If you and your partner are not getting along like you used to, you’re not alone. To hazard a guess, it’s probably due to money worries. According to new research released in the 2011 Relationships Indicators survey, financial stress is the most common reason behind relationship breakdowns in Australia. bad?

Financial stress #1 Trigger for love woes

71% of surveyed Australians said financial stress was the biggest contributor to partner breakups, in joint research released by Relationships Australia and CUA.

But don’t reach for the suitcase just yet. Your Money Magazine recommends following this five point plan to help you get back on top of your finances.

  1. Develop a financial plan: Look at your money holistically. Put in writing what you want to achieve financially and list the steps that will help to make it happen.
  2. Set a realistic budget: Make a list of what you earn and what you can financially commit to. Work out how much you can spend on a weekly, fortnightly or monthly basis, including essential expenses such as mortgage repayments, insurance and savings, as well as luxuries such as holidays.
  3. Regularly review your financial goals: Conduct a bi-annual ‘health check’ on your finances to keep track of your actual spending patterns and any necessary changes that need to be made.
  4. Communicate: Talk to your partner, family member or a friend about financial issues as they arise and be realistic about the solution or outcome.
  5. Seek professional financial advice: If you encounter hardship or financial difficulties, talk to your financial institution or a financial counsellor to help get you back on track.

CUA General Manager, Strategy and Marketing, Andrew Hadley said, “The findings of the survey reinforce the need for couples to proactively take control of their money.”

“Investing the time into organising their finances and setting realistic expectations and financial goals for the short and long-term should help to reduce the associated stress,” he said.
Current as at September 2011