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Planning your Finances before Marriage

with Ben Kleynhans, Liberty Financial Adviser

When planning a wedding, couples don’t often focus as much on their financial portfolios as they do on the actual ceremony. Proper communication and planning can be the keys to a successful marriage that comes with balanced finances. Even if difficult for some couples to discuss, these things should not be excluded from the marriage strategy. Multiple award-winning adviser, Ben Kleynhans, gives couples some insight into proper financial planning with Liberty.

WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE COUPLES LOOKING TO MERGE THEIR FINANCIAL PORTFOLIOS?

“Lay out all the cards on the table and draw up a budget. Discuss the budget, without criticizing each other’s spending habits and agree to monthly budget meetings. Try to stay away from attitudes such as: ‘What I earn belongs to me’.”

WHAT ARE SOME SAVINGS AND INVESTMENT TIPS COUPLES CAN MAKE TOGETHER?

“Before committing to longer-term savings plans (like 5 years), first get an emergency saving plan going. A good emergency plan amounts to three months’ budget. Protect the emergency plan! Activities like dining out and entertainment are not real emergencies.”

IS THERE A NEED TO SHARE DEBT ACQUIRED PRIOR TO GETTING MARRIED?

“It may not be needed to share debt acquired before the wedding, but at least disclose it and agree on how it will be addressed, however embarrassing it may be. Get married Out of Community of Property (ANC) and draw up an agreement.”

SHOULD YOU MAKE YOUR PARTNER AWARE OF A FAMILY TRUST?

“Yes. If you are a beneficiary of a trust, it means that all the assets in that Trust are protected (it may be an inheritance). Setting up a Trust for the new couple may not be a bad idea.”

IF COUPLES ARE LOOKING TO HAVE CHILDREN, WHAT FINANCIAL SOLUTIONS SHOULD THEY LOOK INTO TO SECURE THEIR CHILDREN'S EDUCATION?

“Save, save, and save. Stick to the budget! Education is expensive and it takes a long time to complete. To get a head start, a couple can already start saving before even thinking about children. Speak to an Accredited Financial Adviser and look at forecasts of growth. It’s daunting, but it can be done. Think of it as eating an elephant – by taking one bite at a time.”

WHAT IS THE TOP ADVICE YOU CAN GIVE COUPLES BEFORE MARRIAGE?

“Speak to a Financial Adviser. Talk about money and the budget. Money, or the lack thereof (and lack of discipline), may be one of the biggest factors causing stress and divorce. Lastly, absolutely do not criticize each other.”

Follow these simple tips from Ben Kleynhans from Liberty and give your financial future as a couple the opportunity to bloom. With over 30 years in the industry and multiple awards under his belt, he is an expert in his field. And with almost 40 years’ experience in marriage, he sure does know a thing or two about what makes a successful partnership.

Liberty Group Ltd is a Licensed Life Insurer and an Authorised Financial Services Provider (no. 2409). Terms and Conditions, risks, and limitations apply.

This article does not constitute tax, legal, financial, regulatory, accounting, technical or other advice.  The material has been created for information purpose only and does not contain any personal recommendations. While every care has been taken in preparing this material, no member of Liberty gives any representation, warranty or undertaking and accepts no responsibility or liability as to the accuracy, or completeness, of the information presented. Please consult your financial adviser should you require advice of a financial nature and/or intermediary services.

 Liberty Group Limited is a Licensed Insurer and an Authorised Financial Services Provider (no 2409).

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