marriage http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/5206/all en-US 5 Reasons to Keep Your Money Separated After Marriage http://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-to-keep-your-money-separated-after-marriage <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-reasons-to-keep-your-money-separated-after-marriage" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/wedding_married_couple_000059191426.jpg" alt="Couple learning reasons to keep money separate after marriage" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Money may not be the root of <em>all</em> evil &mdash; but it's the clincher in a great many relationships gone haywire. Research shows that arguing about money is by far the top predictor of divorce. &quot;It's not children, sex, in-laws, or anything else. It's money &mdash; for both men and women,&quot; says Sonya Britt, an assistant professor at Kansas State University who <a href="https://www.k-state.edu/media/newsreleases/jul13/predictingdivorce71113.html">conducted a study</a> of 4,500 couples about the interplay between financial arguments and relationship satisfaction.</p> <p>We all have deeply ingrained beliefs about how money should be spent, when it's appropriate to splurge, and how much we should have stowed away in savings. And it can be difficult to the point of deal-breaking to try and mesh our own attitudes about money with another person's financial beliefs, which very well may differ drastically from our own. That's why a large number of financial advisers urge couples to remain financially independent.</p> <p>Read on for our roundup of the top reasons why it pays to keep money matters separate in your relationship. (See also:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-regular-budget-meetings-might-save-your-marriage?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Ways Regular Budget Meetings Might Save Your Marriage</a>)</p> <h2>1. You'll Avoid a Power Imbalance</h2> <p>Merging finances means there's no more &quot;yours&quot; and &quot;mine&quot; in the money department. The divisions blur and it all goes into the same piggy bank. But what if your partner earns much more than you, and now you're suddenly living a lifestyle you can afford only with your partner's assist? What if the opposite is true, and you're subsidizing your partner's income with your own earnings? When your relationship is healthy and sparkling, you might not be bothered by either of these scenarios. But what about in the wake of a blowout fight?</p> <p>Or let's say you're the breadwinner in the relationship and you subsidize a good chunk of your partner's lifestyle because he or she isn't earning enough to keep up. Then, suddenly, you lose your job and your partner's income isn't enough to pick up the slack. Would you feel resentful? How would you cope with that? This is the kind of financial imbalance that has a tendency to instigate the fights that ultimately tear couples apart. Luckily, you can avoid them by keeping your financials separate from your sweetie's.</p> <h2>2. We're More Accustomed to Financial Independence Than Ever</h2> <p>Young adults are <a href="http://www.census.gov/hhes/families/data/marital.html">delaying marriage longer than ever</a> before. The average age of people at their first marriage in the U.S. today is about 27, which means many people rack up six or more years of complete financial independence before saying their vows. The money habits we develop during our years as single adults become so deeply ingrained in us that it's difficult to shift them in an attempt to mesh with the financial habits of our partner.</p> <p>And, unfortunately, finding common ground on financial matters is not necessarily something that gets better with practice. When asked how much they will need to save to maintain their current lifestyle in retirement, for example, nearly <a href="https://www.fidelity.com/about-fidelity/individual-investing/fidelity-couples-study">half of all couples are in disagreement</a> about the amount needed. This level of disagreement is highest, however, among those who are closest to retirement.</p> <h2>3. It Promotes Healthy Spending Habits</h2> <p>Financially independent couples tend to practice better discipline when it comes to paying off their own debts. And that makes for a healthy relationship. When one partner starts to feel like their partner's pockets are deep enough to offset the burden of their own financial risks, they sometimes become irresponsible in their spending and saving habits. And that can create the kind of friction that could start a fiery argument later on down the road.</p> <h2>4. It Balances the Burden of Money Stress</h2> <p>When one partner becomes the sole organizer of a couple's fiscal matters, he or she runs the risk of becoming overwhelmed by the responsibility &mdash; and that can throw an entire relationship off balance. But when both partners take charge of their separate finances and contribute to mutual expenses fairly, any money stress that arises is shared, making it much more manageable to find relief as a team.</p> <h2>5. A Breakup Won't Mean Financial Chaos</h2> <p>When you maintain financial independence, you avoid the risk of your personal financial situation falling apart just because your relationship did. Paying your fair share in a relationship also makes for a cleaner emotional break if you one day decide to split. When one partner consistently treats the other to dinners and vacations, or pays the majority of the bills, resentment is bound to brew during a breakup. The partner who paid more might even feel entitled to reimbursement.</p> <p><em>Separate or apart &mdash; how do you manage money with your partner? </em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/brittany-lyte">Brittany Lyte</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-to-keep-your-money-separated-after-marriage">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-simple-ways-to-split-bills-with-your-spouse">3 Simple Ways to Split Bills With Your Spouse</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/47-simple-ways-to-waste-money">47 Simple Ways To Waste Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-types-of-friends-who-are-costing-you-money">10 Types of Friends Who Are Costing You Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-to-stop-your-spouse-from-overspending">4 Ways to Stop Your Spouse From Overspending</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/38-ways-to-save-money-without-trying-much">38 Ways to Save Money Without Trying (Much)</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Lifestyle couples financial independence marriage power imbalances sharing money spending Wed, 20 Apr 2016 09:30:21 +0000 Brittany Lyte 1690618 at http://www.wisebread.com Here's What Happens to a Mortgage in a Divorce http://www.wisebread.com/heres-what-happens-to-a-mortgage-in-a-divorce <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/heres-what-happens-to-a-mortgage-in-a-divorce" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/couple_new_house_000008511772.jpg" alt="Couple learning what they need to know about divorce and mortgage" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Divorce is a messy and emotional situation, and it can wreak havoc on your finances. One of the major assets that couples share is their home mortgage. Handling your mortgage correctly in the divorce will help you and your ex go your separate ways on the right foot financially. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-money-moves-to-make-the-moment-you-decide-to-get-divorced?ref=seealso">5 Money Moves to Make the Moment You Decide to Get Divorced</a>)</p> <h2>1. Selling Is Often the Best Option</h2> <p>Your best option is usually to sell your home. This is easiest done if you have equity in the house, and the house can be sold and the profit split. Emotionally, selling will not always be the easiest, especially if you raised your children in that home or have other fond memories. From a financial and logical standpoint, selling the home and splitting the profit is the cleanest way to deal with the mortgage.</p> <h2>2. Decide if One Spouse Can Take Over the House Payments</h2> <p>If one spouse wants to keep the home, then they can refinance the home under their own name. In order to do this, they will need to qualify for the refinance with just their income.</p> <p>It is not wise or advised to trust that your ex will make the mortgage payments. Even if your name's not on the deed, as far as the mortgage company is concerned, you and your ex spouse are both fully liable for the mortgage costs each month. Therefore, if your ex misses a payment, or if something happens to them, such as disability or death, you will still be held accountable for the payments.</p> <p>Even if your ex is the most trustworthy person, having your name tied to that mortgage loan means that you will not be able to get another mortgage unless you have enough income to qualify for another mortgage. It might even prevent you from getting a place to rent, since many landlords want to be sure you have enough income to pay for the rental.</p> <h2>3. Should You Sign a Quitclaim Deed?</h2> <p>A quitclaim deed is a legal way to transfer interest of real property. Signing this deed means the person is forfeiting their claim and right to the property. Signing this deed in divorce gives the other party full rights to the home, but your name still remains on the mortgage. You will still be held accountable for any missed mortgage payments and your credit score will be affected.</p> <p>Remember, the deed and mortgage are two different things, and the quitclaim deed cannot remove your name or responsibility from the mortgage.</p> <p>Another important thing to know about quitclaim deeds is that if you sign one, you are forfeiting the right to sell and profit from your home sale. For example, say you sign a quitclaim deed because your ex wants to pay the mortgage, but cannot afford to refinance. Now that your name is off the deed of the home, your ex can sell or refinance the house any time and will not owe you anything.</p> <h2>4. When You Can't Afford to Sell</h2> <p>While selling the home is the cleanest solution, things get complicated when more is owed on the mortgage than the house is worth. Couples that cannot afford to sell the home during the divorce can try one of these three options.</p> <h3>Short Sell the Home</h3> <p>A &quot;short sale&quot; is a home sale in which the mortgage lender agrees to accept less than the full value of the property and cancel the debt. A short sale will negatively impact your credit score and it can have tax implications, as the debt cancellation offered by the lender is viewed by the IRS as income. (Note that a law passed in 2007, and subsequently <a href="http://eyeonhousing.org/2015/12/tax-extenders-bill-what-the-housing-industry-needs-to-know/">extended through 2016</a>, exempts debt cancellation income.)</p> <h3>Rent the Home</h3> <p>If both you and your ex can agree on renting the home out for a period of time, then you can delay the sale of your house until you have more equity. Renting does buy you time and prevents a short sale, but renting comes with a host of responsibilities &mdash; which you'll share with your ex.</p> <h3>Continue to Live Together</h3> <p>This option is for only a select few couples who can live peacefully under the same roof. While the situation is not ideal, it can save both parties money, since it allows them to wait until the house market goes up. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/post-divorce-finances-7-steps-to-rebuilding-your-financial-house?ref=seealso">Post Divorce Finances: 7 Steps to Rebuilding Your Financial House</a>)</p> <h2>5. What to Do When Things Get Complicated</h2> <p>Divorce can bring out the worst in people, and many times, an ex spouse will not be willing to sell the home or some other issue. This is why it is important to consult with a divorce attorney. A divorce attorney can help you understand your legal rights when it comes to the mortgage and protect you from doing something unwise.</p> <p>It is a good idea not to finalize the divorce until your mortgage issues are settled. Be prepared to get court orders to make your ex remove your name off of the mortgage through selling or refinancing.