First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes baby in the baby carriage.
We all know this playground tune, but what you don’t know is that a much heavier topic goes hand-in-hand with these grown-up matters: money.
Whether we realize it or not, love and finance are bound to intersect. When we invest our heart in a special someone, we may have to adapt our relationship to our bank accounts and vice versa. But too often, these issues are swept under the rug.
According to a study in the Journal of Extension, 70 percent of newlyweds enter marriage with debt. About 35 percent of these husbands and wives had more than $5,000 in debt when they exchanged those vows. The research also asserted that this money wedge distracted couples from strengthening their relationships.
But a rocky start isn’t all that’s at stake. A Utah State University study revealed an alarming link: couples who disagreed about finances were 30 percent more likely to divorce than couples who kept those disagreements to a monthly minimum.
Instead of continued squabbling over the “shoulda-coulda-woulda” problems of your financial past (bad credit) that may prompt a need for payday loans, consider how you can tackle these money challenges together. If you can identify potential obstacles while minimizing finger-pointing, you may be one step closer to harmony.
How Financial Tensions Can Start To Boil
USA Today reports that money is our most taboo topic of conversation—we’re more willing to divulge dirty details of our sex lives than expose the cobwebs and dirty corners of our bank accounts. So it comes as no surprise that we allow the financial shortcomings of our partner to simmer in our psyche until they boil over into an explosive argument.
But if you look at the root cause of your money issues as a couple, you may be able to nip tension in the bud.
Your spouse says, “Look what I bought!” as he or she proceeds to unveil a dozen items from one shopping bag. “But why?” you retort.
Whether you’re the spender or on the receiving end, this is an all-too-common occurrence. Ideas on how to spend the family dollars are going to differ when you’re in a spender-saver relationship.
The Commerce Department reports that while our spending increased in the first quarter of the year by 0.8 percent, our incomes lagged behind with a 0.2 percent increase. While there’s no magical solution to divvying up disposable income, these figures can teach an important lesson: balance.
Don’t allow your spending to outpace what you earn. That way, spendthrifts can scale back without feeling like they’re depriving themselves while penny-pinching partners can hold on to a larger savings fund.
When both parties earn a paycheck, it’s understandable that you crave some bargaining power over your bank accounts. A poll by the Financial Planning Association found that 75 percent of financial planners reported that men made the family’s investment decisions while 60 percent say that women take care of short-term tasks like bills.
This split between long and short term goals may put you in a captain’s role while reducing the overall burden of your responsibility of the finances, but you and your spouse still risk missing the mark. Without a sense of what your future savings goals are, you won’t know what you need to do to properly control your current expenses. And unless you take a look at the financial picture you’re working with now, you may have unrealistic goals for where you hope to be in five or ten years.
Control issues may also manifest when one spouse tries to curb the other’s buying habits, creating a cause and effect circle of spending resentment.
But both spouses need to have an eyes wide open approach to the state of their bank accounts, where critique and encouragement should be integral. Even if your spouse pays the credit card bill while you add to the savings account, staying updated on each other’s transactions can help ensure that each element of your budget is moving in sync.
Lack of Communication:
The American Counseling Association cites communication breakdowns in marriage as a leading cause of divorce. You may not want to approach your spouse about what they spent and how their choices deplete your family savings, but it’ll do the both of you good.
You can put your financial happiness in jeopardy when you two have very different expectations. If you can take shame and blame out of the equation while adding a dose of responsibility, you may have a greater chance at avoiding dead-end arguments. Having these honest conversations will not only help you look at the reality of your cost of living, but also unify your financial goals.
Approaching Payday Loans Together
Once you’re able to identify the financial tensions of your relationship, you can apply your experience toward making the best out of a bad situation—like the unexpected need for a payday loan.
Get On The Same Page:
Consider what you and your spouse need to use it for. There’s a difference between using a payday loan for a short-term situation versus long-term living expenses.
A short-term need allows a payday loan to provide a life raft for that intermittent yet budget-busting vet bill or car repair. But a life raft won’t equip you for your high-seas journey. Borrowing for debt won’t get you out of it. Instead, you’ll risk perpetuating the same arguments with your spouse paycheck after paycheck.
Lay out your emergency expenses on the table and calculate how much of your disposable income you can put toward payments. That way as a couple, you’ll both be able to determine what loan amount you can truly afford to repay by the due date.
Be sure to factor in interest rates and fees. There’ll be little room for argument when you don’t have to deal with the unpleasant surprise of a poorly budgeted loan.
Take time to consider whose name will be put on the application and which account is best to repay your lender through. While only the applicant will bear the technical responsibility of repayment, a committed relationship means that your partner’s financial burden invariably becomes your own.
Should you apply for a larger personal loan down the road as a married couple, your credit scores will be averaged to determine eligibility. If you or your spouse failed to repay your payday loan by its due date, this blemish could end up on your reports and subsequently hurt your chances to borrow for a home or car.
Marriage never ensures smooth sailing, especially when adding contentious finances to the mix. But when you can take on the challenge of your worst money shortcomings—warts and all—you may be closer to finding the love and money balance that you seek.