab.com. And, it isn’t about obsessing over the numbers. Instead, as Ward put it, “budgeting is like rationing. Counting dollars and cents is not much different than counting calories.”
As the saying goes, two brains are better than one, and many couples find financial success when they join forces to tackle budgeting and money management. If want to take your #relationshipgoals to the next level, here are seven secrets — as well as some useful money habits — you and your partner should know if you want to be a financially successful couple.
1. Treat Your Relationship Like a Business
You wouldn’t expect a business to succeed if it didn’t track its income and expenses, or set short-term, mid-term and long-term goals — and relationships are no different.
Keep constant tabs on your cash flow — the money going in and out of your accounts — so you can see if you’re falling short and how to make changes so you can meet your long-term goals. “Longer-term projections are needed to put everything in perspective,” said Ron Weiner, CFP managing director and partner of RDM Financial Group at HighTower. For example, if you want a second home near the beach, do a proper short- and long-term analysis of how that will impact your finances now as well as in the future.
“When you actually do a budget and include the cost of entertaining weekend guests, painting the house every two years (because it’s near the water), increases in property taxes and the desire to leave that property to your children instead of selling it, this decision could have a major impact on a couple’s short-term cash flow as well as long-term financial independence,” added Weiner.
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