Is your love of spending causing tension?
01 December 2020
Most people have a good idea about the things they're looking for in a relationship, common goals, hopes and dreams, that spark! But have you ever stopped to consider whether your approach to money and spending is compatible?
One of the biggest causes of tension in a relationship isn't your mother in law or your partner's incessant snoring but rather your approach to spending money.
Our attitudes and beliefs about money are both emotional and often subconscious, formed from early childhood and they can often be divisive.
If you like to show you care by spending money on gifts, and your partner likes to save for life's ‘what ifs', whilst you might have the best intentions at heart you may be creating a bone of contention between you. As you feel a surge of love buying well intended gifts, your partner may be feeling increasingly anxious about making ends meet.
We've all heard the stories of how friends hide shopping bags from their partners, or even mark down the price tag claiming “it was on sale”, but how is it best to approach money in a relationship?
It's best to be honest with your partner, money doesn't have to be a taboo subject.
Easy ways to start working together on finance as a couple
1. Be aware – start with being aware you probably don't have the same approach to money. Knowing each other's money styles will help you avoid misunderstanding and it could be the underlying cause of a few tensions that you hadn't realised.
2. Have a conversation – Find some time to talk when you're both relaxed. Discuss your different money styles and how you can use both your approaches to get ahead.
3. Set some limits – work together to set some limits, like trying to keep any gifts under a certain amount e.g $100. Consider creating a budget so you don't find yourself overspending and discuss larger purchases together.
4. Make some goals – it might be easier to forego that splurge if you know you're saving up for something big. Whether it's a dream holiday, or your next car, it can help to set up an automatic savings plan so that you don't see the money in your account.
5. Show you care in other ways – challenge yourself to show you care in ways that don't cost much or are cash-free. It can be fun leaving little notes of appreciation around the house, organising a surprise picnic date, or if you can stand the crumbs – serving breakfast in bed. You can show the same thoughtfulness without the need for gifts.
One good way to set and keep goals is to set aside savings in a separate account. Suncorp Bank's Growth Saver account rewards you for making progress towards your savings goals. You can open an account online in just a few minutes.
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