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Girlfriends brother is taking out a loan for his wedding through her?

My girlfriend is taking out a loan of around £5-6k to pay for her brothers wedding. I am serious with my girlfriend (been together for 2 and a half years) and plan to marry couple years down the line when we are more financially secure.

A bit on our current situation: We have bought a 1 bed flat in shared ownership around year ago and both go 50/50 on everything, i.e. utility bills, rent, mortgage etc although i did provide 70% of the deposit. Neither of us currently have a cash flow of savings, its all locked down in the deposit of the flat.

My concern is her taking out a loan of her brothers wedding. His not the sharpest tool in the box and doesn't have any savings or a steady career. My girlfriend tells me she is unsure when he'll pay her back and she isn't exactly in the best financial position herself. According to her, it was either that she takes a loan out or her parents would have to remortgage the house for the wedding. Absolutely absurd I know, but in their culture its very important to keep face.

I'm definitely not keen on her taking out a loan, it will impact us both as a couple, i.e. we can't stair case up to 100% of the mortgage for the flat as quickly, she's putting on hold a much needed car to replace her old existing one and generally not having as much disposable income. God forbid if any of us lose our jobs we will really struggle to keep up with the mortgage and rent payments.

I don't really have much faith in her brother paying back. Like I said, he just doesn't seem to have much common sense.

How can I approach this issue? Clearly it isn't none of my business getting involved in their family affairs but at the same time I am in a financial commitment with my partner so I feel like I'm in the right to know but just don't know how to communicate it across in an effective manner?
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Replies

  • TigsteroonieTigsteroonie Forumite
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    In terms of interest rates etc, it would be better for her parents to re-mortgage if they can. And he is their son, after all ... Who is putting the pressure on her to take out a loan, is it the brother or the parents?
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  • In terms of interest rates etc, it would be better for her parents to re-mortgage if they can. And he is their son, after all ... Who is putting the pressure on her to take out a loan, is it the brother or the parents?

    They have already decided on the loan. For some reason my girlfriend told me it worked out cheaper if she takes out a loan through her bank. Both her parents are retired and don't have a steady income or any savings so I'm assuming re-mortgaging their house was probably a riskier bet.

    I don't have much control in that arena, but I'm really struggling to shake some sense into my girlfriend. Every time I bring it the financial issue she gets upset. I think shes getting a lot of pressure from her brother and parents.
  • edited 30 December 2014 at 7:28PM
    SkintmamaSkintmama Forumite
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    edited 30 December 2014 at 7:28PM
    I can understand your concerns. It is very kind and considerate of her but probably more sensible if she leaves this commitment to her parents to cover. They will be more likely to be able to get their son to pay them back if it is a loan, or alternatively make sure that a note is made of the gift, to be taken into account if their children will be beneficiaries in their wills. Sorry if that seems morbid to mention.

    ETA Just read your reply above. I can see why she is getting the pressure then - poor girl is stuck between a rock and a hard place.
  • I can understand you being concerned about this.

    I do think you need to talk to your girlfriend about this, and whilst you may be right in saying it's not your business to meddle in her family affairs, it is certainly your business financially when you are tied together with mortgage etc.

    Could a compromise be your girlfriend giving her brother say a lower amount eg. £2K as a gift. Then there is no bad feeling over money that should be repaid. It's up the rest of the family to help then, but I wonder why the brother and his girlfriend can't pay some, if not all themselves?
  • Skintmama wrote: »
    I can understand your concerns. It is very kind and considerate of her but probably more sensible if she leaves this commitment to her parents to cover. They will be more likely to be able to get their son to pay them back if it is a loan, or alternatively make sure that a note is made of the gift, to be taken into account if their children will be beneficiaries in their wills. Sorry if that seems morbid to mention.

    I think I should have mentioned that her parents reside in India. They have a fully paid off house. I'm not familiar with the mortgage rules in that country but for some reason my girlfriend says a loan would work out better. I'll have to dig deeper into this.

    I'm just not confident her brother will be able to pay back at all; to his sister or parents. He just doesn't have the wits or the funds to do so.
  • bucksterbuckster Forumite
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    Why doesn't her brother save up the money himself before getting married. If he wants a six grand wedding then he should come up with the money and nobody else. There is absolutely no way I would be taking out loans and putting myself under financial pressure. I would be having a word! and like you said what if either of you lose your job
  • I can understand you being concerned about this.

    I do think you need to talk to your girlfriend about this, and whilst you may be right in saying it's not your business to meddle in her family affairs, it is certainly your business financially when you are tied together with mortgage etc.

    Could a compromise be your girlfriend giving her brother say a lower amount eg. £2K as a gift. Then there is no bad feeling over money that should be repaid. It's up the rest of the family to help then, but I wonder why the brother and his girlfriend can't pay some, if not all themselves?

    That's not a bad idea. I'm just really struggling to even bring up the topic with my girlfriend with her not getting upset. Perhaps I need to change my approach but not sure how?

    The girlfriend of the brothers is paying for her side of the wedding. Its an Indian wedding and has 7 ceremonies (yes I know!) so you can imagine how much it will all add up to.
    From my knowledge, the future wife is contributing to some of these ceremonies. But again, she doesn't have the worlds greatest job and I don't think she has much in savings.

    My girlfriend is a smart one but I feel like her family are just piling on too much pressure on her. She feels that she needs to help (and rightly so, it is her family) out of respect and honor but at times I think they're just walking all over her.
  • Cross posting? This is on the loans board. Here's the answer I gave:

    I have little else to say except this is a TERRIBLE idea. If you are serious and are getting a place together, then you need to let her know that this it NOT acceptable to you.

    What the heck? I would not do this for ANYone: not even my own daughter! I would pay/help pay for her wedding, as best as I could with what money I had, and I would scrimp and save to help her, but take a big loan for it? NO WAY!

    Edited:

    Now I know it's an Indian wedding, I can't believe that the family won't pay.
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  • buckster wrote: »
    Why doesn't her brother save up the money himself before getting married. If he wants a six grand wedding then he should come up with the money and nobody else. There is absolutely no way I would be taking out loans and putting myself under financial pressure. I would be having a word! and like you said what if either of you lose your job
    Lily-Rose wrote: »
    Cross posting? This is on the loans board. Here's the answer I gave:

    I have little else to say except this is a TERRIBLE idea. If you are serious and are getting a place together, then you need to let her know that this it NOT acceptable to you.

    What the heck? I would not do this for ANYone: not even my own daughter! I would pay/help pay for her wedding, as best as I could with what money I had, and I would scrimp and save to help her, but take a big loan for it? NO WAY!

    Tell him and his bird to pay for their OWN chuffing wedding! Why are the parents not contributing? (Hers AND his?!)

    I totally understand you and I'm with you on this. I find it completely stupid and ridiculous but like I said, its her family, I don't have much of a say.

    I just want to make sure my girlfriend isn't going to get ruined in the process of helping her family. Can someone please suggest some kind of subtle (or maybe not?) constructive approach I can use on my girlfriend to talk about this issue?
  • It's a good idea if your girlfriend has a spare £6K sitting around doing nothing.
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