</p> <p>No one buys a house with their spouse with intent on getting a divorce. Unfortunately, these things happen. It is best to protect yourself and your assets by making decisions based on logic rather than emotions.</p> <p><em>What do others need to know about their mortgage during a divorce?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-eneriz">Ashley Eneriz</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-what-happens-to-a-mortgage-in-a-divorce">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-6"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/everything-a-first-time-home-buyer-needs-to-buy-a-house">Everything a First-Time Home Buyer Needs to Buy a House</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-reasons-why-youre-too-old-or-too-young-for-a-mortgage-loan">4 Reasons Why You&#039;re Too Old — Or Too Young — For a Mortgage Loan</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-yourself-these-5-questions-before-buying-a-home">Ask Yourself These 5 Questions Before Buying a Home</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/whats-faster-for-mortgage-payoff-100-month-extra-or-1-payment-year-extra">What&#039;s Faster for Mortgage Payoff: $100/Month Extra or 1 Payment/Year Extra?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/six-options-if-youre-underwater-on-your-mortgage">6 Options if You&#039;re Underwater on Your Mortgage</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Real Estate and Housing deeds divorce house payments lawyers marriage mortgages splitting up Tue, 29 Mar 2016 09:30:23 +0000 Ashley Eneriz 1677287 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Big Ticket Wedding Items You Should Borrow Instead of Buy http://www.wisebread.com/5-big-ticket-wedding-items-you-should-borrow-instead-of-buy <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-big-ticket-wedding-items-you-should-borrow-instead-of-buy" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/newlywed_couple_000042336338.jpg" alt="Married couple finding wedding items to borrow instead of buy" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Getting fed up with the high ticket prices on wedding items? Zero out a few fields in your wedding budget and &quot;borrow&quot; them instead.</p> <p>See also:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-smart-ways-to-save-on-a-wedding-dress?ref=seealso">7 Smart Ways to Save on a Wedding Dress</a></p> <h2>1. The Altar, Arch, or Canopy</h2> <p>This is an item everyone wants, until they remember how it's totally useless after the wedding. Building your own structure is awesome if you're handy, but why not borrow one? Try asking your officiant, venue, or your religious institution if they already have some materials you can use. For my wedding, our Rabbi already had the elements for a simple chuppah, so we used that instead of buying or renting an expensive one.</p> <p>If you are getting married outdoors, find a nearby tree. A tree is not only the perfect backdrop and canopy in one, but it's a great symbol for the family you are making.</p> <h2>2. The Live Band or DJ</h2> <p>Instead of hiring a DJ, why not make the music a fun activity for your guests in anticipation of your wedding? Make a form on your wedding site asking guests what song they want to move their bodies to on the dance floor. You (or your Best Man or Maid of Honor) can gather up all the answers to form one epic playlist. Have your coordinator hit play at the start of the reception and let the good times roll.</p> <p>Really have your heart set on a live band? If you are friends with musicians, try asking them to play for a portion of your wedding as their gift to you. Of course, they are working, too, so it may not be fair to keep them from enjoying the full night of festivities. Talk to your friends and family musicians to see how they can be a part of your wedding and enjoy it, too.</p> <h2>3. The Table Decor</h2> <p>From bunting to centerpieces, this is a factor of every wedding budget that tends to spiral out of control. A few ideas to borrow...</p> <ul> <li>Looked at the florist's quote and cried? Instead of buying their labor, try having the mothers of the family gather flowers from their homes in mismatched vases to use as table dressings.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Bored of flowers and want something unique? Borrow framed family photos from all sides of the family and place them as table centerpieces with a few small tealights from the Dollar Store.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Borrow old books from your parents' bookshelves. Pick some ones that mean a lot to you to stack as a cute, nerdy centerpiece.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Looking for old decor that you don't have to DIY? Try asking your local department store when they will discard their window displays. Anthropologie tends to take theirs down every month.</li> </ul> <h2>4. The Getaway Car</h2> <p>Every couple wants a cool way to leave their reception, but trying to book a Batmobile or a vintage Rolls Royce can mean the difference between being on budget and having to cut down your honeymoon. Ask around! You probably have a relative or friend of a friend with a cool ride (or a connection to one). Leave in something authentic and cool, instead of paying hundreds for a rental that someone else will have to return for you the next day.</p> <h2>5. The Photography</h2> <p>While it's awesome to have a professional photographer following you all day, it's simply not in the cards for everyone. Lots of couples are saving room in the wedding budget by going the guest-sourced photography route. All your friends and family are eager to snap photos of the big day already, so encourage them to get their Instagrams ready. A great way to include guest photography can be through a game or scavenger hunt for people or details, like with the <a href="https://ceremonyapp.com/">Ceremony app</a>. Just be clear about when it is okay to ambush the couple for photos.</p> <p>The wedding goes by fast, so the most beautiful part is seeing your wedding through the eyes of all your friends and family just days later. Remember to make a Dropbox or Flickr account for everyone to add their memories.</p> <p><em>What else should couples borrow for wedding day?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/amanda-meadows">Amanda Meadows</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-big-ticket-wedding-items-you-should-borrow-instead-of-buy">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-have-a-great-wedding-if-you-havent-saved-enough">How to Have a Great Wedding if You Haven&#039;t Saved Enough</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-much-engagement-ring-can-you-actually-afford">How Much Engagement Ring Can You Actually Afford?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/take-back-st-valentine-s-day-from-hallmark-and-hershey-s">Take back St. Valentine’s Day from Hallmark and Hershey’s.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-delaying-marriage-or-kids-saves-you-money">Here&#039;s How Delaying Marriage or Kids Saves You Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-things-that-always-always-go-over-budget">3 Things That Always, Always Go Over-Budget</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living borrowing decorations DJ flowers marriage music photography weddings Mon, 22 Feb 2016 10:30:27 +0000 Amanda Meadows 1659838 at http://www.wisebread.com The Toughest Tax Season Question All Married Couples Must Ask http://www.wisebread.com/the-toughest-tax-season-question-all-married-couples-must-ask <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-toughest-tax-season-question-all-married-couples-must-ask" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/married_couple_taxes_000030080560.jpg" alt="Married couple asking hardest question during tax season" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Tax day will be here sooner than you think, and you and your spouse want to claim as many credits and deductions as possible to lower your final tax bill. So, should you file jointly or separately?</p> <p>That depends. In the vast majority of cases, filing jointly provides married couples with the greatest amount of tax breaks.</p> <p>&quot;The 'married filing separately' status is generally the least beneficial of the filing statuses,&quot; said Luis Rosa, a financial advisor with LGR Financial in White Plains, New York. &quot;'Married filing separate' status loses the ability to claim some of the most common credits such as student loan interest, tuition and fees, child and dependent credits, and many others.&quot; (See also:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-important-tax-changes-for-2016?ref=seealso">5 Important Tax Changes for 2016</a>)</p> <h2>Why Filing Jointly Is (Usually) the Smart Move</h2> <p>Couples who file their taxes jointly will be able to claim a standard deduction amount of $12,600 when preparing their 2015 income taxes this year. Married couples who file separately will each get a standard deduction of $6,300.</p> <p>Gail Rosen, a certified public accountant and president of Gail Rosen, CPA in Martinsville, New Jersey, gives a good example of how much married couples can save by filing jointly: If one spouse earns $75,000 of taxable income and the other earns $15,000, filing jointly instead of separately this April can save that couple $2,265 in taxes.</p> <p>Filing jointly is especially beneficial when one spouse earns significantly more than the other, Rosen said. That's because the averaging effect of combining the two incomes can bring some of the money that couples earned out of a higher tax bracket.</p> <p>Another big difference in filing jointly comes in the form of the extra tax credits that you can claim.</p> <p>When couples file jointly they might, depending on their financial circumstances, qualify for multiple tax credits, including the earned income tax credit, child and dependent care tax credit, Lifetime Learning education tax credit, and the American Opportunity Act education credit. If couples have adopted, they can also qualify for adoption tax credits. Married couples filing separately lose the ability to claim these potentially valuable credits.</p> <p>&quot;Most of the time, filing separately is not going to offer as many attractive incentives,&quot; said Nicole Erwin, with Tax Defense Network in Jacksonville, Florida. &quot;The types of deductions you would enjoy on a joint return may not be available, and your standard deduction is far lower when you file alone.&quot;</p> <h2>When Filing Separately Is the Right Move</h2> <p>While filing jointly is usually the right financial move, filing separately is a better financial choice for a smaller number of married couples.</p> <p>Rosen said that filing separately often makes sense when one spouse has a significant amount of medical expenses, casualty losses, or miscellaneous itemized deductions. You can deduct medical expenses only after they pass 10% of your adjusted gross income for the year. The same holds true for casualty losses. Miscellaneous itemized deductions, which include investment expenses, unreimbursed employee expenses, and the costs involved in hiring others to prepare your tax return, are deductible after their combined total exceeds 2% of your adjusted gross income.</p> <p>If these possible deductions are isolated on the return of just one spouse &mdash; which would happen when spouses are filing separately &mdash; then the couple would enjoy larger deductions. Rosen gives this example: If one spouse has $9,250 in medical expenses and the married couple's joint income is $90,000, then only $250 of these medical expenses can be deducted on a joint return. That's because 10% of $90,000 is $9,000, and $9,250 minus $9,000 comes out to $250.</p> <p>But if the income of the spouse with the medical expenses is only $15,000, and that spouse files separately, the deduction rises to $7,750. That's because 10% of $15,000 is only $1,500, and $9,250 minus $1,500 equals $7,750.</p> <p>Diane Vidal, an attorney with the Chester, New Jersey-based law firm of Iandoli &amp; Edens, said that filing separately can also offer spouses protection when they suspect that their partner is committing tax fraud.