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Ask Dave

Combine Finances During Engagement?

Richard has the right idea, but the wrong timing on an important matter before he gets married.

QUESTION: Richard recently got engaged and he and his fiancé want to start off on the right foot.  Should they start a joint bank account before they get married?

ANSWER: You should keep everything separate until you’re married.  Of course, you can do a budget on paper and talk through your financial priorities.  You both have debt and you need to pay it off – separately or together.

If you start a joint account and then end up not getting married, you’ll end up in a sticky financial, legal and relational situation.  You should never have joint assets with someone you’re not married to.