Blended Family and Remarriage Statistics
- 40% of married couples with children in the U.S. are blended couples
- 68 percent of remarriages involve children from prior marriages.
- 2,100 new blended families are formed every day in the U.S.
- Blended families are the most common form of family in the U.S.
With the rise of blended families it is important to recognize the financial pitfalls that come with the blending of two households. Money matters can quickly create conflict. It is important to identify who is responsible for what and quickly. Some children will have greater financial need than others. Who will pay for college? After-school activities? Allowances? People often have different attitudes towards money and it is critical to not only coparent but to cobudget. Whether you are a saver or spender you should sit down with your spouse and formulate a game plan as to how to approach your financial picture and expenses. Blending children, ex-spouses, and finances is no small task. Be proactive and prepared to compromise. Here are some helpful tips:
- Make sure the family money style is understood. A saver may not understand the mentality of a spender and vice versa. If at all possible, identify your family priorities and get on the same page.
- Make every effort to think of the children as “our kids”. Identifying a child as “yours” or “mine” is divisive and counterproductive to creating a family unit.
- Avoid keeping score. Children can be expensive and if you keep a mental tally of whose child cost what you are inviting conflict.
- Don’t keep secret cash or hidden accounts from your spouse. If you have fears or concerns about a spouses financial responsibility or longevity of the relationship a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement may be utilized to address these concerns. Once you have committed to a person it is important to work as a unified team to meet your financial goals.
Blended families are the new normal. It is important for all parties involved to treat their blended family with respect and open dialogue. At Dekker Financial, our door is always open, to partner with you and your family to map out your financial goals and set up concrete, long-term plans.
*Statistics taken from Applications in Financial Planning I, by Ted Kurlowicz, Sophia Duffy, Adam Beck, Craig Lemoine, Kevin Lynch, Tom Brinker, and Jeff Rattiner