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Bachelorhood: For the Not So Financially Stable?

November 08, 2016

We live in a society where tying the knot is considered to be a priority for a young man or woman. And as age passes them by, their friends and relatives discover a newfound obsession to find out about their marriage plans. Heard the elders of the family saying that the youth can be truly happy only when they get married? Priyanka and Lokesh have.

You know that couple in your circle who have been in love forever, but refuse to tie the knot? Priyanka and Lokesh are just like them. At 28, they are setting a trend—they love each other but have decided not to ring the wedding bells, period. Why? Their reason is pretty straightforward: The cost of living is high, and they’ve devised that not getting married is the best way to save money.

Lokesh believes that when you're unmarried you're rolling in money, even on a lesser salary. Get hitched and it will all go away. And once you start having children, you can kiss goodbye to any savings you may have. Priyanka recalls the time when she watched her just-married friend accept an envelope from his new father-in-law. It contained some documents showing his new wife’s high debt-to-income ratio. While the gesture was tinged with humour, it made the groom realise that it would take them forever to save money and clear the mountain of debt. The poor man fainted right there!

Alas, if only living in today’s world was as easy as it looks on most television sitcoms! Lokesh laments how the lead characters stay at the most palatial apartments while having a job you know cannot pay even the rent for a home that size in reality. Though Priyanka and Lokesh earn a decent salary, they’ve continued staying with their respective parents in order to afford things that they feel they require to be seen as cool, hip and trendy.

That’s because they are a new generation of young professionals that one may categorise as the ‘urban poor’—twenty-somethings who feel that it’s more important to keep up their lifestyle and appearances than to attend to basic needs such as food and shelter. As a result, you’ll often find Priyanka and Lokesh spending a majority of their salaries on expensive outings, apparel and restaurant food, and landing themselves in a soup. They also have no qualms about starving themselves if that is what it would take to afford these things. Both of them go on a one-day-a-week fast. That means only six days a week of breakfasts, lunches and dinners instead of seven, which translates to around 52 days of meals each that they don’t have to cook or pay for. And the best part, they say, is that they’re losing weight too!

Priyanka and Lokesh are not alone. Millennials today are viewing marriage differently than the previous generations. While being unable to find the right person or not being ready to settle down might be popular reasons for people under 35 not getting married, financial instability is also gradually becoming a common cause. True, marriage introduces changes in a couple’s financial situation. But in the case of Priyanka and Lokesh, saving money and making good investments early on would have enabled them to tie the knot without any worries on the financial front.

If you are planning to get married, make sure that you start saving for a secure future right away. This is a great time to discuss some of your financial goals with your fiancé. When do you want to start a family? Do you want to buy a new home after marriage? Once you are aligned in terms of these aims, a simple insurance and investment plan is the perfect way to start. The HDFC Life Click2Invest ULIP provides you market-linked returns on your money.

Couples looking to get married should be as upfront and smart as possible when it comes to savings and investment. In the end, you will not regret getting financially organised even before your marriage! 

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