</p> <p>Vidal said that when married couples file separately, it's easier for one spouse to claim the &quot;innocent spouse syndrome.&quot; That's a term used in divorce law to bring relief to innocent spouses who had no idea that their spouses were engaging in shady IRS practices, Vidal said.</p> <p>But when couples file together, even spouses who had no clue that their partners were committing financial wrongdoings will most likely still be held accountable for their spouse's crimes. That's because the IRS will assume that when spouses file jointly, they both read and understood their filings. The IRS will then have the authority to pursue criminal action against both spouses.</p> <p>&quot;I truly believe that married couples, especially with those relationships that are on the rocks or heading toward a divorce, should file separately,&quot; Vidal said.</p> <p><em>Do you and your spouse file jointly or separately?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dan-rafter">Dan Rafter</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-toughest-tax-season-question-all-married-couples-must-ask">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-most-common-tax-mistakes-made-by-college-grads">5 Most Common Tax Mistakes Made by College Grads</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-ways-the-government-pays-you-to-live-green">11 Ways the Government Pays You to Live Green</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-important-tax-changes-for-2016">5 Important Tax Changes for 2016</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/101-tax-deductions-for-bloggers-and-freelancers">101 Tax deductions for bloggers and freelancers</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-amazing-outrageous-and-just-plain-weird-tax-deductions">20 amazing, outrageous and just plain weird tax deductions</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Taxes deductions marriage married filing jointly married filing separately Wed, 17 Feb 2016 10:30:28 +0000 Dan Rafter 1658023 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Things Newlyweds Must Know About Investing http://www.wisebread.com/5-things-newlyweds-must-know-about-investing <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-things-newlyweds-must-know-about-investing" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/married_couple_monopoly_000017059049.jpg" alt="Newlyweds learning things they must know about investing" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>There's a ton of excitement involved in getting married. There's the big day, which you may have been planning for many months, the honeymoon, and setting up your home together.</p> <p>Before long, though, you have to get down to the business of actually <em>running</em> your household, which includes investing for your future. Here are a few investing essentials every newlywed couple should know.</p> <h2>1. Confidence Is Not the Same as Skill</h2> <p>Men and women tend to come at money from very different perspectives, and that's certainly true when it comes to investing. According to a Merrill Lynch study, 55% of women agreed or strongly agreed with this statement: &quot;I know <a href="https://mlaem.fs.ml.com/content/dam/ML/Articles/pdf/ARTRGVP5.pdf">less than the average investor</a> about financial markets and investing in general.&quot; Just 27% of men agreed or strongly agreed with that statement.</p> <p>This difference in investing confidence leads to notable differences in investing behavior. For example, according to a Barclay's study, men are more likely to attempt the impossible: time the market.</p> <p>While men may have more confidence in their investing abilities, some studies have found women to be more successful investors. The Financial Times reported on a study of hedge funds, finding that those managed by women outperformed those managed by men &mdash; by a large margin.</p> <p>The take-away? Choose which spouse will take the lead with investing based on track record, not confidence.</p> <h2>2. You Probably Have Different Comfort Levels With Risk</h2> <p>One of the most important investing decisions has to do with asset allocation &mdash; that is, how much of your portfolio will you invest in stocks, and how much in bonds?</p> <p>That ratio has to do with your investment time frame and risk tolerance. Each of you should take an <a href="https://personal.vanguard.com/us/FundsInvQuestionnaire">investment temperament quiz</a> and then compare results. If the national studies are reflected in your marriage and he is more comfortable with risk than she is, meet in the middle when making asset allocation decisions.</p> <p>Or, you could take your investment temperaments out of the equation by using target-date funds for your investments. Just make sure you understand <a href="https://www.soundmindinvesting.com/articles/view/how-well-do-target-date-funds-perform-in-a-downturn">how target-date funds work</a>.</p> <h2>3. Your Best First Investment May Have Nothing to Do With the Stock Market</h2> <p>I will always remember a couple that approached me during a break in a financial workshop I was leading for engaged and newly married couples. She had tears in her eyes. He looked irritated.</p> <p>Their wedding was coming up and they couldn't agree on where to live. He was about to graduate from law school, assumed he'd land a job at a large firm, and wanted to buy a nice condo in a trendy part of town. Knowing she was about to marry into six figures' worth of debt, she wanted to rent for a few years in order to aggressively pay off their loans.</p> <p>As diplomatically as I could, I suggested that her plan might be better for their finances and their marriage.</p> <p>You may not have six figures' worth of debt, but if you're like many newlyweds, you likely have debt. One of the best investments you can make is to pay it off as soon as possible.</p> <p>If you're paying 18% on a credit card balance, paying it off would give you a guaranteed 18% return on your money.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/when-to-do-a-balance-transfer-to-pay-off-credit-card-debt?ref=seealso">When to Do a Balance Transfer to Pay Off Credit Card Debt</a></p> <p>But paying off debt isn't just a good <em>financial </em>investment. A study done by Utah State Assistant Professor Jeffrey Dew, found that &quot;consumer debt fuels a <a href="http://www.stateofourunions.org/2009/bank_on_it.php">sense of financial unease</a> among couples&quot; and increases the likelihood that they will fight more often, and not just about money. On the other hand, Dew found that newly married couples who paid off their debt within the first five years of marriage reported being more satisfied with their marriage than those who did not.</p> <p>So, if you're starting your marriage with debt, pay it all off, with the possible exception of a reasonable mortgage before starting to invest.</p> <h2>4. You Have Some Control</h2> <p>When it comes to investing, there's a lot you can't control. No one knows which way the market will go next, how high inflation will get, or when the next market-moving world crisis will hit. But one factor you <em>can </em>control is how much money you invest.</p> <p>One of the best bits of advice my wife, Jude, and I received before we got married was to base most of our essential living expenses on one income, especially housing costs. So, we bought a condo in what realtors euphemistically described as an &quot;up and coming&quot; neighborhood on Chicago's northwest side. There were no coffee shops nearby, but we could easily afford it on my salary alone. That enabled us to save and invest much of Jude's salary, which gave us a nice head start on our investing by the time our first child arrived four years later and we decided to become a one-income family.</p> <p>As you decide where to live and how much to spend on everything from clothing to vacations, make sure you budget some money to invest.</p> <h2>5. The Future Arrives Faster Than You Can Imagine</h2> <p>Another factor you can control is how soon you start investing. When you're young and newly married, retirement may seem like some vague, distant destination you can worry about later. Besides, you have furniture to buy and trips to take.</p> <p>But consider this. A 30-year-old who invests $400 per month, generates an average annual return of 7%, and stops investing at age 70, will end up with a little over $1 million. If she waits until she's 40 to get started, invests the same $400 per month, and generates that same 7% average annual return, she'll end up with less than $500,000. By waiting 10 years, she will have invested just $48,000 less, but she'll end up with half the money!</p> <p>Compound interest favors the young, so the earlier you start investing the better.</p> <p><em>How are you and your partner managing your investments?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/matt-bell">Matt Bell</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-things-newlyweds-must-know-about-investing">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/should-you-pay-down-debt-first-or-invest">Should You Pay Down Debt First or Invest?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-investment-accounts-all-30-somethings-should-have">7 Investment Accounts All 30-Somethings Should Have</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-why-life-insurance-isnt-just-for-old-people">5 Reasons Why Life Insurance Isn&#039;t Just for Old People</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-biggest-myths-about-investing">The 10 Biggest Myths About Investing</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/should-you-buy-vw-shares-10-battered-stocks-worth-considering">Should You Buy VW Shares? 10 Battered Stocks Worth Considering</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Investment joint finances marriage newlyweds retirement risk tolerance Thu, 11 Feb 2016 22:00:05 +0000 Matt Bell 1654134 at http://www.wisebread.com 4 Ways an Income Gap Can Strain Your Relationship http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-an-income-gap-can-strain-your-relationship <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/4-ways-an-income-gap-can-strain-your-relationship" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/couple_breaking_up_000043320308_1.jpg" alt="Couple learning ways income gap can strain their relationship" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Money is the <a href="http://www.cnbc.com/2015/02/04/money-is-the-leading-cause-of-stress-in-relationships.html">leading cause of arguments</a> in married couples. Income disparity, when one person makes much more than the other, can be a surprising source of stress. If you're one of these couples, be on the lookout for these four ways an income disparity could harm your relationship.</p> <h2>1. Holding on to Old Gender Roles</h2> <p>Women are more and more likely to have higher education and a&nbsp;<a href="http://fivethirtyeight.com/datalab/how-many-women-earn-more-than-their-husbands/">higher paying salary</a> than their significant other. However, in heterosexual relationships in which women are the &quot;breadwinners,&quot; the women are actually <em>still</em> doing more housework than men. That doesn't sound like an equal partnership. That might also be why the divorce rate jumps 50% for couples in which the woman earns the higher income.</p> <p>So much inequality comes from not being comfortable to speak up, and worse, tacitly defaulting to your parents' roles. Having a deep and meaningful conversation about gender and money is important in a relationship &mdash; find each other's biases and challenge them. Outdated and unreasonable gender expectations should not dictate what happens in your relationship.</p> <h2>2. Using Salary as Leverage</h2> <p>For many, money equals power. So when one partner earns more than the other, the higher earner can easily become the de facto decision-maker in where to vacation, what to buy for dinner, the kind of house you live in, and what kind of hobbies you partake in. This is precisely the kind of power imbalance that leads to highly toxic relationships.