How to Tie the Knot Without Losing Your Shirt

Tuesday, February 12 at 08:25 AM
Category: Personal Finance

With Valentine’s Day quickly approaching, no doubt love is in the air, but trying to budget for an engagement ring or plan a wedding can quickly have lovebirds singing a different tune. Here are some practical money tips to get your love life on track from the beginning.

  • Live within your means. It seems simple, but it is important, and too often overlooked, to live within your means. If you go into engagement and/or wedding season already carrying too much debt, it will really cramp your style.
  • Use discipline to save money. Start saving for that perfect ring, wedding or honeymoon now. Not even dating yet? Or, no son-in-law even in sight yet? That’s actually the best time to start planning. The sooner you can start saving, the better off you’ll be when the time comes.
  • Credit should only be used when necessary. Most newlyweds or parents of the bride have to use credit somewhere along the way – but not all credit is the same. Before you simply buy that $3,000 dress with a credit card, check your options with your bank – is a home equity loan or line of credit a better option? Can you get a short-term personal loan at a good rate of interest? Check financing options with dress or jewelry retailers – oftentimes they have great financing deals because their finance divisions are only in business to help them sell more products. But always pay attention to the details of any deal and watch for limited-time, no interest deals where interest is accruing in the background and will be added to the balance if you haven’t paid-in-full by a certain time.
  • Know your options. Your bank or a financial planner can help you figure out the best way to reach your savings goal, or the easiest way to finance a large, one-time purchase – like an engagement ring or the perfect wedding. Arvest Bank provides online tools that can help you calculate how much to save for a major purchase or figure out how much you can afford to borrow.
  • Life is expensive. Young adults should know necessities like taxes, insurance, utilities and interest on loans are unavoidable costs they must be prepared for. These are often overlooked and less obvious than just the rent, food or car payment.

Do you have any money tips for lovebirds?

Tags: Budgeting, Credit Cards, Financial Education, Savings
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