Ask Someone Else's Mom by Susan Writer

Dream Honeymoon vs. House Down Payment

DEAR SOMEONE ELSE’S MOM: My wife and I just got married at the end of the summer. Neither of us could take time off for a honeymoon right after the wedding because we used most of our PTO planning and getting to our wedding.

Since we’d lived together for a while before we got married, we didn’t do a big gift registry. Instead, we asked for contributions to a fund for either a honeymoon or a down payment for a house. Many people, especially our close relatives, were very generous, and we now have enough for a dream honeymoon or a nice down payment on a two- or three-bedroom house in an older neighborhood we both like.

The trouble is, she wants to go for the house, and I want to go for the honeymoon. We’re in a large apartment now, and she talks about wanting to not wait too long to start a family, which to me says we should do the kind of travelling now that we won’t be able to do once we have kids.

Which do you think is a better use of the money? --- WANT TO TRAVEL NOW

DEAR WANT TO TRAVEL NOW: You and your bride both have valid points. A good honeymoon will give you memories for a lifetime. A home could be the biggest investment you ever make, and depending on long-range plans, could be the gift that keeps on giving.

Maybe you guys could come to a compromise by earmarking some of the money for a more modest honeymoon and keeping the balance for the house. If the two of you are working, making money, and not outspending your income, you should be able to sock away some of your own money to more easily afford both goals.

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