You’re smart and practical. Make sure your finances are too.
Relationship advice is great. But just because you are getting married doesn’t mean you have to give up everything.
Here are 11 steps to create wealth by keeping pre-wedding assets safe. Pre-nup or not.
- Be debt savvy. Get a joint account for shared bills. Keeping your pre-wedding financial assets separate means your partner’s creditors can’t touch you.
- Create a revocable trust. Ask our lawyers to put premarital assets in a third-party trust. Best part: what’s yours is not his, as long as you don’t add anything after you marry. You can change it if need be.
- Invest jointly. Put equity in joint investments. You can share those 50/50 if you separate. Just don’t co-mingle your own investments with shared assets.
- Appraise your home. If you live there post-marriage, any increase in value is shared. Find out the true value now, before your wedding date.
- Gift yourself first. Using a family gift to buy shared assets (a house, a car) co-mingles the money with your spouse’s. You could just lose it..
- Get it in writing. When gifts or inheritances are just for you, get a letter saying that. You can show it to the Canada Revenue Agency if they tax you.
- Think worst-case scenario. It’s fun to be your own boss. But if your joint business fails, everyone pays. Plan for a rainy day by setting aside cash or mutual funds only you own.
- Planning home renovations? Pay for them yourself. That shows your financial contribution to the marriage.
- Record, record, record. Keep records of expenses you pay from your own account. Those assets are yours alone.
- While you’re at it, put yourself on a financial diet. Frugal living could pay off later.
- Talk it over. Bring your soon-to-be spouse up to speed. You’re not being sneaky. You’re just being the smart, practical person they love.
Your marriage is an adventure. Be a mercenary with your assets. It could minimize your losses if it goes sideways..