October 21st, 2013

Should You Say “I Do” if You Are in Debt?

 

Should You Say “I Do” if You Are in Debt?

**Today’s guest post is contributed by Tahnya.**

You may be in the middle of your engagement bliss if you are one half of a newly engaged couple. You’ve already said YES, but before you say I DO it’s very important to sit down with your spouse-to-be and have “the talk.” …The money talk, that is.

If you have been dating your fiance for quite some time, you most likely already know about their financial habits, including what their financial goals are, how they choose to spend money, and if they save for the short and long term. But unfortunately this is not always the case.

I have a couple of clients who came to see me because they recently got engaged and now want to set a three-year plan to save for their wedding. As we sat together to discuss their monthly income and savings capabilities as well as open a new joint savings account, one of my clients quickly realized that her future husband couldn’t save as much money as she could toward the wedding because he is $15,000 in debt.

I was shocked to learn that this couple has been dating for almost two years and the subject of money never came up. I talk about money all the time with my friends, my family, and boyfriend, but maybe that’s because I am a financial planner.

Here are 3 tips to have the money talk with your future spouse – sooner rather than later

Discuss opening a joint bank account.

Making the financial decision to open a joint bank account with your partner says a lot about the status of your relationship. If someone is willing to trust you with their money, you may be ready to start your happily ever after. However, if your future spouse doesn’t want to share their money with you, there may be underlying issues in the relationship. Opening a joint bank account also lets you monitor your future spouse’s spending habits, which lets you know what you are getting into before saying I DO.

Test the waters with a short-term savings goal.

Some people are just spenders by nature. It doesn’t necessarily mean they are bad with managing their money, it just means they enjoy spending their money (hopefully on nice things). If your spouse-to-be is more of a spender than a saver, give them a short-term money goal such as saving for a vacation within the next year or two. This will help them learn to change their financial habits from spending to saving. Although you shouldn’t expect your spouse to change overnight, over time you can definitely make progress toward changing their financial habits.

Leave your wallet at home and see what happens.

As a financial planner, I always tell my clients that money always shows peoples’ true colors. When it comes to money matters, usually matters of the heart don’t matter. The next time you go out with your spouse-to-be, leave your wallet at home and see their reaction toward paying for your night out on the town. Maybe they will be resistant, maybe they will be more than willing, or maybe they will do the same thing to you next time – either way you will know where your soon-to-be spouse stands on money issues.

Bottom Line: Talking about money with your soon-to-be spouse may not be the most interesting or comfortable activity, but it may prevent uncomfortable/tense situations in the future. Good luck!

Tahnya

Tahnya Kristina is a certified financial planner and personal finance blogger at Dinks Finance. She enjoys helping people land their dream job, achieve financial success and find personal happiness. Drop her a line and say hello on Twitter @TahnyaKristina.

Follow Credit Karma!

    Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/CreditKarma

    Twitter: http://twitter.com/creditkarma

    Google Plus: https://plus.google.com/+creditkarma

    YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/creditkarma

    Subscribe to the Credit Karma Blog

Disclaimer: All information posted to this site was accurate at the time of its initial publication. Efforts have been made to keep the content up to date and accurate. However, Credit Karma does not make any guarantees about the accuracy or completeness of the information provided. For complete details of any products mentioned, visit bank or issuer website.

Continue Reading | 3 Comments

January 17th, 2013

Would You Go Back in Time to Improve Your Credit Health?

Would You Go Back in Time to Improve Your Credit Health?

How many times on this blog have we written about our past mistakes turning into lessons? Let’s take a look. I wrote about how my past relationships actually led to great money lessons. Justine wrote about how a simple error of timing cost her big and what she learned from her first speeding ticket. Guest contributor Kristina talked about recognizing problems and then correcting them in “A Second Chance at Financial Freedom.” And Ezra even shared the things we can learn from the one big mistake that is Jersey Shore.

Continue Reading | 6 Comments

September 28th, 2012

Self-Improvement Month Wrap-Up

wrap up th

This month, we've been talking about self-improvement steps for your credit and finances. Although the "official" self-improvement month of September is coming to an end, we hope these posts have inspired you to work on your financial health year-round. Thank you to everyone who contributed guest posts-- we couldn't have done it without you, and we definitely learned a lot from your tips, stories, and advice.

Continue Reading | No Comments

September 27th, 2012

A Second Chance at Financial Freedom

financial freedom th

Almost everyone has experienced financial difficulties at some point in their life. Whether you are a struggling student who lives on a budget, a single parent who is trying to do the best for your kids, or you are a young professional who is struggling to pay off your debts; the truth is that almost everyone can improve some aspect of their financial lives.

Continue Reading | 6 Comments

August 15th, 2012

How Your Credit Score and Banking Are Linked

writing a check th

Many people know that they need a bank account because they need somewhere for their pay to be deposited and they need to pay bills each month. Many people also know that they should have a credit card and use it responsibly because it helps them build a strong credit history and a good credit score; but not many people know that their banking relationships can also affect their personal credit score.

Continue Reading | 5 Comments

May 31st, 2012

Your Personal Finances Start with Your Credit Score

personal finance th

Some people think that their credit report is only important if they want to know their credit payment history and some people think that their credit score is only important if they want to know the numerical value that determines their credit worthiness, but this is not necessarily true. Your credit report and your credit score actually both contain a lot of useful information which can help people learn about their current financial situation as well as their personal financial habits.

Continue Reading | 6 Comments

Advertiser Disclosure: The offers that appear on this site are from third party advertisers from which Credit Karma receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). It is this compensation that enables Credit Karma to provide you with services like free access to your credit scores and free monitoring of your credit and financial accounts at no charge. Credit Karma strives to provide a wide array of offers for our members, but our offers do not represent all financial services companies or products.

Editorial Disclaimer: Content on the Credit Karma Blog is for entertainment and information purposes only. The opinions expressed on the blog are those of the authors themselves, and not necessarily Credit Karma or its affiliates. However, Credit Karma may be compensated by companies mentioned in the Credit Karma Blog through advertising, affiliate programs or otherwise. It is this compensation that enables Credit Karma to provide its members with services like free access to your credit scores and free monitoring of credit and financial accounts at no charge.

Archives

Categories