</p> <p>Resolve to discuss medium-to-major expenditures with your partner before making them. As long as you share your household, it's always half theirs. It's also key to encourage your partner's goals. Aid them generously, in faith that s/he would do the same for you if the roles were reversed.</p> <h2>3. Acting Defensive Over Earning Less</h2> <p>Earning less than your partner can make you feel as if you don't matter, because one salary is floating most of the household. This can lead to resentment, or worse, a childlike attachment and dependency on the other to help you financially.</p> <p>Just because your income accounts for a smaller percentage of the household finances doesn't mean that your role in the relationship is smaller. This comes up a lot when one person decides to stay home to take care of the kids. But remember that contribution to the household is not measured by income.</p> <h2>4. Letting Money Determine Your Partner's Worth</h2> <p>The easiest way to avoid fights is to assign financial contributions on a sliding proportion scale. Instead of letting your partner struggle to pay 50% of the utilities, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/create-your-first-shared-budget-without-blowing-up-your-relationship">find a shared budget</a> that allows him or her to pay what they can afford. Or, agree on new terms &mdash; like one being in charge of all groceries and utilities, while the other pays the rent or mortgage.</p> <p>Also, it's time to ban the word &quot;breadwinner.&quot; Not only is it divisive, it assigns a &quot;winner/loser&quot; dynamic, which has no place in a loving domestic relationship. If you think less of your partner for doing the dishes, or if you think more of a partner for earning more material wealth, you have set yourself up for trouble.</p> <p>It's time to stop being combative about status. Feeling more or less important is only true if you believe it.</p> <p><em>Is there an income gap in your relationship? How do you get over it?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/amanda-meadows">Amanda Meadows</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-an-income-gap-can-strain-your-relationship">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-to-keep-your-money-separated-after-marriage">5 Reasons to Keep Your Money Separated After Marriage</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-simple-ways-to-split-bills-with-your-spouse">3 Simple Ways to Split Bills With Your Spouse</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-six-figures-really-that-much">Is Six Figures Really That Much?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/financial-independence-is-more-than-just-a-number">Financial Independence Is More Than Just a Number</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/does-money-really-buy-happiness">Does Money Really Buy Happiness?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Lifestyle Breadwinner budgets gender Households income marriage work Tue, 03 Nov 2015 19:15:54 +0000 Amanda Meadows 1603576 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Money Fears and How to Squash Them http://www.wisebread.com/5-money-fears-and-how-to-squash-them <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-money-fears-and-how-to-squash-them" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/nervous_man_000050240320.jpg" alt="Man with money fears learning how to squash them" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Remember when you were afraid of the bogeyman? We all knew he wasn't real, but that didn't stop our fears. For most of us, that same bogeyman is alive in our finances. If you've had a bad month, or even a bad year or two, it's really easy to let fear take over.</p> <p>Below are five irrational (although they might feel very real for you) money fears and some simple solutions to squash them.</p> <h2>1. I Lost My Job; I'm Never Going to Make It!</h2> <p>Even if you have the most &quot;perfect&quot; job and your boss loves you, there is always a chance that you could lose it. The company could have a bad year and need to lay off staff. They might downsize. Or, maybe they get bought out and decide they don't need you on board.</p> <h3>Squash It</h3> <p>Preparation is key to squashing this money fear, which means preparing <em>before</em> you lose the job. Make sure you button up your emergency fund savings with at least three to six months of your monthly expenses, and keep it in a high-yield savings account (<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/discover-bank-review-you-know-the-card-but-what-about-the-bank">Discover Online Savings</a> or <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/capital-one-360-review">Capital One 360</a>). As the name implies, an emergency fund will help you breeze into temporary unemployment and keep you from having to turn to your credit cards to pay your monthly expenses.</p> <h2>2. My 401K Lost 5%, I'll Never Be Able to Retire!</h2> <p>For those who had money in a 401K during 2008 and 2009, losing just 5% would have seemed like a miracle. Depending on their exposure, retirement investors lost 25%&ndash;30% (or more) of their account values in a really short period of time. Now that's a bad day! A 401K, like any investment, is going to have good times and not-so-good times.</p> <h3>Squash It</h3> <p>The best way to squash this fear of never being able to retire is to commit to a monthly investment amount (called dollar-cost-averaging), rebalance your funds annually, and for heaven's sake, don't look at your account every day. With dollar-cost-averaging you'll be buying some funds during the good days, and some on the not-so-good days &mdash; but the objective is that it evens out and keeps you marching towards your retirement goals.</p> <h2>3. My Spouse-to-Be Makes More Than Me &mdash; It's Not Fair!</h2> <p>Rarely do you find a relationship where both people make exactly the same amount of money. When you pile getting married on top of that all, it can be a real recipe for disaster.</p> <h3>Squash It</h3> <p>Having open communication with your future spouse is key before you get married. Come up with a game plan together about how you will allocate your funds for things like savings, paying off debt, and the goals you are trying to achieve. Another way to squash this fear is to create two separate &quot;fun&quot; funds. In each fund, put the same amount of money each month, so each person can spend their money as they wish with no questions from the other.</p> <h2>4. I've Made Too Many Money Mistakes!</h2> <p>Money mishaps can really keep us from making positive strides in our finances. The truth is everyone has financial setbacks in life, but the key is in how you recover and what steps you take to prevent them from happening again.</p> <h3>Squash It</h3> <p>To get better at anything, you've got to learn from your mistakes, but more importantly, forgive yourself. Take out a piece of paper and write down all of your money mishaps without censoring yourself in the next five minutes. Once you are done, take a look at them all, remember what you've learned, and then tear up the piece of paper. They are in your past.</p> <h2>5. I Won't Be Successful if I Don't Own a House!</h2> <p>Owning a house is the American dream. The problem is not all of us can <em>afford</em> a house, and certainly not a $15 million dollar stunner like you'd see on an episode of the Kardashians.</p> <h3>Squash It</h3> <p>Owning a home is great. However, it isn't for everyone. If you want to own a home, the most important thing you can do is to work with a mortgage broker before you go shopping, find out what you can afford, and then take a serious look at your budget. If you plan on staying put for a few years and the numbers work, then go for it. If not, take this money fear off the table and be happy that if you decided you wanted to move to Berlin tomorrow, you could pack your bag and be on a plane in an hour.</p> <p><em>How do you squash your money fears?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/shannah-game">Shannah Game</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-money-fears-and-how-to-squash-them">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-simple-ways-to-split-bills-with-your-spouse">3 Simple Ways to Split Bills With Your Spouse</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/seven-tips-for-the-newly-unemployed">Seven Tips for the Newly Unemployed</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/could-a-divorce-improve-your-finances">Could a Divorce Improve Your Finances?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/should-you-always-dispute-mistakes-on-your-credit-report">Should You Always Dispute Mistakes on Your Credit Report?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-should-you-do-when-you-are-asked-to-repay-an-overpayment-of-severance">What should you do when you are asked to repay an overpayment of severance?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance irrational fears marriage Mistakes owning a home unemployment Mon, 26 Oct 2015 17:15:24 +0000 Shannah Game 1598510 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Things to Never Do When Sharing Finances http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-to-never-do-when-sharing-finances <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-things-to-never-do-when-sharing-finances" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/happy_couple_piggybank_000055685026.jpg" alt="Couple learning what no to do when sharing finances" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Getting married or moving in together implies that you're ready to share your life and living space with another person. It also usually means sharing finances.</p> <p>Merging your income with your partner's is by far one of the fastest ways to upgrade your lifestyle. If you were struggling to make ends meet on your own, you might finally have a chance to get ahead &mdash; or at least catch up. But while combining your incomes and sharing finances has its benefits, success is all in how you approach the plan.</p> <p>Every couple has to come up with a strategy that works for them. There are no hard-and-fast rules, and a system that works well for one couple might not work for another. To give yourself a fighting chance of striking the right balance, here are six things you should never do when sharing finances.</p> <h2>1. Don't Think an Even Split Is Always the Answer</h2> <p>Some people think a 50/50 split is the most reasonable and simplest way to share finances, like when couples open a joint account and then contribute equal amounts toward their shared expenses. Sounds pretty fair, right? Except 50/50 isn't also an equitable solution, and it really depends on how much you earn in comparison to your partner.</p> <p>An even-split might work if you and your partner earn roughly the same salary. But if one person earns considerably more than the other, an even-split can create an unfair balance, where one has a lot of disposable income, and the other can't keep his or her head above water. Before you can share finances, you have to discuss what's coming in and what's going out (including what each person spends on personal expenses). With everything on the table and all your expenses written down, you might conclude as a couple that a 50/50 split isn't realistic and choose a different approach, perhaps a 60/40 split or another breakdown that works for you.</p> <h2>2. Don't Lie About How Much You Owe</h2> <p>You need to be perfectly honest about how much you owe before sharing finances; this isn't the time to be embarrassed about your <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-personal-finance-lessons-women-learn-in-their-30s">credit card debt</a>. Coming up with a system that works requires that both of you are upfront about personal expenses. Sugarcoating your debt and saying you owe less than you actually do can throw off the entire household. And if you're hiding monthly payments, your partner might eventually question where your extra money goes.