When I am asked what is the secret for a strong happy marriage. I always answer that for more than 20 years I have found that sharing values, respect and trust are often key ingredients. Over time a willingness to plan and share our lives has deepen our relationship.
Serious relationships should include open and honest discussions about credit, debt, income, retirement, savings along with a serious conversation about family & career plans. They should also include a healthy participation by both in family finances. Since there is NO BLISS IN NOT KNOWING I would encourage you to begin these conversations by reviewing each other’s credit reports. Begin healthy financial communications before you solidify your social contract with each other.
Long before you say “I DO” ensure that you really do accept each others past, present and future behavior around money.
Communication is critical in any relationship and failure to discuss finances is at the core of many failed relationships. It is a huge red flag if you are both ready to join your lives and yet are not able to discuss and plan for your lives together.
If you need assistance consider a third party which may be covered by your benefit plan at work.
Edi Alvarez, CFP®
BS, BEd, MS