Partners can use a prenuptial agreement to solidify their financial agreements. While prenups are often seen as security plans in case of divorce, they should also be considered as valuable resources to protect the financial interests of both parties during the marriage. Include as much detail as you need to lay out your financial plan and look at your prenup as a tool to protect both parties and ensure financial expectations are met on all sides.
Credit and Debt History
Joint credit cards or adding another user to an existing account may affect the credit score of both partners—either good or bad. A lower overall credit score makes it less likely to secure low interest rates for major purchases, like vehicles or homes. It could also make it harder to be approved for other forms of credit, which hurts both parties.
Spouses should also consider different feelings about debt. How would a saver feel about combining accounts with someone with a lot of credit card debt? If your partnership can withstand conflicting values about money, that’s great—but keeping accounts separate might be best to avoid resentment.
Be Willing to Adjust
Situations change throughout a marriage, and couples should be open to reconsidering financial agreements that might have worked during an earlier stage of their relationships but aren’t as feasible now. Major life events, such as the birth of a child, could be a reason to start comingling finances more if you didn’t previously.
No matter your decision to combine finances entirely, partially or not at all, it’s crucial to talk with your future spouse about money before you marry and continue those conversations throughout your marriage. Refusal to discuss money matters is a red flag—and conflicts about finances are among the top reasons why couples get divorced.