</p> <p>Furthermore, lying about debt can destroy the financial trust in the relationship. In my opinion this is something that should be discussed when the relationship gets serious &mdash; not just when you've decided to open a joint account. If you're talking engagement, you should also be talking about your financial past &mdash; bottom line. Not the most romantic of subjects, granted, but still necessary.</p> <h2>3. Don't Lie About How Much You Earn</h2> <p>Understating how much you earn can also break the financial trust between you and your partner just like lying about how much you owe. If you're splitting expenses based on your incomes, don't lie and say you earn less than you do to avoid paying your fair share of the expenses. You might be able to get away with this lie for a bit, but your partner will most likely uncover the deceit. The truth will eventually come out if you apply for a mortgage together and have to disclose your accurate income, or if you decide to file a joint tax return down the road.</p> <h2>4. Don't Give One Person Control of the Money</h2> <p>It doesn't matter who's better with money, it's important for both of you to have an active role in managing shared finances. Putting one person in complete control of the money is dangerous and can trigger a financial imbalance. If it's easier for one person to write all the checks, fine. Just make sure you both have an accurate picture of the finances, and no one should be left in the dark. Don't wait until your credit score tanks to question whether your partner is making on-time payments. Both of you need access to the checkbooks and online accounts so you always know what's going on with your money.</p> <h2>5. Don't Forget to Leave a Buffer</h2> <p>Dollar signs probably will pop into your head after moving in together and combining your incomes. But just because you now have a combined household income of $70,000 doesn't mean you should spend $70,000 a year. Whether you're paying your own way or sharing expenses, never live at your max. Instead, think about how you can live off half or 3/4 of your combined income and plan to save the rest. This can help you build a sizable cash cushion for yourselves, and you wouldn't have to worry about living paycheck-to-paycheck.</p> <p>Since money is one of the biggest causes of arguments in a relationship, this strategy can help keep those at bay if both of you are on the same page and committed to your partnership's financial success.</p> <h2>6. Don't Immediately Share Credit Cards</h2> <p>Sharing finances doesn't mean you have to share everything &mdash; at least not immediately. You also need to protect yourself financially. So before applying for a credit card together or adding your partner's name to your credit card, seriously consider his or her shopping habits. When you share a credit card with your partner, you're just as responsible for debt he or she incurs. And if you let your partner borrow your credit card, you're ultimately responsible for any and all charges on this account. Sharing a credit card isn't the worst thing in the world, just make sure you're both willing to take responsibility for the balance, regardless of who charges what.</p> <p><em>Do you have more suggestions on what not to do when sharing finances? Let me know in the comments below.</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-to-never-do-when-sharing-finances">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-6"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-simple-ways-to-split-bills-with-your-spouse">3 Simple Ways to Split Bills With Your Spouse</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/could-a-divorce-improve-your-finances">Could a Divorce Improve Your Finances?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-tips-on-what-to-do-before-moving-in-together">5 Tips on What to Do Before Moving in Together</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-before-moving-in-with-someone">What to Do Before Moving in With Someone</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-questions-couples-should-ask-in-the-money-talk">5 Questions Couples Should Ask in the Money Talk</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance marriage moving in together relationships sharing finances sharing money splitting bills Fri, 02 Oct 2015 11:00:29 +0000 Mikey Rox 1573086 at http://www.wisebread.com How Much Engagement Ring Can You Actually Afford? http://www.wisebread.com/how-much-engagement-ring-can-you-actually-afford <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-much-engagement-ring-can-you-actually-afford" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man_proposing_marriage_000048387844.jpg" alt="Man learning how much he can spend on an engagement ring" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Shopping for and purchasing an engagement ring is one of the most important decisions a young couple can make. It can be easy to get carried away with the ring, but it's important to remember that the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-unexpected-costs-that-could-ruin-your-wedding-budget">wedding</a>, honeymoon, and first year of marriage will also be very expensive. Fortunately, we've found some simple ways to help you figure out how much you can afford to spend on the ring.</p> <h2>1. Evaluate Your Finances</h2> <p>Before making the purchase, you should first get a handle on your finances so you can determine how much you make, how much you can finance, and whether a certain amount is worth it. The average <a href="http://www.weddingstats.org/average-cost-of-an-engagement-ring.html">cost of a diamond engagement ring</a> has risen from just under $4000 to just over $5000 in 2015, but that doesn't mean you should be spending exactly that. You are the only person who can decide what the right amount is to spend on an engagement ring.</p> <h2>2. Forget the Two Paycheck Rule</h2> <p>Most people still abide by the two paycheck rule, which states that two months' worth of earnings is a good amount to spend on a ring. However, with the current economic situation and more savvy shopping techniques, the estimate has fallen to one month's worth of earnings.</p> <h2>3. Finance It</h2> <p>At the end of the day, financing is always an option. By financing the ring, you will have time to pay it off, but will likely have to pay a fee and/or interest. If you are able to finance the ring with 0% APR, then it may be worthwhile. If you already have enough debt under your name and don't want to add another bill right before you're married, then you should avoid financing altogether.</p> <h2>4. Find Something Sentimental</h2> <p>Something sentimental trumps something expensive every time. If you have an item that means something to your family or your partner's, include it in the engagement. For instance, giving your fiance your grandmother's engagement ring can show them that you're serious about sharing your family with them and can take the pressure off of finding the &quot;perfect&quot; engagement ring. Giving him or her a sentimental item will make your engagement ring seem more special, or can serve as a second engagement ring or wedding band.</p> <p>Often, men will give their family heirloom as the engagement ring itself, which can save you hundreds or thousands of dollars &mdash; all of which can be put towards the wedding or honeymoon.</p> <h2>5. Figure Out Your Partner's Style</h2> <p>The national average carat size is only 0.4, so don't feel obligated to purchase a two-carat engagement ring. In fact, extravagance may not even be your fiance's style. You need to first ask yourself what you think they would like before making the purchase. Their preferences will affect the price of the ring, so taking their taste into account will help you determine the right budget.</p> <p>Engagement rings can be found in gold, white gold, platinum, silver, and more. While diamonds are the most popular engagement ring stone, you may want to consider other unique options, like an emerald, sapphire, or ruby. Each type of metal and stone comes with its own advantages and price point, so you should know what type of jewelry they normally wear. For instance, does your spouse-to-be tend to go for classic or extravagant jewelry and designs?</p> <h2>6. Visit Your Jeweler</h2> <p>To ensure that you get the most from your investment, make sure to take the time to find your fiance the right ring. Visit your local jeweler to ask questions and see some examples of rings in your price range. Make sure to keep the four Cs (cut, color, carat, clarity) in mind when choosing a diamond, but don't get carried away with the stone.</p> <h2>7. Purchase Online</h2> <p>Visiting a jewelry store and speaking with a professional about your needs doesn't require you to purchase the ring at the jeweler. In fact, you can actually cut the cost of your ring by as much as 50% by simply making the purchase online and doing your research. Sites like <a href="http://www.bluenile.com/engagement-rings">Blue Nile</a> offer beautiful engagement rings, for a huge discount, and can even help you create a custom ring just for her.</p> <h2>8. Upgrade the Ring Later</h2> <p>If you simply cannot afford to purchase the ring you'd like to get, then consider upgrading later in life. After all, after you pop the question, you'll be together forever, right? That gives you plenty of time to upgrade the ring later. Most importantly, remember that the ring you choose won't have any effect on your relationship. There are bigger things to worry about and bigger expenses on the horizon, so try not to get too caught up on the ring. Remember, getting engaged is about planning to share your lives together, not about giving them a fancy present.</p> <p><em>Have you purchased an engagement ring? How did you determine how much to spend? Please share your thoughts in the comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-cannon">Andrea Cannon</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-much-engagement-ring-can-you-actually-afford">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-7"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-frugal-fabulous-alternatives-to-the-diamond-engagement-ring">7 Frugal, Fabulous Alternatives to the Diamond Engagement Ring</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-money-saving-tricks-to-know-before-buying-an-engagement-ring">12 Money-Saving Tricks to Know Before Buying an Engagement Ring</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-greatest-story-ever-sold-is-a-fantasy-covered-in-blood">The Greatest Story Ever Sold is a Fantasy Covered in Blood</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/who-pays-for-the-bridesmaid-dresses-when">Who Pays For the Bridesmaid Dresses When . . . ?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-make-retail-therapy-good-for-you">5 Ways to Make Retail Therapy Good for You</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Shopping diamonds engagement rings jewelry marriage proposals weddings Mon, 21 Sep 2015 11:00:11 +0000 Andrea Cannon 1561395 at http://www.wisebread.com 3 Simple Ways to Split Bills With Your Spouse http://www.wisebread.com/3-simple-ways-to-split-bills-with-your-spouse <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/3-simple-ways-to-split-bills-with-your-spouse" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/couple_tracking_finances_000054290340.jpg" alt="Couple finding ways to split bills and finances evenly" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Even the happiest couples have arguments: Disagreements on how to raise the kids (I vote for boarding school), how to divvy up household chores (&quot;Oh no, honey, let me clean that for you&hellip; again&quot;), or even where to live (like as far away from the in-laws as possible). But those arguments are child's play compared to the mother of all head-butting in a relationship &mdash; money.</p> <p>Managing dual incomes and household expenses gets tricky, and there's no one foolproof strategy that'll work for everyone. If one spouse works while the other stays home, there typically isn't an issue of who pays what and how much they contribute &mdash; the working spouse usually handles it all. But when both spouses work and split expenses, coming up with a fair and reasonable plan is important if you want to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/spouses-and-debt-whos-really-on-the-hook-for-those-bills">prevent financial resentment</a> and money fights from ruining your relationship.