How to avoid money issues in a relationship

When it comes to relationships, finances and friendships don’t always mix.

couple having relationship trouble due to money worries

Money may make the world go round but when it comes to relationships, finances and friendships (or love) don’t always mix. Of course, it’s difficult to separate money and relationships in some circumstances, so here are five traps to try and avoid.

Never let one person be fully in charge of the finances

The reality is that some people are better than others at managing money but on the flip side, it also makes it easier to hide your true financial situation if only one person controls the finances. This can lead to a poor credit rating for both of you if bills aren’t paid, the lack of a financial buffer if savings are spent and added stress that really isn’t good in any relationship.

Never a borrower or lender be

This is true in any relationship, be it romantic, family, friendship or business, borrowing or lending money has been the downfall of many a partnership. No one likes to see a loved one or friend go through financial hardship but you really need to ask yourself why that person is in the situation in the first instance before you hand over your cash. And alternatively, if you’re asking someone to lend you money, think about the position you’re putting them in if they have to say no.

Don’t splash your cash and think you’re doing someone a favour

If you’re a little flush with funds, it may seem like a nice thing to do to treat a loved one or friend, and that’s fine, but don’t go so far as to make them uncomfortable about not being able to return the gesture. And by the same token, if a friend or lover is always paying for your share of the bill, just keep in mind that the longer you let them, the more chance there is that conflict and bad feelings will arise

Don’t be embarrassed about talking money

If you don’t think you can afford to do something or think that a purchase should be put on hold to clear some debt, don’t be afraid to say so. It’s easy to get caught up in the moment and just let those awkward conversations slide, but when you’ve committed a large chunk of cash to a holiday of a lifetime and your mortgage payment is past due, there is likely to be more embarrassment coming your way. Being open and honest about money and spending is the only way to stop it from being a divisive issue in any relationship.

Don’t be afraid to keep your finances separate

If you’re in a new relationship it may seem romantic to share everything from your bed to your bank account, but more often than not these days couples are choosing to manage their own money. This is often the case when one person enters the relationship with more than the other. The one potential downfall is when it comes to apply to Centrelink for any benefits, your de facto partner’s income and assets will be assessed as part of your claim.



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    8th Mar 2016
    Excellent advice! Money is such a major concern later in life. Keeping an eye on respectful sharing of views and concerns and retention of independence really matters.

    8th Mar 2016
    Have a "his" "hers" and a joint account.

    8th Mar 2016
    I agree with most of the above article but I can"t understand why everyone has to be going to Centrelink for money try living on what you have got or earn for a change.
    8th Mar 2016
    Robbo going to Centrelink includes applying for the age pension. Many de facto couples are shocked to find their partners finances included in the total pot even when only one of them is of pension age. Then the second shock as they find out they get half the couple rate, and not the single rate.
    8th Mar 2016
    Radish...I suggested his, hers and joint acts and the idea was not met very favourably at all! In fact partner became quite indignant. I do not smoke or drink so worked out at around $230 a week spent on both, in 10 yrs will go thru $100,000.00 plus...oh boy.....retirement not going to be much fun....????
    8th Mar 2016
    I would insist on his and hers! I could not condone paying for someone elses cigarettes and booze.
    8th Mar 2016
    Cinders, this is a second marriage for both of us. It works perfectly for us...neither of us smoke and we drink around the same (social drinkers).

    Everything and I mean everything comes out of the joint account and the other monies we brought into the marriage is ours to do with as we please. If I feel like indulging in a rather expensive outfit I have no qualms about doing so and he can spend what he likes. I might add this is a very rare event lol.

    Never ever have we argued over money.
    Nan Norma
    8th Mar 2016
    How can a couple have separate bank accounts when only one is working and the other is home caring for young children? Also a couple on a pension is still being deemed on the total amounts in the two bank accounts that may be earing less interest because the money is in two separate accounts..
    Also, sometimes it gets to the stage where one partner gets confused about finances and the other has no choice but to manage it alone.
    8th Mar 2016
    Yes, Nan Norma, it is horses for courses...what works for one may not work for another.

    However, that said, I have always been of the opinion right from when I went into the workforce that I would always have my own bank account; my mother gave me that advice. I see too many of my peers having to go cap in hand to husband for money and changing the tickets on clothing to make out they paid less for the clothes than they did. I have a friend who manages a clothing shop and she has told me this happens a lot. She is asked to cross out the price and put a lower one before she puts it into the bag...sad!
    9th Mar 2016
    Exactly. Relationships are all about give and take - one gives the other takes. hehehe.
    However thank heavens the days of begging men for money is almost over.
    9th Mar 2016
    One of the hardest things I found when dating a person with a higher income was not that they were extravagent with money but dates where very expensive. Buying appropiate clothes, finding accommodation away from home, travelling as a couple to far off places. I remember thinking if this doesn't work out then I am spending money that should be going into my super fund. Its also hard being with someone if they are continually buying themselves stuff and you know you have to budget. Its a bit like being Cinderalla at the ball without the fine dress.