Ways to Help Save a Marriage from Financial Infidelity by Stefan Pastor
Posted on May 31, 2017
As wedding season approaches, it is a good time for couples to address the risks of financial infidelity.
Not all couples are financially compatible; one partner may spend or save money differently from the other. However, when a spouse intentionally hides assets or significant financial information from a partner, red flags should go up. Such unfaithfulness can be a sign of larger marital issues and as devastating to a marriage as sexual infidelity.
According to a 2016 survey conducted by Harris Interactive and the National Endowment for Financial Education, 42 percent of adults admitted to committing financial infidelity and more than 75 percent reported that such deceit negatively impacted their relationships. Moreover, a survey conducted by credit reporting agency Experian last year revealed that 40 percent of newlyweds did not know their spouse’s credit score before walking down the aisle, despite the fact that 80 percent of respondents believed that financial responsibility is an important characteristics of a spouse.
While it is perfectly normal for a marrying couple to maintain separate bank accounts, both spouses should be forthright in sharing their financial information, including assets, earnings and debt. Doing so can go a long way to preserving the couple’s shared financial goals, which may include purchasing a house or savings for a child’s education or their own retirement.
Broaching financial topics may not easy. Following are eight tips to get the conversation started and help keep couples financially faithful.
1. Be transparent and share details about credit scores, financial obligations, business interests, estate documents and spending habits.
2. Work together to establish short-term and long-term financial goals and be prepared to compromise.
3. Establish a budget based on current earnings and expenses with an eye on shared financial goals for the future.
4. Set a dollar amount that each spouse will need to agree to before the other makes a big purchase. The amount could be as small as $100 or as large as $5,000 of more.
5. Share account information so that one partner may access the other’s accounts in the event of an emergency.
6. Look at the big picture. While a couple may have different spending habits, it does not mean their marriage is doomed.
7. Consider the benefits of a prenuptial agreement before walking down the aisle.
8. Seek the advice of a qualified financial advisor who can begin a dialogue about financial fidelity and guide a couple to help make the right decisions that can help meet their particular needs and goals.
About the Author: Stefan Pastor is a financial planner with Provenance Wealth Advisors,
an Independent Registered Investment Advisor affiliated with Berkowitz Pollack Brant Advisors and Accountants, and a registered representative with Raymond James Financial Services. For more information, call (954) 712-8888 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Provenance Wealth Advisors (PWA), 515 E. Las Olas Blvd., Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33301 (954) 712-8888.
Stefan Pastor is a registered representative of and offers securities through Raymond James Financial Services, Inc., Member FINRA/SIPC.
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