</p> <h2>1. Take Inventory</h2> <p>I think it's funny how some spouses can talk about everything under the sun, yet clam up when the discussion turns to money. Sometimes I just want to shake 'em. If I'm talking about you, listen up: You can't keep your head stuck in the sand. For a happy financial life with your spouse, you have to get candid and have these conversations, even though they may be uncomfortable. This isn't the time to be embarrassed about your credit card debt or the fact that you bring in considerably less. Before you can even think about splitting bills, you have to know what's coming in and what's going out.</p> <p>&quot;Sit down with your spouse and take inventory,&quot; says Ashley Feinstein Gerstley, CPC Certified Coach. &quot;While some bills will be different each month, you should be able to come up with a realistic range.&quot; This includes adding up your combined income, plus the total cost of fixed and variable household expenses, such as the rent/mortgage, utilities, groceries, transportation, insurances, etc.&quot;</p> <p>In this discussion, you also should decide which expenses to include in the split. You might agree to only split household expenses and make each of you responsible for your own personal expenses like student loans, credit cards, haircuts, or manicures. Which I recommend, by the way. You'll resent your spouse the first time he or she holds these expenses over your head if they're the one footing those bills. Cut back or man up; those are the only two choices you have.</p> <h2>2. Have Realistic Expectations</h2> <p>When splitting bills with your spouse, problems can arise when there are unrealistic expectations. It might seem logical to have a 50&ndash;50 split, with each spouse contributing an equal share to joint expenses. But this approach only works when both parties earn similar incomes. Think about this: If you earn $7,000 a month, your spouse earns $3,000 a month, and your shared expenses come to $3,000 a month, splitting the bills down the middle doesn't make a whole lot of sense. This approach ends with your spouse spending half of his or her income on household expenses while you only spend 20% of your income.</p> <p>David Bakke, a personal finance expert at <a href="http://www.moneycrashers.com">Money Crashers</a>, recommends a different plan.</p> <p>&quot;A more fair way to split bills is for each spouse to pay a percentage according to how much they make,&quot; he says. &quot;If one spouse makes 65% of the total household income, that's how much of the bills he or she is responsible for.&quot;</p> <p>This strategy ensures there's enough cashflow to cover household expenses, but allows each spouse discretionary income for personal expenses and building their personal nest egg, whether it's preparing for retirement or increasing their personal savings account.</p> <h2>3. Shared Expense Account or Separate Bills</h2> <p>Once you decide how much each person will contribute, the next step is deciding whether you'll have a single account for shared expenses, or pay your own set of bills from your own personal accounts. There's really no right or wrong way to handle this.</p> <p>With a shared expense account, you both contribute a set percentage and pay all bills from one account. It can work &mdash; just know that having a shared expense account means a lot of back-and-forth communication. There has to be enough money in this account at all times to cover your bills, and you must trust that your spouse doesn't take from this account unnecessarily, which can result in insufficient funds and overdraft fees.</p> <p>Another strategy, which can be just as effective, is deciding which set of bills you're responsible for, and then paying these bills from your own account.</p> <p>&quot;Under this strategy, each person maintains his or her own separate account and identifies which expenses each spouse will be responsible for, thereby, keeping a black curtain over accounts and maintaining maximum financial independence,&quot; says Andrea Rizk, founder and CEO of Risk Public Relations.</p> <p>This doesn't mean you're out of the loop with regard to expenses you don't pay. Some couples avoid this strategy because they feel financial problems can easily fall under the radar. If their spouse gets behind on a utility payment or the car payment, they want to know as soon as possible. This is perfectly understandable.</p> <p>So that you don't have any surprises later on, you and your spouse can agree to have your own set of bills, but also agree to manage all shared expenses online. You'll both hold the passwords to these accounts, giving you the freedom to check the payment status of accounts at any time.</p> <p><em>Do you split bills with your spouse? How do you make it work in your house? Let me know in the comments below.</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-simple-ways-to-split-bills-with-your-spouse">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-8"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-to-never-do-when-sharing-finances">6 Things to Never Do When Sharing Finances</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-to-keep-your-money-separated-after-marriage">5 Reasons to Keep Your Money Separated After Marriage</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-expenses-to-ditch-after-age-30">5 Expenses to Ditch After Age 30</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-before-moving-in-with-someone">What to Do Before Moving in With Someone</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chinese-money-habits-how-my-culture-influences-my-attitudes-toward-money">Chinese Money Habits - How My Culture Influences My Attitudes Toward Money</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Lifestyle expenses living costs marriage sharing money splitting bills spouses Tue, 15 Sep 2015 17:00:23 +0000 Mikey Rox 1554838 at http://www.wisebread.com Spouses and Debt: Who's Really on the Hook for Those Bills? http://www.wisebread.com/spouses-and-debt-whos-really-on-the-hook-for-those-bills <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/spouses-and-debt-whos-really-on-the-hook-for-those-bills" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/000033584728.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Your spouse has run up thousands of dollars in credit card debt that you didn't know about. If your partner can't pay back this debt, are you responsible? Can the financial institutions behind this debt come after <em>you </em>for their missing payments?</p> <p>The answer depends on where you live, whose name is on the credit card agreement, and whether you acted as a co-signer on that card. But that's only the technical side of the question. When it comes to the practical side, the answer is easy: When your spouse racks up loads of credit-card debt, the odds are it's going to affect your life, too.</p> <h2>The Legalities</h2> <p>Speaking in the strictly legal sense, though, the odds are high that your spouse's credit card debt is not technically your problem, as long as your name isn't on the credit cards that your partner used to rack up this debt. However, if your spouse ran up debt on credit cards that are in both of your names, you are just as responsible for paying off that debt. The same holds true if you are co-signer on any of the debt-ridden credit card accounts.</p> <h2>Common Law States</h2> <p>The other factor that matters is the state that you call home. The vast majority of states &mdash; all but nine of them &mdash; are considered <em>common law</em> states. In common law states, you are only responsible for credit card debt that is in your name. If the credit cards are only in your spouse's name, you are technically not responsible for the debt on them.</p> <p>This doesn't mean that your spouse's credit card debt won't eventually hurt you. Say you and your spouse own a home together, with the title of the home in both of your names. The credit card company, if it is never paid, could force the sale of your home so that your spouse would have the funds needed to pay off the debt.</p> <p>Your spouse's credit card debt could also make it more difficult for you to apply for auto or home loans, if you want to apply jointly with your spouse. When applying for a mortgage loan, for instance, lenders will consider only the lowest middle credit score between you and your spouse. You and your spouse each have three credit scores &mdash; maintained by the credit bureaus Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion. If your scores are 740, 770, and 730, but your spouse's are 620, 630, and 640, lenders will base their lending decisions only on your spouse's middle score, 630.</p> <p>Lenders, then, will toss out your higher score. This means that if your spouse's score is too low, lenders might not approve you for a loan. If they do, they'll charge you a higher interest rate, making your monthly payment a higher one.</p> <h2>Community Property States</h2> <p>In community property states, you are responsible for your spouse's credit card debt legally. Debts that your spouse rack up during your marriage are considered community debts. This means that you and your spouse might both liable for it. The community property states are Arizona, California, Idaho, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Washington, and Wisconsin.</p> <p>However, the law isn't so simple in community property states. Extenuating circumstances might mean that even if you live in one of the nine community property states, you're still not responsible for your spouse's credit card debt. If the debt that your spouse racked up was for purchases that benefitted both you and your partner, the odds are high that you, too, will be responsible for it. If the credit card debts only benefitted your partner, it is more likely that only your spouse will be held responsible for them.</p> <p>Community property rules also only matter for debts that your spouse has incurred during your marriage. You are not responsible for debts that your spouse has generated before or, in the case of divorce, after your marriage.</p> <p>Spousal credit card debt can be a touchy subject. Make sure you understand the laws in your state, in order to stave off unnecessary headaches.</p> <p><em>Has your partner ever run up massive debt? How did you deal with it?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dan-rafter">Dan Rafter</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/spouses-and-debt-whos-really-on-the-hook-for-those-bills">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-9"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-fastest-method-to-eliminate-credit-card-debt">The Fastest Method to Eliminate Credit Card Debt</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-dirty-secrets-of-credit-cards">The Dirty Secrets of Credit Cards</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-tricks-to-save-money-with-credit-cards">10 Tricks to Save Money with Credit Cards</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-things-people-with-good-credit-never-do">8 Things People With Good Credit Never Do</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-7-best-credit-card-debt-elimination-strategies">The 7 Best Credit Card Debt Elimination Strategies</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Credit Cards Debt Management co-signer common law community property debt marriage spouse Fri, 11 Sep 2015 11:00:12 +0000 Dan Rafter 1553988 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Ways to Protect Your Business During a Divorce http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-protect-your-business-during-a-divorce <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-ways-to-protect-your-business-during-a-divorce" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/divorced_couple_000027585457.jpg" alt="Business owners trying to protect themselves through divorce" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Getting a divorce can be one of the most emotionally devastating times in your life. Combine this with running your own business and next thing you know, your life has become extremely stressful. I know, because I've been there.