Couples Decision Therapy

marriageThere have been studies showing that financial issues are one of the primary reasons why married couples fall apart.  A recent article in Market Watch suggests that the biggest reason for these significant disagreements is a failure to create a unified view of the financial future that both parties have agreed to.  In many cases, one dominant spouse will make decisions on behalf of the couple, which can lead to disagreements (and potential divorce) down the road, as one spouse feels left out of the picture.

How can you come to a basic mutual understanding of your financial priorities?  Even if you already have a financial plan, there may be areas where you disagree with the current one.  Sit down with your spouse and write down the answers to a few basic questions.  How would you like to live when you retire?  What does retirement look like, in terms of activities, travel and your daily routine?  Is helping the kids (if you have them) a priority?  If so, how much support do you have in mind?  What will it cost to achieve these various goals?

Both parties will almost certainly give different answers—which, of course, is where the conflict comes from.  The next step is to look for areas of compromise.  Create “must have,” “want” and “wish” lists, which helps prioritize where you might be willing to give up goals and where you want to stand firm.

After compromise comes evaluation.  This may require amending your current financial plan, to see if you’re still on track to achieve your mutual goals.  But the result may be more harmony, better communication, and a better understanding of what’s important to each other.

Source:

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/how-couples-can-make-smart-retirement-decisions-together-2016-03-28

 

About Objectively Speaking

Tom Batterman, founder of Vigil Trust & Financial Advocacy and Financial Fiduciaries, LLC is in the business of representing the best financial interests of his clients. Having provided objective, fee-only financial management services for over two decades, he specializes in managing the investment and related financial affairs of individuals and mutual insurance companies who do not have the time, interest or expertise to manage such matters on their own. As an objective, unbiased professional who takes on a fiduciary responsibility to his clients, he guides clients to the financial decisions they would make themselves if they had years of training and experience and the time and expertise to fully research and understand all of their options. Founded in 2010 as an outgrowth of Vigil Trust & Financial Advocacy, Financial Fiduciaries, LLC is a financial management solution for individuals and mutual insurance companies who recognize they do not have the time, interest or expertise to properly attend to their financial matters on their own. While there are many financial “advisors”, most of them have investment products to sell and the “advice” they provide is geared toward getting their clients to engage in a purchase. As one of the rare subset of advisors known as “fiduciary advisors”, Financial Fiduciaries does not sell any investment product so its guidance is not compromised by conflicts of interest which plague ordinary advisors. Prior to his employment in the financial industry in financial advocacy and trust positions, he worked at a private law practice in the Wausau area in the areas of estate planning, tax, retirement planning, corporate organizations and real estate. He is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the UW-Madison Law School and has during his career held Series 7, 24 and 65 securities licenses. A longtime resident of the Wausau, Wisconsin Area, Tom is active in the community. He enjoys golf, curling, skiing, fishing, traveling and spending time with his family.
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