The financial plan couples must work out before marriage

Not everyone has a celebrity-sized wallet, but Fox Business says the current trend in later marriages means brides and grooms-to-be have enough equity to at least think about a prenuptial agreement – and whether or not couples choose to go with an asset-defining contract, a financial plan is imperative to healthy finances and a happy union down the road, according to one financial expert.

Divvying up financial tasks
Debbie Dragon, a financial editor for MyBankTracker, writes in U.S. News that couples have a responsibility to each other’s well-being beyond the love and care that is so often the forefront of romantic minds  – that is, they must take the step before getting married to combine finances and compromise on important factors like who will be the primary overseer of spending within the home and what long-term goals will look like together.

When it comes to achieving a better hold on assets together, Dragon says, compartmentalization is key.

“Assign tasks so all of the work doesn’t fall to one person,” she notes. “For instance, one person can contact a financial adviser while the other gets more information about life insurance quotes. By delegating tasks to each person, everyone is involved and money management doesn’t become a point of contention.”

Dragon claims that after an initial meeting covering all the bases of each person’s finances, regular sit-downs are necessary for a seamless financial union. With planned sessions and an excellent method of execution (such as the use of paper organizers for bills and keeping diligent checkbook records), couples should have no problem transitioning into a shared lifestyle.

In case of emergency
Fox adds one aspect to Dragon’s plan, in the form of the increasingly necessary and demanded prenuptial agreement. The network news source notes that signing such a contract has become a regular task on the checklist of engaged couples as state legislation can only go so far to protect the financial reserves and physical assets of people going through divorce. 

Pasternak & Fidis principal Linda Ravdin knows from experience situations get sticky when property acquired within a marriage becomes a point of dispute in divorce.

“If you inherit something during the marriage, that may or may not become marital property depending on the state unless it’s addressed in a prenup or postnup,” she says.

Split marriages are increasingly uncommon, says Fox, but with the proper plan instituted – perhaps with the help of financial tips – the ordeal may be avoided altogether, and couples can find happiness in sound money management.

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