There are several money resolutions every couple should make. It's normal for couples to have disagreements, but disagreements about money can strain the relationship, especially if these occur often. However, couples can get on the same page financially. Here are seven money resolutions every couple should make.
1. Increase Money Discussions
Being open about personal finances is one of several money resolutions every couple should make. Some people are uncomfortable discussing finances. Maybe they grew up in a house where money was a taboo subject, or maybe they're embarrassed about their personal finances. Whatever the reason, it's important for couples to talk about debt, income and financial goals. This way, there aren't any surprises, and the couple can work together to resolve financial issues in the relationship.
2. Start Saving
If you and your partner don't have a rainy day fund or a retirement account, make a resolution to start saving. Aim for a 3 to 6-month cash reserve. Talk to your employers about contributing to a 401(k) plan, or speak with a banker about opening an individual retirement account.
3. Save More
Then again, maybe you and your partner do have saving accounts and retirement accounts. Make a resolution to increase contributions. You can never have too much in savings. The more you contribute to a retirement account, the easier it'll be to maintain your lifestyle after you retire.
4. Pay off Debt
Too much debt can lower your credit score, and if you're paying high minimum payments, this can strain your budget. Strategize a way to pay off balances. You can negotiate lower rates with your credit card companies, pay more than minimum payments and stop adding new debt. Look for ways to generate extra income, and put this money toward debt repayment.
5. Create a Budget
Creating a budget may seem like a tedious task, but if you're constantly overspending or coming up short each month, a budget or spending plan can alleviate both issues. A budget lets you assess what's coming in and what's going out. You can decide how much to spend in various spending categories, which ensures you have enough income for essentials. Without a budget, you risk overspending on recreation, entertainment and food, and not having enough cash for utilities or your house payment.
6. Get a Financial Plan
Everyone needs a financial plan. As a couple, sit down and discuss your long-term and short-term financial goals. Next, create a strategy for reaching these goals. Also, it doesn't hurt to make an appointment with a financial planner. This professional can provide advice on all areas of personal finance from buying life insurance to getting rid of debt.
7. Don't Be Afraid to Splurge
Saving and paying off debt are important and can improve your personal finances. But at the same time, don't be afraid to splurge and have a little fun. Give yourselves a small splurge budget. This is money you can use for any purpose, such as shopping, a manicure, etc. Enjoying some of life's pleasures can reduce the risk of frugal fatigue.
Improving your money doesn't happen overnight, nor does it happen by chance. Sit down with your spouse, review the household finances and come up with a plan that works for both of you. What other money resolutions should a couple make?