Question: I’m getting married next month. How do I make sure my spouse and I don’t argue about money a lot?
Rachel’s Answer: Great question! It’s awesome that you are thinking about this before you get married. One of the most important things you can do is have open communication. Talk about your money goals with your spouse. Where do you want to be financially in a month? Next year? Five years? (Having trouble seeing eye to eye? Read 3 Money Fights You'll Have This Year.)
Talk about your strengths and weaknesses when it comes to spending and saving money. Set an amount (for example: $100) on when you both need to agree on a purchase.
Also, make a plan for your money and budget! The budget gets a bad rap, but all the budget does is tell your money where to go each month, instead of leaving you wondering where it went.
This isn’t rocket science. You’re simply sitting down with your husband and deciding how you will spend your income that month.
Every dollar “has a name.” It will take a few months to get this down, so don’t expect perfection right away. But if you want to get on the same page with your spouse about money, creating a budget together is the best way to do that.
Finally, don’t try and copy your parents’ lifestyle. If they have been successful, remember they have been around a lot longer than you. It took them 20 years to get there, and you’re just getting started.
One of the worst mistakes you can make is to overstretch yourself by getting into a mortgage you can’t afford and a couple of car loans that are weighing you down.
Keep all of these things in mind as you get married and you’ll be off to a great start! (Set yourself up for an amazing first year of marriage. Read 7 Money Tips for Newlyweds.)