You don’t have to swipe your credit card at a fancy restaurant or purchase expensive gifts this Valentine’s Day to show your partner how much you care. Instead, sit down together and plan for your future.
Here are some tips to guide you through this Valentine’s Day date activity.
Before you set financial goals, it’s essential to have a “why.” This will motivate you to make healthy financial decisions.
The best “whys” light your heart on fire. They excite and compel you to stay focused, even when you’re surrounded by distractions and trends, as you pursue your dreams.
What are the things that motivate you as a couple? It could be that you want to own a home together. Or, maybe you want to take a trip together or retire comfortably so your kids won’t have to worry about providing for you after you leave the workforce.
Whatever your motivation, sit down and figure it out with your partner. When you build your goals jointly, you’ll be better able to work at them collaboratively.
Debt from yesterday can ruin today. Plus, it can prevent you from pursuing your future goals with full force. Paying off debt together is a great goal, regardless of if you have student loans or credit card debt.
The two most popular ways to pay down debt are the snowball method and the avalanche method. With the snowball method, you’ll pay off each debt, starting with the smallest, logging your initial wins faster. Most people find this strategy to be the most motivating.
However, the avalanche method is more mathematically sound. With this strategy, you pay off the debt with the highest interest rate first, regardless of the balance on that particular debt. The avalanche method is the least expensive way to become debt-free.
Determine which method is more motivating for you and your partner, then create a plan of attack to get rid of your debt once and for all.
Even if you’re working on paying down debt, it’s wise to invest for your future. The sooner you and your partner start investing, the more your money will work for you over time.
You don’t need much money to get started. Many companies allow you to invest today with as little as $5.
Ideally, you’ll start by maxing out your tax-advantaged retirement accounts. Even if you’re not offered a retirement account through your employer, you can still get tax advantages with accounts like an individual retirement account (IRA).
Being financially aware doesn’t mean life has to be dull. Remember to build in goals for fun activities as well! This can include a big vacation, an anniversary dinner at an upscale restaurant, or anything the two of you enjoy doing together that requires savings.
Be sure to use the Goal-Based Saving1s feature in the Payactiv app to help you track your progress.
The reality is that personal finance requires some sacrifices. You know you’re winning the game when you feel good about sacrificing immediate gratification in the here and now in favor of your big goals for the future.
Let’s say you’re saving up for a trip for your tenth anniversary. Meanwhile, you can research affordable or free date night ideas in your area so that constant trips to the movie theater don’t prevent you from missing that dream vacation together.
Or, instead of going out to dinner when you both get home from work, you might take turns cooking at home to save some extra cash.
Making a financial plan to build a beautiful future together is ultimately what healthy finances and relationships are about, and there’s no better time to implement this strategy than Valentine’s Day. Be sure to check out how Payactiv can help you in your journey to financial health!
1Goal-based saving is a set-aside account, and you will not receive interest or other earnings on the funds within the goal-based account.
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