Tag Archives: Spending

MY TWO CENTS 1/27/17-My Resisting Spouse

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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:

  1. 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.)
  2. 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.”
  3. 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

 

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MY TWO CENTS 1/20/17

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

 

MONDAY MOTIVATION “The Art of Saying NOPE”

I took a trip to H&M Store this morning. There was a location nearby that opened over the weekend. A 10 minute drive to Uptown Village sounded a whole lot better than a 25 minute drive to the nearest location at Northpark Mall. I heard the prices were reasonable and the clothing was trendy. Ehhh. I’m not really a “trendy” dresser. I opt for more “classic” pieces which I believe compliment my personality. Don’t misunderstand me. I’m not some snot who turns my nose up and frowns upon things that don’t suit me. For those that remember me from my YouTube vlogging days, YOU KNOW ME…. AND THAT AINT ME, but I digress.

I made a pit stop at Starbucks for a Venti upside down Caramel Macchiato with extra whip then headed for the ATM. I gave myself a $100 budget. That was NON-NEGOTIABLE. If my purchases totaled $105.32, something was going back on the rack. Seriously. Unfortunately, I didn’t purchase anything. Or maybe good fortune was on my side. I probably would have had buyer’s remorse before I got to the car. I tweeted earlier this morning although I saw a few attractive items in the store, nothing grabbed me. I refused to make a purchase just because I was there. I did walk around the store twice to make sure I didn’t miss anything. I saw some button down shirts that could have worked for me, but decided against them. Then I saw a couple of blouses that may have worked, but they looked a little flimsy and thin. I’m sure I would have found fault with any and everything that caught my attention. Could it be I wasn’t in the right headspace? Could it be since meeting financial goals is my focus, not to mention I already have a closet FULL of clothes, something didn’t “feel right.” Something was off. I instantly felt the guilt of wasting $100 just to say “Hey! I went to H&M and this is what I purchased.”

One thing I look for in clothing is “quality.” I’ll take quality over quantity any day of the week. To be honest, the higher-priced items were of better quality than the lower-priced items. I saw a couple of dresses in the $50 range that would have worked for me, but in all honesty, I could find the same style of dress at one of my many favorite thrift stores I patronize for half the price and the dress would most certainly have a label in it. See where I’m going with this?

I left the store empty handed and stopped at a nearby Target which carries career clothing in my style and price range. No luck there either. Again, it’s the headspace I’m in. I’m wasn’t in “shopping mode,” I was in “saving mode” and had been there since BEFORE I left home. I’ve got a good system going so why disrupt things now? Honestly, I didn’t want to spend my money on clothing. Was my mission today based on a NEED or a WANT? Well, that’s a “no brainer.” At least it is if you’ve read this far. I WANTED to buy clothing from H&M, I didn’t NEED to. I WANTED to buy clothing at Target, I didn’t NEED to. I did however purchase this sweatshirt:

I purchased it as a reminder of what to say, when I’m about to make an UNNECESSARY PURCHASE:

How befitting…. For me. $21.64 spent just to make a point. 

Practice “The Art of Saying NOPE” and you won’t have to wear THIS SHIRT instead:

  
 Catch my drift? 

~The Financial Hack ©2015