Marriage and Money: Are You on the Right Track?

Marital Finances are one of the most important parts of a marriage partnership. Marriage and money go hand in hand. If a couple works together and plays their cards right, marriage can often be a financial boon. The key is getting on the right track and staying there.

In a study done by the Center for Retirement Research at Boston University,  researchers found that married couples can enjoy greater financial well-being in the present. In addition, they will enjoy greater economic benefits in retirement.

One way of creating that financial benefit is through the Five Year Marriage. It promotes the building of your net worth because finances are discussed even before the first vows are taken. When contracting their Five Year Marriage, couples focus on shared values, money patterns and financial goals.

Using a preset preset timeframe (five years) couples have time for planning, implementing and evaluating their finances. Then, unlike traditional marriages, couples continue to assess their finances with considerations for life’s changes (children, houses, jobs, etc.). Every five years, couples adjust their lifestyle design based on life’s shifts and changes.

The Five Year Marriage is one substantive way to get on the right financial track – for the present and the future. You and your fiance or spouse can get started by asking yourself these questions:

  • What are your top ten values?
  • How many of those values do you share with your partner?
  • What are your current experiences with money?
  • How much debt do you have?
  • Are you a spender or a saver?
  • Is one of you better at handling money?
  • What are your financial goals for the next five years?

Once you have a feel for what your money habits are, you can create a plan that will satisfy your current needs. Then, and even while you adjust for life’s changes every five years, you can get your marital finances on a track that will enable you to save for your later years.

No Sound, No Fury, No Marriage

As I was reading author Laura Pritchett ‘s May 2016 article for the New York Times, I wondered: What would have happened if she has a Five Year Marriage?

In No Sound, No Fury, No Marriage, Ms. Pritchett described her twenty year marriage of silence. How could she have lived together with the same man and had a marriage of silence? I don’t know if I could have done it, but I know a lot of people have that or other incompatibilities in their marriages. Living together loneliness is a sad lifestyle that has a long-standing tradition through many, many generations.

But..WHY? Twenty years! Why does anyone give up so much of his or her life?

I recently had a conversation with another woman, Rita. She said she thinks that neither she nor her spouse were really ready when they got marriage. Except, Rita admitted, “I thought I was ready. I was twenty-five. It was time.”

What’s time got to do with it? Is it about biological clocks or the scourge of society toward singles or something else?

Marrying because of a non-nonsensical reason like “it’s time” reminds me of the idiom “marry in haste, repent at leisure.”

If Laura Pritchett lived a Five Year Marriage, she and her now-ex would have mixed it up from the beginning and gotten their differences out in the open. When they got to Chapter Five in the forthcoming book, the Five Year Marriage, they would have talked about their communication differences. Maybe they would have gotten therapy sooner. Maybe Laura would have seen her sweetheart as a good man, just not the right one for her. They might never have married each other. Instead, they might have found partners that were more compatible.

Why do we do spend more time planning a wedding than a marriage?

What do you think?