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    Just got engaged

    Well we have been together for a long time roughly 7 yrs now, its been a rough ride but love got us this so far and I popped the question. We now live together and trying to save for the wedding and a vacation while trying to reduce debt, plus she wants a house before she has kids so the pressure is really on. I am 34 and have a bit more debt than she does, but my questions is whats the right way of handling the bills at the apartment when engaged.
    We now split everything down the middle but my question is how about our savings? and paying our debt? Should we stay on our own or help each other out? she's horrible with her finances but fights to do it her self because her mother did them for her till she was like 28 yrs old but now she's 32. So i think to prove she can do them on her own she wont take help, at the same time she says she wants to do everything together but when I ask to sit down to go over all the bills and the future plan somehow something comes up or she's got something to do or I just forget to ask i cant seem to explain it. I cant really ask my parents for advise because they never really made the correct choices in the paths so I rather not even go there.

    #2
    Originally posted by rvenom View Post
    We now live together and trying to save for the wedding and a vacation while trying to reduce debt, plus she wants a house before she has kids so the pressure is really on. I am 34 and have a bit more debt than she does, but my questions is whats the right way of handling the bills at the apartment when engaged.
    We now split everything down the middle but my question is how about our savings? and paying our debt? Should we stay on our own or help each other out? she's horrible with her finances but fights to do it her self because her mother did them for her till she was like 28 yrs old but now she's 32. So i think to prove she can do them on her own she wont take help, at the same time she says she wants to do everything together but when I ask to sit down to go over all the bills and the future plan somehow something comes up or she's got something to do or I just forget to ask i cant seem to explain it. I cant really ask my parents for advise because they never really made the correct choices in the paths so I rather not even go there.
    You have some very serious issues here and you need to get them worked out BEFORE you get married. Don't even consider putting a ring on her finger until you are both in agreement on financial issues.

    For right now, continue to keep everything separate until you are married. No joint accounts. No paying toward her debts. No taking money from her toward your debts. No buying a house in both names. No co-signing on loans. No joint credit cards. What's yours is yours and what's hers is hers.

    Until she is ready and willing to sit down with you like an adult and plan things together, this relationship will go nowhere. If she won't discuss money with you, that would be a deal breaker in my book.
    Steve

    * Despite the high cost of living, it remains very popular.
    * Why should I pay for my daughter's education when she already knows everything?
    * There are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going.

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      #3
      My DH and I started putting just a little money together at first. We started a joint checking account that we put equal amounts into and used to pay household bills. Basically instead of one of us writing a check to the other and the other paying the bills, we put the money in a joint account and paid from there. This allowed us to go through the motions of splitting money without actually putting your finances together. Otherwise, I wouldn't merge your money. Also keep only a little money in this account, enough to pay 1-2 months of joint bills.

      Talk about finances at any point. Whenever you are together and you think about it then discuss it. Personally, the more casual we made talking about money, the easier it became. Now we talk about it often.

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        #4
        Originally posted by disneysteve View Post
        You have some very serious issues here and you need to get them worked out BEFORE you get married. Don't even consider putting a ring on her finger until you are both in agreement on financial issues.
        I would do this.

        If you are already in debt at this age, I don’t see a point in spending a lot on wedding and on honeymoon. Recently I went to a wedding which was in someone’s back yard and they had beer and pizza for guests. I think that is the way to go.

        You guys are already in debt and are going to get married soon which is going to cost and already thinking about taking mortgage! Pay off all your debts and start saving for retirement before even thinking about taking more debt.

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by Hector View Post
          I would do this.

          If you are already in debt at this age, I don’t see a point in spending a lot on wedding and on honeymoon. Recently I went to a wedding which was in someone’s back yard and they had beer and pizza for guests. I think that is the way to go.

          You guys are already in debt and are going to get married soon which is going to cost and already thinking about taking mortgage! Pay off all your debts and start saving for retirement before even thinking about taking more debt.
          I will take a slightly different view here. The problem is not the debt. The problem is not working together on a plan to deal with the debt. When my wife and I got married, we had one car loan and over 100K in student loans and we bought our house less than 2 years later. So we were loaded with debt, but we were both on the same page about living very frugally, attacking the debt aggressively and building wealth for the future. The problem here isn't the money or the debt. The problem is the attitude and behavior regarding the money and the debt.
          Steve

          * Despite the high cost of living, it remains very popular.
          * Why should I pay for my daughter's education when she already knows everything?
          * There are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going.

