Updated: May 30, 2020
Getting married means more than just committing to love one another. It also means accepting the duty to work together as a team in tackling the financial obligations of the family.
Talking about money is a must for engaged couples. Planning for a wedding is not as important as planning for your future, so don’t skip these tasks before you say “I do”.
1. Learn each other’s financial personality.
People can be spenders, savers, or a varying combination of both. Learn the financial habits of your fiancé, and talk how both can adapt to each other’s financial personality.
Learn how each handles money, and find ways to correct one another’s bad habits, cooperatively. Always remember that you are a team, so help each other become better at handling money.
2. Have a financial check-up.
Be honest about your financial status. Tell each other the amount of assets and liabilities that you have individually.
More importantly, assess your incomes and estimate your future monthly living expenses. Work on it together and prepare for lifestyle changes, if necessary.
3. Tackle debt issues immediately.
Know how much debt each of you have. And create a plan on how they will be paid. If one has a big debt problem, it would be better to handle that first before planning for your wedding.
4. Assess the family financial situation.
Are any of you a current breadwinner for their own family? Is any one financially supporting a sibling, a parent, and/or a relative? If so, how will the marriage affect this?
Openly and honestly talk about the situation. Set rules and find common ground, which will create a win-win situation for both the couple and each other’s family.
5. Manage your bank accounts.
Personally, I believe that apart from having a joint bank account, each one should still keep a separate, individual bank account.
The joint account is where both will contribute regularly. The money in here is exclusively for the family’s expenses. Meanwhile, the individual bank account is for discretionary spending and can be from a small portion of each one’s salary.
6. Get proper insurance coverage.
You may have skipped getting life insurance when you were single. But once you get married, having this type of financial protection becomes a priority.
If you have existing policies, then it’s important to update your agent about the upcoming change in your civil status. You can add your spouse later on to the list of beneficiaries and if necessary, get additional coverage.
7. Set financial goals.
Creating a life together means working on the same goals. Give your family a great start by setting financial goals that matters to both of you the most.
By doing so, you can then prepare your finances accordingly. In this way, you’re ensured that both of you are on the same path when it comes to managing your income and making spending decisions.
8. Be financially educated.
A married life will have many financial challenges. And there’s no better time than now to prepare ahead through financial education. Attend seminars together. Learn and teach each other about money.
And best of all, what you’ll learn, you can then teach your kids someday and help them grow up with good money habits.