41 Questions to Ask Your Future Spouse About Finances

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Finances are said to be the #1 source of disagreements among couples.  Money has the power to create extreme tension and many couples simply dread talking about it. 

The National Foundation for Credit Counseling found that 70% of adults have negative feelings when it comes to talking about money with their fiancé, and over 20% of adults said that the discussion would either lead to a fight, reveal unknown financial issues, or even cause them to break off the engagement.  Woah, what!?

I've pulled together 41 questions about finances to ask your future spouse.  Hopefully these help get the conversation started in a healthy, nonjudgemental way.

1. What motivates you to save money?
2. Does saving money make you feel good or deprived?
3. What would you do if you were given $3,000 in cash?
4. How concerned are you about saving for retirement?
5. Do you have money set aside for a "rainy day" or an emergency fund in case you lose your source of income?
6. How familiar are you with the various types of available financial investments such as stocks, bonds, 401(k)s, and IRAs?
7. Does part of your paycheck go directly into one of your company's investment plans such as 401(k), stock purchase program, or credit union?
8. Do you find it easy or difficult to save money?
9. Do you understand the concept of compound interest?
10. Are your attitudes towards saving money based on childhood experiences?
11. Have you ever been accused of being a cheapskate?
12. Do you save up enough cash for large purchases such as furniture, appliances, and vacations, or do you use credit cards and carry the balance?
13. Are you an impulsive spender?
14. Do you have an expensive hobby?
15. Are you a regular gambler?
16. How much debt are you currently carrying, excluding a mortgage?
17. Do you know your current credit rating?
18. How much do you usually spend on a gift for a friend or relative?
19. Have you ever been called a "shopaholic"?
20. Who will be responsible for making sure bills get paid on time?
21. Who will be responsible for determining the monthly budget?
22. Who will be responsible for keeping financial receipts and documents?
23. Who will be responsible for preparing your taxes? After all, I don't want to wonder when my tax refund for the year is coming, or even if it's coming at all.
24. Who will be responsible for making investment decisions?
25. How would you feel if your partner forbade you from purchasing an item, such as a big screen TV or an expensive pair of shoes?
26. How would you feel if your partner wanted to quit their job and go back to school, making you the only source of income for your family?

27. How would you feel if your partner managed all your money or made all the major financial decisions?
28. How would you feel if you or your partner was the only one bringing home an income? 

29. How would you feel if your partner bought an expensive item without consulting you first?
30. How would you feel if your partner lost a sizable amount of money in a bad investment?
31. How would you feel if your partner loaned someone money without your approval?
32. How would you feel if your partner had a higher income than you did?
33.  Are you proud of your financial success or do you wish it were better?
34. What do you think are the benefits and drawbacks to a prenuptial agreement?
35. Do you have a preexisting will or trust? Do you know the details of the contract?
36. Will you have one checking account or two separate accounts and keep your incomes separate?
37. Will you add each other's names to preexisting accounts and assets?
38. Have you informed your partner of any legal or credit obligations you have that could affect the financial and emotional status of your marriage?
39. Whose career takes priority and how much time and energy will you each devote to your jobs?
40. Under what conditions would you borrow money, and where would you get the funds?
41. Do you worry about being able to afford the type of lifestyle you want to have?


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