5 Questions You Must Ask Your Future Spouse

Photo Courtesy of Sweet Little Photographs
If you've been following our finance column with Farnoosh Torabi — expert and nationally acclaimed author (including The Newlywed's Guide to Taking Control of Your Wedding)—then you've already learned how to talk to your fiancé about the wedding budget without arguing and compromise on wedding expenses like your cake and dress.
In our final installment, we asked this money-savvy bride-to-be to teach us how to set up healthy finance habits for marriage.
Farnoosh recommends that you learn the following about your partner (if you haven't already):

1. How much do you earn?
2. How much savings do you have in both a rainy day account and retirement?
3. What's your credit score?
4. What debt do you have? 

Important: If your husband-to-be has over $100,000 in student loans or other combined debt, you may want to consider pushing back your wedding, especially if those monthly payments are taking up a big chunk of his paycheck.
5. What are our goals in the next 5 years (professional AND personal)? 
Consider the following scenarios: Do either of you want to switch jobs, go back to school, start a business, have kids right away or buy a house next year? According to Farnoosh, all of these answers have price tags associated with them, so it's crucial to consider future expenses in order to start saving.
Once you're armed with all of this information, combine your assets by opening a joint checking and savings account to manage shared expenses. (Jason and I visited the bank the week we got engaged and established our accounts, which was our first wedding-planning task before deciding on our budget, venue, and vendors.)
Consider contributing an equal percentage of your salary with your spouse each month, which could get automatically deposited from a personal bank account.
"I’d suggest each partner maintain their personal savings and personal credit card in addition to the shared account. As a couple, you may also find it convenient to share a credit card for those shared expenses that you can pay off each month in full using your shared bank account," said Farnoosh.
—Stefania Sainato