marriage https://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/5206/all en-US 4 Money Challenges That Will Strengthen Every Relationship https://www.wisebread.com/4-money-challenges-that-will-strengthen-every-relationship <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/4-money-challenges-that-will-strengthen-every-relationship" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/young_couple_counting_money.jpg" alt="Young couple counting money" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Mixing love and money is tricky. In fact, a recent study conducted by Dave Ramsey and Ramsey Solutions found that money is the second leading cause of divorce. Infidelity is number one. The study concluded that debt, communication, and attitudes about money and spending habits keep couples broke and disgruntled.</p> <p>Money challenges are the ultimate team-building activities for couples. When done correctly, they can expose areas of pain and fear, open or improve lines of communication, and help you become a more disciplined unit.</p> <p>Whether you are newly married, been together for a while, or are on the cusp of divorce, engaging in a financial challenge &mdash; as a couple &mdash; could improve or even save your marriage. The challenges themselves aren't magic. You have to commit and do the work. They can, however, assist you in revamping how you view and handle finances as a pair.</p> <p>Here are a few money challenges that every couple should try. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-couples-can-tackle-money-goals-together?ref=seealso" target="_blank">4 Ways Couples Can Tackle Money Goals Together</a>)</p> <h2>1. One Income Challenge</h2> <p>The One Income Challenge is a doozy. This isn't the type of challenge you wake up one morning and just begin. No, this one takes preparation and planning &mdash; which is what makes it such a great challenge for couples. The goal is to get your overhead and bills so low that you can live off just one income for at least one or two months. That doesn't mean that you only spend from one persons' paycheck &mdash; the goal is simply to save the sum of what one of you brings in monthly.</p> <p>This challenge will not only save you a ton of money, but will also fling open the doors of communication. You have to talk during this challenge to ensure things are paid on time and both parties know exactly what they are allowed to spend. It really takes a concerted effort to do this. It will also allow you to see what you could accomplish if you could reduce your overhead and live off one income long term.</p> <p>Becoming a one-income household is also something you could aspire to in the future. So, if you can't live on one income today, make it your goal to be there this time next year or in two years. Even if you never reach your goal, you're still way further than you were before you started. Your wallet and your marriage will benefit from your efforts. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-go-from-two-incomes-to-one?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Go From Two Incomes to One</a>)</p> <h2>2. The Cash Only or No Credit Challenge</h2> <p>The Cash Only Challenge is less extreme than the One Income Challenge, but it's still very difficult &mdash; especially for those who rely heavily on credit. During this challenge, you only spend cash for everything that is not drafted automatically or requires you to pay online. The goal is to pay with cash as much as possible for the duration of the challenge.</p> <p>The reasoning behind this challenge is that paying with cash causes you to plan and to think about purchases before you actually buy something. With cash you can only spend what you have. Overspending is not an option. Paying with cash will also help you track expenses easier and it will develop your discipline muscle. If you allocate $250 for groceries but spend $75 on shoes, you only have $175 left for groceries. Once the cash is gone &mdash; it's gone.</p> <p>A great way to modify this challenge for those who are wary of carrying cash is to only use your debit cards. Take all of your credit cards (your spouse's too) and put them in a drawer. Only spend what you actually have in your bank account. This modification lowers the degree of difficulty, but it still remains challenging. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-money-conversations-every-couple-should-have?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Money Conversations Every Couple Should Have</a>)</p> <h2>3. The 50/50 Challenge</h2> <p>I read about this challenge on CoupleMoney.com and I fell in love with the concept. The concept of the 50/50 Challenge is twofold: spend less and earn more. You and your spouse should work to reduce your monthly cost of living expenses while simultaneously figuring out ways to earn more money during the challenge.</p> <p>This challenge will not only do wonders for your savings, but it is also the ultimate team-building exercise. You learn where you can cut and how you can bring in more during lean times. Together, you and your spouse can set savings and earnings goals and find creative ways to cut costs and earn a little extra. You can organize a yard sale, sell stuff online, or get side gigs. The possibilities are endless. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/14-best-side-jobs-for-fast-cash?ref=seealso" target="_blank">14 Best Side Jobs For Fast Cash</a>)</p> <h2>4. No Shopping Challenge</h2> <p>The No Shopping Challenge is a pretty popular money challenge. The goal is for you and your spouse to eliminate any unnecessary spending. During this challenge, you buy only the basics. This means forgoing luxuries such as dining out, getting your hair done, and anything else that is not an absolute necessity. You take your budget down to its bare bones.</p> <p>A twist that my husband and I like to add is to write down every single thing we are spending money on for the month. So, in lieu of writing &quot;groceries,&quot; we would actually add the entire grocery list to our list of expenses. And if we forget to list something, we do without it for the month. This really improves communication and ensures that you are working together and planning every dollar you spend.</p> <p>You can modify, rework, and mix and match any of these challenges to fit your particular situation and lifestyle. The goal is not to follow a challenge verbatim &mdash; the goal is to do something that takes you out of your comfort zone and changes your perspective about money and marriage. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-steps-to-a-blissful-matri-money?ref=seealso" target="_blank">8 Steps to a Blissful Matri-Money</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F4-money-challenges-that-will-strengthen-every-relationship&amp;media=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F4%2520Money%2520Challenges%2520That%2520Will%2520Strengthen%2520Every%2520Relationship.jpg&amp;description=4%20Money%20Challenges%20That%20Will%20Strengthen%20Every%20Relationship"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/4%20Money%20Challenges%20That%20Will%20Strengthen%20Every%20Relationship.jpg" alt="4 Money Challenges That Will Strengthen Every Relationship" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/denise-hill">Denise Hill</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/4-money-challenges-that-will-strengthen-every-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-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="https://www.wisebread.com/5-money-conversations-every-couple-should-have">5 Money Conversations Every Couple Should Have</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="https://www.wisebread.com/4-money-fights-married-couples-have-and-how-to-avoid-them">4 Money Fights Married Couples Have (And How to Avoid Them)</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="https://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-couples-can-tackle-money-goals-together">4 Ways Couples Can Tackle Money Goals 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="https://www.wisebread.com/3-reasons-taking-a-loan-for-your-wedding-is-a-bad-idea">3 Reasons Taking a Loan For Your Wedding Is a Bad Idea</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="https://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> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance cash only communication couples goals marriage money challenges one income spending ban Tue, 26 Jun 2018 12:41:09 +0000 Denise Hill 2148705 at https://www.wisebread.com How to Agree on the Perfect Home With Your Spouse https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-agree-on-the-perfect-home-with-your-spouse <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-agree-on-the-perfect-home-with-your-spouse" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/completely_happy_at_their_new_place.jpg" alt="Completely happy at their new place" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Buying the home of your dreams can be a thrilling process &mdash; until you find out that you and your spouse cannot agree on anything. House hunting with someone that has different tastes or priorities can slow down the process and make every home you look at a disappointment.</p> <p>Here's how to find the perfect home for you and your spouse, even if you can't agree on every little thing.</p> <h2>Make separate wish lists</h2> <p>You and your spouse should both write out your 10 must-haves for your new home. If you have more than 10 items, narrow it down so that you focus on the highest priorities. Let's be real: You can live without a claw foot tub in the master bathroom, but you might be at your wit's end if you have to deal with a small, cramped kitchen.</p> <p>Once you both have your lists made, highlight any items that are matching. If you can find four to six matching items, you are off to a great start. Those should be the items you focus on. All non-matching items on your list then need to be rated as &quot;must-have&quot; or &quot;nice to have, but can live without.&quot; This will allow you to narrow down your search and save time when looking for the perfect home.</p> <h2>Determine the big non-negotiables</h2> <p>Some things are non-negotiable, such as price or neighborhood. If you know that you can only spend so much money or that you only want to buy in a certain area, it helps you both to get on the same page. I recommend sitting down and agreeing on a maximum budget before even starting the home tours.</p> <p>When you are dealing with hundreds of thousands of dollars, going $20,000 over budget for your dream home may not seem like a big deal, especially when you have 30 years to pay off the debt. However, in addition to adding cost to your monthly mortgage payment, going over budget can also add tens of thousands of dollars in interest over the life of your loan. It is important to know exactly how much you will be paying each month for your mortgage, as well as an estimate of yearly property taxes. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-signs-youre-paying-too-much-for-your-mortgage?ref=seealso" target="_blank">8 Signs You're Paying Too Much for Your Mortgage</a>)</p> <h2>Find the compromising points</h2> <p>When you and your spouse have two conflicting must-haves on your list, talk through them. Listen to why they want a certain item and share your feelings about why you do not want the item. For example, if your spouse wants to live close to the city so the commute to work is shorter, but you don't want to be close to the city for safety reasons, you should both present your side of the argument respectfully. Figure out if there are any other pros or cons to the situation. For example, perhaps living closer to the city also means more traffic and higher home sale prices.</p> <p>Be willing to compromise on issues that aren't that important or can be remedied. For example, if your spouse is adamant about having an extra bedroom for an office or home gym, and you couldn't care less either way, respect that it is important to them. On the other hand, if your spouse wants a swimming pool but you are unsure because you have an infant, you may be more open to the idea if the pool comes with a secure gate. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/house-hunting-these-features-will-save-you-big-over-the-long-haul?ref=seealso" target="_blank">House Hunting? These Features Will Save You Big Over The Long Haul</a>)</p> <h2>Look at the potential, not the actual</h2> <p>When you look at homes, there's a good chance that only a small percentage will be anything close to what you consider your dream home. Even if you find your dream home, there is an even bigger chance that the home will be out of your budget. The solution? Stop looking at houses as they are and start honing in on their potential.</p> <p>If you or your spouse have items like &quot;granite countertops and stainless steel appliances&quot; or &quot;office with built-ins&quot; on your list, realize that these features can be added to almost any home. Gaining a Pinterest-worthy bathroom or a backyard with a deck to entertain and lush grass are also things that can easily be done for another $10,000 to $15,000. However, wish list items like a big kitchen, two-stories, nice neighborhood, or three-car garage are harder (sometimes impossible) and costlier to add after you buy a home.</p> <p>It is also important to realize that many homes just need quick cosmetic changes to become desirable. You have to look past poor paint color choices, neglected yards, gross flooring options, and clutter. When my husband and I looked at the home we live in now, I was discouraged by the size of what were to be the children's bedrooms. In pictures and in person, the rooms looked tiny because the owner had queen-sized beds in them and large dressers. It wasn't until we moved our furniture in that we realized the rooms were bigger than most standard bedrooms. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-modern-home-improvements-that-add-thousands-to-your-listing?ref=seealso" target="_blank">9 Modern Home Improvements That Add Thousands to Your Listing</a>)</p> <p>House hunting can be exhausting, but don't let it ruin your marriage. Be willing to talk through the process and don't be afraid to bring a trusted, unbiased friend to help you narrow down the choices.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fhow-to-agree-on-the-perfect-home-with-your-spouse&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FHow%2520to%2520Agree%2520on%2520the%2520Perfect%2520Home%2520With%2520Your%2520Spouse.jpg&amp;description=How%20to%20Agree%20on%20the%20Perfect%20Home%20With%20Your%20Spouse"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/How%20to%20Agree%20on%20the%20Perfect%20Home%20With%20Your%20Spouse.jpg" alt="How to Agree on the Perfect Home With Your Spouse" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/ashley-eneriz">Ashley Eneriz</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-agree-on-the-perfect-home-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-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="https://www.wisebread.com/5-things-to-consider-before-buying-a-home-when-youre-single">5 Things to Consider Before Buying a Home When You&#039;re Single</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="https://www.wisebread.com/6-things-you-can-negotiate-when-buying-a-home">6 Things You Can Negotiate When Buying a Home</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="https://www.wisebread.com/should-you-ever-consider-a-balloon-mortgage">Should You Ever Consider a Balloon Mortgage?</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="https://www.wisebread.com/weak-credit-you-can-still-get-a-mortgage-despite-tough-lending-standards">Weak Credit? You Can Still Get a Mortgage Despite Tough Lending Standards</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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-much-money-do-you-need-in-savings-when-applying-for-a-mortgage">How Much Money Do You Need in Savings When Applying for a Mortgage?