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Agreeing on financial issues may prevent divorce

When trying to find an ideal marriage partner, most men and women in Illinois and all around the country care about character, personality and looks far more than assets or financial affluence. However, conflicts over finances are the number one reason that couples split up, according to the New York Times. A study conducted by TD Ameritrade and LearnVest revealed that couples argue about money at least five times per year, and that younger couples have many more financial fights than older couples. So while it's easy to ignore practical issues during the first months of an exciting relationship, it's important for couples to be prepared to handle financial disputes as their marriage continues.

Luckily, there are a few strategies that can help a young couple prevent a money-related argument that dissolves their relationship. The first and potentially most important approach involves communicating honestly about how you use money. It's important to know if your spouse typically spends money or saves money. Credit scores and debt situations are also important to know about. Even though it's typically an off-limits or uncomfortable topic, discussing each other's spending habits can help spouses create a plan for any future hardships.

Another strategy involves talking about financial goals, such as when you want to buy a house or retire. The type of lifestyle you desire is also very important for your spouse to know early in your relationship. If you feel that you are not compatible financially, it may be best to avoid getting a joint bank account.

Finally, it's always possible to seek professional help. Getting a financial advisor or family law expert to help with conflict resolution can be invaluable when trying to prevent your differences from leading to divorce. Professionals can provide sound guidance and advice, even for very young couples. If at some point you determine that your differences are irreconcilable, and divorce is the best option, a professional can also help with mediation and talking through issues in order to maintain civility during the divorce process.

forbes.com, "How To Stop Marital Spending Spats" Larry Light, Nov. 26, 2013

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