Before entering into marriage or a partnership, most people assume that infidelity, lack of commitment or even unreasonable behaviour will be the relationship killer. From our experience, it’s usually the money issues.
When two people merge their lives, a lot of patience and compromise is required to make things work long-term. As most couples know, it’s not always easy.
Did you know that the real relationship problem doesn’t stem from arguments over dirty dishes or even bathroom counter space? In fact, one of the main reasons for breakdowns in relationships nowadays is money. Nowadays one of the main reasons cited for relationship breakups is money.
According to a recent study by Relationships Australia, financial stress is the top cause of relationship breakdown. Letting your money issues develop and fester can ignite into enormous arguments. This could derail your relationship or worse still, lead to separation. In this guide, we’ll share the best tips for overcoming money issues in a relationship.
Talking About Long-Term Goals
It’s no secret that the cost of living is on the rise in Australia and other parts of the world. People are under more pressure than ever before to make ends meet. From the rising cost of rent to the increase in costs during the holiday season, there’s a lot of bills to worry about.
When you add to all of this financial stress the pressure to keep up with the Joneses by buying the latest tech, fashion, and so on, debt seems inevitable.
The best way to combat this is by having a frank conversation. Talk about your long-term financial goals and attitudes towards saving. Have these conversations early on in the relationship. If you cannot agree from the start on the fundamentals, you could be setting yourself up for disappointment. It is a lot more difficult to have awkward conversations after the starry-eyed honeymoon period is over.
2. Notice the Signs of Financial Strain
A lot of breakups might have been prevented if couples knew the signs of impending financial straight. Some of the most common signs that you’re suffering from financial stress include:
- Not opening bills when they arrive
- Arguing with loved ones over money
- Living in fear of eviction
- Having difficulties sleeping
- Not having money left after paying your bills
Rather than just walking away, there are a number of ways to make a change. You can begin debt management practices today to get your financial situation back on track.
To regain control of your finances as a couple, it is important to remember that relationships are a two-way street. Both sides need to be comfortable with any guidelines around harnessing spending and debt consolidation.
No matter where you live in Australia, there are lots of options for help with debt consolidation. There are professional debt negotiators who can negotiate a better outcome for you both. Speak with us today and we’ll go through a free consultation with you to determine your best option.
3. Be Open About Spending
Every solid relationship is built on trust. An open book policy on spending is a very important part of this trust. While having your own money helps you feel financially secure, this freedom must be balanced with accountability. All of this translates into meaning that you shouldn’t feel like you need to hide your spending habits from your other half.
Remember you are a partnership and you make decisions together. Therefore, you need to change spending habits together. Set realistic financial goals and avoid making impulse purchases. There are many tools available online to get you started, such as debt consolidation calculators.
4. Seek Professional Debt Advice
It is also important to seek professional help. If you feel that you are working long hours to fund an extravagant partner’s lifestyle, then there are counselling services out there to help you address getting a balance back in the relationship. Likewise, the subject of money should never be used as a weapon against your partner.
Education is also very important. Have you read the small print around the interest rates of those credit cards? Do you have a realistic idea of how much you are paying in interest every month? Many money issues stem from a lack of knowledge, so make this a learning experience for both of you together.
5. Beware of Credit Cards
When it comes to credit card debt, it’s a good idea to sit down with your partner and have a look at your outgoings, then look at how much you are paying off every month. If you are paying just the minimum, it may take decades to clear the debt.
Look at ways you can cut costs to pay off more. Even an extra $50 per month will make an enormous difference. If you have more than one card, look at paying the one with the highest interest rate first. If it still looks bleak, then get in contact with us to discuss your options at reducing your credit card debt.
Relying too much on credit cards will strain your relationship and your wallet. You don’t need to choose the most expensive outings and dates. Living in Australia, we have such amazing natural spaces on our doorstep. They don’t cost a cent to use. Often a few simple changes can start to add up. Looking for free or low-cost dates will help cut down on credit card expenses.
Avoid Money Problems in Relationships
Keep reminding yourself and each other that you’re in it together as one financial team.
Whether you combine your finances or keep separate bank accounts, the important thing is to take responsibility for your actions and to find sensible debt solutions.
If you’re looking for assistance to improve your financial situation, we’re here to help! We have professionals who can offer debt management advice and assist you with consolidating your debts. Contact us now on 1300 368 322 to see how we can help you create a brighter financial future.