7 Things to Do if You’re Hiding Money Problems

Personal finance tips, personal finance, 7 things to do if you’re hiding money problems,, debt

Money problems have been one of the major causes of divorce. The thorny issue surrounding money can escalate into resentment and animosity. 

A recent TD Bank 2019 Love and Money Survey study discovered that nearly 50% of people keep their money secret. The same survey also reports that 31% of the respondents preferred to break up with partners who were deceptive on finances. 

It doesn’t have to be that way for you. Sure, money matters in a relationship are touchy, but you can tone things down. Take a look at the seven steps discussed below to help save your relationship from money-related conflict. 

How to Handle Money Problems

  1. Have A Serious Money Talk

Discussing finances with your significant other can sometimes feel invasive and uncomfortable. However, experts recommend having a money talk as one crucial way to make peace with your partner. 

Relationships can only be built on trust, and deception would be unfair to your significant other and detrimental to your relationship. Once you start a money conversation with your spouse, you prepare them mentally on your financial standing and learn about their relationship with money. 

Besides, the serious talk allows you to ask personal finance questions regarding income, credit score, and debt. Of course, this can be a challenging navigation route, but some of the questions you should have in mind include;

  1. What are your spending habits?
  2. How much debt do you carry?
  3. Do you have a retirement plan?

The bottom line when having the money talk with your partner is transparency. Learn to be honest with each other on finances, feelings, etc. 

  1. Harmonize your Financial Goals

Once you disclose your financial status to your partner, you can make the necessary adjustments to your goals. Alternatively, you can set new goals with input from your partner. 

It would be hard to visualize financial success if you don’t have a joint goal. Maybe you’re planning to start a family, travel together, or buy a home. Whatever your aspirations, you must articulate them, map out a realistic timeline and steps to achieve them. 

Having a well-detailed roadmap for jointly achieving any of your financial goals may be the wake-up call crucial to your relationship. Every partner will understand how their decisions may affect the mutual financial goals; thus, they’ll likely commit to the plan. 

  1. Schedule Regular Check-Ins

Once the financial conversation gets going, and you already have set goals with your partner, ensure you commit to regular money check-ins. 

Regular check-ins are one of the most valuable tools used by couples to maintain a healthy financial relationship. It’s wise to hold regular meetings with your spouse to discuss finances and review your progress on the set goals. This ensures that communication lines remain open, and every partner will have a forum to discuss issues, ask questions, or adjust goals accordingly. 

How often you conduct the check-ins depends on your preferences. You may want to meet weekly if your financial goal is time-sensitive. However, if you have long-term ambitions, holding monthly check-ins with your partner is sufficient.

During the check-in, you can discuss expenses since the last meeting, your current financial standing, and the projection for the future.  

  1. Be Transparent

Your finances are a crucial aspect of your life, and your partner needs to know about it. Therefore, it’s critical to commit to transparency to help them understand you better and forge a way forward. 

In this case, transparency means telling your spouse nothing but the truth when discussing your financial standpoint in the early stages and throughout the relationship.

An honest and open conversation helps establish financial harmony in your relationship. Therefore, feel free to share details about spending habits, credit scores, and debt. Also, listen to your significant other without judgment to understand their money situation. 

  1. Understand Your Partner

After listening without judgment, take time to understand the “why and how” behind your spouse’s financial decisions. Understanding each other’s perspectives helps you hold effective communication. 

In most cases, a person’s approach to money aligns with life experiences that molded them. A person who grew up wealthy may have a different outlook than someone who grew up economically disadvantaged. 

Therefore, understanding a person’s motivation will help try to meet in the middle on money matters. So, if your partner depicts seemingly strange, thoughtless, or selfish traits in their finances, it might be the way they grew up. 

  1. Restructure the Household Budget

Now that your financial woes are no longer a secret, you must take the necessary steps to balance the equation and achieve your goals. One most effective measure is creating a balanced budget. 

Creating a budget for the entire household may seem tedious, but the benefits reign supreme. You don’t want to be in the dark on your expenses which is a recipe for marital turmoil. 

With advanced technology, budgeting has become easier. Popular programs like Mint help you create a budget and track transactions to remain aligned with your goal. Look for available apps and websites online and choose the best for you. 

  1. Seek Professional Assistance

If you sense that disclosing your financial problems might lead to chaos or if money problems have already hijacked your relationship, consider consulting a church minister, a therapist, or a financial expert. 

Seeking guidance as a couple might help disclose money problems and create solutions amicably. Consider specialists charging hourly rates so you won’t fall into another long-term financial commitment. With the help of a professional, you’ll find it easy to navigate financial turmoil together. 

Disclose Financial Problems

Deliberately hiding financial problems in a committed relationship may not be a good move—no need to set yourself up for disaster. Apply the steps outlined here to avoid letting finances get the best of your relationship.

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