At least once each year, couples should sit down and discuss their finances in depth. Pick a neutral time and location. Here are questions that will help the two of you know where you stand financially. This will also help you both know the best way to handle a financial crisis. Money can be a tool that can strengthen your marriage or it can become a wedge between the two of you.
1. Location of Important Documents Do you both know where important documents such as insurance documents, wils, tax information, bank account numbers, investment information, etc. are located?
2. Current Debts and AssetsHow much do the two of you owe in debts and what are your assets?
3. BudgetWhere does your money go? Even if your budget is a general one, it is important to know how your dollars are being spent. If you don't have a workable budget, develop one.
4. Financial PlanningDo you have any financial goals for your future? If you do, re-evaluate the progress you are making toward your goals. If not, make some goals, both short-term and long-term.
5. Financial VulnerabilityWhere are the two of you most vulnerable in your finances? Is it a lack of job security, over spending, not enough income, too much debt? Decide together how to strengthen your financial position.
6. Bill PayingWho actually sits down and pays the bills? Do you do this together or has one of you volunteered for this task? Reevaluate if the way you have this set up is working or not.
7. Financial DifferencesHow do you think your upbringing, culture, and gender are influencing how each of you approach money? Do you know what your financial personalities are?