Personal Finance

6 Important Money Questions to Ask Before Getting Married

So you found your soulmate, and you’re so in love that you make other people sick. You say you’ll love this person no matter what, and that’s cute and all, but things can change pretty quick when you’re not able to meet your goals in life because you failed to have a good money talk before marriage. So grab that beautiful person you can’t live without and break out these 6 important money questions to ask before getting married.

1. How much do you make?

It’s kind of crazy how many people get married without knowing their partners actual salary. Just because someone is living a comfortable lifestyle and taking you to nice dinners doesn’t mean they can actually afford it. Or maybe that new venture isn’t quite bringing in the amount of money hoped for. Sure, you can love someone unconditionally and peoples situations can change, but it’s smart to know what you’re getting yourself into so that you can plan accordingly.

2. What is your financial history?

Choose a night to put together all of your statements so you can assess where you stand in terms of debts, investments and savings. You need to know if there is any crazy credit card debt or student loans that could be killing you on interest and need to be tackled together. Take a minute to both check your credit score – get it for free online or using the free Credit Karma app. While your partner’s score can’t hurt yours, it could hold you back from buying a home or car together at an affordable price and with low interest rates. You also want to be on the same page for what kind of retirement plan or investment account that you want to contribute to (get a financial planner to help if your saving styles are different).

3. What are our monthly expenses?

Take a look at how much you’re paying for your cell phone plans – could it be cheaper if you combined with a family plan? Also review your medical and car insurance plans, because you could also save a bunch of money here by combining coverage. You should both know how much your monthly expenses are as a couple so that you can budget together and be on the same page.

4. Joint account?

Everyone has their own way of doing this – but I personally think that it’s important to have a joint account for paying bills and saving, but each person should have their own account for their own personal purchases. This could save you from having to explain your new amazing pumps. Also, whoever is the most responsible should take charge of paying bills on time (or do auto bill pay to avoid one of those dreaded missed payment blame arguments). You should also decide who will take charge of contributions to savings and investment accounts so that it’s always covered.

5. Prenup?

If this is your first marriage and you don’t really have any serious assets, then a prenup probably isn’t necessary. For older folks or rich folks, you may want to protect the things or savings that you’ve worked so hard for just in case your soulmate ends up being bat shit crazy, and especially if you have kids from a previous marriage that you would want those assets to go to.

6. What are our goals?

Figure out what your short and long term goals are together. Give each goal a deadline and determine what will need to be done to get there. Maybe you need to cut down on spending, so determine together where this will be done. Maybe you will eat out one less night a week, or maybe you can cancel certain unnecessary subscriptions. If both you you are making small sacrifices, it could really add up and bring you closer to your goals.

money talk before marriage

Hopefully after a good money talk you’ll be even more assured that this is the person you should be with the rest of your life. Or maybe you’ll discover that you should run far, far away. Either way, it’s always smart to make sure the person your sharing your life with is someone you can trust to share your finances with too.

 

 

5 Comments

  1. Another great post! Hope to one day be able to have that talk with somebody special.

    Funny how Kanye West’s Golddigger played in my head as I rummaged while reading looking for the word “prenup” haha.

    What is a girl with trust issues from prolonged exposure to stupid boys to do. *Sigh*

    P.S. yep, you’re definitely my idol haha

  2. One of the perks of signing a pre-nup I learned is that you have to be transparent to your partner about your assets, salary, debt that you have. So a pre-nup would be a great opportunity for you to discover that the guy that you’ve been dating who has been taking you to fancy dinners and buying you lavish gifts may actually be highly in debt.

  3. Great post! These are vital questions that need to be answered for a relationship to succeed, I think. The hardest part is probably hammering out and aligning realistic goals with your spouse-to-be. Not only should you discuss goals at the beginning, but they should be revisited yearly, at the least. Life changes, jobs change, and goals have to adjust right along with them!

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