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Financial Planning Tips for Couples!

February 21, 2024

It's February and most couples celebrate Valentine's Day as an important opportunity to express their love. While Valentine's Day is special to most, one of the most valuable ways couples can say "I love you" is through financial transparency.

Here are the 3 most common issues I see and solutions for each:

Issue # 1: Avoiding the money talk.

"Only 43% of the general population talked money before marriage, but the number rises to 57% for affluent couples and jumps to 81% for young professionals." Source:

I suggest that couples pick a time once a month to discuss and review their family finances.  For your first meeting, create an environment that you both enjoy featuring your favorite food, restaurant, or wine. Make it a fun night! This will help make these conversations more enjoyable and reframe your feelings about discussing money.

Questions to discuss with your partner:

Communication: How comfortable are you with speaking about money? 
Anxiety: How often do you worry about your finances? 
Function: Is wealth best used to enjoy today or secure tomorrow? 
Orientation: Is money best spent on yourself or others?

Issue # 2: Unequal contribution.

A lot of couples experience ‘the financial tug of war’ of one person thinks they carry the financial load while the other feels like they’re being nickel and dimed. Sometimes it can feel like a battle of the budget.

The reality is, that how you and your partner decide to manage your finances is entirely up to you – and it is based on where each of your strengths lies and personal preference. We see two ways that have been successful for couples:

  1. 100% Joint – The All-in Method.
    • Everything is 100% shared. All accounts are joint, both incomes go into a joint account, and all expenses go out of a joint account. This works for some people.
  2. The ‘Me Money’ Method.
    • This is a hybrid method where each spouse saves via individual retirement accounts, HSAs, etc. The remaining income goes into a joint checking account. Each spouse still has an individual account where they move x% of money from the joint account to their individual ‘fun money’ accounts.  ex. Let’s say 10% goes into spouse A’s fun money account, and 10% of the income goes to spouse B’s ‘fun money’ account. This % could be an even split or a split based on income levels.
    • Each spouse can choose to spend that fun money on whatever they want or to invest it for future fun money purchases.
    • All shared expenses are paid from the joint account. Personal ‘fun money’ comes from individual fun money accounts. This way you avoid conversations about how much he’s spending on golf and how much she’s spending on shopping.  Each person manages their fun money as they see fit.

Issue # 3: Ignoring financial goals.

This is common. Just like New Year’s resolutions, you’re gung-ho for the first week of the year but after a few weeks pass, that motivation starts to fade, and your goals drop off. The same thing can happen with your financial goals.  When you’re in a relationship, this can become a big issue.

Create a financial bucket list with your partner! Having shared dreams, naming them, and talking about them is critical to help make sure that you and your partner stay motivated and on the same page.

Financial transparency all boils down to consistent communication and finding what works for you and your partner! If you would like me to look at your and your partner's finances, please click the link below to schedule a call!

Schedule A Call With Us!