smart spending

Are you and your mate a money match?

Let's talk about money
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Can we talk? If you and your loved one haven't had the big talk yet -- the one that involves dollar signs -- your romance may be doomed before it goes any further. Even early on in the relationship, openly talking about money is a healthy sign.

"In the early stages of a romance, you just want to winnow out the deadbeats," Thakor says. "After a while, you want to really talk about things. Couples need to figure out how they match up financially. Just because he's a big spender and you're a big saver doesn't mean you can't be together, but it does mean you have some things to work on.

"You have to talk about retirement plans, health care, buying a house, starting a family and how you're both going to handle all that together."

Doesn't sound all that romantic, does it? Thakor disagrees.

"The bigger buzz kill is divorce," she says. "If you really care about this person, you should care enough to talk about these awkward issues. Money is the last taboo, but if you can settle those issues, you're in good shape. My husband tells me he thinks our marriage is stronger because we talk about these issues and we have no financial secrets."




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