</p> <p>If you're <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/small-business/can-a-failed-marriage-lead-to-business-failure">going through the a divorce</a>, here are some important financial steps to take to protect yourself and your business.</p> <h2>1. Get Organized</h2> <p>The first step when dealing with a divorce as a business owner is to get organized and find a lawyer who can help you take the right steps.</p> <p>Gather all your financial documents, business and bank statements, agreements, and other information that pertains to your business and marriage. Any debts and assets you and the business owns will have to be calculated and divided up. Examine all the bank accounts and documents, as you don't want to be out of the loop in a situation like this.</p> <p>Depending on the state you live in, and whether or not you signed a prenup, you and your spouse could be forced to split the business profits &mdash; and everything else &mdash; 50/50. If you and your spouse work in the business together, the operating agreements should outline directions for each spouse to protect themselves during a divorce or other separation.</p> <h2>2. Fill In the Details</h2> <p>What assets or savings did you bring into the relationship? How much do you have personally invested into the business? What are the balances of your personal, joint, and business accounts, investments, credit cards, and loans?</p> <p>Work with your spouse (or a lawyer if you need help mediating) to fill in all these details. Put the information on paper, or in a spreadsheet, so you're both on the same page. Ask your accountant for all the financial reports, profit and loss statements, and balance sheets for the business, too. Everything needs to be accounted for.</p> <h2>3. Protect Yourself</h2> <p>The next step involves dividing up the assets and agreeing on whether to sell the business, dissolve it, or keep it up and running. If you jointly own a home, the mortgage will have to be refinanced into your or your spouse's name, unless you both agree to sell it.</p> <p>By the end of the divorce process you want all of your assets divided fairly. Leaving joint accounts after a divorce can lead to credit reporting inaccuracies and even fraud.</p> <p>Take steps to protect yourself and your business during this process by separating all joint accounts, assets, and debts. Until a property is sold or refinanced into your name, you're still liable for the entire mortgage or rental payment &mdash; whether or not your spouse helps split the bill.</p> <h2>4. Keep a Paper Trail</h2> <p>Any conversations you have with your spouse need to be in writing. Save all your emails, notes, and text messages. This is especially important when it comes to figuring out the important details of how you'll handle the business together.</p> <p>In the event that you and your ex can't discuss things in a calm fashion, you'll need written proof of what each other has agreed upon so you can move forward with the divorce. Keep a paper trail of all the bank accounts you've dissolved, assets you sell, debt settlements, loan refinances, and any other financial paperwork. You may need written proof of these transactions in the future.</p> <h2>5. Start Fresh</h2> <p>Continue protecting yourself as you move forward and rebuild your life. This means opening up new bank accounts in your name only, for both personal and business, and making a plan to get back on track.</p> <p>Check your credit report using a secure site like <a href="https://www.annualcreditreport.com/">annualcreditreport.com</a>, to make sure everything is accurate. If you see any incorrect accounts, numbers, or names, reach out to the top three credit bureaus and get it corrected.</p> <p>When my divorce was finalized I was left with over $14,000 of consumer debt that we accumulated during our marriage. I had to find a new job and start making a plan to pay it down. Our credit was also conjoined since we had shared accounts, and these took some time to separate. It was rough to say the least.</p> <p>You don't have to lose your business just because you and your ex aren't on speaking terms. Work with a legal representative you trust and make sure everything's in writing.</p> <p><em>Have you ever gone through a divorce as a business owner? What was your experience?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/carrie-smith">Carrie Smith</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-protect-your-business-during-a-divorce">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-10"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/250-tips-for-small-business-owners">250+ Tips for Small Business Owners</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-love-not-money-sort-of">Make Love, Not Money (Sort Of)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-credit-cards-for-small-businesses">The 5 Best Credit Cards for Small Businesses</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-lessons-that-teach-your-kid-to-be-their-own-boss">5 Lessons That Teach Your Kid to Be Their Own Boss</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-what-happens-to-a-mortgage-in-a-divorce">Here&#039;s What Happens to a Mortgage in a Divorce</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Entrepreneurship Family business owners dividing assets divorce marriage pre-nup small business Tue, 01 Sep 2015 09:02:44 +0000 Carrie Smith 1538268 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Ways Regular Budget Meetings Might Save Your Marriage http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-regular-budget-meetings-might-save-your-marriage <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-ways-regular-budget-meetings-might-save-your-marriage" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/couple_budgeting_000047207918.jpg" alt="Couple having regular budget meetings to save their marriage" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Your spouse just spent $700 on a new laptop, without checking in with you first. Or maybe you're the culprit, racking up $250 of new credit card purchases last month that weren't in your household budget.</p> <p>Whoever is at fault, such unexpected financial missteps are a leading source of tension in any relationship. But there is a way to eliminate these unwanted financial surprises: regular budget meetings between you and your partner.</p> <p>Holding a weekly or monthly budget meeting doesn't sound like the best way to spend an evening. But such meetings are important. Regular budget meetings can help couples stay on track when it comes to paying off debt, building savings, and stowing away dollars for retirement.</p> <p>&quot;I find that couples who get along the best financially speaking are those who communicate openly and freely when it comes to their finances,&quot; said Kevin Murphy, senior financial services consultant with McGraw-Hill Federal Credit Union in East Windsor, New Jersey. &quot;Couples should discuss their goals and set a plan together.&quot;</p> <p>Married couples argue about a host of subjects. But <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-delaying-marriage-or-kids-saves-you-money">financial matters</a> often top the list, which is why a regular budget meeting can make your marriage a happier one. These money meetings increase the odds that you and your partner will be working toward the same financial goals, and that one or both of you won't be overspending on a regular basis.</p> <p>The best news? These budget meetings don't have to be unpleasant. Here are some tips on holding successful budget meetings.</p> <h2>1. Set a Regular Time</h2> <p>Agree to hold your household budget meetings at a regular time, whether it's every Thursday night, every two weeks, or once a month. If you don't schedule your budget meetings as you would any other appointment, life will get in the way. If you're like most couples, you'll sit down to a Netflix movie and blow off the money meeting. Try to aim for meeting once a week or, at the least, once a month.</p> <h2>2. Give Them a Time Limit</h2> <p>Your partner might imagine a budget meeting lasting into the wee hours of the evening as you both pore over every credit card purchase and ATM withdrawal. No one wants to talk money for hours. Instead, put a set time limit on your regular budget meetings, perhaps limiting the meeting to a maximum of one hour. If you meet frequently enough, 60 minutes should be more than enough time to go over your household finances.</p> <h2>3. No Blame Game</h2> <p>Some people are better at sticking to a budget. That's a fact. Partners who make those extra purchases every month might shy away from budget meetings because they don't want to be lectured for an entire hour on their recent financial missteps. Refrain from using budget meetings to blame each other for financial setbacks. Instead, use the time to craft a budget that works for everyone. If your partner is regularly blowing the budget, ask what you both can do to resolve the problem.</p> <h2>4. Make It Realistic</h2> <p>Maybe your partner overspends each month because your household budget is too tight, and doesn't leave any room for fun or unnecessary purchases. Use your regular meetings to tweak your budget so that it works for your household. A household budget is always a work-in-progress. It's okay, and even advisable, to make regular changes to it. If your household budget isn't working, use your meetings to adjust it so that it does.</p> <h2>5. Come Prepared</h2> <p>You'll need actual numbers to hold a successful budget meeting. So print out credit card statements, bank statements, and other important documents. Bring bills that need to be paid in the next several days, too. Armed with this information, you and your partner can make the best financial decisions for the weeks ahead.</p> <h2>6. Eliminate the Distractions</h2> <p>It's not easy holding a budget meeting when your kids are asking for snacks or your dog is whining for a walk. Finish the household chores before your budget meeting. You want a quiet block of time so you can focus. If your meeting is interrupted by too many distractions, you'll be tempted to cut it short before you address your family's most important financial matters.</p> <p><em>Do you and your partner hold regular budget meetings?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dan-rafter">Dan Rafter</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-regular-budget-meetings-might-save-your-marriage">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-11"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/could-a-divorce-improve-your-finances">Could a Divorce Improve Your Finances?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-time-tested-ways-to-make-a-relationship-work">6 Time-Tested Ways to Make a Relationship Work</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-relationship-rules-you-should-be-breaking">10 Relationship Rules You Should Be Breaking</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-navigate-3-common-money-arguments-with-your-significant-other">How to Navigate 3 Common Money Arguments With Your Significant Other</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-questions-couples-should-ask-in-the-money-talk">5 Questions Couples Should Ask in the Money Talk</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Personal Development marriage meetings money relationships spouse Fri, 21 Aug 2015 15:00:33 +0000 Dan Rafter 1526967 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Have a Great Wedding if You Haven't Saved Enough http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-have-a-great-wedding-if-you-havent-saved-enough <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-have-a-great-wedding-if-you-havent-saved-enough" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/wedding_newlyweds_000027019379.jpg" alt="Couple having great wedding without saving enough" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>You're getting married! Congratulations!</p> <p>If you're reading this article, I'm sure you've heard that a lot already. Now you're getting down to the nitty gritty. Maybe you're even starting to panic, like so many couples do when they realize just <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/budget-bride-131-savvy-ways-to-cut-wedding-costs">how much a wedding can cost</a> and how little savings they have.