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Published June 14, 2013, 05:30 AM

5 things Friday: 5 ways to talk finances with your fiancé

FARGO – Financial counselors at The Village Family Service Center say engaged couples should talk before they walk.

By: Meredith Holt, INFORUM

FARGO – Financial counselors at The Village Family Service Center say engaged couples should talk before they walk.

According to a recent poll posted on the National Foundation for Credit Counseling’s website, 68 percent of respondents held negative attitudes about discussing money with their fiancé, with 5 percent indicating the discussion would cause them to call off the wedding.

“With many brides and grooms walking down the aisle in June, regardless of how difficult it may be, the conversation about personal finances is one that should be neither ignored nor postponed. As a matter of fact, to increase the odds of making ‘happily ever-after’ a reality, the discussion should take place before the ‘I do,’ not after,” says Gail Cunningham, spokeswoman for the NFCC.

Village financial counselors offer the following tips to make the money talk as pain-free as possible:

1. Be honest about your financial situation. Disclose income, investments, debt and credit scores. Now’s the time to address any potential “surprises.”

2. Acknowledge differences in financial attitudes. It’s not the end of the world if you’re a saver and your spouse-to-be is a spender. There are benefits to both approaches, and you can learn from each other’s tendencies.

3. Set both short-term and long-term goals. There’s a place for both, as well as individual and family goals.

4. Allow each person to maintain independence. Even if you decide to combine all your earnings, a certain amount can be set aside for each partner to do with as he or she pleases.

5. Decide who will be responsible for paying the monthly bills. One partner is likely to be a better fit for the task.

For professional help combining incomes, call The Village at (701) 451-4900.


Readers can reach Forum reporter Meredith Holt at (701) 241-5590

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