Getting married usually heightens a man’s sense of financial responsibility, which is rightfully so, as demands increase on a man’s purchasing/earning power. With the usual ‘wedding rush’ towards the end of the year, it’s therefore expedient to share practical insights to address a vital aspect of getting married and staying happily married, as research has proven that a considerable proportion of issues in marriage are money related.
- PATIENCE! It takes time for your finances to grow. Don’t be in a rush to start counting billions; take it a step at a time.
- Don’t rush into any large purchases. Give yourselves time to adjust to married life before you decide where to live or what to drive.
- DON’T GET INTO DEBT! Avoid it like the plague. You’ll be thankful you did.
- Create and stick to a BUDGET! It doesn’t have to be super-detailed and it doesn’t have to ruin your life. However, you need to have a grasp on where your money is going.
- Put money aside for emergencies—even if it’s a small amount. It’s amazing how even a small portion of money saved can help in times of need.
- Start saving for a down payment on a house or building one as soon as possible.
- Start saving for retirement as soon as possible. DON’T LET THE ASSET OF TIME GET AWAY FROM YOU. Even if you can only afford to save a small amount each month, save it.
- If your finances are tight, cut out what you don’t need. Stopping that TV subscription for a while could be the right thing to do.
- Give each of you an allowance that can be spent on anything you wish and don’t criticise each other’s purchases.
- Have a budget for food and other household needs.
- Take your lunch to work.
- Sit down together and write out a list of financial goals and talk through the prioritising of those goals.
- Decide whether or not you’re going to give to charity or reach out to people periodically.
- Seek financial advice from your parents (as long as they are good role models).
- Read some basic books on financial planning and investing.
In conclusion, don’t be penny wise and pound foolish. Be as wise in handling the small stuffs as you are in handling the big stuffs; the small stuff gulp more over time than even the seemingly big stuff. Be a worthy steward!