It’s Valentine’s Day this month, a holiday that doesn’t get much love for the way it costs plenty of sensible people a lot of foolish spending. This Valentine’s, why not take a more financially prudent stance?
First things first: have the important talks as a couple
The number of couples who get engaged or take their relationship to the next level around Valentine’s Day is significant… and it’s worth noting that those who talk about money beforehand save themselves stress later and enjoy better conversations around their future together.
This needn’t be a scary affair. Light some candles, pour some of your favourite drinks and talk openly. What would you like your future to look like and how do you feel about having the money for these dreams? What is important to each of you and how do you perceive value? How do you feel about debt and how do you feel about savings?
It’s not about obsessing over money (which is highly unromantic…) - quite the opposite. It’s about speaking about what is important to you and understanding how you can now achieve these goals together. It’s about how you can be more, together (which is considerably more romantic…).
Conversations like these are gold – for both your rands and your relationship.
Discuss the benefits of potentially skipping Valentine’s Day
If you’ve already had the big talks mentioned above, try having a relaxed conversation about skimping on the Valentine’s plans to save money for other things. Now that you have a better idea of what you value together, you can work together to new and bigger goals. Or, instead of splashing out on gifts, consider just spending on creating a special memory together that will outlast any trinket.
For a Valentine’s present, give the gift of empowerment
If you do want to spoil your loved one, try thinking out of the box. One romantic gestures I’ve heard of happened to a divorced woman with three young kids. She met a man and after being together for a few months, he gave her a gift: he’d invested in a Kruger rand on behalf of each of her children with a goal to having enough money for each of their tertiary educations.
Often, we think of perishable items when we think Valentine’s Day - flowers, chocolates and the like. But what message is that really communicating? By taking out an investment on behalf of your significant other, you are saying ‘you are valuable and worth investing in’.
As a couple, do you meet with your financial advisor together? Money is one of the most common stressors in the world and can cause enormous anxiety in relationships.
This Valentine’s day, why not think long term and have a new conversation?