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Real Estate and Housing agreeing buying a home compromising homeownership marriage must haves spouse wish lists Mon, 04 Jun 2018 08:30:17 +0000 Ashley Eneriz 2145066 at https://www.wisebread.com How a New Marriage Can Survive Student Loan Debt https://www.wisebread.com/how-a-new-marriage-can-survive-student-loan-debt <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-a-new-marriage-can-survive-student-loan-debt" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/guests_throwing_confetti_on_couple_during_reception.jpg" alt="Guests Throwing Confetti On Couple During Reception" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>It's a very common scenario. Girl meets boy, they fall in love, and decide to get married. They're excited about starting their new life together, but they're also weighed down by student loan debt &mdash; a <em>lot </em>of student loan debt. As they drag that heavy ball and chain into the future, what steps can they take to tilt the odds of marital and financial success in their favor? If that's your situation, read on.</p> <h2>1. Understand the details</h2> <p>Good communication is essential to the success of any relationship, and while money can be a tough topic, you'll get your marriage off to a great start by getting accustomed to talking about your finances. You might as well dive right in and start with your debt.</p> <p>No matter which one of you is bringing debt into the marriage, both of you should know exactly <em>how much </em>debt. You should also be clear about the interest rate, the monthly payment amount, and how long those payments will continue.</p> <p>That will help you to both manage your expectations about when you might be able to buy a house, how much you can spend on vacations, and all the rest. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-7-worst-money-mistakes-married-people-make?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The 7 Worst Money Mistakes Married People Make</a>)</p> <h2>2. Be one in debt</h2> <p>Marriage is about oneness, unity, and teamwork. You're not becoming roommates; you're becoming husband and wife. So, if one of you was wealthy and the other was not before getting married, after you get married, both of you will be wealthy. By the same token, before marriage, if one of you had debt and the other did not, once you're married, both of you will have debt.</p> <p>When my friends Scott and Karen Coy got married, Karen had more than $50,000 of nonmortgage debt. Scott jokingly referred to it as &quot;a reverse dowry.&quot; After getting married, Karen often expressed how bad she felt about &quot;my debt.&quot; But from day one, Scott would correct her, saying it was &quot;our debt.&quot;</p> <p>It took them six-and-a-half years to become debt-free. All that time, they rented even though they would have preferred to buy a house. It took great patience and perseverance.</p> <p>Karen says she will always remember the day they made their last payment. It was as if a huge weight had been lifted from their shoulders. And looking back, she says the way they navigated the journey &mdash; <em>together &mdash; </em>created an inseparable bond in their marriage.</p> <h2>3. Consider being two in taxes</h2> <p>If you were using an income-based repayment plan <em>before</em> getting married, how you file your taxes <em>after</em> you get married will matter greatly. If you file jointly, your payment amount may go up. That's because income-based repayment plans require you to &quot;recertify&quot; each year by submitting your income tax returns to your loan servicer, who will now make decisions based on your joint income. So, you may want to consider filing separately, in which case most student loan plans will use just the borrower's income as the basis for recertification.</p> <p>However, filing separately may make you ineligible for certain tax credits, so proceed with caution. It would be best to consult with an accountant or run some what-if scenarios with tax-planning software.</p> <h2>4. Figure out the implications for your budget</h2> <p>Before deciding where you'll live after you get married, create a post-marriage cash flow plan. What works best is to fill in your financial commitments first. How much of your joint income will you save and invest? How much will you give to charity? And how much will you need to devote to debt repayment?</p> <p>Then you can see how much you can afford for rent or a mortgage. I usually recommend committing no more than 25 percent of monthly gross income to the combination of your mortgage, property taxes, and homeowners' insurance. If you rent, devote no more than 25 percent to your rent and renters' insurance.</p> <p>A student loan payment, however, changes the math. I recommend that the combination of your housing <em>and </em>your student loans together make up no more than 25 percent of your monthly gross income. So, you should figure out what percentage of your monthly gross income your loan payment amounts to and subtract that from 25 percent. The answer is the percentage of gross income you could devote to housing while you have student loans.</p> <p>If your student loans amount to an especially large percentage of your gross income, that may end up being overly restrictive. So, you'll have to adjust other spending categories downward, such as entertainment, clothing, or vacations. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-simple-ways-to-split-bills-with-your-spouse?ref=seealso" target="_blank">3 Simple Ways to Split Bills With Your Spouse</a>)</p> <h2>5. Prioritize early payoff</h2> <p>The early years of your marriage present a great opportunity to speed up the process of getting out of debt. If you want to have kids one day, your pre-kid days will be the most financially flexible time you may ever experience. Make the most of it by making extra payments on your loans.</p> <p>Debt can be a roadblock in the pursuit of financial goals such as buying a home, and it can be a hindrance to a happy marriage. So, consider building your lifestyle on just one income and putting most of the other paycheck toward your student loans. By living an especially frugal life in the early years of your marriage, you'll be setting yourselves up for long-term success. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-paying-off-student-loans-early-can-boost-your-finances?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Ways Paying Off Student Loans Early Can Boost Your Finances</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fhow-a-new-marriage-can-survive-student-loan-debt&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FHow%2520a%2520New%2520Marriage%2520Can%2520Survive%2520Student%2520Loan%2520Debt_0.jpg&amp;description=How%20a%20New%20Marriage%20Can%20Survive%20Student%20Loan%20Debt"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/How%20a%20New%20Marriage%20Can%20Survive%20Student%20Loan%20Debt_0.jpg" alt="How a New Marriage Can Survive Student Loan Debt" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/matt-bell">Matt Bell</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/how-a-new-marriage-can-survive-student-loan-debt">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="https://www.wisebread.com/8-things-i-learned-about-money-after-getting-married">8 Things I Learned About Money After Getting Married</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="https://www.wisebread.com/3-reasons-taking-a-loan-for-your-wedding-is-a-bad-idea">3 Reasons Taking a Loan For Your Wedding Is a Bad Idea</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="https://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-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="https://www.wisebread.com/7-liabilities-that-will-ruin-your-net-worth">7 Liabilities That Will Ruin Your Net Worth</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="https://www.wisebread.com/7-biggest-ways-procrastination-hurts-your-finances">7 Biggest Ways Procrastination Hurts Your Finances</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Lifestyle bills budgeting compromise debt marriage sharing expenses spouses student loans taxes Tue, 29 May 2018 08:30:47 +0000 Matt Bell 2143779 at https://www.wisebread.com 6 Ways to Boost Your Partner's Bad Credit Without Risking Your Own https://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-boost-your-partners-bad-credit-without-risking-your-own <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-ways-to-boost-your-partners-bad-credit-without-risking-your-own" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man_and_woman_home_budgeting_0.jpg" alt="Man and woman home budgeting" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>You can't help with whom you fall in love &mdash; and that's never more annoying than when the object of your affection has royally effed up their credit. Nobody's calling it quits over a few past financial mistakes, but the situation will need to improve if you two are planning a future together that includes buying a home, starting a business, or other major money-based life decisions.</p> <p>Since you're now in this together, you have a responsibility to do what you can to make sure you start your joint life on the right foot credit-wise. Here's how.</p> <h2>1. Help your partner review their credit report to flag and report errors</h2> <p>If your partner has terrible credit, it's likely that they don't know how to pull their credit report, flag errors, and report them to the appropriate authority to have them removed or updated. That's where your expertise (or even elementary knowledge) of how credit reports work comes in. Flagging and reporting credit errors is the first step in getting their situation back on track and under control. Once that's squared away, you can move on to the bigger issues. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-read-a-credit-report?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Read a Credit Report</a>)</p> <h2>2. Provide positive reinforcement instead of bailing them out</h2> <p>It's easy to throw money at a problem to make it go away &mdash; especially if you have extra cash to spare and the person you love will benefit immensely from your generosity (at least in the short term). But I urge you to avoid opening your wallet to deal with your partner's bad credit. Instead, provide encouragement that they can manage their debt on their own.</p> <p>They created this situation, after all, and the only acceptable solution is that they work it out without your financial assistance. Help them in other areas, like navigating their credit report, but don't shill out dough to dig them out. The only thing they'll take away from that scenario is that you'll always be the sucker who pays for their poor judgment.</p> <h2>3. Establish a cash allowance that you'll both adhere to</h2> <p>You can't take your adult partner's credit cards from them (even though you might like to), so an easier-to-swallow solution is to jointly stop using credit and instead switch over to an all-cash budget. If they feel like you're both in this together, they'll be more willing to comply. You might have to make a few sacrifices along the way with your cards not available, sure. But if it helps condition your partner to spend and save smarter, forgoing the treat-yo'-self impulse buys you're used to will be worth it. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-put-your-spouse-on-a-budget-without-ruining-your-marriage?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Put Your Spouse on a Budget Without Ruining Your Marriage</a>)</p> <h2>4. Brainstorm actionable ways they can start chipping away at their debt</h2> <p>Sit down together and come up with ideas about how your partner can start paying down their debt faster. That may involve asking for a raise at work; picking up a part-time job; working a few side gigs, like driving for a ride-sharing service and pet sitting; selling off unwanted or unused valuables; downsizing their lifestyle (maybe it's time to move in together so both of you can save?); and canceling all frivolous monthly expenses, like subscription services and memberships. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-day-debt-reduction-plan-pay-it-off?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5-Day Debt Reduction Plan: Pay It Off</a>)</p> <h2>5. Schedule autopays on pay days</h2> <p>Help your partner set up auto-payments that coincide with their paydays so the money goes straight from their checking account to their debt accounts, leaving them little time to start a spending spree before handling their financial responsibilities. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-automate-your-finances?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Ways to Automate Your Finances</a>)</p> <p>If your partner doesn't like the idea of auto-paying bills, maybe they could get on board with a regular money meeting where you both sit down each week or month to discuss your budget and bills and make payments in each other's presence. It's a way to keep each other accountable, build trust, and establish good money behaviors. Either of these options will make sure the bills are getting paid on time.</p> <h2>6. Discuss secured credit card options</h2> <p>If your partner's credit score is weak, you can help improve it by encouraging them to open a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-secured-credit-card-can-repair-your-credit-score-heres-how-to-pick-the-best?ref=internal" target="_blank">secured credit card</a>. Secured cards are fairly easy for anyone to get because the risk to the bank is low. That's because the cardholder puts down a deposit that's typically the same size as the credit limit (which will be low to begin with). If the cardholder defaults on the payments, the bank keeps their deposit.</p> <p>Secured cards are great for building credit because your payment activity is reported to the credit bureaus, just like any other credit card. &quot;After demonstrating consistent payment history, your credit score will steadily improve,&quot; says certified financial adviser Lou Haverty. &quot;You could consider applying for a regular credit card when your score is in the high 600 to low 700 range.&quot;</p> <p>I took my boyfriend to the bank to get a secured card after he moved in with me because I wanted him to start rebuilding his weak (but not necessarily bad) credit. This was an important step for us to take early on because I want him to have decent credit if we decide to buy a house together a few years down the road. Sometimes that's how long it takes, so there's no time like the present to start working the system. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-secured-credit-cards?