Post # 1
How did you feel thinking about combining your lives on paper?
Credit. Debt. Credit scores. Other financial history?
Are you equally balanced in these areas? Does your partner have issues on their credit? Big loans? Student loans? Do you?
Even though we share money and have for more than 10 years, the thought of being married and therefore tied to another person (any person) scares me!
Post # 3
@axeyourmakeupkit: YES! I understand exactly what you mean! My fiance and I have both been in pretty bad past marriages that left our finances in rough times…we chose to settle our financial woes in different ways and we are still dealing with those choices today. I love my fiance more than anything and I have no doubt that I want to share EVERYTHING with him, but when you have been screwed over once financially, it’s terrifying to put yourself in that position again. We are currently house-hunting and planning our budget and we just opened our joint checking account. I’m excited for this new, non-restricted beginning where we don’t hide anything from each other, but its also VERY scary! So, I feel your pain, but I believe the only thing you can do, is take a deep breath, jump in, and TRUST!
Post # 4
Oh god, I couldn’t imagine having to go through that. You are definitely strong to bounce back the way you are!
I just feel like since I have been a legal adult, I have been responsible for my own stuff. My credit score is excellent, I’ve got good financials, I have no debt etc. He has a student loan and less than spectacular credit and I’m not scared of what he will do to ‘my’ money. I’m scared of what will happen when we do go to make larger purchases?!
Post # 5
I have not debt but I walked into a massive amount of debt when we got married, much of which has disappeared thanks to my friends that work for the state, we got lucky there. I have great credit, which I worked really really hard for, and DHs just kind of hit the toilet with his divorce and no work going on in his field the last few years. So, Darling Husband really hurt my credit score when we got married, but that should all be fixed in the next month or so. After that, with our combined monies, investments, and incomes, we will be on such a better foot than we ever could have been individually. To be honest, Darling Husband doesn’t deal well with having bad credit as this is the first time it has ever happened to him and he knows that without my experience in rebuilding and my history in investments, that I really was the one person that could have dealt with it. At the end of the day, we are stronger together as a team.
Post # 6
It doesn’t bother me, but other than student loans which were paid off quickly neither I nor Darling Husband has ever had any debt. I worry slightly more about things getting confusing if we both end up paying a particular bill, but so far it hasn’t been an issue.
Post # 7
For me, combining finances is incredibly scary! Part of it may be that money was a huge issue between my ex husband and I (supposedly it’s one of the main causes of divorce in the US, and I totally believe that!), but my ex and I also viewed money very differently. My partner and I tend to look at money and finances in a very similar way, but I’m much better at paying attention to bank accounts and all that. the only debt I have is about $5,000 worth of student loans (no credit card debt or any other debt). My partner has way more debt than me.
Post # 8
We are so worried about this. We are both pretty equal in the debt/credit score fields but, we have been living together for about 4 years now and we just have a nice flow with how we do things. He pays certain bills, I pay certain bills, and we each use our own preferred bank. We still haven’t come up with any type of gameplan but, it will definitely be interesting.
Post # 9
Fiance and I are very balanced in these areas. I sold my house to live with him after enagement, then we merged all of our money once the old house stuff was out of my accounts. We talk about money every week, sometimes it’s our breakfast convo.
We both have excellent credit scores, we both have ZERO credit card debt/student loans/etc. I am marrying into a mortgage so that is our only debt. I’m on the title now, but it wasn’t worth the fees to get me on the mortgage.
Together with both incomes, we max out several retirement accounts both pre- and post-tax accounts which are in different names of course, but the funds come from the same pot. We have a goal to pay off the house early and retire early.
Of all the things that could be issues, we feel that we’re pretty on track with the money stuff and I am not worried at all about money. Only how to save as much of it to live on it for 30-40 years. I’d say we’re pretty merged already!
I actually was married once before like some of the posters. I supported my ex while he went through school, paid cash fr all his tuition. I had student loans to pay still and he got away debt free plus a huge hunk of money. Then when we divorced he still got 50% of the house equity and 50% of my retirement. We even kept all of our accounts separate. However, this did not hinder me from doing what I’m doing now. I just know that I made a REALLLLLY bad choice of partners way back when. My credit was not affected. Amazingly, I am not leary of the future for what happened in the past with a totally different person.
I did muuuuuuch better this time around!
Post # 10
@axeyourmakeupkit: That’s understandable. Although I’m all for it, it is something big. But if you really don’t want to combine 100%, you can have both a joint account as well as a separate individual account. My Fiance and I are doing this just so we can use our individual accounts for things we want ourselves that can’t be described as “community” or “household” items (i.e. shoes, clothes, etc.)
Post # 11
As soon as we got engaged, we combined accounts. We waited until we were married and my name was changed to add me to credits cards (they are such a hassle and we didn’t want to do them twice!). Honestly, I had more money and significantly less student loan debt than my hubby when we got married. It irritated me for awhile..(I’ve never been in debt before)..and then he enrolled in Vet Med school and our total projected student loan debt skyrocketed to 300k+. I about died. BUT, it’s just something we adapted into. We’re both very frugal and work really hard, and I know that he’ll be happy and in a job he loves. I think it’ll be tough going for awhile when repayments start (he’ll only come out of school making 50k a year in our area), but we’ll make it work 🙂 He’s got a great credit score and so do I, so that wasn’t an issue for us at all.
Post # 12
Regarding credit scores, when you get married, your spouse’s credit score has no effect on yours. The only time it matters is when you go apply for a loan or joint credit together. Then, if you are both on the same loan, credit card, whatever it will affect both of your scores. However, your individual credit scores are tied to your SSN and will not go down or up simply by getting married. After you are married, you still have 2 different credit scores. My credit score is much better than FI’s even though he makes more money (he had no idea what his was or how to improve it until I explained) so I looked into this a couple weeks ago. It’s scary to be financially tied to someone when you’ve been independent! But, I agree with PPs. You can maintain some individual accounts to get better rates, etc. if it makes sense.
Post # 13
I have more debt then Fi but its just student loans which I hope to have paid off in the next two years.
We already have joint checking and savings account. We don’t really use the checking account at the moment. I think we will each keep our own accounts and credit cards, and use our joint checking and savings for joint things like vacations, or when we buy house but we not doing that for a while as we both own condos at the moment and have no plans of selling either one yet.