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By Tokie L. Brown

 


Saturday, February 21, 2015.

 

Once the wedding vows have been said, your reception cake eaten, guests gone and honeymoon pictures have been adored and stashed in an album, you and your new other half can start on planning the future whilst merging your lives together. The joys of being newlyweds, the feelings of perfection between you both!

 

Then slowly the bliss begins to wear off and challenges suddenly appear, it becomes apparent that building a foundation that becomes part and parcel of a solid marriage will require more than just emotional bliss. It will require getting to understand more about yourselves, including understanding budgeting knowledge, a picture of what debt and spending habits each of you have. Whose strength will be required to take charge of financial issues and of course money secrets.

 

It is important to understand each other’s finances before tying the knot as this prepares the couple for planning their new future together. The process should not be rushed as it needs time to tweak and adjust according to the new plans that the couple have set for themselves.

 

The first step will be to talk about finances honestly, discuss what incomes are coming, debts incurred, bills to be paid, whose responsibilities for what bills, what you can afford as a couple which will include lifestyle.

 

Make a list of goals, work out financial statuses and how it affects you as a couple, discuss long term goals, like business start ups, debt clearing etc. Work out saving goals, work with a financial adviser to help plan retirement goals and assets acquisition etc.

 

Discuss joint accounts, individual accounts, what happens if a partner decides to stay at home to look after kids or run the home, what happens if one partner losses an income. Safety nests and what they will be for. Down payments on homes or child education.

 

Look at emergency funds, how it will be implemented and what types of emergency funds, like maybe 6 months worth household expenses in case of any issues. Life policies or financial security funds, paying down debts like college loans. If relatives that will need to be looked after, any medical issues within the family that will need to be taken into consideration.

 

Budgeting as newlyweds, it can be hard to imagine that there will be anything left for just both of you to have fun with. But once everything has been decided, all necessities taken care of, you can plan money for vacations, night outs without straining monthly or weekly budgets and responsibilities. Set realistic goals and plan major spending.

 

Work as team and trim expenses as needed, review when required and plan according to means. Preparing together in love can bring newlyweds closer and grow your finances, understand what money and finances mean to your financial goals and commitments. Remember to write down every financial detail and track every financial detail. This will work hand in hand with marriage plans to build a strong and lasting relationship and remember communication is key no matter the financial status.



Tokie Laotan-Brown is the author of the book “10 Steps to Managing your household budget” which provides readers with useful financial management tools to assess how their household expenditure is utilised. She writes regularly at www.tokielaotanbrown.com and tweets at @tokielbrown

 

Financial Bliss for Newlyweds

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