Money Management for Those Just Married
Author: Kelly Kennedy
Article source: http://magicweddings.net/. Used with author's permission.
So what happens if you marry a spender, but you have been a saver your whole life? A lot of just married couples run into this type of situation once they open a joint bank account. However money management is possible, you just need to set up a compromised budget.
Money management is noted as the number one conversations couples argue about in marriage and are also cited for the most divorces. The last thing you want to do after being just married is fight so money management is essential and will relieve any stress.
A budget is the best place to start. This may prove to be difficult for the spender but it may also for the saver because you are going to have to meet somewhere in the middle.
Create your budget when you have time and both are at ease. Things will flow more smoothly.
This is just a guideline for being just married and you may find that you don't take vacations and you can put money into other areas of your budget but this is just to get you started.
To look at your money management now you'll have to keep track of your expenses and any income. Create three lists: current spending, spending percentages recommended, and actual budget. In the first column you'll want to include the average spent for the last six months. Total your monthly income in the second list, which is household income after state and federal income taxes and social security. It may include salary, rent collected, interest gained, dividends received, income tax refunds, or other sources of money collected on a regular basis. Leave the last list empty for the time being.
To determine your overall spending pattern, take your net income and subtract it from your current spending. Keep in mind that you will need to account for bills that don't show up on a regular basis such as insurance premiums, retail credit, doctor and dentist bills, property and other state taxes, magazine subscriptions, etc.
Once you have your budget established, there may be a few pitfalls you fear running into, but then can be resolved.
The possibility of facing credit card debt. There may be times when you need to charge things, but set a goal for how much you plan to pay off each month and when you plan to pay it off completely. Try beating that goal and pay it off before your estimated time frame runs out. Only have necessary credit cards as well, too many can get out of control too quickly.
Impulse buying. There will be times when you are shopping and you see something that you must have. Just don't let it be a regular occurrence, and consider it a treat to yourself.
Thirty-day rule. If you see something you want but it won't fit into this month's budget, hold out. Give it thirty days and shop around in the meantime. You may find something less expensive or something better all together. If you don't happen to find something that compares and the item is still available the following month, then fit it into your budget accordingly.
"Comfort" spending. If you had a bad day at work and end up at the mall sifting through clothes, turn around and go home to your just married spouse. Although it may make you feel better during the time, it will hurt your joint bank account. Relieve stress, or feeling depressed by other stress relievers you enjoy which may include, exercising or reading.
Gift giving. If you buy gifts for relatives and friends or special occasions get creative and think of something new to do. All gifts don't have to be bought. Make something or if you see something in a store that you like but its highly overpriced, buy the products that it consists of and make it yourself, such as gift baskets. You can buy your own items to put into a basket and decorate it yourself.
Vacations. Going on a just married vacation doesn't have to be in exclusive resorts. Take day trips or try something new like camping. Avoid souvenirs that you'll never get any use out of, and when planning a trip consider all costs so you will know how much you have to save.
Money management or a budget is based on variable factors such as family size, geographical location, debt load, and sources of income. Once the basics are covered, you then can get into your own interests and what you like to spend your discretionary income on but its important to keep in mind that this budget is based on your joint bank account, meaning both your incomes, and therefore you discretionary income should be spent on compromised items. This budget will become routine in no time, as your spending habits may change but once you budget once, it will be easy to make changes and stick to a new one!
For more information relating to marriage financial resources please visit http://www.marriedfinances.com. Kelly Kennedy is the Communications Specialist for MindComet Corporation, a full service marketing agency for Fortune 500 companies and international conglomerates. Kelly specializes in public relations strategies focused on personal finance. Kelly has been author to hundreds of articles focusing on finance. She also acts as a contributing author for a wide variety of websites and newsletters. Kelly holds a Bachelors degree in Marketing from the University of Central Florida.
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