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How to Discuss Credit History and Financial Plans with Your Partner

How to discuss credit history & a financial plan with your partner

Financial harmony is a journey that requires preparation, commitment, and follow-through. Whether you and your partner are living together, getting married or already married, it's beneficial to discuss your financial histories — and your financial futures.

Some tips on how to build a solid financial plan together.

Practice financial transparency.

  • Lay all of your financial "cards" on the table by opening up about your credit score, your debts, and the status of monthly payments to your partner. When it comes to a financially harmonious relationship, transparency is key.

Be a diplomat, not a judge.

  • Remember, money and credit are uncomfortable topics for many people, because they are so often linked to a sense of self-worth. Let go of your partner's past financial faults.

Focus on specific goals and numbers.

  • Just like with dieting or exercising, vague promises don't work. Decide on exact rules for how much you'll spend every month, and how and when you'll pay your bills. Agree on how much each can spend on "personal luxuries" without consulting the other — and what's included in this definition.

Determine your financial priorities and goals as a couple.

  • Your goals may range from saving for this year's vacation — to planning for how you want to live when you retire. Set regular "money dates" to review where you are relative to where you want to be — and how much you're earning versus how much you owe.
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