Dealing With Financial Income Inequality In Marriage

pexels-photo-70308-largeWhen a couple is married and one spouse makes more than the other or if one spouse works and the other one doesn’t it can result in problems in the marriage. There are a few things that couples can do to deal with financial income inequality in the marriage before things start to fall apart.

Don’t Start Out Making Mistakes

Many couples spend more than they can afford on their wedding. The average cost of a wedding is $26,645. Most couples spend between $19,984 and $33,306. This doesn’t include the cost of the honeymoon. If the couple doesn’t have the cash, they will often put the whole wedding on credit cards. This put the couple in debt from the beginning of their marriage. If one spouse is making more money than the other and paying more on the wedding credit cards, it can cause resentment which will lead to arguments. It is best to stick to a limited budget and plan a wedding that you can afford without taking on a massive amount of credit card debt.

Discuss All of Your Financial Issues

Before you get married, you should discuss all of your financial issues. If either spouse has any outstanding loans, credit card bills, or any outstanding debt, they should be disclosed ahead of time. Also, if there are any assets or bank accounts, these should also be disclosed. Spouses should also let each other know if they have child support obligations or if they are going to be providing support for aging parents in the future. When everything is out in the open, it is good for the marriage. If a couple is already married, it is never too late to disclose all of the facts.

Understand That All Fights Are Not About Money

Many couples fight about money, however, in most circumstances, it’s only the tip of the iceberg. Couples should have a talk about their views on money before they got married. The way a person was raised has a great deal to do with their saving and spending habits. They should find out how each other’s families dealt with money. Was talking about money something that was never done? Did they grow up on a budget? These things will factor in with the way that both spouses deal with money today. When a fight does occur, it could be out of fear or because their spouse is not upholding the same financial values that their parents used to.

Set Similar Goals

When it comes to money management, both spouses should sit down together to decide what their financial goals. If they are hoping to buy a home, they would need to figure out what they are going to need to do in order to meet this goal. If both spouses have student loans to pay off, they should set a goal to get these paid. If both spouses don’t set goals together, they won’t be on the same page. This will only lead to arguments.

Don’t Suffocate One Another


If one spouse makes more money than the other, they should not constantly ask questions about spending. This will just cause problems. The person who makes less money will start to feel guilty and also like they are being treated like a child. If the spending gets out of control, however, it would need to be discussed. If the spouse making more money starts overspending, it should still be discussed. Just because one spouse makes more money than the other, it does not give them free reign to spend anything that they want.

Set Up a Spending System

In order to be sure that both spouses are not spending too much money on certain items, they could come up with a system. The cost per unit (CPU) system is an excellent method. This method would use the cost of the item and how often it would be used. For example, if a spouse spends $500 on a pair of shoes, and they are only going to wear them 5 times a year, it would cost them $100 each time that they are worn. This would be a bad investment. If the couple were to spend $1,000 on a couch that they would be sitting on at least 1,000 times in a year, it would be a good investment.

coins-currency-investment-insurance-128867-largeSave Money When Possible

It is important that couples find ways to save money. For example, when it comes to car insurance, couples should find the most inexpensive car insurance coverage. It may take longer to find the right company, however, it will save money in the long run. Car insurance coverage isn’t the only place that this applies. Looking for the best cost on all expenditures can save money, and in the long run, it can prevent arguments over money.

Respect the Golden Rule

It is important that both spouses treat each other that the way that they want to be treated. If one person does not want to be questioned about spending constantly, they should not question their spouse. When both spouses respect each other, there will be fewer arguments.

Don’t Be Afraid to Ask For Help

If things get bad in the marriage due to finances, the couple should not be afraid to get help. Marriage counselors and even financial planners can get the couple back on track.

According to a survey released in 2005 by Sun Trust Bank, finances are the leading cause of stress in relationships. Over 44 percent of the couples asked stated that the major cause of the fights in their relationships was about money. If one spouse doesn’t make as much as the other, they need to work together to avoid hurt feelings and constant fighting.

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