Hidey-ho! Came across this article by Dinks Finance that I liked (seems like I’m always pimping them lately?), and wanted to share the questions they posed with y’all. And also answer them out loud for myself too, just to see where I personally fall with these matters…
If you don’t have a spouse, substitute your girlfriend or boyfriend or even your dog – we won’t judge ;)
Money questions for you and your
dog significant other:
1. Would you discuss money on the first date?
Hell yeah! I mean, not hardcore like salaries or how much is in my savings or anything, but money in general no doubt. Would be hard for me not to when she asks me what I do for a living ;) Or perhaps this fine young lady won a date with me from this blog?? Hmm… (Don’t mind this, honey)
2. How long should you wait to talk about money with your spouse?
I feel like the *real* money talks will play out naturally over time as the relationship progresses. In the beginning you find out what each others’ spending habits are and long term goals/priorities/etc, and then as you talk about moving in and/or marriage you then have the more in depth discussions. At least that’s how it’s been in my relationships – kinda hard to NOT talk about stuff unless you’re on a mission to divert talks on purpose (and in which case you better be diverting the relationship! :))
Actually… just re-reading this question now and it says “with your spouse?” Ummm… so you’re already married and NOW wanting to have the talk?? Haha… danger danger!
3. Who always brings up money in your relationship?
I do! I do! Unless we’re talking about baby or household related stuff – Mrs. Budgetsaresexy is always trying to find way to save there while I’m more blasé… But it’s always me bringing up net worth stuff and grand budgeting ideas :) She hates talking about money unlike you and I.
4. Is it harder to manage your money as a couple than it was when you were single?
Not harder, necessarily, but more stuff to watch over and manage. Especially in the beginning when you each had a billion accounts and you’re trying to merge and streamline/etc. IF you even go down that route – we didn’t until 4 years into our relationship! And I see the pros and cons to either route. But overall it’s not that harder really, just more money and bills to play with ;)
5. Would you offer to pay off your spouse’s debt?
Oooooh… we had a post about this sometime last year: When You Say “I Do!” Who Pays The Debt?“. But I’d like to think I would if that were the case between my wife and I. Always easier when in theory though, eh? :) Luckily my wife was good w/ money too and came in debt-free! Woohoo! Even if I didn’t pay it off directly though, we would have just set aside more of her income towards paying it off faster and what not which meant less income into the household in general since our finances are now merged. So it would really be the same thing at the end of the day anyways.
6. Is debt a deal breaker?
Nah, probably not. If I like/love a chick then it really doesn’t matter. Unless we’re talking about like $100,000 or $200,000 – and not from college! I’m pretty sure consumer habits like that would make us not get along anyways, so we’d never make it that far, haha… unless she was hot. Just kidding ;)
7. Do you think it’s important to have the same money views?
I do. Or at least views that are compatible. Kinda like how I’m all hyperactive and a big dreamer, whereas my wife is more reserved and realistic. We’re opposites, but it’s a good mixture. Same goes with money, only the opposites probably can’t be *as* extreme, haha… Money affects everything though from homes to cars to lifestyle,s to even having kids, so it’s crazy important! One side all out of whack and it’ll be the end in no time… especially if the two sides are stubborn. Isn’t money like the main or 2nd reason people divorce? Right up there with infidelity?
8. Can you really change how your spouse spends money?
I think so, but I wouldn’t phrase it like that to your spouse ;) We can all change our habits whether it’s money-related or not, but the more important question is “do you WANT to change your habits?” Lots of people love the way they manage their money even if it’s not the “right” way of doing things per all gurus out there. But if your spouse isn’t happy with it, well, you gotta decide whether it’s important or not to work on or else trouble’s on the horizon…
But yeah, people can totally change. And you could even just structure things differently so it makes it *easier* for them to do so also. Like when one side wants to spend more than the other and hates when they’re getting checked up on all the time. Doing something like setting up separate “spend as you wish” funds specifically for that reason can be a life saver for both parties. One side gets to splurge with no questions asked, and the other knows exactly how it’ll affect the budget (because both parties agreed on this specific number ahead of time).
Alright, that’s a lot of writing – your turn :) Want to answer any of them in the comments and let us all peer into your relationships?? It’ll be fun, I promise. Do it! Peer pressure!
PS: You know how to avoid all this? Find your match on CreditScoreDating.com, haha… #NOT
(Photo by Sean Hering Photography)