The Big Question of How Much
Do you know what your partner or spouse earns? If you don’t, and are in a serious relationship, you may have considered raising the topic. Especially, if you are living with your partner and they handle the financial planning, while your salary covers the day-to-day expenses. Even if they tell you not to worry about it, in the current economic climate, you can’t really afford not to worry.
If you’re concerned about being in the dark over how much your partner or spouse earns, it may be quite a difficult question to broach, if you’ve never openly discussed this matter before. In this case, the easiest and most important place to start is by saying you’d like to help with the financial planning.
Conversely, if you’ve always been in control of the financial planning during your relationship, as you have better financial knowledge, there are many reasons why you should begin including your partner in your planning sessions.
Consider if something were to happen to the partner wearing the ‘financial-planning pants’, so to speak. The bereaved partner would have absolutely no clue what’s going on. Even if the deceased has a life policy in place, and the other stands to gain from it, would they know where the money came from, and what to do with it?
This puts both partners at financial risk, yet so many couples operate like this, where only one partner handles the financial planning. More often than not, this partner spends absolutely no time or effort planning the ‘hand-over process’, should something happen to them. You may really appreciate the fact that your partner has handled the finances so responsibly over the years, but this also puts them in control of your life, making it essential you be involved.
If you don’t know what’s going on in terms of financial planning, if something were to happen to your partner, then it’s critical you get up to speed on where you’re going financially. Furthermore, it’s vital to ensure that the money you’re spending is having a positive effect on your finances.
Collaborate and Listen
Your partner may be a very generous person and have things perfectly under control. But, if this is the case, they should have no problem explaining what’s going on and involving you. However, if you’ve noticed new credit cards popping up all over the place, countless retail account statements arriving in the mail, or if you often get phone calls from credit providers, clearly this is an indication that it’s time for you to up your involvement.
Income should naturally come up in conversations with your partner or spouse, as it affects both of your lives profoundly. Being involved with the financial planning process and assisting in wealth building activities can only benefit you both, as loving partners and as a collaborative team.