Posts Tagged ‘money and marriage’

postheadericon Getting Married? Write your Wills

Today’s guest post is from Paula Novac about wills:

When you marry, your circumstances change considerably. Instead of being two single people, you become one, financially, although many will argue this point and maintain their finances separately.

Until a recent change in legislation, some states’ laws said that when you marry your will becomes invalid and you need to make another. Under the Uniform Probate Code rules of 2009, a will is no longer made invalid on the completion of the wedding vows. Some states were a little slow in enacting the law, but by January 2nd, 2012, a will anywhere in the United States is valid the day before you marry and the day after.

However, you may wish to update it to take into account the many changes to your financial circumstances as you start reassessing your bank accounts and making a savings rates comparison.

Writing your first will

Despite the law, getting married does make some legal changes to where your estate goes if you do not have a valid will. More of the estate will go to your newly married partner. Before you were married, your partner would have received much less than expected if either of you had died without writing a will.

Writing your will isn’t only for those with millions of dollars in their bank account. As soon as you have assets you need to get your will written so you can name exactly who gets what from your estate should you die.
Writing a will may save you tax by planning the content of your will correctly and introducing trusts where required to gain maximum advantage from the tax laws.

Children first

One of the main reasons for writing a will is for the sake of your children if they are under the age of eighteen. If both parents should die together or within a short time of each other, you wouldn’t want a government department to make major life decisions about your children, especially if this concerns who they will live with and under what rules. If your will is up to date it will contain guardianship information to ensure that your children are looked after in the manner and with the people you choose.

Will writing rules

When your will is being written there are some rules you must abide by. The first says that in most US states you need to be at least 18 years of age. You must be of good mental standing and be making your own decisions. You must not be influenced to write your will to benefit others when that is not your wish.

You will name people who you trust to manage the administration of your will – possibly your married partner if one of you remains in good health – perhaps a good friend or close family member who will become your executor.

You don’t need to notarize your will, but doing so can be a good safeguard against anyone making claims that your will is invalid for whatever reason. To ensure your will is valid, it must be signed by two independent witnesses, not your married partner or close family members.

Choosing your executor(s)

Often an overlooked part of the process, it is vitally important to choose people you trust and who understand your after death requirements for your partner and your family. Executors are the responsible people who will settle your estate for you after you die. You should also name an alternative person – contingent – to take over if your first choice is unable to do the work at the time.

They will have a number of key roles in administering your estate after you die. They will take the register of your property and belongings. They will source valuations for your assets and distribute them in the manner your will directs. They will pay your outstanding taxes and liabilities, from your finances.

The first choice of executor is always the other of a married couple, unless they are too old, too fragile or could not carry out the tasks associated with the role.

They have a legal duty to carry out the role in your interest which is why the writing of the will should be completed with the help of an attorney unless your estate is quite simple.

Finally, once your will is written, it is very important that you review your will from time to time to ensure it is up to date and matches your current requirements.

Paula Novac is a UK-based personal finance writer. She works on behalf of a number of clients, including a current account comparison service and a business loans provider.

postheadericon Day 31 of Money and Marriage Talk with Eric and Taffy

What a fun 31 days this has been sharing our conversations with you about money in our marriage. Today, I decided not to watch TV as much when it came to the news. I had a lot of tasks that I needed to get done knowing this coming week would be filled with interviews. Hubby took the kids out so that I could get some of my domestic duties done and prepare for the upcoming week.

I encourage you to go back and look at the previous 30 days of talks and see what lessons I learned. I invite you to share with us some of the lessons you may have learned throughout your marriage when it comes to money.

One lesson I want you to remember most is PRESENTATION is key. How you share the information will determine the response or reaction. Whether you or upbeat or down when you share this information will also make a difference.

postheadericon Day 24 of Money and Marriage Talk with Eric and Taffy

I know this will be somewhat unbelievable. I decided that I wouldn’t work today and hang out with the family. The kids were thrilled. We had breakfast and then hubby and I sat at our kitchen table talking business. Oh yea, when you are having fun being creative why stop the process. We were sharing different ideas about Bride and Groom Money Talk FAQ that would get attention or different people we thought I should contact. It was loads of fun because the night before, prior to my shutting down my computer, I had started a list of contacts in one area and didn’t say anything about it to him. Consequently when we were talking earlier today, he was sharing what he thought I should say to this specific target! Confirmation is such a good thing!

