The market recovered from the previous week with the fear of Omicron diminishing as investors bought into the dip. Inflation worries caused a set back on Thursday before the markets recovered and stayed positive on Friday. And all these little ups and downs can obscure the important stuff. The market is up substantially for the year. And for the last five years. And the last ten years. Don’t let the short-term fluctuations in the market keep you out for the long-term gains.
As we work with couples on their financial plans, we see a variety of ways to manage money as a couple. There is a significant amount of research that shows that couples who merge accounts are the happiest. For a young, newly married couple with no previous marriages, merging everything can make a lot of sense. One person should take the lead in making sure bills are paid, but both should meet regularly to review spending and cash flow.
If you’re concerned about a loss of autonomy, consider each of you having a small account for your personal fun money. If you go this route, I recommend each of you getting the same amount.
The biggest issues we see are when one person makes substantially more, and feels they are entitled to more. For the marriage to work, you need to be partners. If you keep everything separate, what happens if one of you becomes sick or is injured and can’t work? What if one of you stays home with your children? Or you get a fabulous job somewhere else, and your spouse gives up their job to enable your dream job?
For a second marriage, or couples coming together much later in life, keeping your own assets can make sense. Here, contributing to a joint account that pays all the bills solves this problem. The joint account should cover everything: bills, emergency savings, and discretionary spending for you as a couple. Dinners, vacations, concerts, events – all paid out of the joint account. The discussion point becomes whether you contribute the same dollar amount or the same percentage of income.
Through all of this, communication is key. Talking about how your family of origin handled money, and your money habits, is a good start. Beliefs on debt, savings, and goals is another area of discussion. A good financial planner can help facilitate all of this along with developing budgets and a long-term plan.
Your action to take this week is to stick to your budget for holiday spending. As we get closer to the big day, it’s easy to think “just one more little thing.” Don’t. Focus on the time, memories, and being together versus more stuff. And be sure to check out our website at covingtonalsina.com, as well as our Facebook page.
Securities offered through LPL Financial, Member FINRA/SIPC. Investment advice offered through Great Valley Advisor Group, a Registered Investment Advisor. CovingtonAlsina and Great Valley Advisor Group are separate entities from LPL Financial.
All performance referenced is historical and is no guarantee of future results. All indices are unmanaged and may not be invested into directly.
The opinions voiced in this show are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. To determine which strategies or investment(s) may be appropriate for you, contact the appropriate qualified professional prior to making a decision.