What couples should know about finances before tying the knot

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- Many couples are looking to tie the knot this summer, but accountants in Knoxville, Tennessee believe there are a few things two people should look out for before saying "I do's."

Emily Boone and Henley Baugh are high school and college sweethearts, but after buying their first home, they quickly realized the time they have spent together does not add up monetarily.

"You start out, you're poor as church mice," said Henley. "You don't really have anything together. So you kind of pull together all you have and it builds your communication skills."

Jon Dunn, President of Tax Assist Knoxville, said having a game plan is key, but like Henley mentioned, communication makes a winning team.

"Those are things, again, not pleasant to talk about, but a lot of time you want to know ahead of time," said Dunn.

Dunn advised that when combining incomes, be aware there could be a marriage penalty.

"What is your income going to be when you combine? Because there's a marriage penalty for a lot of people if they have similar incomes, so it can affect a lot of people," he said.

Dunn mentioned, spending habits can also make things difficult.

"I hate spending money," said Emily. "Henley loves spending money. So we had to come to an agreement on that, and what we need and what we don't really need."

Dunn said it's up to the couple to decide what those true needs are.

"Openness. Sometimes if you can't discuss amongst yourselves, go to a professional," said Dunn. "Come here, go somewhere else - sit down and go over everything - all the details, what you're trying to do, plan and get a game plan of what you're trying to do going forward."

He wanted to remind engaged couples, though, investments in your relationship can bring about strong assets.

"You do see them grow, from starting out, growing as a couple and when you have a life change," he said. "You can watch them grow, help them through it. it's a wonderful process."

Read the original version of this article at local8now.com.