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7 Tips to Help You Navigate Money in Your Marriage

 Listen to Best in Wealth Podcast Episode 205

Did you just get married? Or have kids about to get married? Maybe you fight about money and need to recommit to a healthier money mindset. Rachel Cruze wrote an article where she shared 7 tips for a healthy relationship with money in marriage. I will share what those tips are and what I might do differently. Even if you do not fight about money, this episode of the Best in Wealth podcast is full of tips and tricks anyone can implement to change the money conversation. Check it out!

Outline of This Episode

  • [1:05] My oldest daughter is getting married! 
  • [2:52] 7 tips for a healthy relationship with money
  • [5:37] Tip #1: Keep a joint bank account
  • [8:02] Tip #2: Discuss lifestyle choices together
  • [9:37] Tip #3: Recognize your difference in personality
  • [11:45] Tip #4: Do not let salary differences come between you
  • [13:22] Tip #5: Keep your purchases out in the open
  • [14:40] Tip #6: Set expectations together
  • [16:37] Tip #7: Do not let the kids run the show
  • [18:12] Learn how to talk about finances productively

Tip #1: Keep a joint bank account (if it works for you)

One of Rachel’s tips is to only have a joint bank account. When we got married, we kept separate counts and a joint account. I thought we would pool some money in the joint account to cover bills (based on how much each person made). It did not work out as I anticipated. 

Instead, when we are creating our spending plan, we set aside a flex account for money that each of us can spend monthly—no questions asked. It is the only line item that rolls over into the next month. 

Tip #2: Discuss lifestyle choices together

You and your spouse may have different shopping habits. One might spend money on designer clothes and the other might shop at thrift stores. Get on the same page and come to a compromise about where and how to spend money (another reason I love each person having a flex account). 

Tip #3: Recognize your difference in personality

Dave Ramsey talks about two types of people: The “free spirit” and the “nerd.” In any relationship, there is usually someone who likes to spend more than the other. Who is the nerd in your marriage? That person should handle the day-to-day operations of your finances. But when you create your spending plan and allocate where every dollar is going, do it together. You must both look at it and agree on it. 

Tip #4: Do not let salary differences come between you

I see this time and time again. The higher income earner in a marriage feels like they should have more power over what is happening with the money. Remember, it is not your money. When you get married, it is “our” money. Even if you keep separate accounts, do not use it as a power trip in your marriage. You are on the same team!

Tip #5: Keep your purchases out in the open

The #1 reason people get divorced is infidelity. The second reason is because of money. Being unfaithful to your spouse does not always involve an affair. What if you are keeping a separate account and hiding money and purchases from your spouse? One in three people has hidden purchases from their spouse. It will not end well. 

Tip #6: Set expectations together

How did your family of origin talk about money? Does one spouse have a family with more money? Do they buy nice things and go on fancy vacations? Maybe one spouse went camping for vacations. Set expectations together. If you want to go on a great vacation, save for it. Discuss your dreams and go after them together. 

Tip #7: Do not let the kids run the show

What are you willing to do for your kids? How much will you spend and on what? Set spending plans for back-to-school shopping and Christmas gifts. Do not let your kids dictate the money you spend. Kids have unrealistic expectations about money—now more than ever—because of their access to technology (and even what their friends are given).

Any of these tips stick out to you? I encourage you to implement these and start having conversations about money. It is a game-changer!

Resources Mentioned

Connect With Scott Wellens

Podcast Disclaimer:

The Best In Wealth Podcast is hosted by Scott Wellens. Scott Wellens is the principal at Fortress Planning Group. Fortress Planning Group is a registered investment advisory firm regulated by the Securities Act of Wisconsin in accordance and compliance with securities laws and regulations. Fortress Planning Group does not render or offer to render personalized investment or tax advice through the Best In Wealth Podcast. The information provided is for informational purposes only and does not constitute financial, tax, investment or legal advice.