Manage finances as a couple

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Check out this interview with Kaelo (a follower of the blog) about he and his new wife manage their finances together. He also shares some tips on how to manage finances as a couple and things to look out for.

What’s your relationship status (if I may ask)?

Newly-weds and have been living together for just over a year, after lobola & traditional wedding which was done concurrently. The “white” wedding followed up about 14 months later.

How do you guys currently manage finances as a couple?

Budgeting is key! It’s like a check list you complete just before going on a trip or a journey. We do this monthly.

Our approach is that all income is household income and we don’t have to put everything into one account to accomplish this.

We then logically divide all responsibilities and address them individually. We try do this as equally as possible even though the underlying assumption has already been established that its a “household income”.

The rations don’t matter to us , as long as we adhere to the budget.

What is the biggest challenge / “hot topic”?

Our relationship with finance is very different for each of us. Maybe this has to do with upbringing or life experiences, I don’t know.

Lengthy deliberations are mainly based on the priority of goals, even though the goals themselves are normally similar. We agree on the same principles such as no debt to accomplish certain tasks, however what do we do first and how, is often up for debate.

For me it does matter, it affects how we save and our financial strategy but for my wife it doesn’t. I’m more patient and would rather do things in one big project and she prefers to do things incrementally.

There is also the curious case of individual goals, this I found to be the most interesting…

We both want to travel; but to different places.

But together.

So where do we go first?

Knowing very well that there might be unexpected life events along the way, these conversations and decisions can be interesting.

The same can be applied to career goals, education, and when we plan to have our first child (l never thought I’d consult my budget and net worth for this I must say).

Do you use any tool to manage your finances?

I’m the more finance and tech savvy one and take more risks and my wife complements that with here discipline.

I use 22Seven and Alexander Forbes’s budget tool, and I’m trying to get my wife on 22Seven too. As for banking platforms and investment tools, that depends on the goals. We use everything from EasyEquties to AllanGray.

Using YNAB in South Africa

My first investment with EasyEquities

The best tool however is communication.

We talk about everything, we write down and discuss it at length.

Any advice you could give other couples?

  1. The best thing we did was start our marriage debt free (besides the bond which we got just a few month before the wedding). Our marriage feels like a fairy-tail, we’re content and being debt free has certainly contributed to this.
  2. We already had formed habits for savings, that should be a staple.
  3. Goals –  Write them down, make sure they are accomplished, individual and joint.  We write these down annually and review them like wise.
  4. Lastly as mentioned, communication is vital! Talk it out, plan together, budget together. You don’t have to always agree but communicate.

You don’t have to always agree but communicate

Please share your thoughts