The Financial Newlywed Game

Questions about how you and your partner think about money

Welcome to The Financial Newlywed Game! I’m your hostess with the mostest!

The show back in the 60’s, “The Newlywed Game” was a game show that brought four couples together to compete on who knew each other the best by answering provocative questions about their spouse. It could be quite a funny outcome, or uncomfortable, as you’d watch couples become exasperated when they learned new and unpleasant things about their spouse.

I came across an article from The Motley Fool, adapting a series of financial questions to answer and compare, put into a game you can play as a couple to become more aware of your financial compatibility.

So, how well do you know your partner when it comes to money? Are you on the same page? How frequently do you work together with your money? Do you have similar dreams and goals about money? This game is a good way to find out.

I came up with a similar set of questions for you and your mate. If you play the Financial Newlywed Game, you’ll (hopefully) come away with a better understanding of each other’s financial mindset and envisioned future goals.

So, get out a pencil and paper, and read aloud each question, then write down your answers. No peeking until the end! When you’re done with the exercise, compare your answers.

  1. What is the amount of money you’d need to save to maintain your lifestyle without a regular paycheck (financial independence or retirement)?
  2. What do you think is the amount of money your partner considers to be adequate for financial independence?
  3. What would your partner say is the annual income needed to be happy?
  4. List most important to least important in financial priority: home, clothing, furniture, retirement, travel/vacation, debt payoff, car, entertainment, kids, college.
  5. What are the three best purchases you’ve made as a couple?
  6. What are the three worst purchases you’ve made as a couple?
  7. Budgeting is: a) a tedious chore, b) necessary to get ahead with finances, c) for people who are OCD about money, c) overrated, d) unnecessary, I usually know how much I have in my accounts, e) a fun thing that I look forward to doing
  8. When was the last time you and your partner sat down and went over your finances together?
  9. You receive $5000.00 of unexpected money. What do you spend it on? What would your partner spend it on?
  10. You view money as: a) a necessary evil, b) something to give others to show them that you love them, c) a tool to get what you need, d) your path to happiness
  11. Credit cards are: a) a great way to stay in debt, b) a good way to buy what you need when you don’t have the cash, c) essential in building up your credit score, d) never used for anything, period.
  12. Where is the one place you’re spending money right now and wish you didn’t need to spend it there?
  13. What is your biggest fear about money?
  14. What is the one thing you want or need to tell your partner about your money that they don’t know yet?
  15. What is the one thing you want to create with your partner that involves your monies?
  16. What is your biggest dream in life? (regardless of money)
  17. What are your partners best money habits?
  18. Take the last question about their best money habits, then give him/her a superhero name! Make it positive.

Tips for playing the Financial Newlywed Game:

Keep it positive: This is Rule #1! No blaming, criticizing, putting your partner down, digging up the past, or trying to change his or her mind. Approach the questions with an open and non-judgmental attitude. This game has no room for negativity.

Be honest and open: You’re delving into a deeper conversation with your spouse to learn more about each other. It’s important to give them honest answers, no matter what. If you lie or are hiding something, what are you afraid of? These are things you need to clarify with yourself.

Listen and be non-judgmental: Your partner may tell you something that’s new information for you. Even if your ideas are different, even though this is your better half, the person you chose to spend your life with, he/she is also an individual with his or her own background and experiences when dealing with money. Accept this, and work together on your money habits.

Take a break if it gets a little heated: It’s okay to stop and cool down. A lot of couples have hot buttons with money. This is your chance to come together and see the other person. But, if you hit a hot button, take a break.

Have fun: Part of this game is dreaming about goals, and your future life together. This can be really fun! It’s also an opportunity to support your spouse with any goals they might have. Be a problem-solver. Lean on each other. Work together to have a great life. You can come away with a better understanding and a life that is happy for both of you individually and as a partnership.

Cha-Ching Money Blog helps you manage your personal finances by giving you tips on changing your money mindset and lifestyle. Sign up for our newsletter for ongoing tips, stories and ideas on how to make your money work for you.

Advocate for Women / Editor of The Virago

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