Plan for Tomorrow | Understanding your financial love language
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Understanding your financial love language

Apr 29, 2024, 3:20:27 PM | Reading Time: 5 minutes

The way people receive and express love in a relationship is known as their love language and can differ from person to person. Understanding your preferences and your partner’s can help make communication easier and strengthen your bond. Love languages can also apply to your financial life and your attitude toward money. Here’s a look at the different love languages, how they translate into money management, and ways to support each other in achieving financial goals.

How finances can affect a relationships

Financial stress can sometimes affect a relationship and lead to arguments over money. Nearly three in four married or cohabitating couples say financial decisions have caused tension in their relationship. For instance, if a couple experiences a job loss or an unexpected emergency, these financial stressors can lead to disagreements. Plus, if a couple has different spending habits, financial priorities, and communication styles, conversations can easily turn heated when they’re not on the same page. While talking about money is not always comfortable, it’s important to be open about your financial situation and provide an opportunity where both people feel heard and supported.

Talking about finances with a partner

Since finances are an ongoing factor in a long-term relationship, couples should routinely discuss financial matters and try to understand each other’s point of view. For couples starting out and determining compatibility, it can be a good idea to be open about personal financial goals a few months into the relationship. Couples at this stage don’t need to have numbers nailed down or everything figured out, but being open and honest is a good place to start. Established and married couples should consider discussing more concrete financial goals and how their decisions will affect their joint financials. Taking time to understand each other’s love language can also be applied to managing finances and provides important insight into finding balance.

Ways financial love language can impact money management in a relationship

Knowing how your love language impacts financial decisions can help you find ways to compromise with your partner, even if your love language and relationship with money are different. Here’s how each love language can translate into finances and suggestions for strengthening those connections. If your love language is:

ClockQuality time: Have a budget date night idea in your back pocket

For those who enjoy spending time together and giving and receiving undivided attention, it may be tempting to put money toward extravagant date nights or weekend getaways. Since quality time is about being together no matter what you’re doing, having budget-friendly options can still allow you to enjoy one-on-one time without breaking the bank. Consider mini golf, going for a hike, packing a picnic, or trying a new recipe together.

Phone Acts of service: Simplify finances with apps & automation

Some individuals like to show their partner they care by doing things that let them know they’re thinking of them or make their life easier. To apply this to your financial life, setting up auto-pay on shared expenses or using a budgeting app to simplify combined financial goals like starting an emergency fund may be helpful. Finding ways to make paying bills and increasing savings less stressful can benefit both people in the relationship and support a team-effort approach to money management.

Speech BubbleWords of affirmation: Seek a professional in financial planning for couples

For this love language, people choose verbal communication to show they care and use words of gratitude and appreciation toward their partner. From a financial standpoint, you may prefer to talk through money matters together, even if they’re complex topics, and feel ongoing conversations are the key to building financial security and staying on track. Seeking the guidance of a financial professional can help put a plan in motion and allow a 3rd party to facilitate the discussion, ask questions, and help find common ground where both partner’s goals are supported.

High FivePhysical touch: Track personal finances together

Some people’s love language is physical affection, like hugging or holding hands. For finances, physical touch translates to spending and saving habits and seeing the tangible effects of their efforts. If they’re not seeing their collective spending or saving activities regularly, it may not impact them as much. For these individuals, it can be helpful to use a spreadsheet or app to maintain a budget, track spending, and review it together regularly. This can help both people to be proactive about their finances, solve any issues quickly, and create an equal partnership when making financial decisions.

GiftGift giving: Stick to a gift budget

Many people enjoy giving or receiving thoughtful gifts to show they care and feel connected. This can be tricky for a couple’s financial life if one partner spends money on a gift as an act of love while the other considers it an unnecessary expense. Budget how much is spent on gift-giving for specific occasions to get on the same page financially. Consider incorporating homemade or personalized gifts that do not have a huge price tag or reserving time for an activity together rather than an expensive item. This can still say, “I’m thinking of you,” without the stress of spending money you may not have.

Boosting financial security in a relationship

No matter your love language, showing mutual respect and being open to compromise are important to maintaining a healthy relationship. This is especially true regarding money management and working together to create a more secure future. With each partner’s personality and preferences in mind, find ways that both people can feel like they’re contributing to improving your overall financial well-being. This could be having separate savings accounts and a joint checking or savings account. A combined budget that breaks down into individual budgets allows each person to set their spending limits and goals. Identifying your financial love language and respecting your partner’s if it’s different can help you find balance and create an environment where everyone feels empowered to make financial choices and decisions.

The term financial professional is not intended to imply engagement in an advisory business in which compensation is not related to sales. Financial professionals that are insurance licensed will be paid a commission on the sale of an insurance product.