You recently tied the knot. You found the one that you know you want to be with for the rest of your life. Love is a joy, and every day is a new adventure. Bravo!
At the risk of bringing a little shade into your sunny twosome, be sure to address the realities of newly married life to hopefully prevent some of the common problems that all too many couples run into. After all, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
The realities of sharing your financial decisions
While you were an independent singleton, your financial choices were your own. Whether you were an avid saver who sacrificed to ensure that you would have a bountiful retirement fund for later years, or a carefree shopaholic who lived by the “live life to the fullest today” mantra, your fiduciary decisions were yours to make.
That is no longer the case. From now on, you need to consult with your partner before making any major purchases. It is advisable to sit down together and discuss your plans for the future. Set a budget and stick to it. Either start or continue making plans for retirement.
No matter what your approach to spending and saving, it is imperative that you both be on the same page. Clear communication and the ability to work together towards a common goal are key.
When financial issues lead to a break
Despite all of their good intentions, some couples simply cannot overcome the disagreements that financial issues lead to repeatedly. Money matters are frequently a main source of contention when a marriage dissolves.
Even more alarming, is the discovery that arguments about money early in the marriage may be a warning sign for the future of your union. Couples who experience this are at greater risk of an unhappy ending than most, says a 2013 study.
When financial disputes lead to a divorce, the resulting dissolution can be particularly acrimonious. If you are unable to agree while you are still in love, imagine how difficult the negotiations become during a divorce.
Property division is challenging in the best of circumstances. When you are both already at odds about how your finances should be handled, how to save and spend, and what is most important from a monetary standpoint, the ability to negotiate a divorce settlement takes on added complications.
Should you ever find yourself in this situation, the guidance of an experienced and compassionate divorce lawyer can be of great help. He or she understands better than most how difficult this challenge is, and can help you reach an agreement that is both fair and desirable.
Money and possessions are not everything. The time to acknowledge that is now, while you are both enjoying the wedded bliss of a new marriage. Learn to communicate openly and make concessions when possible. In the long run, this could prevent you from really losing out, both financially and emotionally.