Home » Blog » What is a “money date” and why you should have one with your partner

What is a “money date” and why you should have one with your partner

Money, money, money. Granted, it’s not the most exciting or romantic thing to broach on a date with your partner – but it’s an essential chat to have, especially if you’re in a committed or long-term relationship. Research has pointed to money as a leading cause of stress in a relationship, and among the top reasons why couples argue and, in many cases, divorce. 

Yet, many couples still shy away from talking about finances.  

When it comes to love, we seek out compatibility in our interests, personalities – even Zodiac signs! But financial compatibility is something we tend to overlook. Perhaps it’s because talking about money feels unnatural, or that we’re conditioned to view it as a conversational taboo. Some of us may even hesitate bringing it up to our partners out of fear of a negative reaction. 

Much like communication and honesty are essential building blocks to a healthy relationship, financial compatibility and – dare we say – intimacy is an equally important ingredient. In fact, we’d wager that having frank conversations about money can bring you closer as a couple.  Studies have revealed that couples who manage their finances together are more likely to say they’re in a happy, stable partnership.  

So where do you start, and how on earth do you talk about money with your significant other?  

Also read: The 10 money management rules you need for your relationship to thrive

Introducing “money dates”: An alternative date night idea

If you struggle to talk about money with your partner, might we suggest a money date? To put it simply, money dates are a scheduled date night where you and your partner can talk about your finances in a way that’s comfortable and non-confrontational.  

These dates can occur weekly, bi-weekly or monthly, and can either dive into specific financial commitments (like an upcoming mortgage or an unexpected medical bill) or more high-level (your long-term financial goals or individual relationships with money). Rather than having a spur-of-the-moment chat when you’re faced with a money crisis (we know how emotional these chats can get), a planned money date is more intentional and allows you to mentally prepare for the conversation. 

 

Start with the big picture

Ideally, your first money date should be a bigger picture conversation about your goals, values and priorities. Talk to your partner about the life you want to build together and how you can get there financially. This sets the groundwork for future conversations. As you and your partner have more money dates, you can go into the specifics – like, are your current household expenses higher than your joint income? Or are you looking to start saving for your child’s university fund and want to plan for that? 

Do the groundwork

If you haven’t already, make sure you cover all the basics – like your personal savings, investments, CPF, debt, insurance or retirement plans. This helps you get clarity on each other’s financial health and form a good foundation on how you can work towards a common financial goal as a couple.  

Choose the right time

Granted, the money chat is not something you want to have on the first date. When you feel your relationship is getting more serious, it’s time to ease into the topic of money. Talking about your financial expectations early on, as opposed to waiting on when a crisis arises, is helpful. 

Also read: Why CPF LIFE May Be Insufficient For Your Retirement

Make it comfortable and fun

Because the premise of a money date is to create a relaxed and non-judgemental space for you and your partner to dive into your finances, there’s no harm in making it a little fun. Chat over a cup of coffee or a glass of wine, and have it at home or on a stroll in your favourite neighbourhood park. The idea is to keep an environment conducive enough to have you both open up about your money and goals.  

If your first money date feels a little uncomfortable or new, fret not. The idea is to get you and your partner comfortable in the habit of talking about money. Before you know it, having conversations about partner about your personal finances will become second nature and a regular part of your routine. 

Tip: If you’re looking for a tool to kickstart your money chats as a couple, Autumn’s new My Circle feature is the perfect starting point. Add your loved ones on the app and share your savings, insurance policy information so that your family and beneficiaries are updated in the case of emergencies. You can also create joint aspirations together as a couple or family.  

Autumn, a money management and life planning appEnjoyed this article? Find more useful nuggets on finances, health and life on the Autumn blog, and watch this space for next month’s column. Also, tune in to our next Autumn Conversations webinar on “Money Matters in Relationships” happening Thursday, 18 November. 

 

 

About Autumn

Headquartered in Singapore and backed by Standard Chartered, Autumn is a holistic financial, health and lifestyle app. We’re founded on the belief that a genuinely meaningful retirement goes beyond just financial readiness; but also, overall well-being. If you’re looking for a tool to kickstart your finances and realise your goals, learn more about Autumn here.

You might also like

SHARE THIS: