*This blog post is my personal opinion only and may contain affiliate/referral links
Getting into marriage involves the sharing of couple’s assets. This is the natural course and an implied agreement on being married but sometimes talking about the “money” topics earlier and planning ahead will make the married couple’s financial future more secure.
It is my opinion that a couple should be honest and transparent about their savings, investments and debts before they officially tie the knot. I think it will guide them to their financial goals and also dispel any misunderstanding that may arise later. On this blog post, i am writing three financial topics that should be lay out on the table and at least every couple should try to discuss.
Savings and Expenses
This two can be put on separate ledgers but can actually make more sense if put side by side. A couple should make a conscious effort to be aware of their savings and monies that go to their monthly spendings. Typical expenses that are regularly paid can be basic or miscelleneous: rent, utilities, food, gas and others are examples of the former, and entertainment, subscription and the likes are of the latter and not really necessary but can be important in its own way also.
Doing this would lead to them having a budget plan. Budgeting is critical because it gives them the foundation to save up for bigger and more important purchases like a car or house and to have an emergency fund for future and contingency needs.
Joint Account Vs Separate Account
At its very core, marriage is a financial union for the couple. It means that they have an equal share of their combined belongings and wealth. For some reasons though, sometimes it is a smart move to have a separate account. Be it a savings, checking, credit card and other accounts, one will affect the other if no clear agreement on how to handle a joint account is made.
This is especially true with a credit card. A joint credit card is only good when both are accountable with the payments, otherwise both credit score will be drag down. Opting for joint bank savings and checking account are also something that has to be sit down and discussed. There are tax, divorce, survivorship and other implications that has to be considered. While there is surely an ease with shared funds and shared bills, a couple should read and research what would be practical and advantageous on their ends.
Visualization is key when setting a goal, and this is the same principle with retirement. Writing down how a couple envision their life on retirement is a good exercise on this goal setting. Pay off mortgage, live off work pension and government fund, tap into retirement accounts… this are just some of the end goals that would fuel the drive before retirement.
Creating a healthy and wealthy-oriented future as partners would lead not just to a financially-content actions but also to a family-satisfied life. If there is any motivation for retiring comfortably, it is this written-down goals that will serve as reminders to their dream retirement.
Thank you for reading.