Talking about money with your partner and spouse is never easy, especially when you’re not sure what they think about it or you have limited knowledge of how to manage money.
Not all of us share the same philosophy about money, how we make it, how we spend it, or how we invest it. Unfortunately, the friction surrounding money and finance can lead to larger relationship problems, such as: B. so-called financial infidelity, where people hide their purchases from their partners.
Postponing that conversation can often do more harm than good, and research shows that about 64% of couples admit to being “financially irreconcilable” with their partners, according to Bread Financial.
Interestingly, the same Bread Financial research survey found that 45% of adult friends admit to having engaged in some form of financial infidelity in their relationships.
If you allow money issues to affect your relationship and love life, it can have lasting effects on you and your partner. It’s not always possible to immediately understand how everyone you meet works with money, and before putting the cart before the horse, it’s always best to have a solid judgment before jumping to any conclusions.
But often there are financial red flags that will reveal themselves over time as the relationship progresses. And while you don’t want to feel like you’re telling another person what they can and can’t do with their money, it’s often better to recognize these issues and have an open dialogue with your partner before they escalate into bigger problems becomes.
Financial red flags
Here’s a quick look at some of the financial warning signs that could be damaging to your relationship without you knowing it.
Your partner has ongoing financial problems
Let’s face it, we all have financial problems, and often these are carried around with us for long periods of time only to be solved when we seek advice or guidance.
Although money problems can look different for everyone, from high debt to low credit scores or even high spending, money problems are financial problems that can be solved with the right help or by talking to someone who is more knowledgeable on the subject.
On average, around two-thirds of Americans use credit cards, with the average person owning at least three credit cards, according to CreditNinja.
Jumping from one financial trap to the next without learning from past mistakes can no longer be seen as a coincidence, but as an active choice to ignore the opinions of others or find ways to tackle the problems.
Unfortunately, having money problems and not being willing to do something to address those issues or improve the situation can be a problem and can hurt you and your partner and possibly others involved.
A lack of financial wealth
There is no denying that not all of us are at the same stage in life when it comes to careers and financial prosperity. Often you will meet someone who has recently started a new career or has just returned to the job market after being laid off. Perhaps your spouse decides to go back to school and relies heavily on your income to sustain the household.
At other times there will come a point when you or your partner will reach a point where you can develop healthy financial habits, e.g. B. want to save for a specific goal, put some money aside for retirement, or want to travel, or even start a business.
If you notice that your partner is at a point in their life and career where they can save and invest their income, but don’t have the financial options, talk about how they can use some of their money for retirement can save or even save account.
Consider where they are in their lives and seek guidance yourself so that after the conversation you are informed and can provide actionable practices that you can both use.
They tend to be irresponsible with money
Overspending isn’t hard these days, and often we find ourselves spending more than we budgeted for. There are many instances where we’ve bought something on a whim without really thinking twice, or used some of our savings to pay for other expenses – this usually happens to most of us.
However, there comes a point when you need to address irresponsible spending with your partner, especially if it impacts you or the household.
Ask yourself, is your partner spending their income on luxuries before paying for more important things like rent, groceries, or utilities? Do they purchase items without thinking about the short-term financial impact they can have? Do they tend to run out of money early or later in the month? Do they borrow from you and forget to pay you back?
You may notice that they hide their purchases from you after you confront them, or that they are unable to tell you about their purchases.
These and other valuable questions are a key indicator of how your partner handles their money and whether they are simply being irresponsible and ignoring their financial responsibility for their own good.
They ignore their financial responsibilities
Many of us have financial responsibilities, whether it’s paying off college loan debt or even making monthly car payments. Each month we budget according to our financial needs and make sure our money will last until we get our next paycheck.
In some cases, people tend to neglect their financial responsibilities and often rely on their significant other or partner to pay for their mistakes or to help them pay for things like rent, utilities, and other important expenses.
Setting up a budget for your partner or even your household can help you see where your money is going and what it is being spent on. If your partner willfully ignores these efforts and prefers to use their money for less important purchases, it shows that they are not willing to make a financial commitment or improve their actions.
Addressing irresponsible financial behavior with your partner or spouse is never easy and it can be an uncomfortable situation at first, but voicing your concerns and offering advice where possible is important to the long-term well-being of your relationship.
Your partner is drowning in debt
Although we all wish to be debt free, many partnered couples, even those who are married, carry some form of debt. Research shows that 7 out of 10 Americans get married with debt, whether it’s a credit card or a student loan.
Paying off debt is no easy task, and it requires you to be careful about your income and spending habits. Ensuring you don’t miss payments and that you are able to pay off your debt is a financial priority for many of us.
Yes, some of us may have more debt than others, and often we see our partners carry debt into a relationship but ignore the importance of paying it off on time. Being in a debt-ridden relationship or marriage is more common than we might think, and some people disregard their debt responsibilities and hope their partners will help them pay them off.
Understanding how your partner has accumulated their debts over time and what they are doing to pay them off will give you a clear indication of their financial responsibilities and money savvy. Unfortunately, this is not always the case, and often many people hide their debt from their partners or take on even more debt due to irresponsible spending or money habits.
Ignores the importance of talking about money
Another red flag to watch out for is if your partner is intentionally ignoring a conversation about money.
Oftentimes, they feel intimidated, even scared, or unwilling to share money issues because they are afraid of the results, but if they are unwilling to solve their financial problems, you may have bigger problems to deal with.
The “money talk” is never easy, and it can be an awkward confrontation with your partner or spouse. If you’re not sure where they stand on money, it’s best to ask or interview them when you think it’s the right time.
If you find yourself putting off the idea of budgeting your household, or if you are in a marriage where one person is unwilling to make financial compromises, you may want to address these issues sooner rather than later.
Not everyone may be willing to talk about their monetary value or even their income, so be patient with your partner and figure out ways to make the conversation less uncomfortable or awkward for them.
It’s best to think about how short-term solutions can help your relationship long-term, but also make sure they help you build a financial future with someone else.
Dating someone who is irresponsible with their money or who is unwilling to improve their financial situation can be detrimental to your relationship and your well-being.
It’s not easy to bring up money issues in a relationship, but the sooner you agree on how to make your money work for both of you, the more likely you are to share the same values and philosophy when it comes to household finances.
If you confront your partner or spouse about their finances, make sure they feel comfortable enough to speak their mind and ask where you can help if they need advice. Instead of ignoring these issues, see how you can work together to overcome financial difficulties and build a thriving relationship.
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