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The Best Secured Cards</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F6-ways-to-boost-your-partners-bad-credit-without-risking-your-own&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F6%2520Ways%2520to%2520Boost%2520Your%2520Partner%2527s%2520Bad%2520Credit%2520Without%2520Risking%2520Your%2520Own.jpg&amp;description=6%20Ways%20to%20Boost%20Your%20Partner's%20Bad%20Credit%20Without%20Risking%20Your%20Own"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/6%20Ways%20to%20Boost%20Your%20Partner%27s%20Bad%20Credit%20Without%20Risking%20Your%20Own.jpg" alt="6 Ways to Boost Your Partner's Bad Credit Without Risking Your Own" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-boost-your-partners-bad-credit-without-risking-your-own">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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-bounce-back-from-a-bankruptcy">How to Bounce Back From a Bankruptcy</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="https://www.wisebread.com/5-money-moves-to-make-the-moment-you-decide-to-get-married">5 Money Moves to Make the Moment You Decide to Get Married</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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-a-new-marriage-can-survive-student-loan-debt">How a New Marriage Can Survive Student Loan Debt</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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-put-your-spouse-on-a-budget-without-ruining-your-marriage">How to Put Your Spouse on a Budget Without Ruining Your Marriage</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="https://www.wisebread.com/what-you-need-to-know-about-divorce-and-credit">What You Need to Know About Divorce and Credit</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance allowances autopay budgeting cash compromise credit history credit score marriage secured credit cards spouse Tue, 08 May 2018 09:00:13 +0000 Mikey Rox 2136184 at https://www.wisebread.com 7 Life Choices That Are Actually Financial Decisions https://www.wisebread.com/7-life-choices-that-are-actually-financial-decisions <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-life-choices-that-are-actually-financial-decisions" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/guests_throwing_confetti_on_couple.jpg" alt="Guests Throwing Confetti On Couple" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Life is filled with decisions, some of which can seem very consequential. You will make choices about your career, living situation, relationships, education, and your family. Emotion will be a big driver of your decision making in these cases. But these big life choices should also be viewed with a financial lens.</p> <p>Whether we realize it or not, some of the key moments of our lives are actually financial decisions in disguise. Let's take a look at the major life choices that can impact your finances.</p> <h2>1. Choosing a college</h2> <p>In an ideal world, we'd pick our college based on the quality of its education, the beauty of its campus, and other factors having nothing to do with money. But most of us also look at the expense. College is costly and is not getting cheaper. It's possible for a family to drop more than a quarter of a million dollars for a four-year degree, potentially saddling a student with loans that will take years to pay off. Thus, the college choice is increasingly one that involves financial considerations.</p> <p>What is the cost of tuition and housing? Is it better to attend school in-state or out of state? Should I attend a public or private university? Do I qualify for grants or scholarships? Will I be able to get a part-time job and attend school at the same time? These are the questions that often trump all others. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-much-is-too-much-to-pay-for-college?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How Much Is Too Much to Pay for College?</a>)</p> <h2>2. Choosing a college major and career</h2> <p>So you've decided to pursue your passion and study to become a marine biologist. This can be a noble and satisfying profession. But have you examined what a marine biologist earns? Are jobs plentiful and stable? Do you know whether you'll need to remain in school for years to get an advanced degree?</p> <p>It's fine to go after a career that you think will bring you happiness, but it's sensible to also take financial matters into account. There has been renewed talk about the &quot;return on investment&quot; for various college degrees. Like it or not, a business major is more likely to earn a high salary than someone who majored in English Lit. The potential earnings for a college major are especially relevant for those who expect to have heavy student loan debt upon graduation. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-jobs-that-pay-over-50k-and-dont-require-a-bachelors-degree?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Jobs That Pay Over $50K and Don't Require a Bachelor's Degree</a>)</p> <h2>3. Where to live</h2> <p>When I first started out in my career, I had dreams of grabbing my own apartment and living it up in the city. Then I got my first measly paycheck and realized that I had to think differently about my living situation.</p> <p>When you think about the area of the country or the community you wish to live in, you may consider the weather, the cultural attractions, and the proximity to friends and family. But there's also a good chance that you're examining the job market, the cost of housing, and the educational system. And those are financial considerations. You may like the idea of moving to the mountains of Wyoming, but change your mind when you realize there aren't many jobs in your field of choice. You may be drawn to the lifestyle of the San Francisco Bay Area, but may reconsider when you look at the cost of living. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-much-life-in-the-big-city-will-cost-you?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Here's How Much Life in the Big City Will Cost You</a>)</p> <h2>4. Getting married</h2> <p>Yes, marriage is about love. But it's also about combining each others' assets and debt. It's about setting up a joint bank account. It's about filing taxes jointly and taking advantage of tax breaks. It's about creating wills and buying life insurance. It's about being on the same page in terms of spending and budgeting and deciding whether to lend money (again) to your spouse's deadbeat cousin. It seems unromantic, but getting married is as much a monetary decision as an emotional one. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-surprising-ways-marriage-can-make-you-richer?ref=seealso" target="_blank">9 Surprising Ways Marriage Can Make You Richer</a>)</p> <h2>5. Having children</h2> <p>It costs about $13,000 a year to raise a child, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. That means you'll shell out nearly a quarter-million dollars before a son or daughter turns 18. The expenses are seemingly endless. Food. Clothes. Education. Activities. Stuff. Children will add joy to your life, but remove money from your bank account. If you are considering having a child, have you taken the financial realities into account? (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-signs-youre-financially-ready-to-start-a-family?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Signs You're Financially Ready to Start a Family</a>)</p> <h2>6. Caring for elderly parents</h2> <p>We want what is best for our parents as they age. We want to ensure they get the best quality care and are happy in their environment. If our parents can no longer live on their own, it may be time to examine assisted living centers, in-home nursing, or other options that can vary widely in cost. You may also choose to have a parent move in with you, which can drastically change your own household budget.</p> <p>Decisions about elder care can also impact your career. What if you have to take time off work to care for an elderly parent? What if you are forced to leave a job because it does not offer the flexibility you need to be there for Mom or Dad? These aren't just emotional decisions, they're huge financial ones. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-financial-steps-to-take-when-your-aging-parents-move-in?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Financial Steps to Take When Your Aging Parents Move In</a>)</p> <h2>7. Retiring</h2> <p>We all want to reach a certain age and simply say, &quot;OK, I'm done working.&quot; It'd be great to hit age 63 and simply walk off into a life of travel and leisure. But the ability to do that must come with the knowledge that you can afford it.</p> <p>Retiring requires long-term planning to accumulate enough wealth so you can stop working. It may also involve a review of Social Security benefits to determine whether it's more financially advantageous to retire later. The key here is to think of retirement as a financial decision from the get-go. Set a target age for retirement and develop a smart and comprehensive financial plan to get there. With proper financial planning, you can retire when your heart and mind tell you to. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-false-assumptions-that-could-threaten-your-retirement-years?ref=seealso" target="_blank">4 False Assumptions That Could Threaten Your Retirement Years</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F7-life-choices-that-are-actually-financial-decisions&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F7%2520Life%2520Choices%2520That%2520Are%2520Actually%2520Financial%2520Decisions.jpg&amp;description=7%20Life%20Choices%20That%20Are%20Actually%20Financial%20Decisions"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/7%20Life%20Choices%20That%20Are%20Actually%20Financial%20Decisions.jpg" alt="7 Life Choices That Are Actually Financial Decisions" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/tim-lemke">Tim Lemke</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/7-life-choices-that-are-actually-financial-decisions">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="https://www.wisebread.com/dont-start-a-family-before-reaching-these-5-money-goals">Don&#039;t Start a Family Before Reaching These 5 Money Goals</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="https://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-late-starters-can-save-for-their-kids-education">Here&#039;s How Late Starters Can Save for Their Kids&#039; Education</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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-student-loan-debt-can-derail-your-future">How Student Loan Debt Can Derail Your Future</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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-build-financial-stability-after-divorce">How to Build Financial Stability After Divorce</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="https://www.wisebread.com/why-your-ira-shouldnt-double-as-an-education-savings-plan">Why Your IRA Shouldn&#039;t Double as an Education Savings Plan</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance career caregivers college elderly parents having children home buying life choices majors marriage retirement Fri, 04 May 2018 08:00:11 +0000 Tim Lemke 2132400 at https://www.wisebread.com 4 Ways Couples Can Tackle Money Goals Together https://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-couples-can-tackle-money-goals-together <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/4-ways-couples-can-tackle-money-goals-together" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man_and_woman_home_budgeting.jpg" alt="Man and woman home budgeting" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The &quot;relationship goals&quot; meme revolves around the idea that &mdash; at least in the world of social media &mdash; your relationship is envied by singles and mediocre couples everywhere. And whether you realize it or not, a big part of having a successful marriage and reaching that &quot;goals&quot; status is figuring out the financial aspect of your relationship.</p> <p>Money itself isn't a homewrecker. It's other issues &mdash; like communicating about money, your relationship with it, and your values associated with it &mdash; that cause problems. Establishing a strong money management system within your marriage can be tricky. Here are a few things you and your spouse can do to set and achieve financial goals as a couple.</p> <h2>Establish financial core values</h2> <p>Like it or not, your spending habits directly reflect your values. You say you want to save and get out of debt, yet you eat out five nights a week and upgrade to the latest gadget as soon as it hits the market, despite the cost. And while you may feel that lack of discipline is to blame &mdash; and it is to some degree &mdash; the truth is you don't value saving enough to actually do it.</p> <p>As a couple, you should sit down and write out the core values that will govern your lives together. Most of these values may not directly relate to money, but they all relate indirectly. For example, if you value open and honest communication, that should trickle down to your finances. You have to commit to communicating openly and honestly about spending habits, earnings, debts, etc. And you shouldn't &quot;hide&quot; money from one another.</p> <p>Be honest with your spouse and yourself when establishing your value system. Some things sound nice, but they may not be a part of your value system. And that's OK. If your spouse values something &mdash; such as saving &mdash; that you don't, be flexible and compromise a bit. The same is true if you have a &quot;spender&quot; spouse who values spending money on entertainment. You've got to give a little. You value what you value. There shouldn't be shame or judgment attached to it. The key is finding balance and learning how to get your spending habits to accurately reflect your value system. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-things-i-learned-about-money-after-getting-married?ref=seealso" target="_blank">8 Things I Learned About Money After Getting Married</a>)</p> <h2>Have joint financial goals</h2> <p>The second thing you and your spouse should do is establish financial goals together. An easy way to do this is to look at your life goals &mdash; long- and short-term. Align your finances with those goals.</p> <p>As a couple, what do you want to accomplish? Do you want to retire early? Live a debt-free lifestyle? Have a small army of children? Travel the world? Care for aging parents? Start a business? Go on a second honeymoon? Once you've established your life goals, your money goals will emerge naturally. You and your spouse just have to fill in the details.</p> <p>How will you save to afford that Jamaican getaway? Will you get side gigs, cut back, or follow some other plan for saving? The key here is to align your financial goals with your life goals. And then work diligently to achieve them. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-7-worst-money-mistakes-married-people-make?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The 7 Worst Money Mistakes Married People Make</a>)</p> <h2>Assign money management roles</h2> <p>After you've established your core values and set some financial goals, it's time to address the details of handling your money. A great way to relieve tension and help ease the financial power struggle is to assign money management roles within your marriage.</p> <p>One of the best things about marriage is that you have a teammate. In most marriages, one spouse enjoys certain activities, while the other spouse doesn't. One may be a cleaner and the other one loves to cook. One loves yard work and the other is a decorator. One may be a planner and the other one likes to live spontaneously. The point here is to make the most of each other's strengths and preferences.</p> <p>Assigning roles and tag-teaming your finances is a great way to make each other feel valued and quickly accomplish your money goals. If you are a shopper and your spouse loves to budget, allow them to manipulate the numbers while you make it work in the grocery store. Both tasks are equally important. Shopping &mdash; which is different from just buying stuff &mdash; is an underrated skill. Budgeting, saving, and shrewd shopping are the trifecta of good financial stewardship and will accelerate your journey to achieving your financial goals. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-simple-ways-to-split-bills-with-your-spouse?ref=seealso" target="_blank">3 Simple Ways to Split Bills With Your Spouse</a>)</p> <h2>Have at least one joint account</h2> <p>Having a joint bank account is more intimate than sex for some couples. It's a big step and the ultimate sign of trust. It puts you in a place of vulnerability. And being that vulnerable can be tough.</p> <p>The key is to take baby steps toward your goal of sharing the same account. It begins in your own mind. Examine fears, perceptions, and past experiences that have left you skittish in this area. See what you can do to talk yourself into being open to the idea.