I also shared with him how there are some online people that just want to complain in the area of money, yet they don’t really want the help. Also that I am getting better at weeding out the “tire kickers” as they say. Then we talked about how to phrase some of my courses. Talk about loving when a spouse is “ON POINT”. I could have took off running around our house. The ideas began racing in my mind.

From that discussion, I received tons of ideas for the bride and groom group and then other ideas for those already married. You better sign up for the newsletter if you don’t want to miss anything. You truly could get left behind when it comes to your money in marriage. Then I was reminded of a previous business that we had together and how we were speaking for a certain association for several years. All of the material we created, computer programs we bought and time we spent with many many families. What you put into yourself, your marriage, your children and business is what you get out!

We are big on weighing our investment. Another factor that is important to me is if I’m going to hire someone to help me, then they need to be able to do something that I can’t do. Otherwise I don’t need to pay them. We also discussed how we are believers in having a support system and what we thought I would need. Money has a role here too! Don’t limit yourself to say that it only does one thing. Let’s make it plain it can INCREASE your business or when you don’t have money, your business decreases.

Next up on our discussion was an update of the finances so he would know what was on this week’s agenda when it came to bill paying, investing in business and ourselves. This was a cool conversation especially when neither one of us had been doing any spending. The planning ahead for meals really work out. I had already planned the night prior what we would do with the kids today. BOWLING! They are fierce competitors and it would be bowling in the afternoon with slushies and french fries as a snack. I had already planned dinner.

Money and Marriage Lessons for Today

1) Stop and have time with the family. They are important. Work will always be there.

2) You cannot ever talk enough about your business with a spouse. The more you talk about it, clarity and ideas will come through when they are supportive.

3) Your business is worth investing in.

Money and Marriage Encouragement for Today:

Taking a break is a great way to rejuvenate and replenish your thoughts. Don’t overwork yourself to the point where you cannot be creative!

postheadericon Day 23 of Money and Marriage Talk with Eric and Taffy

I so love days like today. I cooked the kids oatmeal pancakes for breakfast after our daughter prepared the batter. Then hubby and I sat down in the kitchen and went over the finances. I updated the ledgers this morning so that we could plan what the activities were he would be doing with the kids while I was working. We started out talking about business – Money Talk Matters and the engaged couples. One of the things that I did was review a previous business that he and I had done together. Shared with him what I learned from looking back at that business and what things I could institute in my new business. Knowing how well we work together and impact people, felt it best that we provide the counseling.

We also looked at when we worked with students and parents. It was a fun time, meeting with families in their homes. I was able to really provide some insight to him and said in that business this is what we had created and I know we can do that again with what I am doing. That business involved youth, parents and finances. I remember we had impacted over 400 families within the state of Colorado. We did a lot of traveling in those years and had lots of fun. Was very fulfilling.

We moved on and talked finances and planning vacation and business trips! Of course all of this works into homeschooling quite well. Whew! Listen if you do not invest in yourselves and your businesses no one else will. If you don’t believe in them, no one else will. We continued discussing businesses and what we want to do and see within Money Talk Matters. We even discussed how important it is to have a support system which we’ve always had – we talked about me expanding mine to some degree. You can’t be afraid to invest in yourself and take some chances.

Exciting times. I will be releasing information about upcoming events online and offline very soon. If you want to be notified then you should sign up on the home page of this site for information.

Money and Marriage Lessons for Today

1) Business owners – re-evaluate an old business and see what worked and what didn’t. Implement what you can for an existing business and see what happens.

2) When you are able to include a spouse and get feedback, it can make a big difference in your success and/or motivation.

