People like to say “when it comes to love, money doesn’t matter”. Well it does, especially when it comes to tying the knot. Money is the problem that already exists in your marriage before you even get married unless off course you have truck loads of it. But if you don’t, it is an issue and one you will have to solve before getting hitched. The idea is not to be financially independent from your partner as many seem to imagine, the idea is to be able to merge your money and financial plans together in the best way possible to make money less of a problem or even a negative talking point while married. The ideal situation in your marriage is to talk about money only when necessary such as important purchases to be made or during financial planning not bickering about who pays what bills and who spent what. It is never going to be easy but it will help to have a system in place which could save the little bickering.
Step1: Talk about your individual financial positions
Get that awkward money conversation out of the way. This is a very necessary and important step. Let all issues be known, be honest and have a positive open attitude about what you are about to hear because some of it you may not like. Starting the rest of your life with a person in huge debt or a questionable credit score may not be the ideal start but imagine finding out after the marriage! By having this conversation you both know what you are in for and whether you want to be involved in the first place. If you do, be prepared to bite the bullet and work hard to get this rectified.
Step 2: Resolve small money issues, debts and outstanding bills
After all have been declared and laid bare on the table, aim to clear all small outstanding bills, debt etc. That loan you owe your best friend, unpaid personal telephone and credit card bills need to be settled. Not necessarily to a zero balance but up to date. This helps put in place a starting point for merging your finances and moving on to clearing the bigger debts and smooth monthly payments of household bills.
Step 3: Merging your money
This is the difficult part. It requires extreme dedication and clarity from day one and all through out. Assuming your relationship is for the long term you need to put a system in place that fits both your financial and lifestyle needs. It is worthy to note that sacrifices will have to be made when dealing with another person with different goals in life. Transparency is the key to merging your money successfully. Every major spend has to be visible to both parties, damaging habits like gambling etc will have to be discussed and if possible curbed or at least regulated.
Merging your money is a long term commitment and how you do it is up to you. I have come across a few systems and they all come with their own pros and cons however here most revolutionary one I have encountered so far and how it works
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