Monday, May 2, 2011

Get talking about your finances


While chatter about mortgages, debt, savings and retirement planning isn't likely to put one in a romantic mood, it's an important aspect of any marriage or co-habitational relationship.

Unfortunately, talking about money is typically the last thing anyone wants to do during their personal time. When you don't have enough of it - or when the debt is quickly piling up - it's much less enjoyable. But with financial matters being one of the top cited reasons for divorce, it should be an important aspect of every relationship. Below are a few strategies to take the fear out of your finances:

1. Know where you stand.
Dealing with your own finances is quite different than dealing with a couple's. Make sure you're both aware of your entire financial picture - money coming in, money going out, and all outstanding debts. You'd be surprised at how financial awareness - and a strategy to tackle any worries you may have - can quickly erode any fear you have about financial matters.

2. Get both members involved.
While one person may be more financially savvy than the other, it's important that both members of a couple are involved in the financial decisions. So when it comes time to renew that mortgage, for example, both members should meet with your mortgage broker and understand the pros and cons of the different products before selecting. In the same sense, you should periodically go through your expenses together and brainstorm ways to slash costs, and revisit your investment portfolio.

3. Arrange a financial "date night".
Even if you're not afraid to talk about money, it can be difficult to find the time to do so. For this reason, consider arranging a monthly financial date night. Open a bottle of wine, order some take-out, and take an hour or two to look at your monthly expenditures, the debt you've tackled and any other financial-related topics you've been thinking about.

-article courtesy of Axiom Mortgage Partners

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