How Families Can Avoid Fighting Over Money

After marriage, the way you manage money will be different than pre-marriage. And if you did not discuss money with your fiancé before tying the knot, fights might happen. The good news is there are several ways to reconcile your viewpoints regarding money.

Have a Talk about Debt

It’s a good idea to be upfront with each other about how much debt each of you have. That way, you can create a plan to pay it off. If you have loans from school, you may want to discuss the best way to deal with debt. You could consider refinancing it with a private lender to get a new loan. This could come with better repayment terms or a lower interest rate.

Discussing Financial History

The things you did with your money in the past can affect you today, from levels of debt to the amount of money you currently have in the bank. Learning how each other’s families viewed money can shed some light on each other’s habits. If one hides their spending habits but the other wants everything laid out, there could be conflict. Learn about what each person considers normal. You may find your spouse was not trying to deceive you.

Being More Positive

Try to be patient with your spouse, as money is a personal thing, and conversations around this topic can be emotionally charged. Empathizing with each other allows you to admit mistakes made in the past. You can then plan for the future without shame. Being respectful of each other and giving the other person a chance to speak, uninterrupted, can lead to better conversations. 

It’s a good idea to talk openly about your goals and things you hope the future holds. If money is causing you stress, other aspects of your relationship will also suffer. Once you have a plan in place, you might even enjoy talking about effective ways to reduce expenses and other financial matters in your household. That’s because you will be able to focus on the positive future.

Talking About Large Purchases

It’s important for both of you to agree about more expensive things, like vacations, cars, or other items. This can be challenging, since one person might feel that something is necessary and can’t wait. Or one person might want the more expensive option. It’s a good idea to avoid making this purchase until both of you have agreed.

The person who has objected should consider why they are doing so. Perhaps spending that amount of money prevents them from reaching another goal. Or you might just want to reduce your overall spending. It’s a good idea to help your partner feel heard and spend a bit of time listening to each other’s perspectives until you have your differences resolved.

Sometimes, couples have a spending limit for each other. Anything above this limit has to be communicated to the other spouse before it is spent. For instance, if you want to spend a couple hundred dollars at the store, you might check in with your spouse first. This is not asking for permission before spending but simply making sure no one is unpleasantly surprised at anything.