3 Crucial Money Questions I Asked My Husband Before We Got Married

by Christy Bieber | Published on Aug. 26, 2021

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A young couple having a serious discussion sitting on their living room floor.

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These questions helped ensure we're on the same page, financially.

Money can be a major source of conflict in a relationship, and I never wanted to end up spending my marriage arguing with my husband about our personal finances. In order to make sure that wasn't likely to happen, I asked him three big money questions before we tied the knot.

1. What's your credit score

My husband and I exchanged credit scores early in our relationship for a few key reasons.

First, when you get married, your spouse's credit is absolutely going to impact yours -- even if you aim to keep your finances as separate as possible. It will determine if you can qualify for joint loans for things like buying a home or could play a role in whether you can live where you'd like since landlords will check your credit. Your insurance costs could also differ depending on credit score.

Perhaps more importantly, a credit score is a good barometer of how you handle money. It's not perfect because sometimes people can damage their credit due to circumstances beyond their control, such as health issues. But it can give insight into whether someone pays bills on time or borrows a lot.

Since it was important to me to marry someone who was serious about making payments on time and not taking on too much debt, credit score was important to me. If his score had been low, we would have had to talk about why -- but fortunately, this didn't end up being the case.

2. How much debt do you have?

A partner's debt can also have a big impact on your future relationship. After all, if your significant other owes a lot of money, then some of their income will need to go toward repaying it, and that will affect what you can afford to do as a couple. It also raises other questions about debt-payoff plans -- whether it would be a joint project after marriage and whether becoming debt free was a priority.

I wouldn't have refused to marry someone with debt, but if they owed a lot, I'd want to know why they had borrowed so much and if it was because they were aiming to improve their net worth or if it was because they were trying to fund a lifestyle they couldn't afford. And that's especially true if they had a lot of high-interest credit card debt.

3. What are your financial goals?

Finally, I wanted to know about my husband's future financial goals. That's because I had some very definite things I wanted to accomplish with my money, and I wanted to make sure that my future spouse's plans didn't conflict with them.

Shared goals can be the basis of a joint budget, since you can decide together how to prioritize spending and saving to work toward them. They can also help you to determine if you have a similar money philosophy or planned life trajectory.

Fortunately, my husband and I had a lot in common when it came to finances; neither of us had a lot of debt, and we both had good credit. If those things hadn't necessarily been the case, that would have necessitated more discussion to make sure we were on the same page going forward.

It's a lot simpler to address these issues early on and can make for a lot more peace in your married life if you're sure you mesh well financially.

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