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QUESTION: I am the CFO of my family (I handle the household bills) and am very good at what I do. The problem is my husband. He never wants to talk about budgeting saying, “Budgeting is for poor people. We are not poor so we don’t need to do it.” I’ve asked what he thinks we should do however, he is extremely adamant about not talking about it, period. How do I get him to budget, or should I just do it without him?
MY TWO CENTS:
It’s always important that couples are on the same page financially. Contrary to popular belief, the majority of marriages fail because of financial reasons, not infidelity as many may think. I was once in a marriage where disagreements regarding finances was a major issue. That coupled with “other” stressors unfortunately led to its demise, but I dare not digress so allow me to make a couple of suggestions:
- POSITION: You are the CFO of the family. Hmm. Think about that for a second. Have you declared yourself Chief Financial Officer of the family to your spouse, to extended family members or friends? Some men have extremely fragile egos and regardless of your intent, you declaring yourself Chief Financial Officer of the family may indicate authority over your husband making him feel emasculated. This could result in subconscious resentment towards you. Usually one spouse handles the finances because either one is better at it than the other or one has more time to do so. As petty as it may sound, consider resigning from the position of CFO (or at least from making the reference aloud.)
- APPROACH: When are you bringing up the topic of budgeting? Here are a couple of examples of when NOT to approach your husband regarding budgeting: Immediately upon coming home from work and before, during or after a football/basketball/baseball/hockey game etc. Those times will result in immediate “shut down.” After a stressful day at work and/or a long commute home, talking about budgeting is the LAST thing your husband wants to do. Most prefer to decompress and relax. Asking questions on “game day” is definitely out. For many men, game day is their “me time” or “time with the guys” especially if their spouses/partners are not into sports. In this case, do the opposite of what Nike says…. “Just don’t do it.”
- INVOLVEMENT: Try breaking the ice by asking your husband what his top three money goals are. Ask him what his plans are for achieving those goals. LISTEN TO HIM. If the mood is positive, introduce how budgeting can help achieve those goals. The key is not to dictate what should be done. Work together. Feedback and communication are important. You are a team. Stress the importance of how a collective effort can produce fruitful results. GOOD LUCK!!!
Wishing you financial prosperity and success in your marriage,
~Andrea L. Coleman, The Financial Hack
QUESTION: My washing machine is on the fritz. The emergency fund that I had established has been depleted due to an unexpected expense last month. I’m scheduled to receive a commission check next month and will use it to pay the credit card bill after charging the washing machine. Is this the right course of action to take?
MY TWO CENTS:
In this scenario, I would say “no” for a couple of reasons:
1) Purchasing a new washing machine is not an absolute necessity in my opinion. An automobile repair for a vehicle that you rely on to get you to work, yes. A washing machine? Not so much. Although inconvenient, a visit to the local laundromat or a friend/relative’s until you have saved the money to purchase the washer IN CASH would be the best route to take. Should another unexpected expense emerge next month, the commission check may have to be used for it thus leaving you with a credit card balance that will accrue finance charges.
2) The issue of the depleted emergency fund should be addressed. I suggest taking the commission check you’ll receive next month to replenish the fund. An essential key to having a healthy emergency fund is being able to replenish it when used. Make sure you can distinguish between what constitutes an emergency and what does not.
3) I believe this scenario is an excellent lesson in delaying self-gratification. We all want what we want when we want it. That’s human nature. Delaying self-gratification develops discipline, so if you intend to be successful at being a better steward of your money, start with delaying self-gratification.
Wishing you prosperity and healthy finances,
Andrea L. Coleman, The Financial Hack
When offered 0% financing for a specified number of months, finance charges have already been added to your purchase total. #Fact
THE FOUR MONEY BEARS by Mac Gardner, CFP®, CRPS®, CRPC® is a “must have” book to introduce young children to the concept of money and how to use it wisely. Simplistic yet succinct, I highly recommend it. This book would make a great addition to your local school/public libraries. I’ll be speaking with DeSoto School Board Trustees for book approval, even if I have to purchase them myself. Purchase this book for your little ones or anyone you believe can benefit from it. (Avail…able on Amazon.)
~Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old he will not depart from it. (Proverbs)
Andrea L. Coleman (The Financial Hack) 2016
Helping Hand Financial Counseling Ministries
I was so honored to be asked by @twoand10 to speak to a wonderful group of teens about Financial Fitness. It is imperative that we educate our youth at an early age so they can have the necessary financial skills as they navigate through life. Be sure to follow @twoand10 on Instagram and for the latest updates and activities, be sure to like their FACEBOOK PAGE. Not only does the organization stress Financial Skills, but more importantly, Life Skills. Remember, if you’re not a part of the solution, there’s a good chance you’re a part of the problem. Make a difference. Our youth need YOU!!!
~The Financial Hack ©2016
“Liven up yourself in the morning time y’all…. Liven up yourself, Cuz I said so.” ~Bob Marley
If you’re familiar with Bob Marley and the song “Liven Up Yourself,” you know his interpretation is slightly different from what most are accustomed to. Its underlying meaning however, remains constant. It’s time to get up. It’s time to wake up.
IT’S TIME TO MOTIVATE YOURSELF!!!
When I decided to commit myself to helping others by promoting Financial Literacy, there were people around me who were skeptical. People close to me. People I actually knew. There were naysayers and I sensed a general lack of interest from those I believed could benefit from the knowledge and experience I had. It had/has nothing to do with “feelings of superiority,” I was simply excited to share with others what took me most of my adult life to learn. It was crushing to not have the support from people I truly believed I could count on, but that didn’t stop me. I AM MOTIVATED to do what I do. I “liven up” myself daily and am constantly reminded of my purpose. I wake up every day determined to learn something new that I can share with those who wish to receive it. As someone reminded me in one of my Periscope sessions, when the student is ready, the teacher will come. Powerful.
I teach Financial Literacy to our youth. I teach Financial Literacy to adults…. And you know the beauty of it all? THEY GET ME. The ability to connect to people no matter where they are on their financial journey is motivation for me.
Motivation comes from knowing you’re on the right track. Motivation comes from knowing what you are doing is positive. Motivation comes from the excitement of seeing your purpose manifesting itself. Walking in my purpose is enough to keep me going.
So stop seeking validation from others. Stop waiting for someone to pat you on the back and tell you “Good Job,” or “Well Done.” Never mind what others are saying…
You’re too busy being great.
~The Financial Hack ©2015