</p> <p>Stop.</p> <p>Breathe.</p> <p>Even if you haven't saved enough money, even if you don't have a massive budget, you can still have a lovely wedding that will represent you both as a couple and that you can be proud of. And you don't have to borrow or beg. Here's how.</p> <h2>1. Choose What Matters Most</h2> <p>The most important thing you can do to save money on a wedding is to figure out what is important to you. Some couples care a lot about their venue, but they don't need a video of the day. Others have to have a video, because they will watch it on every anniversary forever and ever, but they don't care much about flowers.</p> <p>You need to choose what is important to you. Pick two or three of the most important things (maybe your dress, your photographer, and your caterer), and plan to put the majority of your budget toward these. It's not that the rest doesn't matter, but that these are the places where you want to invest your time, your energy, and your money. These are the things that will make your wedding yours.</p> <h2>2. Register for a Honeymoon</h2> <p>Didn't save enough for your honeymoon? No problem! You can <a href="http://www.honeymoonwishes.com/">register for a honeymoon online</a>, and people can contribute knowing that their money is secure and they are helping you have a trip you'll never forget.</p> <p>This is particularly useful if you don't need very much to start your household. If you have been living together, or each living on your own, for a while, you'll have most of what you need as far as cooking, cleaning, etc. goes. Let guests contribute to your honeymoon, and you'll not only save money, but you won't have to return as many gifts afterwards!</p> <h2>3. Keep it Simple</h2> <p>If it isn't important to you and it isn't making the wedding uniquely yours, keep it simple. If you don't care much about photography, let a friend take the photos and pass around some disposable cameras during the reception. If you like your venue as-is, don't spend money you don't have on elaborate centerpieces.</p> <p>Again, this will look different for each wedding. But keeping simplicity in mind from the get-go will help you stick to your budget, no matter how little you have saved.</p> <h2>4. Keep it Small</h2> <p>One huge way to cut wedding costs is to limit your guest list. This can be so hard, especially if you have a lot of family and friends or business contacts. You may even choose to make the day family-only, though that is a little extreme. Let your heart be your guide. Only invite people with whom you have intimate relationships and truly want to have by your side on that big day.</p> <h2>5. Ask for Help</h2> <p>Most of us know people who can help in some way with a wedding. Maybe your sister is a graphic designer or your brother a video ace. Don't hesitate to ask them for help. Even people who don't have a useful area of expertise can help you tie bows, staple programs, etc.</p> <p>If you need more help than you're comfortable asking for, let it be known that you would love to have aid in lieu of a wedding gift. Allowing people to give time rather than expensive gifts means that even friends and family who can't afford much will be able to give you a lovely, valuable gift, and you won't have to spend as much of your limited savings on your wedding day.</p> <h2>6. Remember the 99 Cent Store</h2> <p>Some people think the 99 cent store is tacky, but many brides actually find decent candles, vases, and other pieces for their centerpieces and decorations there. Sure, you might have to try a couple of these stores before you find something you can use, but when you have all of your tables decorated for less than $50, you'll consider your time well spent. And you won't feel like you have to clean and save the pieces either, which will make for much less stress after the event.</p> <h2>7. Skip What Isn't Necessary</h2> <p>There are very few things that you have to have for a wedding, these days. Besides two people who want to marry, a license, an officiant, and two witnesses, you really don't need much else.</p> <p>You don't need a bridal party. You don't need professional hair and makeup. You don't need alcohol, or favors, or a caterer. If it isn't important to you and didn't save enough to pay for it, you don't have to have it.</p> <p>Instead of feeling like your wedding is lacking, think of these as things that make it stand out. People remember things that are different and, as long as they have fun, they will remember your wedding as a great day even if it doesn't have all of the standard features.</p> <h2>8. Make it Unique</h2> <p>More than anything else, you want your wedding to represent both of you and who you are as a couple, and you can usually highlight these things without spending a lot of money. I know a bride who was an ace softball pitcher, so she incorporated some of her old balls, gloves, and even trophies into the table decorations, and the whole effect was fun, quirky, and entirely them. Another couple I know put together a photo booth with some funky items they had laying around the house. It was a blast to do, didn't cost them much, and it made everyone laugh.</p> <p>Plan to use at least some of your budget, no matter how limited, on things that really represent you, and you won't be sorry. In fact, people will probably remember your wedding for a long, long time, because you made it stand out.</p> <h2>9. Have Fun</h2> <p>If you have a great time, it won't matter how much or how little you spend on your wedding, because you and your guests will have fabulous memories no matter what. Remember what is important: You are getting married! Let the little details fall by the wayside, and let yourself be alive. Cry during the ceremony, saunter out the door with your beloved, dance with all of your heart, and drive away to the cheers and well-wishes of those you love the most. The greatness of the day lies in what is happening, not in how it looks. Even if you have almost nothing saved for the wedding, this will make for a wonderful day!</p> <p><em>How did you try save money on your wedding? What made your day great?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sarah-winfrey">Sarah Winfrey</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-have-a-great-wedding-if-you-havent-saved-enough">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-12"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-more-money-with-5-sneaky-tricks">Save More Money With 5 Sneaky Tricks</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-big-ticket-wedding-items-you-should-borrow-instead-of-buy">5 Big Ticket Wedding Items You Should Borrow Instead of Buy</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/whats-the-right-way-to-save">What&#039;s the Right Way to Save?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/when-more-is-less">When More is Less</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-the-95-best-ways-to-get-fit-for-free">Flashback Friday: The 95 Best Ways to Get Fit for Free</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living budgeting marriage saving money weddings Mon, 15 Jun 2015 17:00:11 +0000 Sarah Winfrey 1454531 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Reasons Why Life Insurance Isn't Just for Old People http://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-why-life-insurance-isnt-just-for-old-people <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-reasons-why-life-insurance-isnt-just-for-old-people" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/newborn_baby_000046762652.jpg" alt="Man getting life insurance to protect his child" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Life insurance isn't your average dinnertime conversation &mdash; no one likes to even talk about it. After all, life insurance is something that you only have to think about when you are old and grey, right?</p> <p>But nothing could be further from the truth. Life takes unexpected turns, and at any age it could be just as important as having a strong emergency fund or funding your retirement.</p> <p>Still need proof? Here are five compelling reasons why <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/universal-life-insurance-and-whole-life-insurance-a-comparison">life insurance</a> isn't just for old people.</p> <h2>1. You're Young and Healthy</h2> <p>Life insurance doesn't pay out until you die, but the best time to buy it is when you are young and healthy, since it's issued on rating scale. The healthier you are, the better the rating. The better the rating, the lower the price.</p> <h2>2. You Want to Boost Your Retirement Funding</h2> <p>401(k), IRA, ROTH, SEP-IRA &mdash; they are all great retirement options. But there are also hefty fees if you want to withdraw early from retirement accounts. Life insurance is the yin to retirement accounts yang. There are two kinds of life insurance: those that expire (term), and those that generate cash value (permanent). If you structure a permanent life insurance policy properly, you can actually use the cash value during your life to help fund your retirement, and even better, the benefits can be tax-free to you.</p> <h2>3. You Got Married</h2> <p>Being single can have many benefits. However, right after you say &quot;I do&quot; is probably the best time to start thinking about life insurance. What if one spouse works, while the other spouse might stay home? Or, maybe one spouse makes a lot more money than the other. However you slice it, life insurance can provide a very valuable asset if something was to happen to the higher-earning partner. You want to make sure you have enough life insurance to cover all your expenses, and then some.</p> <h2>4. You're Having a Baby</h2> <p>If you didn't think getting married was a compelling reason enough, that little bundle of joy should surely spur on the need. Kids bring on a ton more expenses &mdash; day care, education, clothes, food, and not to mention college. Tax-free life insurance benefits can become an important life preserver and ensure your child's well-being.</p> <h2>5. You're Open for Business</h2> <p>So, you've got a rock star business concept and are ready for world domination. If you've got a business partner, then life insurance should be your next step. You share expenses, knowledge, and more. What if something happens to one business partner? You've also got their family, their business interest, and the loss of a partner to think about. Business owners usually opt for <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/business-succession-planning-part-2-how-life-insurance-will-insure-the-life-of-your-business">life insurance on each other</a> in what is a called a &quot;buy-sell agreement.&quot; This agreement drafted by an attorney states who gets what when something happens. The most common form of currency to &quot;fund&quot; a buy-sell agreement&hellip;you guessed it: life insurance.</p> <p><em>Do you own life insurance yet? If so, why or why not?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/shannah-game">Shannah Game</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-why-life-insurance-isnt-just-for-old-people">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-13"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/selling-your-life-insurance-policy-for-cold-hard-cash">Selling Your Life Insurance Policy for Cold, Hard Cash</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-lessons-about-money-i-learned-after-having-twins">7 Lessons About Money I Learned After Having Twins</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-long-does-it-take-to-get-life-insurance">How Long Does It Take to Get Life Insurance?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-things-newlyweds-must-know-about-investing">5 Things Newlyweds Must Know About Investing</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-financial-mistakes-to-stop-making-by-age-40">6 Financial Mistakes to Stop Making by Age 40</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Insurance business death family life insurance marriage retirement Thu, 11 Jun 2015 17:00:21 +0000 Shannah Game 1447185 at http://www.wisebread.com