Inevitable financial setbacks for couples
Finance plays a huge part in your life as a married couple. It can be extremely overwhelming for some but manageable for those who have planned for it.
However, as much as you plan, life doesn't always cooperate.
Setbacks are bound to occur for everyone, especially so for finances. Though some circumstances might be truly unexpected, there are more common occurrences that you can prepare for.
The transition from double to a single income
If you're a working couple, you'll be affected by this. There are several ways for this shift to occur. The loss of a job is one possibility. The economy is a constantly changing environment. While predictable to a certain extent, it does not guarantee your individual stability. The loss of your income will drastically impact your lives because of its responsibility for your daily life and expenses.
As a solution, set aside a savings account and rainy day account. If you've just started paying for your home through CPF, a loss of income will make it tough to continue payments. To counter that, use the funds in your rainy day fund to tide your household over while you get back on track.
Another reason would be the arrival of a baby. Even if you do not have plans to be a stay-home mum, it doesn't hurt to prepare for unforeseen circumstances. On top of that, raising a child comes with additional expenses. If this is the case, you'll need to prepare for an increase in expenditure and a possible reduction of income.
Long-term medical bills
Injuries and illnesses always deliver the biggest impact emotionally, physically and financially. To avoid drowning in medical bills, the best solution to own insurance. However, your insurance should entail certain factors. For example, your insurance expenditure should be at an affordable amount according to your lifestyle as well as cover a range of illnesses.
Starting a new life together can be exciting and empowering. Because of that, you might purchase items—though unnecessary—to maintain or improve your relationship. While some items can be paid off quickly, others come with long-term instalments.
Examples of such instalments include mortgage, car loans, instalment plans for home devices, luxury goods and income tax payments. Some of these instalments may even come with late payment penalties. Before you take on these instalments, picture them as unbreakable commitments. Know that you will not be able to turn away from them because of a change of mind or lifestyle.
If you find yourself drowning in a pool of instalments, one way to help yourself is to significantly lessen your expenditure or increase your income. But if you do opt for instalments, keep in mind that cash instalments shouldn't take up more than 35% of your take-home income.
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Financial Services Manager, Joseph Tan and Associates
- 51 Scotts Road #03-11 Singapore 228241.
- 9853 0208 / 6572 6967