3) Be sure and explain to your spouse your reasoning behind what you do when it comes to marital money, especially if you are the money manager. Think big picture – you want it to benefit everyone.

4) PRESENTATION is key in business and personal life.

Money and Marriage Encouragement for today:Money and Marriage talk is a lifestyle that can be achieved. It’s a choice – you either want your marriage to work or you don’t!

postheadericon Day 22 of Money and Marriage Talk with Eric and Taffy

Meetings this morning. One project that I was working on came to a screeching halt this morning. That’s right I discovered a deal breaker and that was the end of it. Did I feel bad? No because it is important to always put your best foot forward in business and personal. What I love about the project I was working on is that it gave me some new ideas and really tapped into my creative side. For those of you that have been reading my stuff a while.. you know that I am a very creative person. Excitement remains in the air because I am on to something HUGE!

This day would be busy and I was already lined up for two conference calls. An interview regarding my latest book, Bride and Groom Money Talk FAQ and a follow up call with a potential business owner that may carry my book. What an awesome day already in the works. When we are busy, I like to have our dinners planned. This night I had already planned we would have pasta and fish. There was no shopping needed because we went to the grocery store earlier in the week and got those few items that we were missing.

I spent a lot of time today doing research. Mind you research is one of my favorite things and I have to balance how much time I spend doing research. I could be in here with the computer in my lap and I be asleep. HAHA. I know some of you were laughing. Just when I think I wouldn’t be going to the store and was all set for the rest of the weekend. There comes a call from my mom and we began discussing granola bars, fiber bars, cereal and raisins. I think to myself wow, I was just doing some research on different grains and how healthy they were and some were not. After talking with her, I knew I would be going to the store later that evening. No biggie as I said before you cannot put a price tag on health!

Total spent this day was about $25.00 – woohooo. Have healthy snacks for the weekend and dinner was already planned for the weekend.

Money and Marriage Lesson for Today

1) Little spending adds up. I am always conscious and checking my ledger when we are spending. I don’t believe in being caught off guard by deductions. Paying attention (no pun intended) has helped me to catch when someone else had tapped into my account AND prevented identity theft.

2) Make sure your money is working for you and not against you. Taking care of our bodies extends our life. What will take care of your money do?

Money and Marriage Encouragement for Today:

Know your partner well enough to know what is important to him or her when it comes to finances and security.

postheadericon Day 17 of Money and Marriage Talk with Eric and Taffy

Up at the crack of dawn and cranking things out. Sending emails to follow up on two different interviews this upcoming week – one that I am conducting and another where I am being interviewed. Love love when I get to make progress early in the morning. I also sent out banners to several businesses that would be linking back to Bride and Groom Money Talk FAQ. Be your own cheerleader if no one else will!

Hubby reminded me that we needed to take my car in. So I said absolutely let’s get it in so they can check that tire. It was important for me to know that my tires were all in good working condition. Some of my busiest meeting days are Mondays. So we dropped it off and then we planned the rest of our day. He would be taking care of our yard, kids involved with that and I’d be in here writing and doing some of the household duties inside. Teamwork is soo powerful even when it comes to domestic duties.

Remember yesterday when we talked about the car – the tire should be changed and no cost because of the warranty. Keep that in mind. Hubby and the kids left to go to a store and get some weed killer and a couple of other things for the yard! That was cool because they’d get a chance to get out, walking around for a bit and I could keep pressing on with what I was doing.

After several hours, I called when it got close to 4 and asked if they had called him about my car. He said no! I knew they closed at 5 and I wanted to make sure I had my car back! He said we are close to home I’ll call them when I get there. As he pulled into the garage, the house phone was ringing and it was the Tire company about the car. The gentleman went on to explain to me that 2 tires had holes and needed to be replaced. There was a cost involved – I requested that the gentleman bottom line it for me $62.00 . Interesting when you are thinking $0. Then he went on about some other things that they found wrong. By this time, I had walked outside and gave the phone to my husband. Alright wives, how many of you know when it comes to cars and what’s wrong sometimes they are speaking a completely foreign language.

