Guest post by Rachael Pace, edited by Jeff Campbell
Talking about money is hard, even for soulmates!
Research shows that, of 3,010 survey participants, nearly 70% admitted they would rather reveal the truth about how much they weigh than how much money is in their bank accounts.
A financial marriage counselor will help you both make a plan of action for saving money and getting out of debt.
It can also help you get on the same page about spending and borrowing money.
While money is not necessarily the number one cause of marital conflict, it is usually in the Top 3 Reasons for Divorce.
Whether you are newly engaged or have been married for years, financial marriage counseling can help you.
A financial advisor can help you and your spouse straighten out your spending, saving, and debts.
So let’s review the . . .
7 Proven Ways Financial Marriage Counseling Can Help You
1. Building Trust Through Open Communication
Like regular marriage counseling, financial marriage counseling will help you and your partner learn how to talk to each other about money.
Just how awkward is it for couples to talk about income and spending?
One recent survey done by Aspiration found that of the more than 700 participants, only 52% of men and 60% of women tell their partner how much money they make.
Your financial advisor will help you both learn how to talk to each other about your spending, budgeting, and financial goals.
Studies show that students who grew up in households where money was spoken about openly were less likely to have problems with overspending and had less credit card debt.
The lesson? Talking openly with your partner about financial issues can boost trust in your marriage while reducing your debt.
In any form of communication, learning Empathetic Listening Skills can really help. It ensures the speaker feels heard and validated.
Financial Infidelity: Do You Keep Money Secrets from Your Spouse? https://t.co/5hpM3TUe4u
— Entrepreneur (@Entrepreneur) June 15, 2018
2. Eliminating the Devastating Effects of Financial Dishonesty
Sometimes, it’s hard to be honest about money.
Finances are an inherently embarrassing. They can be especially awkward if you have some debt or troubles with impulse purchases.
Did you know there is actually a term called ‘Financial Infidelity’?
No, this phrase does not refer to couples spending money on their secret lovers. Instead, it refers to one spouse opening up a secret bank account so that they can use it for personal spending that they don’t have to inform their partner of.
This is just one way in which you may be lying to your partner about your spending.
Over-charging credit cards, gambling, the exact amount of money you are making, lying about unpaid bills and shopping addictions are other areas of a couple’s financial truths that they may lie about.
Seeing a financial counselor can help you and your spouse learn how to be honest about your spending habits so that you can correct any debts you have and strengthen your marriage.
3. Helping You Get on the Same Page
If you and your spouse had completely different upbringings or socioeconomic backgrounds, you may have opposing views on money.
In order to have a successful financial married life, you and your partner need to get on the same page.
Having similar views on debt and spending is crucial. Your counselor will help you understand how each other thinks about money and to make a financial plan that satisfies both of your points of view.
4. Showing the Crucial Importance of Combining Finances
Financial marriage counseling is not simply for those who are already in debt or who are mismanaging their money.
A Country Financial report revealed that 40% of surveyed couples said they didn’t discuss finances and money management prior to getting married.
This is a problematic statistic that can leave many couples arguing over their finances once they are married. Combat this early by going to a financial advisor while you are engaged.
Financial marriage counseling will help you discuss:
- How bills will be split
- The importance of combining back accounts
- How properties will be divided
- Advice on mutual investments
- The pros and cons of combined money management
- Many couples who are about to get married make the wise decision to visit a financial advisor to help them decide the best way in which they can combine their monies.
Ultimately for a successful marriage you should combine finances.
That means combining all bank accounts and credit cards. It also means all paychecks are no longer “yours” or “mine”, but “ours”.
Combine all income and expenses, make financial decisions together and you’ll be well on your way to financial and marital success.
— Middle Class Dad (@middleclassdad1) June 15, 2018
5. Helps You Avoid Crushing Debt Problems
A survey reported on by The Washington Post found that 33% of Americans hold debt that is currently in collections.
Another study reports that 8 in 10 Americans have debt of some sort, with mortgages being the most common.
The point? Most people have some sort of debt that they’ve accumulated over time, which means that most married couples do, too.
Having debt should not be embarrassing or something you lie about to your spouse. Instead, make it something you work on together.
Bringing debt into a relationship is going to scream trouble for your relationship satisfaction and your bank account.
By attending financial marriage counseling, couples will be able to tackle harmful debt in a positive way.
Struggling with living Paycheck to Paycheck? I highly recommend you take a moment and check out one of the most popular personal finance posts on the Middle Class Dad website.
6. Create a Budget Together
A study done at Columbia Business School found that people were more likely to deposit money into their savings after they publicly announced their goals to save more money.
This is partly because people feel more pressure to follow-through on a commitment when they are accountable to someone else.
By openly sharing goals about financial saving or paying off debts, you and your spouse will be more likely to follow through on your financial plans.
Want the best budgeting tool out there? Download my FREE Excel household budget template now!
Once you get it, you can dive deep into how to use it and why it works in another post about why this is the Best Excel Household Budget Template.
7. Helps Ease Stress
One thing a financial marriage counselor will do is help you make a complete listing of your income, debts, and living expenses.
This is important if you are considering bankruptcy as a couple or are feeling undue stress financially.
Your counselor will also help you make debt-reducing proposals, create a budget, and help you communicate about your finances.
It’s almost impossible to have a happy marriage when you’re both fretting over finances.
It’s no surprise that money, or lack thereof, can put a large amount of stress and anxiety into a marriage. By going through financial marriage counseling, you will greatly ease your burdens.
Not sure of the cost or what they do in Marriage Counseling? Or wondering if it’s too late to save your marriage? Check out one of the most popular relationship posts on the Middle Class Dad site.
Did we cover everything you wanted to know about financial marriage counseling?
In this post we reviewed the most common financial pitfalls that couples have.
Specifically we reviewed the best ways that financial marriage counseling can help couples move past the turmoil, strife and tension. This can set couples up for long-term success both financially and in their relationship as a whole.
Any tips, suggestions or questions on personal finance and how to get on the same financial page as your spouse?
About the author of this post.
Rachael Pace is a relationship expert with years of experience in training and helping couples. She has helped countless individuals and organizations around the world, offering effective and efficient solutions for healthy and successful relationships.
She is a featured writer for Marriage.com, a reliable resource to support healthy happy marriages.
Want to write for Middle Class Dad too? Check out everything you need to know on my Guest Blog Page.
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