Help with Debt: How to Have a Couple’s Money Date NightFeb 21, 2019
You and your partner are in it together, and that’s great. But being in debt together? Not so wonderful. If your family needs help with debt, starting a regular couple’s money date night may be the solution you’re looking for.
What’s a couple’s money date night?
It’s an evening that you and your partner set aside to focus on your finances.
Talking about finances isn’t easy for everyone. In our Debt Confessions poll last year, we discovered that 30 per cent of Canadians in a relationship rarely discuss their financial situation with their partners.
The good news is that 25 per cent of couples discuss finances monthly and 19 per cent discuss them weekly. But simply talking about money isn’t enough–those discussions need to have a purpose and be productive. After all, a full 59 per cent of Canadians in a relationship wish that their partners would change the way they handle money.
Why is it necessary?
Carrying consumer debt can be extremely stressful. Manulife Bank’s 2018 Holiday Debt Survey found that 37 per cent of Canadians with debt are worried/anxious/stressed about it all the time.
It’s safe to assume that anyone carrying debt is stressed about their debt load at least some of the time. Stress takes a toll on our mental and physical health as well as on our relationships.
By dedicating some time to focus on your finances as a couple, you can ultimately reduce and even eliminate debt. You’ll feel more in control of your money and less anxious, both of which are good for you, your relationship, and your family.
What does it look like?
For your first couple’s money date night, set aside 30 minutes to an hour to go over your finances together.
Make sure you have all your financial statements, bills, and credit card statements as well as your income information.
If you and your partner haven’t been focused on your money, use this first date to simply review your financial situation. Talk honestly about how you feel about your finances and what you’d like them to look like.
Don’t fall into the blame game. Your partner might have some financial habits you don’t agree with, and vice versa, but committing to hearing each other’s perspectives and preferences about money needs to come before you can commit to any money management methods together.
How to build on your money dates
Your first money date breaks the ice, opening up the lines of communication. But don’t stop there!
Schedule regular money dates to really make an impact on your finances. Use the time to:
- Set up a budget that you can both stick to. Try this one.
- Create a plan to get rid of credit card debt.
- Set financial goals and develop plans for achieving them.
- Identify ways to save money. Check out the Canadian coupons over at Simply Frugal.
- Identify and start using apps that make things like tracking your spending and comparing prices easy.
If you commit to a regular couple’s money date night, you’ll find yourself getting more and more comfortable discussing finances with your partner. Each date will bring you closer as you manage your money and your debt as a team.
In a relationship, a good place to start getting help with debt is from each other. By identifying your goals, talking honestly about your finances, and creating plans, you’ll develop stronger financial literacy skills as a couple and individually, setting you up for a lifetime of financial success.
How are you and your partner tackling debt together? Tell us on Twitter. #LeaveDebtBehind #DateWithMyFinances #FamilyFinances