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Relationship goals: How to achieve financial security as a couple

What we'll cover

  • What financial security means

  • The importance of financial openness

  • Strategies couples can use for financial security

Being in a committed relationship involves a lot more budgeting worksheets and splitting bills discussions than any rom-com would have you believe. But one of the best parts of a great relationship is growing together and accomplishing big goals, like reaching financial security. Here are a few strategies you and your partner can try, no matter where you are in your own love story.

Finding financial bliss

While couples may have their own definition for how financial security looks and feels, it generally means you can afford your essential expenses, save for the future and live a comfortable lifestyle. It doesn't necessarily mean you're immune to any financial stress (unexpected bills aren't fun for anyone), but an emergency vet visit, for example, probably won't break the bank.

Establish open communication

Whether you're moving in , married or financing a mortgage, as your lives become increasingly intertwined, you need to be able to discuss money. It might feel a bit uncomfortable at first, but financial discussions are part of a healthy relationship. Be open and honest about where you stand financially, how you view money and your financial worries or hopes. Doing so will help you and your partner better understand each other's relationship with money. Ultimately, the more transparency you have around money, the less opportunity there is for financial tension or resentment to build.

After an initial conversation, work together to figure out the best way to keep the communication flowing. You might find that discussing finances comes naturally, or you may decide to take a more structured approach and plan dedicated monthly money check-ins or these date night challenges .

Align on your future goals

It's much easier to get somewhere if you know where you're going. Create a list of your joint and individual money ambitions and include these in your discussions about financial security. For example, a shared goal may be to build a family emergency fund of $8,000 in two years and an individual goal might be to pay off student loans that you had before starting the relationship.

If you have several goals, work together to prioritize them. You might organize them by short- and long-term goals or decide to tackle any quick-wins first. Remember to keep in mind how debt might impact your priorities. For example, waiting to pay off high-interest credit card debt in favor of saving for a car could end up costing more in the long-run.

The more transparency you have around money, the less opportunity there is for financial tension or resentment to build.

Build and execute a plan together

With your goals spelled out, you can make an action plan to reach them. For instance, if one of your goals is to build an emergency fund, determine how much you each need to save each month to hit your target amount by your desired date.

Then, take a look at your current finances and spending. Work together to create a couple's budget that includes your monthly expenses, debt payments and savings amounts. Identify areas where you can eliminate unnecessary spending and put extra cash toward building financial security.

This is also a great opportunity to take care of the tactical aspects of your finances, such as opening an Ally Bank Savings Account (and using buckets and boosters to optimize your savings), turning on autopay for monthly bills or ensuring your 401(k) contributions are set up. Automating your finances as much as possible helps keep you moving forward while avoiding expensive, unnecessary fees or interest. And if you have debt, identify the best repayment strategy to help you save long-term.

Work as a team

The best part of striving for financial security as a couple is that you have someone to lean on. Remember to support each other, work together to stay on track and celebrate milestones. Regularly check in with each other to assess how you both feel and make adjustments to your budget or savings plans if you need to.

Stay secure in love

Feeling financially stable with a partner takes effort, trust and patience. You might have to make sacrifices along the way, but the payoff is worth it. Not only is reaching financial security together an incredible achievement, but it creates a strong foundation for you and your partner to work toward even more goals and ambitions in your relationship.

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