Conduct yourselves with all humility, gentleness, and patience. Accept each other with love, and make an effort to preserve the unity of the Spirit with the peace that ties you together.
– Ephesians 4:2-3 (CEB)

If you’re in a committed relationship, it’s important to sit down together and talk about your preferences in regard to the most intimate topic of all: money.

Money is a major cause of conflict in relationships, but understanding your partner’s money preferences is one step to combat potential conflict. Just because you may discover that you and your partner differ in how you value money does not mean that you are incompatible together. However, it is vital to your relationship that you are aware of your partner’s tendencies so that you can better anticipate their needs and be sure to account for their feelings in regard to money matters.

You can begin by answering the following questions separately (it may help to write them down):

  • Name 3 short-term financial goals (6 months — 1 year)
  • Name 3 long-term financial goals (1 — 5 years)

Take time to share your responses with your partner:

  • Were there any similarities/differences?
  • How can you affirm your partner’s goals and work to achieve them together?
  • If there are few similarities, try to establish additional short and long-term goals as a couple.

Get to know your partner’s financial personality. There are multiple online quizzes you can take to determine your habits. Pick a link below or search for your own. You may already know your own financial style, but it’s essential to learn the financial style of your partner. For instance, if one person is more impulsive with money, while their partner is often stressed by money matters, the couple should discuss the best ways to manage purchases. Perhaps approval from both parties is required for purchases over a certain amount. Talking through situations such as these can alleviate some of the stress and struggle money inevitably creates.

Get to Know Your Money Habits:

The Simple Dollar: Money Personality Quiz
LearnVest: What’s Your Money Belief?
Money Harmony
Money Type

If you haven’t already, read about identifying your values here. Defining and sharing your foundational values with your partner will also help you both determine your priorities in your relationship. Aligning your values with your partner will foster better understanding and goal setting.