Engagement can be a hectic and overwhelming time for all parties involved.
However, by setting a wedding budget and by creating a long-term money-management plan, you can ensure that you will start off on the right foot.
Follow these steps for a good marriage preparation:
1. Prepare to merge finances
Discuss your spending and saving habits, your debts and assets and your respective salaries. Be sure that you have a realistic idea of how marriage will affect you both as a couple and as individuals.
2. Plan your wedding
Make a realistic assessment of how much you can spend. While the average wedding cost is $15,000, with careful planning you may be able to go lower than that and create memories that will last forever.
3. Decide on whether to have a prenuptial agreement
Prenuptial agreements aren’t always necessary. However, if there is a considerable difference in your net assets, it would be foolish not to have one drafted by a lawyer and signed by the necessary parties.
4. Merge your money
In the eyes of the law (and creditors), a married couple is a single financial unit. This holds true, even for those couples who decide to open joint bank accounts.
5. Go over your taxes
A good accountant may help out in this area. Generally speaking, dual-income families get penalized by tax laws. Evaluate your tax situation and decide if it is worth it for both of you to work.