Money conversations may feel daunting, here's how to get started.
Are you in a relationship where you talk about money regularly? Avoiding conversations about money can seem like a way to steer clear of unnecessary stress and conflict, but this can lead to confusion and sometimes even resentment when it comes to managing money.
The kinds of money conversations you’ll have may depend on the stage of the relationship you’re at - whether you’re newly dating, thinking of moving in together, getting married or in a long-term relationship.
This guide is general but we’ve included resources below to help with your specific needs.
Money can be a daunting subject, so you might like to agree on conversational ground rules before starting to talk through money. This can include taking turns speaking, listening and not interrupting.
It helps to keep in mind you’ll need to have regular, open and respectful conversations. It’s also important to prioritise both of your opinions, goals and needs when making decisions.
Talking about each other’s backgrounds and attitudes about money can help build understanding and intimacy. Talking about future dreams and goals can also build trust and help with future decisions.
How was money managed around you while you were growing up? What are some of your earliest money memories? Did you earn pocket money or were resources scarce?
Talking through these questions can help promote understanding of the potential emotions and meanings associated with money.
Our attitudes and personalities shape how we think and feel about money, which can in turn impact how we act with money. You, Me and Money’s financial personality quiz could help you better understand each other’s motivations, so you're better prepared to support one another.
It’s worth talking about what money means to each of you now and how you prefer to manage money.
How have your money habits changed since you started earning your own money? Do you have short and long-term goals? Are you more inclined to spend or save? Are there areas of your financial fitness you’d like to work on?
These questions can help you understand one another and help as you think about making decisions together.
Financial abuse is when one partner uses money as a means to control or exploit their partner and limit their financial independence. This can include controlling their financial affairs, spending their money and making financial decisions without the consent of the other person.
Financial abuse can be hard to recognise and may make it unsafe to have a conversation about money. Seek advice if you think you may be experiencing financial abuse - you can also contact 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or visit 1800respect.org.au
If you’re experiencing domestic or family violence, it may not be safe to have a conversation with your partner about money. Seek advice and support from a family violence service before a conversation.
This guide contains general information to support you as you build your financial fitness. It doesn’t consider your personal circumstances and isn't financial advice. The information is true at the time of publishing.