Some low-cost, high-impact ways to say “I love you” include:
1. Find easy ways to chat about finances and financial priorities early in a relationship, in a way that doesn’t sound like an interrogation. If you’re pondering what to do about your 401k investment options or deciding what health insurance policy to purchase, ask for input from your partner. Even planning vacations together can be a great way to begin to understand how he thinks about money. Is he always suggesting that you should both splurge on hot air balloon rides or long weekends away? Is she constantly picking the cheapest dishes on the menu because of their price?
2. Before you decide to take it seriously, and move on from roses to diamonds, be clear about to what extent – and how – you’ll merge your finances. Will you keep them separate as long as possible, and contribute only to common expenses, like rent/mortgage and utilities? What will you do if one of you gets a raise, or the other’s parents help with the downpayment on a house? Talking through scenarios ahead of time boost the odds that you’ll ride out future storms.
3. Sometimes, being creative pays big dividends. Eleanor Blayney, a [CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional] who serves as consumer advocate for the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, an industry group, suggests including causes that your spouse or partner feels passionately about when you’re writing philanthropic checks. You’re really giving two gifts: one to the organization you support, and the second to your spouse. Read more >
February 14, 2014