Money & Career

How to talk about money with your partner

How to talk about money with your partner

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Money & Career

How to talk about money with your partner

In this excerpt from Money Talks: When to Say Yes and How to Say No, Gail Vaz-Oxlade offers a simple series of talking points to get you and your partner talking about your values when it comes to money.

Rank each of the statements in the following categories on a scale of one to five, with one being strongly agree and five being strongly disagree. Compare your answers with your mate’s and talk about why you answered as you did. If you’re on the same page, great. If there are areas where you see things differently, you’ll have to negotiate to a common ground. These talking points should get you started on a conversation you’ll be having for the rest of your relationship.

1. Saving
a) ____ I think savings are important but I don’t have as much as I should.
b) ____ I have a hard time saving money. There’s always something to buy.
c) ____ The more money I have saved, the more in control of my life I feel.
d) ____ Having lots of money in the bank makes me feel important.
e) ____ Saving is the most important thing: spending on anything other than essentials must always take a backseat.

2. Spending
a) ____ I shop around so I know I’ve gotten a good deal.
b) ____ I love shopping sales. When something’s a good deal I can’t pass it up.
c) ____ I feel great when I buy something new. I love that feeling.
d) ____ I only buy the best. Name brands are investments.
e) ____ I hate shopping. Every time I have to spend money I feel angry or scared.

3. Gifting
a) ____ I’d much rather give a beautiful gift than buy myself something.
b) ____ It’s important to give expensive gifts or people will thing you’re cheap.
c) ____ I would never regift; that’s just tacky.
d) ____ I buy expensive presents because I want people to know I appreciate their friendship/love.
e) ____ I’m against spending money on gifts. What a waste of money.

4. Debt
a) ____ I don’t see any problem with putting a vacation on a credit card and then paying it off when I get back.
b) ____ I’m not debt-averse, but I know what my limits are.
c) ____ As long as I’m keeping up with my minimum payments, my credit score is fine. d) ____ Life is for living. What’s a little debt?
e) ____ No debt, no debt, no debt, no debt.

5. Acquisition
a) ____ I don’t want to own a lot of stuff because I think it’s just a waste of money and space.
b) ____ I love shopping. I can always find a place to put something new.
c) ____ People judge me by how I look. I’ve got to keep up appearances.
d) ____ Needs always come before wants, but some wants are good too.
e) ____ I only spend on things I plan to buy and have researched carefully.

6. Money management
a) ____ I want to know where my money is going. I track my spending.
b) ____ I don’t like making the financial decisions. It’s all so confusing.
c) ____ It’s important that I be able to pay my own way. You should too.
d) ____ Money is for spending. What’s the point of money if you can’t enjoy it?
e) ____ I don’t have a problem borrowing money from friends or family when I run short. I just pay them back.

From Money Talks by Gail Vaz-Oxlade ©2015. Published by HarperCollins Publishers Ltd. All rights reserved.

Read more: 
Gail Vaz-Oxlade's best advice on how to save more money
How to talk to your kids about money—at any age


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Money & Career

How to talk about money with your partner