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Columns | Go Far With Kovar

Money Conversations for Married Couples

by Taylor Kovar

September 26, 2023

Hi Taylor - My wife and I have a good relationship and can talk about almost everything—except money. When it comes to finance, we either avoid the topic or get into a fight. Can you help?

Hi Scott - Indeed I can. It's wild how much of a strain money can put on an otherwise strong relationship. You and your wife are like so many other couples who get nervous and anxious about money, so you only talk about it in the midst of a fight when things are already heated. Here are a few ways to get things on the right track.

1. Schedule a money date. You have to have these conversations or you'll end up with bigger money problems down the road. Since it's a difficult subject for you two, you should set aside some quality time during which the whole discussion should be about spending and saving and investing and debt. That conversation can't happen over coffee when you're checking your watch to see if it's time to go to work; it has to be a more meaningful meeting. Do it at a fancy restaurant, order pizza, or take a picnic to a spot where you both feel relaxed. Make it an actual date and then just dive into all the nitty-gritty money talk that's been so hard for you in the past. For even more in-depth money date ideas, check out TheMoneyCouple.com

2. Listen. Discussions about money often end in fights because people feel defensive and then get a little combative. Those feelings become even stronger when someone doesn't feel heard. When you have your money date, make sure you both get a chance to talk. Even if one of you pays all the bills and manages the credit card and is essentially the family accountant, you still need to make sure both parties get equal speaking time. It's usually the person left out of the money decisions who feels the most overwhelmed and really needs to get some stuff off their chest. If money makes your spouse anxious, you have to ask why and really listen to the answer.

3. Make a plan. If finance remains a hot-button issue in your house, your marriage will suffer because of it. There has to be a consistent effort made to get you both on the same page and comfortable with your money relationship. If you don't already know your Money Personalities, go to 5MoneyPersonalities.com and take the free quiz. This will give you a new vocabulary to use when you're discussing the ways you handle your finances. Once you've got the communication part down, you can start making things happen—whether it's paying down debt or saving for a house—together.

You and your wife have got this, Scott. You're not alone in your struggles, and a little bit of teamwork will go a long way. Let me know how it goes and don't hesitate to reach out for advice!
Taylor Kovar

"Go Far With Kovar" September 26, 2023 Column
Legal Disclaimer: Information presented is for educational purposes only and is not an offer or solicitation for the sale or purchase of any specific securities, investments, or investment strategies. Investments involve risk and, unless otherwise stated, are not guaranteed. Be sure to first consult with a qualified financial adviser and/or tax professional before implementing any strategy discussed herein. To submit a question to be answered in this column, please send it via email to Question@GoFarWithKovar.com, or via USPS to Taylor Kovar, 415 S 1st St, Suite 300, Lufkin, TX 75901.


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