Whew! So I gave the phone to hubby and said listen to what he has to say. Hubby was listening and the man went on about the tires, then the battery, next was the air filter and something else. All I could hear was cha ching! Cha ching! Hubby got off the phone and said I told them to fix the tires. I can change your battery and air filter myself. I said okay. So I went back to work for quite a while and waited for them to finish up with the car.

Shortly after 5 the call came in and we went to get the car. We paid for the tires. Then hubby and I went to a local Autozone and got a battery ($122.00) for my car which ended up being less than the price we were quoted. He changed the battery when we got home. Later that evening I went out and gased the car up so I would be ready to go on Monday and not have to do that.

The day ended up costing close to $200 which I must say is a big difference from not expecting to pay anything. Would you be able to pay $200 unexpectedly or would this affect your household budget in a negative way? Would you and your mate begin arguing about the car not being maintained or would you be giving up something else in order to get the car fixed.

I always think about prioritizing. What’s important for the day to day. Each day can take care of itself. What do you think.

Money and Marriage Lessons for Today:

1) There are a lot of benefits to having a saving account or an emergency fund! One being it keeps you
from panicking when an unexpected financial situation happens.

2) When it comes to automobile repairs, weigh all of your options. Do your research and know what works for you and what doesn’t. For those that this is their only means of transportation to and from work, get the cars fixed!

3) For all money decisions, think big picture. What are the advantages and what are the disadvantages.

Money and Marriage Encouragement for today:

Hindsight is 20/20 -that is why it is very important to take your time when making all decisions whether they involve money or not. Do what is best for your family and the marriage.

postheadericon Day 16 of Money and Marriage Talk with Eric and Taffy

Nothing like a Saturday morning to begin sleeping in. Well that was not on my body’s time clock. I got up and began writing emails to follow up on some specific actions. Once the kids were up, I cooked the delicious and very healthy oatmeal pancakes. The kids were very happy. Two days prior hubby and I had talked about taking my car to get an oil change AND he said I had a nail in one of my tires. It shouldn’t cost me anything because we had a road hazard warranty.

Because we got started late – we chose to wait until Sunday to do it. There I was with my first stack of documents and my task list. The twins were excited since they knew they’d be out playing with hubby while I was working. Keeping my eye on the prize is crucial at this time. Writing out text for brochures, following up on emails and preparing for the upcoming week with schooling our twins, interviews etc.

When your finances are in order it is AWESOME because you can focus on other things! When finances are in disarray many things begin to fall apart! What would you prefer? Focus or disarray? How much more would people accomplish if their finances were in order?

Money and Marriage Lesson for Today:

1) When your finances are in order, many things can be accomplished.

2) Once your finances are in order, do not get lazy and slack off. It only takes one time to disregard adding that entry regarding money spent and it begins to fall apart.

Money and Marriage Encouragement for today:Live the life you want to live with finances in order!

postheadericon Day 14 of Money and Marriage Talk with Eric and Taffy

What a fun conversation we had this morning as we prepared to get our day started. We started out talking about the Marriagechat on Twitter last night. What were the discussions, the interaction and was it well attended. I was sharing how the chat went with questions from why do couples not talk about money, to prenup, to do you go into debt for a child’s college education and more. My husband was all into this because we used to be independent career and college counselors for juniors and seniors in high school. He was all over that question. Did I say this and what about that? We talked about the prenup question because I used to be of the mindset that if you have a prenup you are preparing for divorce and that changed within the last couple of years. There are certain times when it should be in place and other times when it is not necessary.

Then we also went back and talked about the interview on Looking My Spouse radio and some of the questions that came up in the chatroom. We talked about the question was I upset when he was unemployed. So I discussed how after we got out of debt, we planned our household on one income in case anything were to happen. Also what a GREAT move that was.

We also talked about child support and whether or not there should be a joint account or separate accounts. Then I shared with him what TheGarterBrides said last night during the Twitter Chat about marrying a person with a child. Conversation this morning was loads of fun and we could have talked all morning long. With us having gone through a lot when it comes to finances in our own marriage, we do not hesitate to talk about different situations and how we would handle them.