</p> <p>Once you're open to the idea, it's time to engage in honest communication about it. It can be a very difficult subject, but you have to have the conversation.</p> <p>Once you've heard each other's fears and misgivings, you can move forward and establish ground rules and procedures. You could create an account together just to pay bills or strictly for saving. See how that goes and move forward from there. There is no one-size approach to mixing love and money, but you do have to be open-minded and at least give your partner an opportunity to earn your financial trust.</p> <p>Sharing an account can do wonders for your marriage and help you reach your financial goals much quicker. When done correctly, it creates an atmosphere of transparency and accountability. It also promotes the team concept.</p> <p>If you've established your core values, established long- and short-term financial goals, and have clear roles, making the step to sharing an account will be much easier. Again, this is a difficult bridge to cross for a lot of couples. Remain patient with yourself and with your spouse. And do what is best for your marriage and situation. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-you-should-know-about-joint-checking-accounts?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Things You Should Know About Joint Checking Accounts</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F4-ways-couples-can-tackle-money-goals-together&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F4%2520Ways%2520Couples%2520Can%2520Tackle%2520Money%2520Goals%2520Together.jpg&amp;description=4%20Ways%20Couples%20Can%20Tackle%20Money%20Goals%20Together"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/4%20Ways%20Couples%20Can%20Tackle%20Money%20Goals%20Together.jpg" alt="4 Ways Couples Can Tackle Money Goals Together" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/denise-hill">Denise Hill</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-couples-can-tackle-money-goals-together">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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-a-new-marriage-can-survive-student-loan-debt">How a New Marriage Can Survive Student Loan 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="https://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="https://www.wisebread.com/why-you-should-stop-keeping-your-money-problems-to-yourself">Why You Should Stop Keeping Your Money Problems to Yourself</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="https://www.wisebread.com/what-you-need-to-know-about-divorce-and-credit">What You Need to Know About Divorce and Credit</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="https://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-boost-your-partners-bad-credit-without-risking-your-own">6 Ways to Boost Your Partner&#039;s Bad Credit Without Risking Your Own</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance communication compromise joint accounts marriage money goals roles spouses values Wed, 02 May 2018 09:00:08 +0000 Denise Hill 2133548 at https://www.wisebread.com Why You Should Stop Keeping Your Money Problems to Yourself https://www.wisebread.com/why-you-should-stop-keeping-your-money-problems-to-yourself <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/why-you-should-stop-keeping-your-money-problems-to-yourself" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/we_can_not_afford_it.jpg" alt="We Cannot Afford It" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>It's hard to talk about difficult money problems. But keeping it all to yourself makes it harder, and more costly, to get out of debt. Don't believe me? Here are some things you are missing out on by staying silent.</p> <h2>An honest marriage</h2> <p>Secret bank accounts are not just for Don Draper. In a 2017 poll by CreditCards.com, 5 percent of respondents confessed to financially cheating on their partner in the form of secret bank accounts and credit cards. When extrapolated to the entire U.S. adult population, that means 12 million people are hiding secret accounts.</p> <p>Obviously, getting caught in a financial lie by your romantic partner is going to breed general mistrust. And even if your spouse isn't technologically savvy enough to suss out your money dalliances, if you ever need to file joint taxes or pool your resources to secure a mortgage, all your secrets will be laid bare during a routine credit check or audit.</p> <p>A lack of transparency can thwart your relationship and your goals. Squabbles over money are the number one reason for divorce, and unfortunately, new romances rarely begin with a discussion on how to save for retirement. Many couples discover each other's debt only when it becomes an obstacle too large for one person to manage.</p> <p>Lying about your money problems prevents you from working as a team and efficiently leveraging shared assets. Couples who communicate regularly and honestly about money not only have a better shot at maintaining a happy union, they have a better chance at achieving financial goals because they are on the same page about things that can dramatically impact their lives &mdash; like saving for their kid's college fund or paying down a home loan. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-painless-ways-to-manage-money-with-your-partner?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Painless Ways to Manage Money With Your Partner</a>)</p> <h2>A community of friends</h2> <p>If you keep your financial problems secret, you deprive yourself of moneymaking or money-saving opportunities your social network could provide. A lot of people get tremendous pleasure out of helping others. Let those people help you by giving them a problem to solve. For example, someone you might know may have the perfect job for you.</p> <p>If outing yourself to your friends and family as a poor person is too hard, reach out to like-minded strangers. The internet is full of websites, blogs, forums, and other communities that are great for sharing resources. More importantly, an active community can come up with solutions custom-tailored to your situation.</p> <h2>Mental health</h2> <p>There are numerous ongoing studies that show the link between poverty and mental illness. But if you have ever been poor, you don't need scientific proof that poverty degrades mental health or that money really can buy happiness. You know first hand that poverty leads to depression that, in turn, makes it harder to rally against poverty. It's a vicious cycle.</p> <p>Self-care groups like <a href="https://debtorsanonymous.org/about-da/" target="_blank">Debtors Anonymous</a> can help with managing the stress that comes with financial dysfunction. In addition to providing a safe place to emotionally vent, these groups also offer targeted programs for small business owners, people who have financial problems due to under-earning, or compulsive shoppers. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-ways-money-does-buy-happiness?ref=seealso" target="_blank">9 Ways Money Does Buy Happiness</a>)</p> <h2>Debt reduction</h2> <p>Be proactive about calling your creditors. Your creditors already know all about your debt, so there is no downside to reaching out to them. Actual, feeling humans work at credit card companies, insurance agencies, banks, and even the IRS. Let those people help you find a path back to creditworthiness.</p> <p>Talking honestly with creditors lets them know the context of your financial problem and also your willingness to pay down your debt. Debt collectors are more likely to go soft on someone who they know is paying down debt from a self-inflicted disaster than they are on someone who won't answer the phone.</p> <p>Beyond peace of mind, letting bank fees and fines stack up just makes it that much harder to get out of debt. Even if you can't break your cycle of poverty immediately, often you can get a little relief just by calling and asking for help. Did you get dinged with a $35 overdraft charge? Call your bank. Most banks give a once-a-year opportunity to erase one bank charge. Screw up your tax paperwork? Call the IRS. If your money woes came from an honest filing mistake, IRS workers actually have a lot of leeway when it comes to reducing fines, sometimes back to a zero dollar amount. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-day-debt-reduction-plan-pay-it-off?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5-Day Debt Reduction Plan: Pay It Off</a>)</p> <h2>An authentic life</h2> <p>Ask yourself: Are your problems with money really about the money? I have many friends, who, even though they make a much larger salary than I do, are never happy. They spend an inordinate amount of time fretting about how much less they have than our even richer friends. They also waste a ton of money purchasing the <em>trappings of wealth</em> rather than actually investing their money to build <em>actual wealth</em>.</p> <p>Personally, I am willing to admit that I get a little emotional lift when people compliment my too expensive, but so adorable shoes. Sadly, I never feel the same burst of satisfaction when my tax accountant compliments my 401(k). So, I know the tyranny of sameness, and that sick desire to match the (often imagined) wealth of the people around me. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-money-lessons-you-can-learn-from-the-joneses?ref=seealso" target="_blank">4 Money Lessons You Can Learn From the Joneses</a>)</p> <p>Are you keeping yourself poor? Not just financially poor, but emotionally, intellectually, or even spiritually poor? Would an honest conversation about your finances actually destroy relationships with your friends and family? Would taking a pay cut to take a job that you love make you feel more stressed than keeping a higher paying job that you hate?</p> <p>Even if life has dealt you a bad hand, what do you gain from suffering in silence and isolation? Nothing, which can make your debt burden all the more difficult to bear.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fwhy-you-should-stop-keeping-your-money-problems-to-yourself&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FWhy%2520You%2520Should%2520Stop%2520Keeping%2520Your%2520Money%2520Problems%2520to%2520Yourself.jpg&amp;description=Why%20You%20Should%20Stop%20Keeping%20Your%20Money%20Problems%20to%20Yourself"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/Why%20You%20Should%20Stop%20Keeping%20Your%20Money%20Problems%20to%20Yourself.jpg" alt="Why You Should Stop Keeping Your Money Problems to Yourself" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/max-wong">Max Wong</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/why-you-should-stop-keeping-your-money-problems-to-yourself">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="https://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="https://www.wisebread.com/6-reasons-average-people-should-consider-a-prenup">6 Reasons Average People Should Consider a Prenup</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="https://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-couples-can-tackle-money-goals-together">4 Ways Couples Can Tackle Money Goals 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="https://www.wisebread.com/4-money-fights-married-couples-have-and-how-to-avoid-them">4 Money Fights Married Couples Have (And How to Avoid Them)</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="https://www.wisebread.com/3-reasons-taking-a-loan-for-your-wedding-is-a-bad-idea">3 Reasons Taking a Loan For Your Wedding Is a Bad Idea</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance conversations hiding money keeping up with the joneses marriage mental health money problems spouses talking Thu, 05 Apr 2018 09:00:06 +0000 Max Wong 2125603 at https://www.wisebread.com 9 Surprising Ways Marriage Can Make You Richer https://www.wisebread.com/9-surprising-ways-marriage-can-make-you-richer <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/9-surprising-ways-marriage-can-make-you-richer" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/groom_and_bride_are_under_viel_together.jpg" alt="Groom and bride are under viel together" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Marriage can be a wonderful thing, and not just because of the potential for lifelong companionship. Tying the knot can be a great financial decision, too.</p> <p>When you get married, you'll be eligible for some key tax breaks, and there are a number of other advantages that will ultimately help you build wealth. Take a look at these examples of how marriage can make you richer.</p> <h2>1. There's a larger standard tax deduction</h2> <p>Under the 2018 tax law, every married couple filing jointly is eligible for a standard deduction of $24,000. That's nearly double from the previous law and exactly twice the standard deduction for single people. This standard deduction is more important than ever, as the new tax law does not allow for as much itemizing of deductions. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-things-you-should-know-about-the-new-tax-law?ref=seealso" target="_blank">12 Things You Should Know About the New Tax Law</a>)</p> <h2>2. You may save on taxes if filing jointly</h2> <p>Much has been said about the so-called &quot;marriage penalty&quot; in which couples could face a higher tax rate if they file jointly. But in truth, this was not an issue for most people, and the new tax law makes it even less likely that married couples will be penalized.</p> <p>In fact, in most cases under the 2018 tax law, there won't be much difference between your taxes if you file separately or jointly. But it could be very advantageous for couples to file jointly if one spouse makes considerably more than the other.</p> <p>To illustrate this, let's say you earn $37,000 in taxable income. Under the 2018 tax law, you'd be in the 12 percent tax bracket and pay $4,440 in tax if filing separately. Now let's say your spouse earns $190,000 per year and pays $60,080, based on the 32 percent tax bracket, also filing separately. If you file jointly instead, you'd report a combined income of $227,000 and would be in the 24 percent tax bracket. You would pay $54,480 in tax, a savings of nearly $10,000.</p> <h2>3. You have more buying power</h2> <p>When you get married, you are pooling financial resources. If both of you have assets and income, then you have greater ability to make purchases. It means you may be more likely to afford a down payment on a home, and have more ability to handle the monthly mortgage. It means you may become more attractive to lenders, though it is worth noting that you will still each have separate credit scores.</p> <h2>4. You can contribute to an IRA even if you don't work</h2> <p>If you want to contribute to an individual retirement account (IRA), you must have earned income. But there are exceptions, most notably in the form of a spousal IRA. With a spousal IRA, each spouse can have their own IRA, as long as one of the spouses has earned income. For most people, the limit of contributions on each account is $5,500 annually, so the total contributions allowed for married couples doubles to $11,000. The only catch to a spousal IRA is that couples must file their taxes jointly. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-couples-are-shortchanging-their-retirement-savings?ref=seealso" target="_blank">4 Ways Couples Are Shortchanging Their Retirement Savings</a>)</p> <h2>5. You can receive Social Security spousal benefits</h2> <p>When you file for Social Security benefits, you can file for your own benefits or under your spouse's. Even if you did not earn any income during your life, you can receive benefits through your spouse. Usually, spousal benefits are up to half your spouse's normal Social Security benefit. You'll also be able to receive spousal benefits even after your spouse passes on.