Both of you could be earning money separately for years. Then a change of circumstance can happen that means your personal money has been slashed or stopped altogether. For example, pregnancy or redundancy.
Even though you’ve worked as a partnership, financially, for years, you might need to have a difficult conversation. Especially if one of you is going to have to rely on the other for money.
The person who’s no longer earning money, or suddenly earning less, can end up feeling powerless. Especially if their partner takes control of the finances. They might feel guilty or like they have to justify what they spend. Maybe they feel like they have to avoid going out or doing things that cost money, such as going out with friends.
It’s important to communicate honestly about your financial expectations. A big change in circumstance is the perfect time to sit down and make a new budget together. Perhaps set some mutual financial goals and revisit them each month.
When you’ve made a budget and decided on your new goals, you might find you have to cut back on your spending. Make sure you do this as a team, rather than it falling on the shoulders of the person who has taken a cut in salary.
It’s always worth thinking about how you speak to each other about money because everyone can be feeling extra emotional during this period. Avoid arguments by replacing emotions (I think, I hate, I wish) with facts (we have spent… you bought… we have £XX left, and so on).
If you’re having a baby, these guides will be useful:
If you’ve been made redundant, these guides will be useful: