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How to Budget as a Partnered Couple

Budgeting as a Partnered Couple | SOLFCU Financial TIpMoney can be the stopping block in many relationships and it’s important to establish the ground rules for your dual incomes early on. Shared expenses may seem like a breeze at first but as things get more serious in your relationship, you will find larger expenses coming up and need to navigate them as a couple.

There are several ways to go about financial coupling and all of them have advantages and disadvantages to them.

Separate Accounts

This will be the most natural at first since when you first start dating everything will be separate already. Less hassle since you won’t have to go through setting up new accounts and joining financial forces. Obviously, you will have more control over your money and more independence in terms of your personal spending.

If you decide to move on from separate accounts you can always test the waters by doing some joint saving for a vacation, wedding gift, or smaller bills.

Joint Accounts

Joining all your accounts is pooling your money together and using the shared accounts for all expenses and to save together for any goals. This route can be tricky as one person may be a spender and the other a saver so it’s crucial to talk about expectations and reality before you join accounts. This requires constant communication about your budget and the boundaries within. This is a frequent cause of resentment and bitterness between couples who struggle to be honest about their spending habits.

The key here is communication. Weekly talks between partners about spending are highly encouraged to stay away from any anger about your joint accounts.

Combination Separate and Joint

This is hopefully the best of both worlds where you open a joint account for bills and shared expenses, but you also have separate accounts to use for whatever you want as individuals.

We recommend biweekly discussions of your budget for this system to keep communication open and if you are a little short, it’s good to have the discussion ahead of important bill payments. This all boils down to preferences. Whatever your preference of spending and saving may be, it is a crucial part of a relationship to discuss it and make sure your partner is on board with the plan.

No matter what you and your partner decide, make sure you partner with Solidarity for all your financial needs! 
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