One of the most common arguments between couples is financial arguments. Nearly seven out of 10 married or cohabiting Americans have disagreed with their partners about finances in the past year, according to the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants.
Today’s uncertain financial environment may escalate the money debate for all couples, but gay couples often face additional challenges.
“The current economy is putting pressure on everyone’s finances, but for many members of the LGBTQ community who are already dealing with lower salaries — LGBTQ employees in the United States tend to earn 10 cents less on the dollar — lower savings and greater amounts of money than they are,” says Jill Popovich, managing director. First for TIAA Customer Relations: “Student loan and credit card debt, the need to implement a financial plan is vital to helping them secure their future.”
For such couples, there are many approaches they can take Managing their finances. One potential upside: they don’t have to deal with gender-based stereotypes about finances in the same way. Here’s a look at how three LGBTQ couples split up and manage their money:
Annalize Kieldo (left) and Samantha Hernandez on vacation in Europe(Courtesy of Annaleise Kildow and Samantha Hernandez)
Samantha Hernandez, 27, and Annaleese Kieldo, 23
Hernandez and Kildow just bought a home in Savannah, Georgia, where they live with their dogs, Ollie, Peaches, Alvin, and their cat, Leo. Hernandez is a freelance financial coach who specializes in LGBT clients and Kildow is a social media content creator.
Money Talks: At least every week.
Money Approach: Spouses maintain individual monthly budgets as well as a joint budget Grocery budgetpet food, household goods, and other common expenses, such as a mortgage and other bills.
Short term financial goals: Hernandez and Kildow want to rent a room in their new two-bedroom home and renovate a cottage on the property into a studio.
Long-Term Financial Objectives: Ultimately, the couple wants to buy and rent another property in Savannah. After that, they will move to Europe and live on the income from those rental properties.
Biggest Money Challenge: rescue. Hernandez is a businessman with a fluctuating income and Kildow is a fresh graduate who hasn’t earned much money yet.
Best financial advice for other couples: Have open conversations about money, and don’t approach the topic with a negative or judgmental attitude.
Peter Molnar (left) and Kevin Bullitt at the Atlanta High Museum(Courtesy of Peter Molnar and Kevin Pollett)
Kevin Pollett, 60, and Peter Molnar, 55
Mudeeb and Molnar have been together for 18 years and have been married for the past eight years. Polite is an investor, real estate developer, and Molnar data scientist with a large technology company. They live in Decatur, Georgia.
Money Talks: Whenever it happens – and it comes more often.
Money Approach: the couple joint bank accounts and share all of their assets. They talk about big purchases before buying them.
Short term financial goals: to pay off the mortgage on their home before Polite turns 62.
Long-Term Financial Objectives: The couple wants to make sure they have a comfortable retirement, living off their retirement savings and income from their rental property.
Biggest Money Challenge: Keep their spending on track.
Best financial advice for other couples: do not worry talking about money. It’s important to understand your partner’s financial goals, and the sooner you have these conversations the better.
Daniela (left) and Alexandra Flores pose in front of Puget Sound(Courtesy of Daniela and Alexandra Flores)
Daniela, 32, and Alexandra, 46, Flores
The Flores family has been married for six years and have been together for eight years. They both work in IT and live in a home they own (mortgage) in Washington State with their two dogs, Gogo and Benny, and five cats, Little Buddies, Tex, Mio, Victor, and Little Girl.
Money Talks: every day.
Money Approach: The Flores family combines their assets into one bank account and uses a Shared spreadsheet To keep track of their bills and adjust their budget if they spend more than they’d like each month.
Short term financial goals: Max 401(k) and start investing with a brokerage account. They also want to build files emergency fund.
Long-Term Financial Objectives: The couple wants to move to a property with more land for their animals, and while they may not be retiring, they want to save enough money that working is optional.
Biggest Money Challenge: health care costs. Daniela has a side manager running a financial literacy site who wants to turn it into a full-time job, but they are concerned about the cost of insurance if they are going to be self-employed. While they can get insurance through Alexandra’s employer, it will cost about three times as much.
Best financial advice for other couples: Start talking about money with each other a lot, especially about your financial concerns and their origins. Then talk about how you can help each other get through your insecurities and financial mindset as you work towards your goals.