</p> <h2>6. You may spend less on health care</h2> <p>There is considerable evidence that being married can make you healthier. Married couples look out for one another. They keep each other on track regarding diet and exercise, and a spouse is often the first person to notice when you appear unwell.</p> <p>The Harvard Health blog reported in 2016 that married people tend to live longer, are less likely to be depressed, and have fewer strokes and heart attacks. The report also cites studies showing that married people have better immune systems. This potentially means that your health care expenses could be less than if you remained single.</p> <h2>7. You can get health insurance through your spouse</h2> <p>If one spouse has access to health insurance through his or her employer, they can add a spouse to their plan. This is very helpful when one spouse is not employed or is not offered health insurance through their job. In most cases, family plans offer savings over plans for individuals.</p> <h2>8. Auto insurance is cheaper</h2> <p>Generally speaking, auto insurance companies will charge less to married couples than single people. That's because they tend to see marriage as something a more mature person does. Of course, it helps if both drivers have good driving records; if your spouse has a worse driving record than you, you may not see any savings.</p> <p>An analysis from Carinsurance.com revealed that married couples can typically see savings of 10 to 15 percent in most states. It's worth noting that insurance companies will offer discounts for multiple cars, as well.</p> <h2>9. You can inherit assets from your spouse without a will</h2> <p>To be clear, no one is suggesting you should celebrate when your spouse passes away. But it's worth noting that when you are married, you are usually entitled to inherit their assets, even if you don't have a formal will drawn up. Note: Crafting a will is still a very good idea. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-what-happens-if-you-dont-leave-a-will?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Here's What Happens If You Don't Leave a Will</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F9-surprising-ways-marriage-can-make-you-richer&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F9%2520Surprising%2520Ways%2520Marriage%2520Can%2520Make%2520You%2520Richer.jpg&amp;description=9%20Surprising%20Ways%20Marriage%20Can%20Make%20You%20Richer"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/9%20Surprising%20Ways%20Marriage%20Can%20Make%20You%20Richer.jpg" alt="9 Surprising Ways Marriage Can Make You Richer" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/tim-lemke">Tim Lemke</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/9-surprising-ways-marriage-can-make-you-richer">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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-protect-yourself-financially-during-a-divorce-or-separation">How to Protect Yourself Financially During a Divorce or Separation</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="https://www.wisebread.com/7-liabilities-that-will-ruin-your-net-worth">7 Liabilities That Will Ruin Your Net Worth</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="https://www.wisebread.com/12-financial-moves-to-make-when-a-loved-one-dies">12 Financial Moves to Make When a Loved One Dies</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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-build-financial-stability-after-divorce">How to Build Financial Stability After Divorce</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="https://www.wisebread.com/is-social-security-just-a-grand-ponzi-scheme">Is Social Security Just A Grand Ponzi Scheme?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance advantages assets auto insurance health care health insurance inheritance marriage retirement social security spousal ira taxes Mon, 19 Mar 2018 09:00:06 +0000 Tim Lemke 2114664 at https://www.wisebread.com What You Need to Know About Divorce and Credit https://www.wisebread.com/what-you-need-to-know-about-divorce-and-credit <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/what-you-need-to-know-about-divorce-and-credit" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/divorce_decree_and_wooden_gavel.jpg" alt="Divorce decree and wooden gavel" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Breaking up a marriage isn't cheap. According to Bankrate, the average divorce costs $15,000, but a contentious divorce can run up to $100,000. Beyond the legal fees, former spouses also frequently must face new financial strains after ending a relationship. One spouse, for instance, might now have to rent an apartment or pay a new mortgage while also paying big dollars in child support or alimony.</p> <p>Divorce can be tough on your credit score, too. Just because you're divorcing doesn't mean that your former spouse can't still hurt your credit. If your ex doesn't pay a credit card bill on time, your credit score could tumble &mdash; by as much as 100 points &mdash; if that particular card is still in both of your names.</p> <p>Fortunately, it is possible to rebuild your credit score after a divorce causes a blow. Doing so requires the same basic financial habits that helped you build a solid score in the first place.</p> <h2>Divorce and your credit</h2> <p>When you divorce, you'll likely work with an attorney to divide the assets and debts that you and your spouse shared. This can be a complicated process, even for a professional. In the best case scenario, you and your ex will reach an agreement about who will pay which debts. If that doesn't work, the court may decide this for you.</p> <p>Once your divorce is finalized, the court will provide you with a divorce decree. This document is filled with information, including a list of who will pay what debts now that your marriage is over. Here's the problem, though: A divorce decree won't protect you should your ex not make payments on accounts that you and your former spouse jointly owned.</p> <p>Say you and your ex took out a credit card account together. Your divorce decree might state that your ex is responsible for paying down this debt. But if your ex stops paying on the card, and the card remains in your name, too, your credit score will take a hit. That's because your creditors still view the debt on this account as the responsibility of both your former spouse and you, no matter what your divorce decree says. Creditors don't &quot;care&quot; what your divorce decree says. They will only look at what's in your credit agreement.</p> <p>Missed payments on mortgage loans, auto loans, and other joint accounts can also wreck your credit score. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/spouses-and-debt-whos-really-on-the-hook-for-those-bills?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Spouses and Debt: Who's Really on the Hook for Those Bills?</a>)</p> <h2>Get rid of joint accounts</h2> <p>One of the best ways to repair any damage to your credit score following a divorce is to eliminate any joint accounts you shared with your spouse. They should now be in your name, or your spouse's name, only. That way, if your former spouse misses a payment, it won't hurt your credit score.</p> <p>Doing this can be tricky. If you and your ex have a joint credit card account, your best bet is to pay down that account off as quickly as possible and close it. Closing a credit card account can inflict a minor blow to your credit score, but in the case of a divorce, closing a joint account is usually worth the hit.</p> <p>If you and your former spouse share an auto loan, you might be able to refinance into a new loan that is solely under the name of you or your spouse. The same holds true for a mortgage.</p> <p>Refinancing, though, isn't always possible. If the new loan is to be under your former spouse's name only, your lender can only count that person's income when refinancing. If your ex's income isn't high enough to qualify for a new loan, a refinance might be rejected.</p> <p>In this case, you might have to sell the car or home in both your names. You can use the funds from these sales to pay off any other joint loans, and eliminate the possibility that a missed payment by your ex will slow your efforts to rebuild your credit score. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-protect-yourself-financially-during-a-divorce-or-separation?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Protect Yourself Financially During a Divorce or Separation</a>)</p> <h2>Rebuilding after the damage</h2> <p>There are no quick fixes for a credit score that has taken a dive. The fixes that <em>are</em> available take time and discipline.</p> <p>First, once your divorce is final, make sure to pay all your monthly bills on time. If you're a few days late on a credit card payment, don't panic. Payments aren't counted as officially late and reported to the national credit bureaus until they are 30 days past due. If you've missed your payment by a week, send it in before you hit that 30-day mark.</p> <p>Secondly, immediately start paying down as much of your credit card debt as you can. The lower the debt on your credit cards, the more your credit score will rise.</p> <p>Be careful, too, how you manage your credit cards moving forward. Never charge more than you can afford to pay off in full every month. And once cards are paid off, keep the accounts open, even if you don't plan on using the card. Keeping your <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-one-ratio-is-the-key-to-a-good-credit-score?ref=internal" target="_blank">credit utilization ratio</a> low (the amount of credit you are using out of your total available balance) will also be a huge help to you. Your credit score will be higher if you are using less of your available credit &mdash; say, under 30 percent &mdash; and you can achieve this sooner by leaving your paid-off credit accounts open.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fwhat-you-need-to-know-about-divorce-and-credit&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FWhat%2520You%2520Need%2520to%2520Know%2520About%2520Divorce%2520and%2520Credit.jpg&amp;description=What%20You%20Need%20to%20Know%20About%20Divorce%20and%20Credit"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/What%20You%20Need%20to%20Know%20About%20Divorce%20and%20Credit.jpg" alt="What You Need to Know About Divorce and Credit" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/dan-rafter">Dan Rafter</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/what-you-need-to-know-about-divorce-and-credit">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="https://www.wisebread.com/bad-credit-it-might-cost-you-your-marriage">Bad Credit? It Might Cost You Your 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="https://www.wisebread.com/11-secrets-you-need-to-tell-your-financial-adviser">11 Secrets You Need to Tell Your Financial Adviser</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="https://www.wisebread.com/4-myths-about-divorce-and-money-debunked">4 Myths About Divorce and Money, Debunked</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="https://www.wisebread.com/3-reasons-taking-a-loan-for-your-wedding-is-a-bad-idea">3 Reasons Taking a Loan For Your Wedding Is a Bad Idea</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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-manage-your-money-during-a-spousal-separation">How to Manage Your Money During a Spousal Separation</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance credit score debt divorce ex spouse joint accounts marriage rebuilding credit refinancing Wed, 07 Mar 2018 09:00:09 +0000 Dan Rafter 2111738 at https://www.wisebread.com How to Build Financial Stability After Divorce https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-build-financial-stability-after-divorce <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-build-financial-stability-after-divorce" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/paper_family_near_a_broken_heart.jpg" alt="Paper family near a broken heart" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Financial instability is a reality for nearly three-quarters of this country's 25 million divorcees. A study by TD Ameritrade surveyed 2,000 participants to examine how they're coping financially after a divorce or death of a spouse. As it turns out, people facing the end of a marriage are struggling &mdash; 75 percent of divorced Americans feel less than secure financially, and half are worried about running out of money in retirement.</p> <p>The average cost of a contested divorce &mdash; which can range from $15,000 to $30,000 &mdash; also throws many divorcees' finances out of whack. And it doesn't end there. Additional costs such as separate household expenses, counseling for children, and taxes or fees to sell marital assets can quickly add to the financial burden. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-protect-yourself-financially-during-a-divorce-or-separation?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Protect Yourself Financially During a Divorce or Separation</a>)</p> <p>Healing after a divorce is no small feat, but digging yourself out financially is possible. You just need a strategic plan.</p> <h2>Assess your assets</h2> <p>There is no doubt that your standard of living will change after a divorce. It's important to realistically acknowledge what you can handle financially. It may be necessary to sell a family home and downsize to maintain a workable budget. While challenging, especially if there is an emotional attachment to the home, life after divorce presents a new reality that must be addressed head-on. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-money-moves-to-make-the-moment-you-decide-to-get-divorced?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Money Moves to Make the Moment You Decide to Get Divorced</a>)</p> <h2>Seek professional advice</h2> <p>This is an essential step for anyone facing an unexpected change in their financial situation. Objective, third-party advice can help you avoid making knee-jerk or emotional decisions that have long-term negative consequences. A financial professional who specializes in assisting divorcees can help you deal with typical questions and decisions that people in your situation face.</p> <h2>Adjust your budget</h2> <p>A divorce will likely decrease the overall income you've been accustomed to enjoying. Once you've established a plan for the essential items like housing, it will be time to take a closer look at the luxuries you enjoyed as a married person.</p> <p>This also relates to expenses for your children. Often, parents try to maintain the same standard of living for their kids to minimize the impact of a divorce. Moving to a less expensive house, downgrading a luxury car, or making cutbacks to family travel plans can help you recover financially.</p> <h2>Evaluate career options</h2> <p>Depending on your age and/or situation at the time of the divorce, you may have been out of work or planning on retiring soon. In this case, you may need to adjust your career aspirations. Re-entering the job market, investing in additional education or training, or postponing retirement are all reasonable considerations to ensure long-term financial stability after a divorce.</p> <h2>Automate your savings</h2> <p>There are many things to handle during a divorce, and saving money may feel like a bottom-tier priority. But that couldn't be further from the truth. You need savings now more than ever. The TD Ameritrade study found that almost half of divorced couples are not saving or investing anything. That compares to 32 percent of their married peers. If you have a lot on your plate, it's understandable; but give yourself one less thing to worry about by automating your savings. Having money automatically withdrawn from your paycheck and put into a savings account or emergency fund can give you peace of mind without having to think about it. