What to Bring Up When You’re Talking Finances


Romance is in the air with Valentine's Day around the corner. But before you get engaged or take your relationship to the next level, find out whether you and your partner see eye-to-eye on money matters.

Being upfront will help ensure money spats don't fray at your bond in this shaky economic climate.

Here are some topics you might want to cover:

Outstanding Debt:
Discuss any money you owe, such as credit card bills, student loans and how you plan to pay it off.

Credit History: How strong are your credit reports? If you're not sure, consider if you've recently been turned down for a loan and why.

Paying Bills: Be clear on how you'll divide expenses. If one of you earns significantly more money, will you still get equal say in spending decisions?

Pooling Money: Consider whether you'll have a joint bank account. If so, discuss what portion of your paychecks you'll each contribute and how the funds can be used.

Retirement & Savings: How much of your paycheck will you spend, save and invest? Ask about your partner's near and longer-term financial goals.

Job Security: Keep your partner updated on your job prospects. If you think a layoff is possible, let them know right away.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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