Some say that love is lovelier the second time around, but don't let Cupid's charms blind you to the financial realities of remarriage. Sit down with your spouse-to-be and draw up a summary of what each of you is bringing to the marriage. Include insurance policies, investments and vacation homes. Don't forget to include credit-card debt and other financial obligations to avoid nasty surprises later.
It's critical that you know all about each other financially," says Lee Raine, a partner at G2 Financial Group in Calgary. "Discussing finances might be uncomfortable, but it's vital for everything else to work out and for the romance to survive."
Raine offers these tips.
Check the beneficiary
You need to change the name from your former spouse to your future spouse on insurance policies and RRSPs. It's also important to change your will and power of attorney.
Discuss bank accounts
It's a matter of choice, but if your spending habits are very different, consider a joint account (for all household expenses) and one personal account each (for money to spend as you like).
Reassess your insurance needs
Since obligations have changed, you might need to increase your coverage.
Consider a marriage contract
If you have a large asset, such as a family business, a marriage contract can spell out which assets will not be shared should the marriage fail.
Talk to your children
Discuss with your children how the remarriage affects them financially to prevent any resentment.