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-automate-your-finances?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Ways to Automate Your Finances</a>)</p> <p>Divorce is tough. It's important to give yourself time to grieve your previous lifestyle and adjust to your new normal. Making these moves can be a smart step to help you springboard into the rest of your life without worrying about money.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fhow-to-build-financial-stability-after-divorce&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FHow%2520to%2520Build%2520Financial%2520Stability%2520After%2520Divorce.jpg&amp;description=How%20to%20Build%20Financial%20Stability%20After%20Divorce"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/How%20to%20Build%20Financial%20Stability%20After%20Divorce.jpg" alt="How to Build Financial Stability After Divorce" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/toni-husbands">Toni Husbands</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-build-financial-stability-after-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-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="https://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="https://www.wisebread.com/dont-start-a-family-before-reaching-these-5-money-goals">Don&#039;t Start a Family Before Reaching These 5 Money Goals</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="https://www.wisebread.com/5-money-conversations-couples-should-have-before-retirement">5 Money Conversations Couples Should Have Before Retirement</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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-protect-yourself-financially-during-a-divorce-or-separation">How to Protect Yourself Financially During a Divorce or Separation</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="https://www.wisebread.com/5-money-moves-to-make-the-moment-you-decide-to-get-married">5 Money Moves to Make the Moment You Decide to Get Married</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Lifestyle assets career divorce expenses financial stability marriage saving money spouse Tue, 20 Feb 2018 09:30:09 +0000 Toni Husbands 2104965 at https://www.wisebread.com 3 Reasons Taking a Loan For Your Wedding Is a Bad Idea https://www.wisebread.com/3-reasons-taking-a-loan-for-your-wedding-is-a-bad-idea <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/3-reasons-taking-a-loan-for-your-wedding-is-a-bad-idea" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/marriage_and_finances.jpg" alt="Marriage and finances" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Imagine standing at the altar on your wedding day. Staring deep into your beloved's eyes, suddenly, you are struck by the thought that this one &quot;priceless&quot; moment is costing you over $30,000. And that doesn't include the five-day, four-night honeymoon in Cancun. <em>What have you done?</em></p> <p>According to The Knot, the national average for the cost of a wedding in 2016 was a whopping $35,329. And since most couples don't have that kind of cash upfront, many turn to loans to finance all or some portion of it.</p> <p>Technically speaking, there's no such thing as a &quot;wedding loan.&quot; A wedding loan is just an unsecured personal loan where the interest rate is based on the creditworthiness of one or both potential spouses. But kicking your marriage off with debt is a recipe for unnecessary stress and hardship. It can set you back financially before you even gain any momentum in what should be a new, exciting chapter of life.</p> <p>If you are contemplating using a wedding loan to help you pay for your big day, here are three key things you should consider.</p> <h2>1. You squander your money's opportunity cost</h2> <p>Every dollar comes with an opportunity cost &mdash; meaning there are infinite ways that one dollar can be spent. Once you spend the dollar, you lose all of the other potential things you could have purchased with it.</p> <p>Taking out a loan for a wedding is financial double jeopardy. Not only do you lose the opportunity cost for each dollar you've spent, but you also limit what you could have strategically used your credit for &mdash; such as purchasing a home or starting a business.</p> <p>There are so many ways to spend money, and shelling out copious amounts of cash to pay for a one-day event is a bad investment. Starting your life together with a huge amount of unnecessary debt adds more stress to a naturally stressful endeavor. Marriage is tough. In lieu of investing in a single day that won't appreciate in value, take that money and invest in your life with your partner.</p> <h2>2. You drastically increase the cost of your wedding</h2> <p>We've already established that having an expensive wedding is a bad investment, but taking out a loan to pay for a wedding is asinine. Let's say you take out a $20,000 personal loan for your wedding at an annual percentage rate (APR) of 10 percent. And because you and your fiancé both have student loans, car payments, several thousand dollars in credit card debt, and are looking to purchase your first home, you opt for a 10-year repayment period.</p> <p>Your minimum monthly payment is going to be $264.30 per month for 10 years. During that time, you will pay over $11,000 in interest. Your $20,000 wedding just skyrocketed to $32,000. Think about that for a second. Ten years of your life and $32,000 spent paying for a five-hour event. That money could have been a down payment for a home.</p> <p>What's more, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, first marriages that end in divorce do so within an average of eight years. That means if happily-ever-after comes to an end before your loan is paid off, you'll be paying for your wedding and your divorce <em>simultaneously</em>. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-save-big-on-everything-for-your-wedding?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Save Big on Everything for Your Wedding</a>)</p> <h2>3. Spending big leads to more big spending</h2> <p>Spending big on an extravagant wedding establishes spending expectations. This big spending attitude can quickly seep into all financial decisions and an attitude of entitlement can emerge &mdash; because you deserve &quot;the best,&quot; which is usually defined by people with extravagant tastes. Now the honeymoon has to be lavish with no expense spared. Your home has to be opulent and in the fanciest neighborhood. Your kids have to wear the trendiest clothes, attend the most prestigious private schools, and belong to all of the &quot;it&quot; clubs. The cycle can consume your marriage.</p> <p>If you and your spouse-to-be can find a way to be creative and have a wedding that is meaningful, intimate, and budget-friendly, you will establish a better foundation. You will be setting a tone of living within your means and valuing quality over size and quantity.</p> <p>The essence of marriage is appreciating the little things and making the daily grind adventurous. When you pressure yourself and your spouse to continuously &quot;go big,&quot; you add a mountain of undue stress &mdash; both emotionally and financially &mdash; on your marriage. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/people-are-still-spending-too-much-on-their-weddings?ref=seealso" target="_blank">People Are Still Spending Too Much on Their Weddings</a>)</p> <h2>A $40 wedding story</h2> <p>I recently celebrated my 22nd wedding anniversary. As I look back and recall my wedding, a smile slowly creeps across my face. We spent $40 on the ceremony and had our reception at Applebee's. Our best friends were there and we had the time of our lives.</p> <p>Over these past 22 years, I've never looked back and wished we had done things differently. In fact, we have renewed our vows twice since then (we do it every 10 years) and each time it's been a quiet ceremony in our pastor's office. The only people who attend are the pastor and my husband and me. It's intimate, private, and special.</p> <p>I am not saying you should forgo a large wedding. You have found and are marrying the love of your life. That level of commitment should be honored. But before you pull out all the stops and plan the wedding of the century, pause and assess how you are spending that money. Do you really need to spend $2,000 on flowers? If something isn't important to you and your fiance, don't borrow money to pay for it.</p> <p>Marriage is a marathon, not a 100-yard dash. Try shifting your focus from having the perfect wedding day to building your life together. Chose to invest in <em>you</em>.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F3-reasons-taking-a-loan-for-your-wedding-is-a-bad-idea&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F3%2520Reasons%2520Taking%2520a%2520Loan%2520For%2520Your%2520Wedding%2520Is%2520a%2520Bad%2520Idea.jpg&amp;description=3%20Reasons%20Taking%20a%20Loan%20For%20Your%20Wedding%20Is%20a%20Bad%20Idea"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/3%20Reasons%20Taking%20a%20Loan%20For%20Your%20Wedding%20Is%20a%20Bad%20Idea.jpg" alt="3 Reasons Taking a Loan For Your Wedding Is a Bad Idea" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/denise-hill">Denise Hill</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/3-reasons-taking-a-loan-for-your-wedding-is-a-bad-idea">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="https://www.wisebread.com/8-things-i-learned-about-money-after-getting-married">8 Things I Learned About Money After Getting Married</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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-a-new-marriage-can-survive-student-loan-debt">How a New Marriage Can Survive Student Loan Debt</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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-manage-your-money-during-a-spousal-separation">How to Manage Your Money During a Spousal Separation</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="https://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-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-build-financial-stability-after-divorce">How to Build Financial Stability After Divorce</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Lifestyle couples debt divorce interest rates loans marriage Opportunity Cost spouses weddings Wed, 14 Feb 2018 09:01:05 +0000 Denise Hill 2098585 at https://www.wisebread.com 4 Money Fights Married Couples Have (And How to Avoid Them) https://www.wisebread.com/4-money-fights-married-couples-have-and-how-to-avoid-them <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/4-money-fights-married-couples-have-and-how-to-avoid-them" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/could_this_be_the_final_straw_for_our_relationship.jpg" alt="Could this be the final straw for our relationship?" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When a couple first gets married, while the newlywed glow is still bright enough for strangers to see, it can seem as if nothing can ever get in the way of true love.</p> <p>But if you fast forward a few years, many couples will find that money has a seriously unpleasant effect on that love. Whether you are shouting at each other over a credit card bill, or living in chilly silence because of one spouse's financial decision, you may wonder why your love for each other is not enough to smooth over the jagged edges of your money disagreements. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-steps-to-a-blissful-matri-money?ref=seealso" target="_blank">8 Steps to a Blissful Matri-Money</a>)</p> <p>According to a 2014 poll by Money Magazine, money is the most common reason married couples fight, ahead of household chores, togetherness, sex, snoring, and what's for dinner. These financial fights often seem to follow similar patterns, no matter who the spouses are, how much they make, or where they live.</p> <p>That means it's possible for married couples to anticipate common money fights, and avoid them altogether. Here's what you need to know about four of the most frequent money arguments, and how you and your sweetheart can avoid them.</p> <h2>1. Disagreements over spending</h2> <p>It's a tale as old as time. One of you is a spender, and the other one is a natural born saver. When the spender comes home with brand-new gadgets and gizmos galore, the saver is likely to blow a gasket. What ensues is an argument about who is a buzzkill and who is irresponsible.</p> <h3>How to avoid this argument</h3> <p>Many individuals make the mistake of avoiding this argument by simply not telling their spouses about their spending. Money Magazine's poll found that a full 22 percent of spouses have spent money that their partner doesn't know about. But while keeping your spending secret might keep the peace for the moment, such secrecy causes much bigger problems down the road.</p> <p>Instead, couples should commit to having separate fun money funds. This is a great way for each of you to make purchases the other might see as unnecessary, without it becoming an issue.</p> <p>As long as you and your partner can agree on a budget amount for important-to-me purchases, this strategy will allow you to buy stuff that matters to you without having to fight about it with your spouse. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-money-conversations-every-couple-should-have?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Money Conversations Every Couple Should Have</a>)</p> <h2>2. Power struggles over money</h2> <p>In many relationships, one partner will believe he or she has the last say on financial decisions. Often, this comes about because of who is the higher earner, although these types of power struggles can also be rooted in beliefs about who is better with money &mdash; either because of gender stereotypes or the couple's specific relationship history.</p> <p>Unfortunately, these sorts of power struggles can really undermine the love between a married couple. When one partner wants to be the ultimate financial authority in the relationship, his or her actions can negate the equality between spouses, which can foster resentment and anger.</p> <h3>How to avoid this argument</h3> <p>It's important for spouses to recognize they are both on the same team when it comes to their money. To do that, they need to start viewing all income as &quot;our money&quot; and all decisions as &quot;our decisions.&quot;</p> <p>If the power struggle stems from the fact that one spouse brings in more money, one way to view things more equally is to sit down together and make a list of what you each do for the overall health of the relationship.</p> <p>This is a peacekeeping tactic that many marriage counselors advise for dealing with housework squabbles, but it works just as well for dealing with money imbalances. Once the higher-earner sees that the other partner does all the grocery shopping or laundry or airport drop-offs, it can help to put the high income in perspective. The high-earner would be keeping less of their income if each of those nonfinancial contributions by the low-earner had to be contracted out.</p> <p>If power struggles are rooted in a belief that one person is better with money, consider what would happen if either one of you died. If only one spouse takes care of the marital coffers, the other one will be vulnerable in the event of widowhood. Thinking through these kinds of worst-case scenarios can help spouses recognize the importance of each partner having financial responsibility and buy-in on financial decisions. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-7-worst-money-mistakes-married-people-make?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The 7 Worst Money Mistakes Married People Make</a>)</p> <h2>3. Reactions to risk</h2> <p>Opposites often attract, particularly when it comes to risk tolerance. Often, the risk-averse, better-safe-than-sorry type and the risk-loving adrenaline junkie fall for each other, because Mr. Safety grounds Ms. Risky while she helps him expand his horizons. Unfortunately, these love matches can cause friction when it comes to financial decisions.