          Comment


            #6
            Perhaps there is a reason she finds excuses to not sit down with you and discuss finances? Perhaps you don't have a true picture of her financial situation and she wants to prolong "coming clean"?

            Congratulations on your engagement. Please iron out these issues before the wedding.

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by disneysteve View Post
              I will take a slightly different view here. The problem is not the debt. The problem is not working together on a plan to deal with the debt. When my wife and I got married, we had one car loan and over 100K in student loans and we bought our house less than 2 years later. So we were loaded with debt, but we were both on the same page about living very frugally, attacking the debt aggressively and building wealth for the future. The problem here isn't the money or the debt. The problem is the attitude and behavior regarding the money and the debt.
              I agree that main problem is not being on the same page.

              I think premarital counseling is an awesome thing to do before getting married. I dont think its necessary to go to a professional to do so, but it is must to talk about money, sex, children and other things that is important to a couple. The benefit of going to professional is that counselor will include things to talk about that a couple might not think about discussing.

              About taking multiple debts, I am not totally disagree with your approach. Personally if I already have a debt, I prefer not to take additional debt if I don't need to.

              Comment


                #8
                I'm going to really try and sort this out over the weekend, and thank you all for you input and help.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Just got engaged

                  This is what marriage is all about, being on the same page and if your not then making allowances to try to work in unison. Have you tried asking her to work out what she can afford to put into a “pot” for the holiday and wedding, this way your not getting involved and you have semi sorted out your issue. I would say that before you get married that you sort this issue out.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Financial success is not a private affair. You need to talk to your partner about your money. This is vital for both the health of your relationship and the health of your bank balance. As for actually sitting down with her and getting her to discuss it, I would ask her to set up a date where you can both discuss this issue, and gently remind her as the date comes close.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Think of this as a preview of your married life. If nothing changes now, it probably won't change after marriage. Right after I read your post, it reminded me of something I read recently:

                      Debra Weiner: How to Recognize Your Future Ex-Husband

                      First paragraph:

                      The best way to avoid divorce, even before you get married, is to understand the power of the "R" word, i.e., rationalization. This is the process of trying to create a sense of logic for something that we know is wrong. Oftentimes it is the quicksand that devours our ability to reason in the first few weeks and months of dating.

                      The others are absolutely correct -- don't proceed to marriage without working out these very serious issues first. If she refuses to talk about them, then you need to see a counselor separately and obtain disinterested advice.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        The Hubby and I have had our finances merged for going on a year now (we've been together for almost 5 years) and it actually worked out better for us. You definitely need to sit down and talk to her about it. It isn't something to be taken lightly, for sure. Money, unfortunately, is the center of marriage, whether you'd like it to be or not. Marriage should be about love, but if you don't have your finances sorted out, it will seem like it's more about money. Perhaps you two should take a personal finance class together. I know how difficult it must be for her to have you delving into her finances so soon after she gained control of them, but perhaps instead of saying that you're going to take them over, you should say that you'd like to sit down and delegate positions for income.

                        Such as: Hubby's income pays the bills. My income pays for gas and food for the week. Anything over on either side goes towards savings.

                        My point is not to discourage you or make you angry. Keep in mind, that although your entire relationship is not based on money, most divorces are the result of monetary issues.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Congratulations on your engagement. I too think it's important to have a plan for clearing old debt and a process for future spending decisions. I suggest you and intended set a date to clear the air to both understand financial circumstances. I'd draw a chart on poster paper and tack it on the wall in the hall in the private area of your home to have a visual of what is owned and interest rate. That makes it so much easier to make a plan and enjoy seeing balances shrink.

                          If your fiance continues to stall and procrastinate you will have a clear vision of your future. Keep in mind that the divorce rate is tipping over 50% and money issues is dispute # 1

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