Money, Marriage and Divorce
It's pretty crazy, really but we seldom explore someone's financial habits and philosophy when we meet them. In fact, it seems too personal for some married couples to even talk about.
It's important to know if our life partner is a spender. Are they a saver? Do they believe in debt? Do they have debt already? Do they believe in being a homeowner? What's their credit score? Do they have a good financial history? Is budgeting a swear word or a principle to be strictly adhered to?
These are simple questions to answer, but they are not so easy to ask.
Do you know that we all have a money personality? Knowing not your own personality but that of your partner can help avoid some of the financial arguments that can bring a marriage to its knees. You and your partner can learn more about your money personality by taking my free money quiz.
Money and Marriage
Ideally, you want to marry someone who is financially right for you. They don't have to be wealthy or a financial whizkid, but you do have to be financially compatible. They would be a good match if they had good financial habits.
Financial compatibility could mean that they have similar habits to you, but they also combat your not-so-great financial habits, and you combat theirs. If you like to account for every penny and have a strict budget every month, but they spend like money is going out of fashion and have lots of debt, then it's fair to say that you aren't a match made in money heaven.
The problem for many couples is that because they have not 'talked' money before marriage, they have assumed that they know how the other thinks about money through their actions. Unfortunately, your proper financial habits can be hidden when you are in the dating phase. Perhaps they have been a big spender on romantic meals and weekends away, which was just part of the courtship process, but once this courtship is over, they revert to their normal financial habits of being really tight with money.
Staying Married To Someone Who Isn't Financially Compatible
If you have not married someone who is financially right for you, then chances are money arguments will occur. These can get so severe over time that the marriage starts to crumble. Money is the reason for many divorces, not just the lack of it, but the friction it causes.
Money and Divorce
The quickest way to financial downfall is divorce. Just ask your divorced friends. I certainly have plenty of friends who had money when they were married and are now in a completely different financial situation. Divorce affects the finances of both sides. There are the fees to start with, and then there is the split of the assets, which doesn't always yield the best return.
Money, Marriage & Divorce - The Lessons
- Make sure your partner shares the same money philosophy and has a compatible money personality.
- Have honest money discussions before you get married (or form another lifelong commitment)
- Have honest money discussions throughout your marriage regularly
Adhering to these simple money lessons will not only help you stay married but help you achieve financial success.