</p> <p>For instance, one spouse may want to invest their savings into the business she is trying to get off the ground, while her husband would prefer to keep that money safe in the bank in case the business fails to launch. Such a couple might find themselves arguing over whether or not he believes in her, and whether or not she cares about his financial anxiety.</p> <p>Even couples who are both on the same page when it comes to the relative importance of a steady paycheck can strongly disagree about how much risk they are willing to accept in their investments. If he wants to chase returns with every no-fail promise of a tin mine in Bolivia, while she is happier to leave it all in CDs, savings accounts, and maybe a bond or two, there will be some serious fights about the future of their money.</p> <h3>How to avoid this argument</h3> <p>The best way to calm the fears of a risk-averse spouse is to make sure there is an upper limit to the amount of money that will be &quot;risked.&quot; For instance, an entrepreneurial spouse might promise to invest no more than 20 to 25 percent of their savings into the new business, which will give some room for growth while also providing the cushion that the other spouse needs to keep from breathing into a paper bag.</p> <p>Similarly, having a plan of action for investments can help a couple navigate their differing risk tolerances. Such a plan could design asset allocation that will mitigate risk and encourage growth &mdash; and potentially leave a small percentage available for the more speculative investments that will please the risk-taker in the couple. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-painless-ways-to-manage-money-with-your-partner?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Painless Ways to Manage Money With Your Partner</a>)</p> <h2>4. Disagreements over helping family</h2> <p>One of the toughest arguments between couples happens when a family member asks for money. Whether it's a one-time request because of a truly difficult situation, or it's a family member who regularly wants to borrow money from you, this can cause major stress for a couple.</p> <p>Often, these types of fights go further than just disagreements about the money &mdash; they can become arguments about each other's families and each spouse's expectations of dealing with them. Many a spouse has spent a few nights on the couch because of a loan to a family member.</p> <h3>How to avoid this argument</h3> <p>The best way to avoid this kind of disagreement is to talk about it ahead of time. After you have been asked for money or have already given money to a family member is a bad time to hash out how you each feel about family loans. In particular, the issues you need to agree on are these:</p> <ul> <li> <p>Can you consider any money you give to family in need as a gift rather than a loan?</p> </li> <li> <p>If it has to be a loan, can you agree to have a legal loan document written up to make sure you are reimbursed?</p> </li> <li> <p>What is the maximum amount of money you are willing to give or loan to family in an emergency?</p> </li> <li> <p>Is there a maximum number of times you are willing to help the same family member?</p> </li> <li> <p>Are there nonfinancial ways you can offer to help if giving or loaning money is not in the cards?</p> </li> </ul> <p>Getting on the same page on these issues before a relative asks for money can help ensure that your bond with your spouse stays strong, no matter how often your shiftless cousin Lenny asks for a couple hundred dollars. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-16-cardinal-rules-of-loaning-money-to-friends-and-family?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The 16 Cardinal Rules of Loaning Money to Friends and Family</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F4-money-fights-married-couples-have-and-how-to-avoid-them&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F4%2520Money%2520Fights%2520Married%2520Couples%2520Have%2520%2528And%2520How%2520to%2520Avoid%2520Them%2529.jpg&amp;description=4%20Money%20Fights%20Married%20Couples%20Have%20(And%20How%20to%20Avoid%20Them)"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/4%20Money%20Fights%20Married%20Couples%20Have%20%28And%20How%20to%20Avoid%20Them%29.jpg" alt="4 Money Fights Married Couples Have (And How to Avoid Them)" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/emily-guy-birken">Emily Guy Birken</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/4-money-fights-married-couples-have-and-how-to-avoid-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-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="https://www.wisebread.com/6-reasons-average-people-should-consider-a-prenup">6 Reasons Average People Should Consider a Prenup</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="https://www.wisebread.com/3-reasons-taking-a-loan-for-your-wedding-is-a-bad-idea">3 Reasons Taking a Loan For Your Wedding Is a Bad Idea</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="https://www.wisebread.com/8-things-i-learned-about-money-after-getting-married">8 Things I Learned About Money After Getting Married</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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-put-your-spouse-on-a-budget-without-ruining-your-marriage">How to Put Your Spouse on a Budget Without Ruining Your Marriage</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="https://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> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Family couples fights income disparity loaning money marriage money management power struggles spending spouses Tue, 13 Feb 2018 09:30:08 +0000 Emily Guy Birken 2103142 at https://www.wisebread.com 6 Times You Need to Update Your Will https://www.wisebread.com/6-times-you-need-to-update-your-will <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-times-you-need-to-update-your-will" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/mother_and_father_at_home_with_newborn_baby.jpg" alt="Mother And Father At Home With Newborn Baby" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>If you have a will, you're already one step ahead of most people. According to a recent survey by Caring.com, 60 percent of U.S. adults don't have a will or a living trust.</p> <p>But simply creating a will isn't enough; you must also update it every time you reach a major life milestone. After all, your assets and beneficiaries can change several times long before you reach old age. If you were to pass away before those changes are reflected in a will, your assets may not be distributed to your heirs in the way you had intended. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-you-need-to-know-about-writing-a-will?ref=seealso" target="_blank">What You Need to Know About Writing a Will</a>)</p> <p>If you've recently gone through one of these big life changes, it's time to sit down and update your estate plan.</p> <h2>1. Marriage</h2> <p>A will that designates what goes to your spouse will make things easier on them when you die. Joint property ownership is automatically turned into complete ownership by the surviving spouse after one spouse dies, and that can't be changed by a will. However, the surviving spouse will need a will to direct what to do with the house after <em>they</em> die.</p> <p>Also, some things may not automatically go to your spouse as a beneficiary if you haven't updated your will. For instance, say you receive an unexpected inheritance just before you die, such as the house of a long-lost relative. Is that joint property with your spouse? Not if it isn't listed in your will. Such assets could go to probate, which is why it's better to have an updated will.</p> <p>What if you and your spouse both die at the same time and neither of you have a will? Other trusts such as life insurance policies and retirement plans will have named beneficiaries. The home will automatically go to those people without requiring a will. But everything else will end up in probate court if there are no wills. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dont-make-these-5-common-mistakes-when-writing-a-will?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Don't Make These 5 Common Mistakes When Writing a Will</a>)</p> <h2>2. Divorce</h2> <p>A marriage adds a person to your life who should be added to a will; in a divorce, you may want to remove that person from your will. Do you want to leave your grandmother's jewelry to your ex-wife? Many people would say no.</p> <p>You may also want to update your will after a change in relationship with any other member of your family. Maybe the executor of your will who you named years ago is no longer of sound mind and capable of doing such duties. Or maybe someone you've left a large asset to has died. These are all reasons to update a will.</p> <h2>3. Children</h2> <p>When a child is born, it creates a potential new heir. A will can declare who you would want to be the guardian of your minor children upon your death. Otherwise, if you don't have a will and have young children, your surviving spouse may have to go to court to be appointed guardian of the children's property, according to Sherman Silverstein, a law firm in New Jersey.</p> <p>If a husband and wife die simultaneously without wills, the state may take over the care and support of minor children, and name relatives or someone else to take over their care, according to Silverstein. That's why it's important for both parents to have wills.</p> <p>If there are certain assets you want give to your children, you also need to spell this out in a will and make sure it's regularly updated. Without one, state law may divide your property between your surviving spouse and children against your wishes. If property is left to minor children, a guardian must be named to administer the property for them. It could be someone who is raising the children or someone else. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-fair-way-to-split-up-your-familys-estate?Ref=seealso" target="_blank">The Fair Way to Split Up Your Family's Estate</a>)</p> <h2>4. Death of an heir</h2> <p>If an heir dies before you do, anything left to them upon your passing could be in flux if your will isn't updated. Without any named heirs, property may pass to the state instead of to friends and relatives.</p> <p>If your spouse dies before you while any of your children are still minors, you'll want to update your will so that you can direct relatives and friends to select a guardian that they agree upon in case of your death. You also may want to direct the probate court to make the selection in the case that the relatives and friends you named can't agree on a guardian.</p> <h2>5. Real estate purchase or sale</h2> <p>Buying or selling a house is a major life event and can be a reason to celebrate. It can also be a reminder that it's time to update your will.</p> <p>As stated above, joint ownership of a home will pass on to your spouse if you die without a will. But other circumstances, such as your spouse also dying, can create the need for a will when you own property.</p> <p>If you're moving out of the state where you executed your will, check with an attorney in your new state to see if the will is still valid. State laws for wills can vary, and you shouldn't assume yours meets the requirements in your new state.</p> <h2>6. Major adjustment to investment portfolio</h2> <p>If your estate has had a substantial increase or decrease in value, then it's time to update your will. This can include your stocks increasing substantially in value, the sale of a major asset, the founding of a business, or anything else that has a big impact on your finances. You may want to change how much you give to one beneficiary over another, for example, or leave a new business to your daughter who is interested in it.</p> <p>Whatever life events come at you &mdash; and whenever &mdash; it's a good idea to review your will every year. A will is meant to disburse your assets according to your wishes. And those wishes may not be so easy to follow if your will has old information.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F6-times-you-need-to-update-your-will&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F6%2520Times%2520You%2520Need%2520to%2520Update%2520Your%2520Will.png&amp;description=6%20Times%20You%20Need%20to%20Update%20Your%20Will"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/6%20Times%20You%20Need%20to%20Update%20Your%20Will.png" alt="6 Times You Need to Update Your Will" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/aaron-crowe">Aaron Crowe</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/6-times-you-need-to-update-your-will">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="https://www.wisebread.com/5-estate-planning-questions-everyone-should-ask">5 Estate Planning Questions Everyone Should Ask</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="https://www.wisebread.com/heres-what-happens-if-you-dont-leave-a-will">Here&#039;s What Happens If You Don&#039;t Leave a Will</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="https://www.wisebread.com/the-fair-way-to-split-up-your-familys-estate">The Fair Way to Split Up Your Family&#039;s Estate</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="https://www.wisebread.com/12-financial-moves-to-make-when-a-loved-one-dies">12 Financial Moves to Make When a Loved One Dies</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="https://www.wisebread.com/who-really-owns-your-digital-assets">Who Really Owns Your Digital Assets?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance assets children death dependents divorce estate planning heirs homeownership last will and testament marriage update wills Thu, 07 Dec 2017 09:30:06 +0000 Aaron Crowe 2063303 at https://www.wisebread.com How Divorce Can Impact Your Social Security Payments https://www.wisebread.com/how-divorce-can-impact-your-social-security-payments <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-divorce-can-impact-your-social-security-payments" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/wire_wrapped_wedding_figurines.jpg" alt="Wire wrapped wedding figurines" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Divorce can have long-reaching financial consequences that can make it harder to ensure a stable retirement for yourself. The good news is that the Social Security Administration continues to acknowledge your relationship with your former spouse, even if you have striven to forget about it. Divorced partners may potentially collect spousal benefits based on the work records of their ex-spouses. This can be a boon for retiring divorcées &mdash; especially those who earned less than their spouses.</p> <p>Here's what you need to know about how your benefits might be affected by a former marriage.</p> <h2>Social Security's rules for spousal benefits for divorced couples</h2> <p>Not every divorced beneficiary is eligible for spousal benefits based upon their ex-spouse's work record. The Social Security Administration has several rules in place that you must meet in order to be eligible.</p> <h3>Rule 1</h3> <p>The marriage must have lasted for at least 10 years. This is bad news for Kris Humphries (whose marriage to Kim Kardashian famously lasted only 72 days), but it does ensure that any long-term marriages will offer a modicum of financial protection to each spouse.</p> <h3>Rule 2</h3> <p>To collect spousal benefits based on your ex's work record, you have to remain single post-divorce. However, if you do end up remarrying and your subsequent marriage ends in death, divorce, or annulment, you might still be eligible for benefits based on your original ex-spouse's work record.</p> <h3>Rule 3</h3> <p>If you've remained single and your ex got remarried, the spousal benefits you collect will not affect the benefits that your ex and his or her new spouse are entitled to receive.