Some might say that they never knew their loved one better than on the day they shared their vows. I beg to differ. I think many knew their loved ones the most on the day they shared their financial histories. My advice? Do the financial sharing prior to the sharing of wedding vows. It definitely avoids some post-wedding surprises that could lead to some pretty permanent post-wedding jitters.
Weddings and bankruptcies don’t mix. Don’t keep one a secret. Weddings and financial secrets in general don’t mix either. If you’re ready to share your vows, you should already have shared your financial situations with each other. A bankruptcy isn’t the only financial tidbit you should share with our fiancé.
Deciding to get married without first having a full understanding of your partner’s finances is begging for a strain on your marriage before you’ve even had a chance to enjoy being a carefree newlywed. It’s hard to imagine during the engagement or on the honeymoon, but finances are the number one reason for divorce. Don’t let it be a potential point of contention in your relationship. To avoid it entirely, simply have a frank discussion about your general attitude towards money before you say “I do.” Share you general financial behaviors before the wedding. You might not agree with eachother, but knowing what’s coming is a big step in the right direction.
Check out these tips on how to approach the “financial sharing” before marriage discussion:
- Exchange credit reports. It definitely eliminates a lot of potential surprises that could put a strain on the marriage later. Free credit reports can be obtained through www.annualcreditreport.com.
- Share your financial goals and any financial plans for the future. Working together towards the same financial future can bring you together, but working towards separate financial futures…is obviously going to have the opposite effect.
- Discuss investments and be aware of what you each see as acceptable levels of risk.
- Discuss a regular day and the potential financial decisions that occur and how each of you approach them. Discuss how you make those choices about regular everyday expenditures.
- Discuss responsibilities. Who will be in charge of what aspects of the finances in your marriage? Paying bills, balancing the budget, creating the budget, keeping track of debt, tracking savings and investments, etc. Will one person be in charge of handling it all? Will you split the duties down the middle? Or will you split the responsibilities of all the duties down the middle and equally share all the responsibility? Regardless of how you divvy up the duties and responsibilities for your financial future, you both need to be aware of what’s happening and you both need to agree.
Many experts on marriage will tell you that discussing your finances successfully is fantastic practice and a great foundation for open, effective communication between couples. To successfully maneuver financial discussions, partners have to discuss, understand and compromise. It’s a recipe for success all around and it all began with sharing your financial stories, beliefs, habits and goals before you shared your wedding vows.
For more tips on how to keep your finances in good shape and avoid bankruptcy, please read the information available on the Westgate Law website. We update it regularly to ensure that you have all the information you need.