Before you do, you both need to be very open and disclose all assets and debts.
Especially debts !!
Make a new will as soon as you are married or move in together, and do not take on any debt till you have done so.
Make a pre-nuptial agreement, especially if you have more money than your new partner.
This is pretty hard to do though, as you are bringing up the realities of money at a time when you are supposed to be thinking about love and romance.
But ignore it at your peril!
An easier way may be to set up a family trust before you marry again and put the bulk of your assets in it. A trust will protect you quite well in the early years of a new marriage.
Remember though that in the longer term the Matrimonial Property Act may override a trust, especially if your new spouse has been a good contributor to the marriage.
Since most women outlive their spouse, they need to be well-informed about retirement and all its financial aspects;
- How much is government super ?
- Will the age you get super at be raised from 65?
- You should be in Kiwisaver, working or not
- Kiwi saver won’t be enough, so set up another savings plan as well
- Kiwisaver is locked in so other savings can double as emergency funds
- Any saving is better than no saving.
- Should you perhaps work a little longer or keep working part-time?
- Why you need more investment returns than the bank will pay you.
- Can you get better investment returns without taking excessive risks?
- Learn the basics or more about investments.
- Get professional advice from an independent adviser or suitably qualified mentor.
- Make a plan and stick to it.
- Review your plan at least annually with your adviser.
- Be prepared to be flexible.
This can seem a pretty scary subject, but it need not be so. In fact you can have a pretty good retirement in NZ if you plan ahead, and there is a lot you can do out and about at low cost.
Property – your home in retirement
Keep an eye on property prices, because at some point you may downsize your house to release some more cash - your fallback position.
Since you do not know how long you are going to live, “keep your powder dry” and do not use up your fallback position until later on – say age 75 to 80.
Living alone - cars, appliances and home maintenance
If you are not mechanically or practically minded, avoid excess bills by finding a man who will act as your “go between” in these cases.
Such men are around and often happy to help.
Sometimes this will keep the naughty boys from overcharging the innocents.
Get them to help too when changing your car.
“Above all, be the heroine of your life, not the victim.” ― Nora Ephron
Checklist for women
Get to know all your family’s finances, inside out
Put all legal such as wills in place
Make sure you have appropriate life and other insurances
Manage risk & debt
Be careful about loans to children that might not get repaid
Teach all this to your daughters before they marry
Don’t get burn out
Take regular breaks and sabbaticals
Make all the others who live with you pull their weight
If you are widow, or live alone
Don’t get scammed
Don’t get cleaned out by a predatory new boyfriend
Get a mentor to help you with big decisions
Find a guide to advise you on car and household appliance repairs if you are not that way inclined
Supplied by Alan Clarke, financial & retirement adviser, & author. His second book is virtually complete, & he also writes regular articles for the media & on line – see www.acfs.co.nz
Alan is an independent authorised financial adviser (AFA) FSP26532 & his disclosure statement is available on request and free of charge.