Using the High-5 Banking Method as a married couple can be heavily sent if you want it to. Many couples want to keep transparency, honesty, and respect as a top priority when managing their finances together. Society can make us question how to manage your finances with your spouse nor how to approach it. One partner wants to keep everything separate due to fears of conflict and divorce. While the other is trying to simplify the money process of paying bills, saving for a home, and life. This can make it a bit confusing on how to create your unique money system as a married couple.
What’s the High-5 Banking Method
The High-5 Banking Method is a clear way to organize your finances with purpose straight from your bank accounts. It’s a system that helps you organize your money so you can stay on budget and hit your goals. I created the High-5 Banking Method during one of the most difficult times in my marriage. We learned that as times got difficult, it didn’t matter who’s money it was that paid the bills. It had to get paid and we had to make it work. The difficult times tested our marriage and our financial system, aka the High-5 Banking Method.
Now, let’s get right into how you can use the High-5 Banking Method’s structure to create your money system.
Joint Bills Account
When it comes to bills you have to remember that these are mandatory needs. You want to focus on the important items like housing, minimum debt payments, groceries, and utilities. These expenses are something we all have and need. So when you’re trying to manage your money as a married couple you have to remember that you need to build a system for your finances that accounts for imperfection. So if one person is ill, overly busy with the kids, or unemployed you can still hold each other accountable to get all the bills paid for. Having a joint checking account specifically for bills is a great way to make sure you’re prioritizing your needs.
Joint or Separate Lifestyle Account
When it comes to lifestyle expenses, let’s make it clear that these are expenses that are want in your life. That being said, it’s important that you budget for joint lifestyle expenses like restaurants, entertainment, joint hobbies, and personal money. During my pregnancy, my husband and I found it easier to have a joint checking account for our lifestyle expenses. Anything that we needed for the baby, pregnancy, or the house could be bought by any of us. We added line items to our lifestyle budget to account for personal play money that we could use as we pleased. Once we had our kids, we also added a budget line item for our kid’s play money. This was helpful when buying baby clothes, toys, and anything extra for the kids.
I personally don’t want you to feel like you have to have a joint or separate lifestyle account. But this is one account that can be separate if you choose. I personally keep it joint, due to the flexibility needed when we shop for lifestyle expenses. Like I said, sometimes he goes to buy fast food or buys something for the kids. It’s nice that he has the option to spend lifestyle expenses without having to do a lot of math afterwards. While on my debt free journey I also liked having my accountability partner keep me on budget.
Emergency Fund for Two
I love emergency funds, they give you so much confidence when life gets challenging. If one of you loses your job, are hospitalized, ill, have unexpected car problems or house fixtures. You can feel assured that you have a nest egg to cover any mishaps that can affect either one of you. This is you and your spouse protecting each other incase of emergencies.
When it comes to how much you should have in your emergency fund as a couple. How much you save really does depend on your minimum costs of living and how many people depend on this fund. When you are a couple that has one income vs two incomes, you want to save accordingly.
Here is a range to consider, especially if you have kids or not.
Goal Setting as a Team
Goal setting is the most interesting part of managing your finances as a couple. At the end of the day you both want to accomplish things that may be for you individually and as a household. Both of these types of goals can be communicated and contributed to as teammates. When it comes to long or short-term goals like saving for a home down payment or a wedding, you both want to be able to contribute with full transparency. This is probably the most important part of using the High-5 Banking Method, you’re able to clearly see what you’re saving for. Saving with purpose helps couples stay the path of open communication and staying on budget.
However you choose to manage your finances, make sure you’re considering the other person’s feelings. Miscommunication and lack of transparency is the biggest issue when dealing with money and marriage. Having a system that promotes transparency and honesty allows you and your spouse to feel more confident and removes secrecy from the finances. You have the option to use and modify the High-5 Banking Method as you see fit. But remember to stay purposeful with how you want to manage your finances.
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