New Step Mom….listen very carefully…you and your good hearted soul are going to be so inclined and tempted to pool all your resources to portray a united front and support the financial growth of your new family…kudos to you for such selfless and generous thoughts…now erase them from your memory!!!
This is where you have to balance romance and common sense, and common sense MUST prevail! Contribute to the expenses of the household, whatever you and your new spouse determine to be fair for your share, but also maintain a separate account for yourself…Please :) Learn from my critical error on this front and protect yourself.
Years down the road, when the kids are all off enjoying their own lives and the two of you have the chance to explore your marriage as a couple and not a foursome, then take another look at what’s happening with your finances and make a new plan. Until then, manage your own financial life to its maximum potential.
Create a joint account that you each contribute to which will be responsible for paying for day-to-day expenses and save together for vacations etc., just be sure to keep something aside for yourself OK.
Have the open and frank emotion free discussion very early on in your relationship so your new spouse understands where you stand…he will respect you for making a wise choice and doing the right thing, honest he will :)
Without going into the gory details, I started out a strong and financially independent woman with a great credit rating…I then allowed an uninvestigated sense of greater good allow me to pool my finances with my husband’s and the outcome was not pretty. Today I am trying to make up for that past mistake by once again segregating finances, and it’s a tough row to hoe at this stage of the game, believe you me!!
So, learn from that OK.
Be wise and $ave your Money !!