4 Money Convos to Have With Your Fiancé Before the Wedding
BY CATEY HILL
You’ve got a ring on your finger and wedding planning on your mind – and amidst all this, I’m sure the last thing you want to think about is money. But it’s important that you and your fiancé have a few major money conversations before you get married. After all, you guys want to start your marriage on the same financial page and help prevent money fights once you’re husband and wife. So, here are four money conversations every couple should have before tying the knot.
1. How Much Debt Each of You Has
Ick, debt is one of the most hated four-letter words in the country (believe me, I know – I was once in a bit of it myself!), but that doesn’t mean you should hide from it. You and your soon-to-be hubby need to talk about how much debt each of you has, whether it’s from credit cards; student, car or home loans; or something else. And then you guys should make a plan to get out of it. Pay as much as you can on the highest interest debt and the minimum required on all other debts until everything is paid off. (I know, that sounds intimidating, but I’ve done it myself so I know it’s totally doable!).
2. Your Dreams for the Future
Talk about your financial goals: Do you want to buy a house, pay down debt, save for a vacation or retirement? Basically, talk about any goal that’s important to you that will require money. Make a list of these goals in order of priority (be sure to put getting out of high-interest debt – like credit card debt – and saving for retirement – aim to save at least 10% of your incomes – at the top of the list) so you’re both on the same page about where you want to go financially once you’re married.
3. How Much Savings Each of You Has
It’s also important to know how much each of you has saved. Once you know these amounts, talk about what you want to do with this savings: Which of your goals will you put this money towards or is it already going towards a goal? Should you use this savings to pay down a debt?
4. Your Credit Scores
Finally, it’s important that both of you know and share your credit scores before you get married. A credit score – you can get yours free at AnnualCreditReport.com – basically tells a lender (that’s anyone from a bank lending you money to buy something) how likely it is that you will pay them back in full and on time. Credit scores range from 300, which is poor, to 850, which is excellent. If you or your fiancé’s credit score is lower than you’d like, start working now to boost it – you can do this by paying bills on time moving forward, paying down huge debts and not taking out a bunch of applications for new credit at once – so you can start your lives off together on great financial footing.