Getting married? Congratulations! When it comes to money and marriage, you're probably more occupied with wedding plans and expenses than your future household budget. Although the wedding day is an important new start to the rest of your lives together, so are your upcoming combined finances. (Learn how to break down and understand a corporate budget, in How Budgeting Works For Companies.)

You may be surprised to find there are many financial benefits (except for that catering bill for the big day, that is) to tying the knot. Here are some ways your nuptials will put money in your collective pockets:

Combined Income and Assets
This one may be obvious, but take a moment to think about it. Your financial resources have just doubled, which will open doors that may have been closed when you were still single. With your higher combined income, you'll likely qualify for better loans, including a higher mortgage. With the current tax incentives for home buyers, now may be the perfect opportunity for you two buy a home together.

As you combine your income, you'll also want to look at your combined assets. Savings accounts, real estate holdings, and yes, even his ugly old couch and her china collection are now both your assets. As you're preparing to tie the knot, make a list of all that you'll be owning (and owing) together, so there are no surprises (like an unexpected tax bill for that condo she owns) in the future. (This costly coverage protects your mortgage lender - not you. Find out more in 6 Reasons To Avoid Private Mortgage Insurance.)

Lowered Expenses
On top of the benefits of your combined income, you're now sharing expenses. That rent or mortgage payment? You just got yourself the perfect roommate to split your housing cost with. Utilities, phone, groceries - you're no longer paying for all of these on your own now that you're married. Take some time to assess all of your bills for ways to save by combining your expenses. For instance, cell phone companies offer family plans that could save you both some cash every month. Sometimes when you live by yourself, eating out may be a cheaper alternative than cooking for one. Now you are cooking for two, combining your grocery bill will save you money, significantly.

When going over your expenses, pay particular attention to your insurance costs. Car insurance rates are lower if you're married, especially for young males, and you can save by bundling your plans with the same provider. Life insurance, home owners or renters insurance - all of these may also be reduced, now that you're married. If both your employers offer health insurance, look at combining yours under the best plan as a family. Sorting through insurance plans and rates can be a hassle, but just remember: you're putting money in your pockets every month.

Tax Advantages
Right now, the IRS (http://www.irs.gov/) allows you to deduct $11,400 from you combined income if you file jointly - twice what you can deduct individually. Although this doesn't seem like a direct benefit, once you deduct other itemizations, you'll more than likely come out ahead when tax time rolls around. If you or your spouse has itemized deductions, children or other dependents, childcare or education expenses, these will all reduce your combined taxable income. Filing jointly will most likely lead to lower taxes; the tax code is complex though. To get a concrete idea of where your married status will put you with the IRS, take each of your latest tax returns and pretend as if you were filing jointly. You may be surprised at the financial benefits. (For many couples, it pays to file for taxes together. But what are some of the obstacles you should watch out for? Find out, in Newlywed Tax Returns: Wedding Present Or Party Crasher?)

Banking and Budgeting
Now that you've pooled your income and are paying the bills together, you may want to open a joint bank account and come up with a budget. Although there aren't any monetary benefits to sitting down together to crunch the numbers, here's a nice advantage: you're not doing it alone. We all face financial crises in our lives, and it's just a lot less stressful to face them with a spouse by your side than on our own. Likewise, when things are looking up in your budget, you can celebrate together. Two really are better than one, especially when it comes to money.

Conclusion
While you're looking forward to the big day, picking out the wedding cake and flowers, take some time to sit down with your spouse-to-be to look at your finances. Be honest about your assets and bills. Examine some of the ways you can save money together, and you may find you'll have even more to toast on the big day. (Use this quick parental guide to help your child learn this process and establish good habits. Filing Your Child's First Income Tax Return.)

Related Articles
  1. Insurance

    Understanding Taxes on Life Insurance Premiums

    Learn about the tax implications of life insurance premiums, including when they might be taxable and whether they are tax deductible.
  2. Taxes

    Top Reasons to File Separately When Married

    Most of the time, it makes sense for couples to file their taxes jointly. Except for these possible exceptions...
  3. Taxes

    What IRS Form 1023 Is Used For

    To be treated as a tax-exempt organization, start by filling out this form.
  4. Taxes

    Late with Your Taxes? Grab IRS Form 4868

    Fill out this form to get a few more months to file your tax return. But remember, April 15 is still the payment due date if you owe taxes.
  5. Economics

    The Problem With Today’s Headline Economic Data

    Headwinds have kept the U.S. growth more moderate than in the past–including leverage levels and an aging population—and the latest GDP revisions prove it.
  6. Personal Finance

    Millennials Guide: Before You Move in with Your Partner

    Living together can be romantic. But at what point does co-habitation become a common-law marriage? It's wise to know the legalities of your relationship.
  7. Professionals

    How to Bring Up a Prenup with Clients

    Prenups aren't just for the rich. Here's how to help clients agree to one if you think they'll benefit.
  8. Professionals

    Advisors: Ignore a Spouse at Your Own Peril

    Financial advisors have their work cut out for them when it comes to keeping a spouse or partner in what was formerly a couple-client relationship.
  9. Credit & Loans

    Joint Credit Cards: The Pros and Cons

    A joint credit card may sound like an easy way to split the bills, but make sure you know what you’re getting into first.
  10. Taxes

    What's Wrong with the American Tax System

    American's are highly taxed and we still run a deficit. We explain why.
RELATED TERMS
  1. Duty Free

    Goods that international travelers can purchase without paying ...
  2. Equitable Division

    A legal theory that guides how property acquired during the course ...
  3. Tax Deductible Interest

    A borrowing expense that a taxpayer can claim on a federal or ...
  4. Deferred Tax Asset

    A deferred tax asset is an asset on a company's balance sheet ...
  5. Buffett Rule

    A tax rule proposed in 2011, by President Barack Obama, stating ...
  6. Benefits Received Rule

    1. A theory of income tax fairness that says people should pay ...
RELATED FAQS
  1. Are spousal Social Security benefits taxable?

    Your spousal Social Security benefits may be taxable, depending on your total household income for the year. About one-third ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. Are dividends considered passive or ordinary income?

    Despite the fact that earning dividends requires no active participation on the part of the shareholder, they do not meet ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. How do you calculate penalties on an IRA or Roth IRA early withdrawal?

    With a few exceptions, early withdrawals from traditional or Roth IRAs generally incur a tax penalty equal to 10% of the ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. Are credit card rewards taxable?

    Credit card rewards are taxable in the United States some of the time. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) classifies credit ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. What are Social Security spousal benefits?

    Social Security spousal benefits are partial retirement or disability benefits granted to the spouses of qualifying taxpayers.  Qualifying ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. Are Social Security benefits taxable after age 62?

    Eligibility to collect Social Security benefits begins at age 62. Many seniors, to collect larger benefit amounts, wait until ... Read Full Answer >>

You May Also Like

Trading Center
×

You are using adblocking software

Want access to all of Investopedia? Add us to your “whitelist”
so you'll never miss a feature!