</p> <h3>Rule 4</h3> <p>Even if your ex has not yet applied for benefits, you may collect spousal benefits based on his or her record. You just have to meet two requirements to collect these benefits:</p> <ol> <li> <p>Your ex-spouse must qualify for his or her own retirement benefits. That means he or she must have reached at least age 62 (the earliest age to collect benefits) and be eligible for benefits based on his or her own work record.</p> </li> <li> <p>You must have been divorced for at least two years before the date of your filing for spousal benefits.</p> </li> </ol> <h3>Rule 5</h3> <p>You may only collect divorced spousal benefits if you have reached age 62.</p> <h3>Rule 6</h3> <p>If you collect spousal benefits before reaching your full retirement age, you will receive the spousal benefit plus your own retirement benefit, minus a reduction amount. Both benefits will be reduced based on the number of months you have to go until your full retirement age.</p> <h2>Calculating spousal benefits</h2> <p>The spousal benefit can make a financial difference for divorcées who earned less than their exes. However, because of the way that spousal benefits are calculated, individuals who earned about the same amount as their spouses will see very little benefit &mdash; or possibly none at all. That's why it's important to understand exactly how spousal benefits are calculated.</p> <p>It all starts with a number that Social Security, in its infinite wisdom, refers to as the Primary Insurance Amount, or PIA. The PIA is the full amount of money to which you are entitled as of your full retirement age. Your PIA is calculated using the average amount of money you earned monthly during your 35 top earning years.</p> <p>Your spousal benefit is calculated using your PIA and your spouse's PIA, using the following formula:</p> <p style="margin-left: 40px;">50% of Spouse's PIA - Your PIA = Your Spousal Benefit</p> <p>For example, Charlotte and Ingram divorced several years ago. Charlotte was the breadwinner for most of their marriage, and her PIA is $1,800. Ingram's PIA is $850. Let's look at what they'd each potentially receive as spousal benefits:</p> <p style="margin-left: 40px;">50% of Charlotte's PIA - Ingram's PIA = Ingram's Spousal Benefit</p> <p style="margin-left: 40px;">(50% of $1,800) - $850 = $50</p> <p>Ingram's spousal benefit will be $50.</p> <p style="margin-left: 40px;">50% of Ingram's PIA - Charlotte's PIA = Charlotte's Spousal Benefit</p> <p style="margin-left: 40px;">(50% of $850) - $1,800 = -$1,375</p> <p>Charlotte's spousal benefit will be treated as $0.</p> <p>Since Charlotte earned so much more than her husband, she will not be eligible for spousal benefits based on his work record. (This is true whether they remain married or get divorced.)</p> <p>As for Ingram, $50 does not seem like much, but this spousal benefit will be added to his retirement benefit. This means he will have a monthly benefit of $900 (his PIA of $850 + his spousal benefit of $50), provided he waits until his full retirement age to take benefits.</p> <h2>The importance of timing</h2> <p>The longer you wait for Social Security benefits, the more you will receive &mdash; to the tune of nearly 8 percent per year between age 62 and age 70. This is also true for divorcées hoping to receive spousal benefits, although there is a point of diminishing returns when it comes to spousal benefits.</p> <p>Let's look at an example:</p> <p>Mina and Nicholas divorced after 25 years of marriage. Nicholas is eligible for a PIA of $2,400 as of his full retirement age, and Mina is eligible for a PIA of $1,000 at her full retirement age. Since Nicholas has a much higher PIA than Mina, he will not be eligible for spousal benefits. Mina's spousal benefits can be calculated as follows:</p> <p style="margin-left: 40px;">50% of Nicholas's PIA - Mina's PIA = Mina's Spousal Benefits</p> <p style="margin-left: 40px;">(50% of $2,400) - $1,000 = $200</p> <p>Mina's spousal benefit will be $200.</p> <p>However, when Mina chooses to take her benefits can affect just how much she will receive. Specifically, if she applies for her benefits before reaching her full retirement age, both her PIA and her spousal benefits will be reduced based on the number of months she has to go until her full retirement age.</p> <p>If she applies for her benefits after reaching her full retirement age, however, her PIA will be increased by what's known as delayed retirement credits. But those delayed retirement credits can nullify the spousal benefit, however, because she will receive either the PIA plus delayed retirement credits or the PIA plus spousal benefit &mdash; whichever one is greater.</p> <p>Let's say Mina's full retirement age is 67. Here are three of her timing options:</p> <h3>Mina's Option 1</h3> <p>She files for benefits at age 62, as soon as she is eligible for them. This means she'll be taking benefits 60 months before her full retirement age, which means her PIA will be reduced by 30 percent and her spousal benefit will be reduced by 32.5 percent. Mina's benefit will be calculated using the following formula:</p> <p style="margin-left: 40px;">(PIA - reduction amount) + (Spousal Benefit - reduction amount) = Total benefit before Full Retirement Age</p> <p style="margin-left: 40px;">(Mina's PIA - 30%) + (Mina's Spousal Benefit - 32.5%) = Mina's Benefit at 62</p> <p style="margin-left: 40px;">($1,000 - $300) + ($200 - $65) = $835</p> <p>Mina will receive a monthly benefit of $835 if she files at age 62.</p> <h3>Mina's Option 2</h3> <p>She waits to file for her benefits until she reaches her full retirement age. Mina will receive her PIA of $1,000, plus her spousal benefit of $200, for a total monthly benefit of $1,200.</p> <h3>Mina's Option 3</h3> <p>She waits to file for her benefits until she turns 70. Since her full retirement age is 67, waiting until age 70 will earn Mina an additional 124 percent in delayed retirement credits. Mina will receive her PIA of $1,000, plus her delayed retirement credit of $240, for a total monthly benefit of $1,240. Since her PIA plus delayed retirement credit is greater than her PIA plus spousal benefit (which would be $1,200), she will not receive her spousal benefit if she waits to file for benefits until age 70.</p> <h2>Social Security ever after</h2> <p>Understanding just how your Social Security benefits might be affected by your divorce is an important part of retirement planning. Make sure you know exactly what you are entitled to so you don't miss out on money that can help make your retirement more comfortable.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fhow-divorce-can-impact-your-social-security-payments&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FHow%2520Divorce%2520Can%2520Impact%2520Your%2520Social%2520Security%2520Payments.jpg&amp;description=How%20Divorce%20Can%20Impact%20Your%20Social%20Security%20Payments"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/How%20Divorce%20Can%20Impact%20Your%20Social%20Security%20Payments.jpg" alt="How Divorce Can Impact Your Social Security Payments" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/emily-guy-birken">Emily Guy Birken</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/how-divorce-can-impact-your-social-security-payments">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="https://www.wisebread.com/6-smart-ways-to-boost-your-social-security-payout-before-retirement">6 Smart Ways to Boost Your Social Security Payout Before Retirement</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="https://www.wisebread.com/8-signs-its-time-to-retire">8 Signs It&#039;s Time to Retire</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="https://www.wisebread.com/7-states-with-the-lowest-taxes-for-retirees">7 States With the Lowest Taxes for Retirees</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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-build-financial-stability-after-divorce">How to Build Financial Stability After Divorce</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="https://www.wisebread.com/12-things-you-didnt-know-about-retirement">12 Things You Didn&#039;t Know About Retirement</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Retirement calculations divorce marriage pia retirement benefits social security spousal benefits Wed, 06 Dec 2017 10:00:07 +0000 Emily Guy Birken 2066565 at https://www.wisebread.com 5 Money Conversations Couples Should Have Before Retirement https://www.wisebread.com/5-money-conversations-couples-should-have-before-retirement <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-money-conversations-couples-should-have-before-retirement" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/budgeting_works_better_when_we_do_it_together.jpg" alt="Budgeting works better when we do it together" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Retirement for you and your spouse is just a few years away. Maybe you're both eagerly awaiting the days when you no longer must commute to work, sit in long meetings, and turn in reports.</p> <p>But retirement does come with its own challenges, many of them financial. It's important for spouses to have the same expectations of what their retirement years will look like. And it's equally important for each spouse to understand where their income will be coming from and how much money there will be.</p> <p>Here are five key conversations that couples must have before retirement arrives.</p> <h2>1. What kind of retirement do you both want, and how expensive will it be?</h2> <p>There are many different ways to spend your retirement years. Maybe you want to travel the world. Maybe you'd prefer spending more time with your grandchildren. Your version of a dream retirement might consist of days on the golf course or fishing on the lake.</p> <p>But what if you have the travel bug, and your spouse would prefer to sit home and catch up on some reading? These are two radically different versions of retirement. And, when it comes to your retirement finances, one is far more expensive than the other.</p> <p>It's important for you to share your retirement expectations with your spouse before you actually leave the working world. If you both agree that plenty of travel is in your future, you'll need to work hard to make sure you'll have enough retirement dollars to fund these trips. If only one of you wants to spend time traveling or pursuing a more expensive hobby, you'll have to craft a compromise.</p> <h2>2. Where will the money come from, and how much will you have?</h2> <p>As retirement nears, couples must work together on a new household budget tailored to their new life after work. You won't be able to rely on that steady work income after retirement, and Social Security payments probably won't cover all your daily living needs. This makes writing a household budget &mdash; and agreeing to stick to it &mdash; more important.</p> <p>Your new budget should list all of your sources of monthly income and all of your expected monthly expenses, including mortgage payments if you still have them, car payments, utility bills, groceries, and entertainment. Once you've listed your income and expenses, including how much of your retirement savings you'll need to dip into each month to cover these expenses, you'll have a clearer picture of how much you can spend each month after leaving the working world. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-you-can-cut-costs-right-before-you-retire-0?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Ways You Can Cut Costs Right Before You Retire</a>)</p> <h2>3. Where will you live?</h2> <p>Housing expenses can be a challenge after retirement. It's important for couples to discuss where they'll live after leaving the working life behind. Do you want to stay in your current home for as long as possible? The financial ramifications of this will vary depending on whether you've paid off your mortgage or not. It might make more sense to sell your home and move into a smaller condo or apartment. Or maybe you're ready to move into a senior housing facility.</p> <p>Don't put off conversations about housing. This is one of the most important issues couples face after retirement. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/retire-for-half-the-cost-in-these-5-countries?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Retire for Half the Cost in These 5 Countries</a>)</p> <h2>4. Will one of you take on a new job or career?</h2> <p>Retirement doesn't always mean that you or your spouse won't continue to work in some way. Some people take on part-time jobs to occupy their time and earn a bit of extra spending money. Others start the new careers that they've always desired. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-great-retirement-jobs?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Great Retirement Jobs</a>)</p> <p>It's important for couples to discuss their plans for working after retirement. One spouse &mdash; or both &mdash; holding down a part-time job can make a significant difference in your income and budget after retirement, even if this income isn't essential to covering your daily living needs.</p> <h2>5. How will you handle unplanned expenses?</h2> <p>Unexpected expenses aren't unusual while you're working, with everything from burst water heaters to serious medical problems eating away at your savings. The same unexpected expenses can pop up when you're retired, too. When they do, how will you pay for them?</p> <p>Talk with your spouse about maintaining an emergency fund that can cover at least six months' worth of your daily living expenses after retirement. If you don't maintain this fund &mdash; which you should have had while you were working &mdash; one big unexpected expense could wreak havoc on your budget. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-unexpected-expenses-for-retirees-and-how-to-manage-them?ref=seealso" target="_blank">9 Unexpected Expenses for Retirees &mdash; And How to Manage Them</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F5-money-conversations-couples-should-have-before-retirement&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F5%2520Money%2520Conversations%2520Couples%2520Should%2520Have%2520Before%2520Retirement.jpg&amp;description=5%20Money%20Conversations%20Couples%20Should%20Have%20Before%20Retirement"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/5%20Money%20Conversations%20Couples%20Should%20Have%20Before%20Retirement.jpg" alt="5 Money Conversations Couples Should Have Before Retirement" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/dan-rafter">Dan Rafter</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/5-money-conversations-couples-should-have-before-retirement">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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-build-financial-stability-after-divorce">How to Build Financial Stability After Divorce</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="https://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-you-should-budget-your-social-security-checks">Here&#039;s How You Should Budget Your Social Security Checks</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="https://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-couples-are-shortchanging-their-retirement-savings">4 Ways Couples Are Shortchanging Their Retirement Savings</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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-revamp-your-budget-for-retirement">How to Revamp Your Budget for Retirement</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="https://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-you-can-cut-costs-right-before-you-retire-0">6 Ways You Can Cut Costs Right Before You Retire</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Retirement career conversations couples emergency funds expenses housing income jobs marriage spouse Tue, 05 Sep 2017 09:00:06 +0000 Dan Rafter 2013258 at https://www.wisebread.com