10.24.2014

5 Financial Tips for Newlyweds

This week has been the week of marriage talk. I can't say I hate it. Seriously, what is better than hearing so many different perspectives on so many different marriage-related issues?! With us today is Rebecca from Renovating Rebecca. I have had the pleasure of knowing Rebecca for a while now and it seems that I am continually swooning over her wedding photos, interior deigns tips, and sweet pup Finnegan. I know you'll adore her too.


I'm so excited to be guest blogging today! I'm Rebecca and I blog at Renovating Rebecca about finances, photography, our wedding, and my life as a newlywed. Somewhere between paying off credit card debt, starting a budget, and getting married, I have become fascinated with personal finance. Here are some personal finance tips that I have learned in our 5 months of marriage.

Financial tips for newlyweds
1. Talk about money often. The top issue that couples fight about is money. I think the best way to start off your marriage or engagement is to be very open about money. My husband and I use the Mint app for our budgeting and we usually check it every day. If I notice that we're going over in one of our budget categories, I'll send him a quick text to let him know. Whenever my husband wants to know about a certain charge in our account, he asks me. Even if it's just a short text or 5 minute conversation, it's very important to have open lines of communication when it comes to money. In the beginning money can be awkward to talk about, but the more you talk the less awkward it becomes.

2. Start paying down debt immediately. If you're starting off your marriage in debt, now is the time to start paying that down. It's easier to pay off debt now, than to wait when you have more responsibilities (like children). There are two different methods of paying off debt: the avalanche method (paying off higher interest rates first) or the snowball method (paying off the smallest debt first). Talk to spouse and get on the same page about which method you want to use. Prior to our marriage, I got into credit card debt and paid it all off before our wedding. Having debt is stressful, and paying it off was such a weight off my shoulders!

3. Live off one income and save the other. One of my co-workers told me during her pre-marital counseling their pastor recommended only living off one income. If you decide that one of you wants to stay home with children, this is easier to do financially if you're already used to living off one income. We're not planning to have children anytime soon, and I don't think I'll want to be a stay at home mom when the time comes, but I still think this is great advice. If one of us loses our job, we'll still be okay financially since we only live off one income.

4. Save! Have you ever been really excited about getting a raise, only to realize that the additional money just seems to disappear? Most people increase their standard of living whenever they get a pay raise. You don't end up accumulating more money because you're spending more money. Instead of spending your raise, invest it instead. My husband just got a raise last week, and he increased his retirement savings with the extra money. We never got used to having more money, so we never missed the money that was now going to retirement. It's so important to start saving money when you're young because of the magic of compounding interest. Those people who say they aren't saving for retirement in their 20's because they have "plenty of time" don't understand the magically powers of compounding interest, which this charts explains pretty well:


The earlier you start saving for retirement, the less you'll need to save thanks to compounding interest. If you want to learn more about compounding interest, this article explains it really well.

5. Agree on your goals. When it comes to short term and long term goals, finances play a huge role in the decision making process. Whether you want to buy a new car, go on a European vacation, or retire at 40, you need money for everything. Discuss your goals with your spouse and come up with a plan to meet your goals. Before we got married, my husband and I agreed that we wanted to buy a house and travel. To achieve these goals, we set up additional saving accounts and have money automatically deposited into these accounts on pay days. I also recommend writing down your goals, because people who write down goals are more likely to accomplish them.

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11 comments :

  1. Amen to number 3!! Our pre-marital meetings told us the same thing and it has been such a blessing to be able to do this. Loved all these tips! :)

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  2. Yes me too! Unless you're on a graduate school "income" and it's virtually impossible haha

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  3. This is SUCH a great post. Such a wonderful idea for newlyweds. I know Josh and I didn't have that talk when we first got married, but now we're on a great savings plan for us and the kids. so important these days. Esp with the risk of social security going away for our generation.

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  4. YES, it's so important to plan and set goals together!

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  5. Our premarital counseling was an online version (Marriage 101 to any couples who can't find a local counselor they like; it was awesome; I highly recommend it). It included a LOT of information, but a big highlight was finances. Two video sessions were with Dave Ramsay, plus we read one of his books. Luckily all that was basically a formality for us because Dan and I have been discussing money since very early in our relationship. We both straddle the line between saving and spending, but we both prioritize saving. Mint is an awesome tool that we used separately prior to marriage. Its only downside is that while you can add a new person to the account, you can't combine two people's accounts. So we had to close my Mint account and just add all my information to his.

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  6. Mint! Yes we use it to track our finances too and it has been so good for us :)

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  7. Brita, I wish there was a way to combine two separate accounts. My husband and I had the same problem when we got married. We ended up closing my husband's account because I'm the budget-er in our relationship.

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  8. Melissa, I know! Retirement is important to think about, especially for young people! We have no idea what the future will hold for our generation.

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  9. Thank you Cassie! Saving all my income has been so helpful for us!

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  10. These tips are so good! My husband and I are doing the "snowball method" to pay off our debts faster. It's such a mind game but it works so good. I also agree on the fact of transparency when talking about finances. It's so so so important to both be on the same page, and know what you're getting into with the other person's financial situation.

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  11. YES YES YES! Glad you could relate to this!

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