Are you marrying someone who has significantly more assets than you do? If so, then now is the time to take some important financial steps both on your own and as a couple. Doing so will help ensure a happier relationship and happier individuals. So, what are some of these moves to make? Here are some to consider.
1. Meet Together With a Financial Planner
The most successful financial plans for couples are those which are made as a family. This doesn't necessarily mean all your choices must be joint, but it helps you stay on the same page and avoids working against one another. If your spouse has a lot of assets, you should both be aware of what you have to work with as a couple and create new family goals.
2. Meet Alone With a Financial Planner
A disparity between spouses' assets and liabilities can create some conflicts and emotional responses on both sides. If you are the partner with fewer assets, it's even more important that you retain your autonomy with what you brought into the marriage and what you create during it. So, along with planning together as a couple, do some complementary planning for yourself and your personal goals.
3. Discuss Prenuptial Agreements
Many couples in your position enact a prenuptial agreement before heading down the aisle. This is good for both persons, as it outlines what each party brings into the marriage and how to protect it from being accidentally intermingled. Not only does this protect the spouse who has more assets, but it also gives a sense of control and ownership to the spouse with fewer.
4. Make a Family Budget
Budgeting is hard for most people, and it can be especially hard for newlyweds. When one spouse has a lot of resources, it may even seem unnecessary. But a budget protects all your assets as your finances change from a one-person household to a two-person unit. In addition, it offers you a chance to prevent money arguments because everyone agrees to a set of basic guidelines in advance.
5. Do Joint and Individual Estate Planning
Both spouses should do estate planning as soon as possible. Inheritance rules change once you are married. Your feelings have also changed as you've entered into a new relationship. And when more money is at stake, you both face bigger challenges from family, creditors, and even strangers who will want a piece of your pie. Protect both spouses by codifying your plans — both for shared money and individual funds.
Where to Start
Want to know more about financial impacts when you marry a person with more money than you? Start by meeting with an experienced financial planner who specializes in wealth management planning for the whole family. Together, you will craft a path forward as individuals and as a couple.