Between 2004 and 2014, the number of married men and women aged 65 and over went up by 46%. With life expectancy continually increasing, widows, those previously divorced, and those who never married are deciding they have time to tie the knot and have their “happily ever after.”
While finances should not ultimately decide whether or not you should marry, they are a factor to consider seriously. If you are contemplating getting married later in life, there are several pros and cons to this decision.
Keep reading to learn the pros and cons of getting married late in life.
Pros of Getting Married Late in Life
Below are only 3 advantages of tying the knot late in life:
1. Safety Net
Marriage allows for a smooth transfer of holdings, investments, pensions, savings, and other assets should one partner pass away. If you are not married, there are a myriad of financial documents and planning that are required to ensure all assets are passed on successfully.
2. Greater Combined Income
As an older couple, your income is most likely higher than expected in the earlier stages of life. Your skill set, experience, and commitment to a company generally yield greater financial benefits. When you combine your higher incomes, you have more money to travel, invest, and do more of what you enjoy.
3. Fiscal Sensibility
By the time most people reach retirement age, they’re knowledgeable about finances and are used to “paying their way.” Two individuals marrying one another later in life are already used to being financially independent and savvy.
They will be less likely to rely on one another and instead know their way around financial obstacles.
Cons of Getting Married Late in Life
Below are three potential disadvantages to getting married late in life:
1. Higher Tax Brackets
Sometimes, marrying and combining incomes will move a partner into the higher tax bracket. This means higher taxes and possibly making a partner ineligible for services such as Medicare and other government-subsidized programs.
Any debts that a partner or both partners have will be merged in marriage, meaning that you now have a joint responsibility and financial burden to pay off. Although some debts may not be overwhelming, massive debts such as home mortgages can place a substantial financial strain on the couple’s finances.
If either or both partners have dependents, some of their financial resources may have to go towards assisting their dependents. When you combine finances with your partner, you may come to disagree with the financial approach your partner takes with their dependents.
These disagreements may become conflicts, and put a strain on your marriage.
Is Getting Married Late in Life Right for Me?
The pros and cons of a potential marriage will depend on your situation, and there is no “one size fits all” answer to it.
If you’re considering the pros and cons of marriage, be sure to find a financial advisor to discuss your thoughts and concerns, and decide what path is right for you.
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