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Financial Questions to Ask Your Significant Other

February 10, 2021

Financial Questions to Ask Your Significant Other

You are engaged and preparing for the big day. But have you talked to your partner about money?

Before the big day arrives, you and your partner should discuss your finances. Be honest about your similarities and differences when it comes to money. Financial differences can put an added stress on a relationship and could lead to arguments along the way. It is also one of the most common reasons couples split up. Having a mutual understanding of financial concerns at the onset is a lot healthier than dealing with these troubles after you say, “I do!”

Tough Love

Talking to your partner in an open and honest way can be a tough challenge when it comes to money. Of course, you want to impress your loved one, but life has its ups and downs especially when it has to do with money. Entering a marriage debt free would be ideal; unfortunately, that is not always the scenario. Here are a few questions to help get the conversation flowing.

Financial Situation

You know how they take their coffee. But how well do you know their financial situation?

  • What assets and account are you each bringing into the marriage?
  • How much debts do you have, including credit cards?
  • What are your credit scores?
  • Are there any bankruptcies or other negative financial events?
  • Do you want to create a prenuptial agreement?

Compare Expectations and Spending Habits

It is important to communicate financial expectations and spending habits to help ensure you are both on the same page.

  • Do you want to combine your finances, or keep separate accounts?
  • Are you a spender or a saver?
  • How do you spend discretionary money?
  • What is an acceptable monthly amount to spend on non-essentials?
  • What would you like to do with a work bonus?
  • What relationship have you already established with financial professionals?

Define Financial Responsibilities

Much like discussing, who is going to cook dinner and who is going to clean up, you need to discuss who is going to manage the finances.

  • Who will build and monitor the budget?
  • Who will pay the bills?
  • Who does the taxes?

Discuss Short- and Long-Term Plans

Short-term financial goals are focused on things within a few months like creating an emergency plan. Whereas long-term goals can be focused on saving for a new car or new house. It is important to talk about how much you need to save each month to obtain these goals.

  • How much do we need to save to create an emergency fund?
  • What major purchases do we need to make within the next two years?
  • Do we want to rent or own a home?
  • When should we plan to start a family?
  • When we have a family, how we will care for the child?
  • How much should we contribute to retirement savings, 401(k) and/or IRAs?
  • What are our retirement goals?

Speaking from the Heart and Wallet

Remember, good and honest financial advisors will listen to your goals and plans. Check out TVFCU’s Financial Calculators after clicking on the Services & Tools tab. There you will find easy to use tools to help with your budgeting needs such as the simple loan and savings goal calculator at And when it comes to home buying for first time couples, make sure you watch the TVFCU Virtual Mortgage Seminars which is located under the Loans tab.

Take It from the Experts

Kay and Les Wallace, originally from the Midwest, decided to retire on Signal Mountain. They have been together 55 years. When they first got married, they made it a point to put a little money aside from each paycheck. We call that, “paying yourself first.”

“It is paying yourself,” said Les. “Kay will tell every young person before getting married, ‘Don’t spend money on large projects before you talk to your spouse. It is called trust.’ Without that five letter word, a marriage will not survive. Trust is the main key to a healthy relationship. Without trust, life truly becomes miserable.”

Kay and Les are also tremendous role models in their community when it comes to giving back to others.

“Money is a great thing to have,” said Les. “But kindness is worth its weight in gold.”

Once you agree on what you are saving for, money issues become a lot easier to handle. And when it comes to getting financial help, remember it is a process that may take a lot of time researching. We hope this article helped get the conversation started!

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