Today, relationships and dating are really difficult, consider how many more external factors there are compared to when our parents were dating. There’s social media, celebrity relationships to compare to, dating sites and apps paired with a “YOLO” outlook on life. It’s already hard enough, add finances into the mix and you have a recipe for disaster.
Communication is key, and that stays true when it comes to financial topics. Talking to your partner about some of these important topics is crucial to a healthy financial relationship
- Discussing your future – Okay, maybe not on the first date, but making sure that you and your partner want the same things in life is very important to discuss. Children, homes, caring for parents, these are all financial decisions that you may have to make with your future partner. Making sure the person you are dating has the same future goals and expectations, to ensure that you are setting up your relationship for success rather than for failure.
- Talking about your current financial situations – Now this is obviously a conversation you’ll probably want to keep for when you have someone special in your life, as this is much more private. But talking about your incomes and assets and debts is important because both people should have a realistic understanding of your future together. Similar to the first point, it’s critical to a healthy relationship to have the same future goals and for both people to be working towards the same thing, but also to have an understanding of whether or not those goals are realistic.
- Living arrangements – If you and your partner are thinking about moving in with each other, it’s a good idea to talk about the financial arrangements before you actually live together. Making sure each person understands what their responsibilities would be, may take longer than you’d think and is important to talk about it beforehand.
- Legal agreements – Throughout the course of most relationships, couples tend to accumulate things together. Whether you are getting married or living with your partner, having the proper legal agreements in place is crucial for both parties in the relationship. Prenuptial and cohabitation agreements can help ensure that both of you decide on what happens in the event that the relationship doesn’t work out. It’s best to do this at the beginning rather than at the end of the relationship when you may be a little more negative and emotionally driven. It’s a good idea to have a family lawyer assist with these agreements because each province differs slightly when it comes to family law.
Financial problems are the reason that a lot of marriages end in divorce. So, make sure you’re as open to discussing these necessary financial topics as you are to letting love into your life. To love and happiness, and I’ve heard that a healthy marriage promotes financial success, so it’s a win-win!