• Nate Baim, MBA, CFP®

Couples Combining Finances



Video Transcript:

So, Becky, my wife and I, we are coming up on being married for about a year. It will be a year the end of July. And it's been very exciting because we've had to negotiate. Any relationship is a negotiation. And marriage is especially a negotiation and compromise. One of those things that couples really have to negotiate a lot around is spending money and how you use your money, and where are you saving, and how are you working toward achieving your shared goals.


So, a good example of that came up here recently, where we both felt it was a good time to buy a new bed. I know Becky was a lot more ready for that; sooner than I was. I was a little more reluctant. A lot of my reluctance comes from spending the money because I am very frugal, and how I grew up was to save money. A penny saved is a penny earned. And that's something that was drilled into my head at a very young age. And I still live with that everyday, and I carry it with me all the time. We did negotiate, and we settled on a bed. The bed is on its way. And I am sure both of us are going to be a lot more rested because of that.


But, it reminded that couples, especially this time year because folks are still going to get married. Unfortunately it may not be the ideal wedding given the circumstances, but I imagine there is going to be a lot of people out there this summer getting married. You're going to be asking yourselves the question, "How do we combine our finances?" I think a lot of people when to approach that question they start with what accounts do we need to move together and what accounts need to be joint. And how to do we navigate this account thing? How are going to spend together and how are going to save together. And really the hard work begins way before you even start to ask that question.


The hard work begins when you start to understand who you are and where you come from and sharing that with your with your partner. Because once you communicate your behaviors, your habits, your biases with your partner they are going to be able to respond more with empathy and understanding on where you're coming from when you say that you have a certain savings goal or spending objective. That will help you also begin to map how to combine your finances together operationally. Next, the two of you should sit down and write out your values and goals. Understand what makes the two of you tick together. Write down your short term, medium and long term goals. From there you are going to be able to understand how to setup your accounts. Then you can say, "We want to save for a home." That means you probably go and setup an account designated specifically for a home. And then you can begin understandable how much each of you should be contributing to that account.


There is no right or wrong answer on how to combine finances as a couple. It can be very simple such as everything is co-owned. It can be more complex where everything is co-owned except for there's two fun money spending accounts for each partner; Each one has their own. Or everything is separate still but we just contribute to certain accounts and certain expenses together. It can very across many different ranges. But sitting down and having that conversation about money behaviors, habits, and biases, your values and your goals will lay the foundation in order to answer the tougher question of "How to be operationally combining our finances? How do we setup our accounts? How do we spend together and save together?"


I offer this as a service with folks that are trying to combine their finances. You may have been married for two year now, but you feel may not be on the same page with your partner yet on that and I can offer a third opinion really on that process. And especially for those getting married soon or just got married, I offer this for those folks, too.


You can learn more about it on planyourpursuit.com under the Our Services tab. There it will detail what all is involved with the money management program for couples. If you are not quite ready for that, and you want to get to know me more, sign up for the Planner's Beta. It is my weekly digest that I send out every week with items in the news and in the world that I think are interesting and wanted to share with you and hopefully is valuable for you too. I hope you have a great rest of your week, and I hope to talk with you soon. Thanks!

 

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