Niyi and I try to focus on one main topic per month that pertains to our marriage. We seek the face of God and ask for guidance, talk about it, read about it, and research about it.

Well this month, we are talking finances. This is a very big part of every marriage. I would like to share my views and also ask that you share yours.

I believe the saying “whats mine is yours”  definitely applies with finances. It is very important to lay down a  strong financial foundation before stepping into marriage.

1. I think that a couple should  merge their accounts but still have individual accounts. For example, a couple can have their own separate checking accounts and then have a joint checking and savings account. Both couples will have access to all four accounts via their online banking.  Both income goes in to the couples joint checking account. Then the couple will pay each other by transferring money into their individual savings accounts and also deposit into their joint savings account. This makes sense in my head…does it actually make sense? Am I sounding like a random girl right now?

2. NO SECRETS: I think one reason that marriages experience hardship is due to bad spending habits. Women not being truthful about how much is really being spent, guys overspending on electronics etc. I am a firm believer that everything that happens in the dark will eventually come to light. So be real with your spouse.

3. STOP TRYING TO KEEP UP WITH THE JONESES:  This is very simple,,if you cant afford it, don’t buy it. Plan for it and wait for it. When you live above your means it will eventually catch up with you…and this goes for us as individuals period. God’s time is the best time..why would he ever trust you with more financially when you are not appreciative or properly managing what he has entrusted you with now?????

4. PLAN PLAN PLAN.. God has promised us long life (as long as you follow through with your side of the bargain) so plan to make sure that you enjoy it fully. You cant live like there is no tomorrow, and as married couples your financial responsibility can only get greater with kids and other expenses. So the key is to BUDGET. Be sure to tally all expenses, including savings, emergency funds, retirement funds, college tuition for your kids, etc. Keep in mind that there is always seed time and harvest time. You can not harvest without planting. So do the work, and reap what you sow.

Here are six financial mistakes couples make form

1. Merging the Finances
The Wrong Approach: United we stand, divided we bank.
The Right Approach: It’s yours, mine and ours.

2. Dealing With Debt
The Wrong Approach: Your debt will ruin us; you must find a way to pay it off.
The Right Approach: It’s our debt: Let’s decide how to pay it off together.

3. Keeping Spending in Check
The Wrong Approach: I’m a saver and you’re a spender. That’s the problem.
The Right Approach: We both spend, but on different things. Let’s budget.

4. Investing Wisely
The Wrong Approach: You’re a risk-taker, I’m risk-averse. Hands off our retirement savings.
The Right Approach: Let’s think in time frames and take as much risk as our goals allow.

5. Keeping Money Secrets
The Wrong Approach: What my spouse doesn’t know will never hurt him/her.
The Right Approach: Big financial secrets can ruin a marriage.

6. Emergency Planning
The Wrong Approach: We’re fine. We don’t need to worry about money.
The Right Approach: Anything could happen. Let’s plan for emergencies.