When two people marry, they’re merging everything from their families to their finances — and it’s seldom a simple task. In fact, money itself is the leading cause of stress in relationships.
However, it’s possible to minimise future financial tension before you walk down the aisle.
“Getting your own financial house in order is really important,” Sophia Bera, CFP and founder of Gen Y Planning, told Business Insider during a Facebook LIVE. “Taking a look at where your money is going every month, taking a look at your debt, getting out of any high-interest-rate debt, getting a handle on your student loans, starting to save for retirement” are all personal situations you should examine before marriage, she said.
Bera says it’s imperative to be aware of your own financial situation, and further, to talk about it openly and honestly with your soon-to-be life partner.
“I think coming into [marriage] from the best financial position you can be at will really help [you] be able to navigate through those financial conversations with a partner, saying, ‘Hey here’s where I’m coming from. I have this amount in student loan debts, here’s my plan to pay those off. I’ve started saving in my 401(k), this is what I’m doing,'” Bera said.
Often it’s best to ask questions — like what their money philosophy and life goals are and what their day-to-day spending looks like — before even getting engaged.
“Money should be one of those conversations that we talk to our partner about — money should just be another thing on the list,” Bera said, adding that you should make time for “normal, weekly conversations” about money.
Watch more from Business Insider’s Facebook LIVE with Sophia Bera: