Trusting your partner with money is integral to a healthy relationship. It’s also a sentiment held by most Canadians, according to a survey released by the Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada (CPA Canada), which found an overwhelming majority (96 per cent) of respondents are comfortable chatting about finances with their partner.
Further to that, 92 per cent say they trust the financial finesse and decisions made by their lover.
Money Talks Should Be An Open Conversation
When it comes to deciding money matters, most Canadians turn to their partner or spouse for insight.
“It was very encouraging to discover that more than 80 per cent of the respondents discuss household finances regularly with their spouse or partner,” says Nicholas Cheung, a director with CPA. “Open lines of communication are important to make sure that couples are on the same page when it comes to money management.”
Of those surveyed, 94 per cent agreed speaking openly about money is key to a strong relationship.
“What emerges from the findings is that in so many ways managing the household finances is really a joint effort,” says Cheung.
It Takes Two To Balance A Budget
However, it’s not always harmonious – Canadians tend to be divided when it comes to building their budgets. But it’s ok to disagree; only 56 per cent of respondents admitted their opinion about managing financial investments aligned.
However, when couples combine funds it’s important both have a voice in putting together a financial plan.
“It makes sense to work together on establishing a household budget,” says Cheung. “Not only does it help to keep the lines of communication open but spending time managing your household finances can go a long way in reducing stress and providing some peace of mind.”
Don’t Get Money Matters Come Between Your Relationship
With four in 10 of respondents admitting to arguing about money, the stakes are high when it comes to dealing with money in a relationship. Wondering how to talk to your spouse about money? Here are a few tips to keep in mind for chatting about finances with your significant other:
1. Pick a Constructive Time
All though the inclination might be to wait until your partner has racked up a flurry of spending on the credit card or is in the throes of financial dismay to chat about money, it’s more constructive to pick a neutral time when both of you are calm and can look at finances objectively.
2. See Both Sides
Start with your feelings first – this can help open the dialogue with your partner and show that you trust them. It’s also important to try and understand the angle your partner is coming from – everybody has his or her own threshold when it comes to financial aptitude. Remember, the relationship is your first priority so you might need to make some sacrifices to ensure both sides are satisfied.
3. Know Your Strengths
If you’re the thrifty one, be honest about your feelings with your lover. There’s nothing wrong with one partner being in charge of finances and assuring bills are being paid – just keep the lines of communication open. Sometimes it helps to send monthly or bi-monthly updates to make sure both parties are kept in the loop.
4. Outsource Your Opinions
If money seems to be a constant item of contention between you and your lover, maybe it’s time to bring in some extra help from a financial advisor. Having an objective contribution to the conversation can help tone down what may seem like a personal attack – and you likely will benefit from some pro advice.