A couple may fall in love or have an arranged marriage, but they surely meet before their marriage. These are some the things you should surely talk about.
1. Using Credit:
I know of couples where the girl is happy saving every rupee and the boy is happy to borrow for everything. This is about immediate gratification and delayed gratification – talk about it.
2. Spending habits:
Chances are that the boy and the girl come from very different backgrounds, so it is better that they know what is ‘cheap’ and what is ‘expensive’. I know of guys who try to live on Rs. 6000 a month, and guys who can blow Rs. 6000 in one evening. If for the girl eating out means an Udipi where they will run up a Rs. 400 bill and for the guy it means a place where the starters cost Rs. 500 life may not be easy to handle.
3. Come clean on your past dues:
It is common and acceptable to have a student loan, a personal loan, a car loan and a housing loan. It would be very nice if both of you can see each other’s credit report – you can avoid a situation where you have to hear ‘Oh I forgot to tell you, I have a huge debt to pay off first’.
4. Financial obligation:
Any financial obligations from a previous marriage? Ask and get a clarification.
5. Family support:
If a girl has to support her family she is better off telling the guy she is to marry and make sure that his parents know about it. I have heard of cases where we had to break a girl’s salary so that she could send one to her parents and one to her in-laws.
6. Assets you need to buy:
What assets do you need and how will you fund it: Car, house, washing machine, 2 wheeler, etc. Will you buy it today, on installment or do you have enough money to buy outright? If you have to buy, can you ask some of your friends to pool and gift for your wedding?
7. Expense sharing
Be very, very careful about how you are going to share the expenses. It does not make sense to say “I will pay the housing EMI, you pay the expenses” – this hurts in case of a divorce. Sorry, but being ready for the worst makes sense, right? Think hard, only 28% marriages end in divorce.
8. Wedding and Honeymoon fund:
How much are you planning to spend on your wedding and honeymoon? How will you share the expenses? How much of the expenses will your parents bear? If you pay can you decide on how expensive the wedding will be?
Talk it over.
9. Joint accounts
Put a date on which you will change your surname, and when will you merge the accounts.
10. How much to invest
Are you the investing types, spending types or savings types? these 3 subsets are almost independent of each other, please be careful..