How many times have you told your partner, “Ok next week we’re going to seriously start saving money” and then you just...don’t. Saving money with your partner doesn’t mean completely sacrificing the things you love (in fact, sometimes it can be the opposite). Good habits can go a long way. Here are some tips from our friends at Tandem.
1. Auto insurance policies can be better together
If you and your partner live together, you may be able to score a discount by combining auto insurance policies (especially if you’re bundling home and auto, or auto and renters policies with one insurance company). Be sure to compare quotes from multiple carriers to make sure you get the best value insurance for your coverage.
2. Family subscription plans don’t just mean with your parents
It's a common misconception that bundled subscription plans are only for families with kids. However, brands like Spotify offer savings for two people to be on one account. Take a deep dive into your subscriptions and make sure you aren’t both paying for any that can be shared!
3. Have a rock-solid expense sharing method
Having a good understanding of your shared expenses can help you and your partner identify room for savings and avoid money fights (this is where a platform like Tandem can help). Tandem is a free iOS application that allows couples to share their expenses in a casual and customized way. Tandem links to your current spending accounts and automatically pulls in your expenses so you split them with your partner in seconds without any manual entry. The amount owed adjusts in real-time based on what each partner is splitting. You can also automate recurring expenses and pay each other right within the app.
4. Let the grocery store know who’s boss
Grocery shopping can be painful. Go in with a plan. On average, U.S. families waste $1,500 per year on unused groceries. Take five minutes to explore your kitchen and make a shared note of what you need from the store. Incrementally, if you can lock down what meals you’re making for the week with the necessary ingredients beforehand, that can help you to avoid last-minute trips during the week (which often results in extra money wasted).
5. Not all date nights need to be extravagant
The restaurant’s $40 bottle of wine tastes just as good at home and for half the price. Get creative with at home date nights. Try to recreate your favorite meals at home. Obviously our friends at Crated with Love have you covered on the entertainment...
6. Shake the dead weight (aka that extra car that just sits in the garage)
If you and your partner don’t both commute to work, or public transportation is an option, look into sharing a car. According to the American Public Transportation Association’s June 2019 Transit Savings Report, taking public transportation instead of driving can save, on average, more than $816 per month.
7. Utilize credit cards over debit cards to earn more rewards and build credit
We have a whole article on this here but the TL;DR is with the right card and good financial habits (paying your balance off on time and in full each month, this is crucial), you can earn $2,000 or more in rewards over five years. There are certain cards like the Delta Amex that offer a free airline companion ticket each year, so you and your partner can get a free flight if you both get one!
8. Let your partner know investing isn’t that scary
One way to accelerate growth is to utilize the power of “2 is greater than 1”. If you have a partner that does not currently invest, encouraging them to invest their money is an easy way to double your future investment income as a couple so you are better set for the future. This doesn’t necessarily translate to savings, but it does translate to growing your earnings, which is better! More on this here.
9. Certain states allow domestic partners to join each other’s health insurance plans (gasp)
You now don’t have to be married to be on your partner’s health insurance. If you have a pricey individual plan, look into getting on your partner’s if they are OK with it.
10. If you feel like the timing is *right*, move in together!
Lodging is the biggest monthly expense for most people, moving in with your partner can help you split it in half (not to mention, your utilities as well).
The best way to get started is to align with your partner. What are your financial goals? Wants? Needs? Believe it or not, growing your financial life together can be fun. When you both have a shared goal you are tracking towards, saving doesn’t seem all that daunting. Plus, you get to do it together.