Happy Valentine’s Day!! As you are celebrating your couple-ness today with your sweetie, remember that it is not all roses and chocolates and cards. Sometimes things are tough, and that can hurt even the best relationships. Here are some financial tips to help smooth or prevent the rough times:
1. Have “the Talk”. Talking about money and debt isn’t pleasant, I know. However, it is very important to share your financial info with your partner. If something horrible were to happen to you, it is important that they know where your safe-deposit box is, what savings/checking and investment accounts you have, where valuables are kept, and what you would like done if the unforseen should happen. It is important to share your final wishes while you are still able.
2. Boost your Life Insurance. Again, in preparing for the rest of your life, you need to consider who you are leaving behind. If you were to die, would your spouse be able to handle all the bills on their own? Life insurance will be able to keep your family afloat in a very difficult time.
3. What about disablity insurance? If you were seriously hurt, and became disabled, you will need money to help replace your income. Even if you had a sort-term problem, say, 3 months, do you have enough savings in reserve to pay your bills?
4. What WILL happen? Who WILL take care of your children if you and your spouse both die? Who WILL get your family heirlooms, who WILL inherit your home? Do you see the theme here?
5. Both partners in a relationship need to know the day-to-day financial situation. One person may be responsible for getting the bills paid, but both need to know how much debt you are in as a couple, what your monthly budget is (Yes, BUDGET!), how much you can afford to spend and where your money is going. After you rack up $100,000 in debt is not the time to open your eyes to what you’re spending. Pay attention as you go to prevent any unpleasant surprises down the road.
I hope these tips can help you on the road to financial success with your partner.