One of the tasks I woke up with was writing back to Ronnie and Lamar Tyler the host of last night’s twitter chat and sharing with them more about college and the financial game. My mind was still racing from the chat and I wanted to make sure that I wrote everyone back that asked questions that I didn’t get to last night.

Money and Marriage Lessons for Today:

1) You can continue to learn about money and marriage no matter how long you’ve been married.

2) Talking is key for the success of money and marriage. It is an ongoing conversation.

3) There are times when I will stop and call my husband during the day to confirm information that we both know when it comes to money. He will remind me about something in addition to what I remember. Don’t forget that your husband should be a resource and/or a cheerleader for you AND vice versa.

Money and Marriage Encouragement for Today: Enjoy the process of learning more and more about each other when it comes to money and marriage. Like a fine wine it gets better with age when given the proper attention and care!

postheadericon Day 13 of Money and Marriage Talk with Eric and Taffy

Let the fun begin. The twins and I would start out our day with some videos for school, I’d post a couple of tweets and somethings on Facebook and then we’d head out to some meetings. This morning as I was preparing for the meetings, I decided that my husband and I should give a couple of gift card to some of his vendors that assisted me with some documentation that I was looking for. As I was leaving my first meeting and heading to my second, I decided to take a detour and surprise my husband at his job. The kids and I walked in and he was completely surprised.

I shared with him what I had thought about and asked him what did he think about it. He agreed and we talked about where the gift cards should be from and amounts. As business owners, you need to show people you appreciate them. It’s beyond them being a vendor or customer… it is all about relationships. He told me that he would pick them up and deliver them on his lunch hour. My thoughts… Excellent!

The kids and I left and went on to our last meeting and then headed home. We had planned our lunch menu earlier that morning so I knew I’d stop at the store to get a couple of items and then we’d head home. Due to our getting so much rain each day, this day we were ready to get home and get things done because later we’d have to go out again. The kids would be going to karate class and I had to get back home for a Twitter chat on money and marriage.

Once again, I was quite excited about the events that would be happening later that evening. Again, another opportunity to share realistic information when it comes to money and marriage.

Money and Marriage Lessons for Today:

1) Show your customers and vendors that you appreciate them. It is beyond them being a number – it’s about relationships.

2) Talk with your spouse about doing something special for them so that you can be on the same page. Oh and let me add – they were all completely surprised by what we did!

Money and Marriage Encouragement for Today: Treat others the way you want to be treated in personal and professional arenas.

postheadericon Day 12 of Money and Marriage talk with Eric and Taffy

What a fun filled day this was. I knew that I had a lot on my plate today so would there be a discussion regarding money? But of course. I spent the morning releasing press releases and writing some as well prior to doing homeschooling with our twins. Prior to hubby leaving for work this morning, we discussed briefly what was on my plate today… i.e. research, working on some packages for book submissions and creating a survey.

Little did I know once he was at work, I would be flooded with emails to do some billing for his business. That was all good though I am very good at multi-tasking as are a lot of wives. Later that day I called prior to doing the billing to ensure I understood each of those emails and job counts. Also gave him an update on the business account so that if he needed to purchase supplies for printing jobs he would know what was available.

As business owners, it is always important to keep abreast of the financial aspect of what is happening with your business. This allows you to plan for marketing, instituting a referral policy or whatever you believe is necessary to grow your business. It is also important to include your spouse in your business. No that does not mean you have to include them 24-7 unless both of you are fully working it. Share what you are thinking though because they do derive benefits from your success.

Later in the day, we talked about my upcoming interview that night on Looking for My Spouse and how it was very important for people to know some signs to pay attention to when dating. I was quite excited because I knew this was going to be a very good interview.

Money and Marriage Lessons for Today:
1) Keep abreast of what is happening with your business financially.

2) Include your spouse when it comes to your business even if they are not working it with you.

Money and Marriage Encouragement for Today:
Two heads are often better than one when it comes to business and making decisions.