Four Money Topics to Discuss Before Moving in With Your Partner
- Money is one of the main reasons that cause relationships to end, so it's crucial to build a solid financial bond before making any major decision.
- Before you decide to sign a lease with your partner, it's a must to discuss your financial situation and theirs too.
- Communication is essential to a healthy relationship because it allows both parties to be open and honest before making a big financial decision, like moving in together without knowing each other's money history.
Relationships can be healthy or tricky, especially when it comes to talking about money. Often, one person or both people will bring their financial baggage into the relationship without warning. If you haven't ripped the bandaid off by now, then you should start having the conversation about money with your partner as soon as possible.
For couples who are sure that they will be together for an extended time, moving in together may be the next step. But, before you sign the lease, there are a few things you must discuss with your partner about your financial situation and theirs too. Communication is essential to a healthy relationship because it allows both people to be open and honest with one another. This allows for a relationship to be built on a solid foundation.
Money is one of the main reasons that cause relationships to end, so it's crucial to build a solid financial bond. If you are curious about how to start the conversation, then here are four areas that can help you check in with yourself and your significant other before you move in together.
Before you move in with your partner, it's important to discuss each other's money history. Discussing each other's money history can include learning about current money habits (good and bad), what their parents taught them about money growing up, or how you both paid rent and bills prior to moving in together and personal finance in general. This information helps because you both are aware of the other's money history without having to be unpleasantly surprised later on down the road.
One person may spend a lot of money on their credit cards without knowing about debt because they grew up in a home where financial instability was normalized. At the same time, another person may have been raised in the same type of environment but decide to become frugal because of observing their parent's and sibling's money habits.
Either way, when you are better aware of your own and your partner's money history and habits, you can find ways to develop better solutions. These solutions will also honor each person's needs and strengths while improving on your weaknesses.
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Credit is an important topic generally brought up when someone or a couple is preparing to buy a home. However, credit is just as important for those who decide to rent instead. A lower credit score can make your basic needs more expensive. It can hurt your chances of living in the apartment you want, and it could mean that you pay more to connect your utilities.
If one partner has a lower credit score than the other, a financial imbalance could be brought into the relationship. The partner with a better credit score could end up putting every bill and the lease in their name. This could put one partner in a sticky situation, especially if the other one has trouble paying bills on time. Also, if the relationship ends abruptly, one person can get stuck with paying back the debt that two people accrued.
A couple with a healthy financial balance must also ensure that they stay up to date with their credit score.
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Image Credit: Shutterstock by Andrey_Popov
Saving money is a critical aspect of financial stability and security. Saving money allows you to build a cash cushion or an emergency fund that can help you when you need it the most. If you have never saved your money before, that's okay. There are tools that can help you build the discipline of saving money. One way is through a savings automation plan, which is when a fixed amount of money is taken out of your paycheck each month and goes directly into your savings account. This method helps people to "set it and forget," in other words, they don't have to remember to transfer money each month manually.
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If you realize that you don't have enough savings in the bank, it's a must to figure out what is standing in your way and what could be the best solution for you. You may need to rework your budget and focus on a combination of reducing expenses and increasing income before deciding to move in with your partner.
Planning for your financial future with a budget will significantly help a couple gain control of their money. When you talk about your budgets, work on understanding what you can control. Try not to dwell on situations out of your control or terrible money decisions from the past. Instead, look at what you have the power to change. Look for opportunities to tighten up where you need it and increase your income, if necessary.
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Creating a budget is also an excellent time to decide how you will handle your household finances together. Many couples work best with a plan that allows them to work towards joint goals and leave space for individual freedom to spend. A couple can be a strong unit if they work together instead of against each other. Learning about each other's finances can be a great way to see if moving in together is the right choice for you.