Have you and your partner decided to combine budgets?
Before you make a single account, take time to learn what comes with combine budgets. This guide to basic principles to combine budgets and finances as a couple will help you and your partner lead a financially comfortable life.
Joint finances become a joint responsibility when you combine budgets
Once you and your partner join your finances, the responsibilities regarding spending and saving become of equal concern. Have a conversation over this critical step with your partner. Decide on the account you’re going to merge. Some couples combine all finances, while others opt for joining only a fraction of them. So, discuss all your available options to reach the solution both of you find most convenient.
Learn the art of money management to combine budgets
The next step is another conversation you should have with your partner – combining budgets. Not all people act the same when it comes to money. One partner might be skilled at financial planning while another lives paycheck to paycheck. Now both of you have an insight into each other’s money management habits that affect your mutual budget. Also, this might be an excellent opportunity to invest in further financial education.
Write down your monthly combined income. Calculate the percentage each of you contributes to it. If your earnings make up 60% of a household income, then you are responsible for 60% of mutual expenses (utilities, repairs, etc.). At the same time, discuss what budgeting methods would be the best for both.
Introduce spending rules
We suggest that you re-think spending habits if you (or your partner) tend to dine out often, go shopping whenever possible, etc. Combined finances mean both of you are there to contribute to the finances in your home. Make a list of rules that will keep your spending habits in check. Agree on how often to allow luxuries and what items aren’t worth the investment.
Have a joint savings account
Mutual life includes many mutual responsibilities, making finances one of them. So, if you want to vacation together, your combined budgets will decide where and how long. After all, it’s always welcome to have the extra money in case of necessity. The first step to saving money as a couple is to set concrete goals, be it a vacation, new furniture, etc. Discuss how much each of you can contribute to it. To follow through with your savings plan, inquire more about money-saving methods.
Agree on a monthly minimum you’re ready to cut from your monthly salary and move it to a savings account. Financial experts advise at least 10% of monthly savings on each part. If possible, you can lift it to 20% if your financial situation allows you to.
Track your finances
If you have started combining budgets and finances as a couple, you should have a list of all mandatory expenses. Write them down and calculate total expenses at the end of the month. Consistent money-tracking is beneficial to your financial situation. It’s also an important aspect of budgeting in general. You can manage your finances by writing them down in a notebook or via free apps.
Tips for joining your households when moving
Moving into a mutual home means sharing equal responsibility for combined finances for many couples. If you plan to move in with your partner, you’ll need to find ways to combine your households easily. You can follow the tips below, which can help you join your households more easily:
- If buying a house, discuss the best way to furnish it. Combine the best furniture pieces, and see what’s left to donate or sell. The money you get by selling spare furniture and décor can be added to a mutual savings account, for instance.
- Declutter your separate homes before you move to a mutual on Get rid of all non-essential items that only clutter the space and collect dust.
- Mix interior design styles that will match your lifestyle.
- Plan a mutual moving budget. Book several moving estimates and decide on the company that will carry out your move.
Ask a financial advisor for guidance to combine budgets
Let’s say that you and your partner are polar opposites regarding money management. However, there’s a solution to this. The fastest way to develop the best mutual financial plan is by hiring a financial advisor. Life becomes a lot simpler when you have an expert to help you make the best financial decisions.
Remember that combining budgets and finances as a couple is an important step in one’s life. Financial literacy and better money management strategies are great to learn about. Moreover, it will be easier for you and your partner to have a stable financial situation right from the start.