How to get your spouse excited about budgeting
It's no secret that my husband is not excited about budgets and finances. When it came to anything money related, he pretty much let me handle it. At first, this worked out great since I loved to have control.
We were a typical married couple with one saver (me!) and one spender (him!). The issues and arguments would eventually arise though because we would disagree on how to spend (or in my case, save) money. We easily would fall into a parent-child trap where I would try and control his spending and he would rebel against my control.
After years of fighting about money, I knew we had to do something different. There's a reason that money is often listed as the number one cause for divorce. Money is stressful! There's lots to argue about.
Here are some key things we did so we were both on the same page about money and how I got my husband to get excited about budgets.
Once a month, my husband and I sit down and go over our budget for the next month. Doing it once a month is a lot easier than trying to have a sit-down meeting every week. We go over our budget and create a zero-sum budget every month so we know exactly where each penny is being allocated. We call these our "money talks" and it helps get us on the same page as to how we're going to spend our money.
I love to vacation. My husband loves to buy electronic equipment. If we wanted to save money, we had to start saving toward the same goals. So we agreed that we would set aside a certain amount of money each month for fun stuff, like vacations AND electronic equipment. This way, we both felt like we were getting what we wanted.
We currently live in a two-bedroom home but we both have hopes of getting a bigger house within the next five years or so. We really had to sit down and figure out how we were going to make that happen. Having conversations about it—yes, just talking about it, really helps us feel like we're on the same team working together rather than on opposing teams working against each other.
Everybody needs reminders of when they're doing a good job. It's good to get acknowledged! So whenever we meet a certain percentage of our goal, like 25% or 50%, we celebrate by going out for ice cream. We save these special outings just for budget celebrations, and that makes it feel even more special and something we both look forward to. There's something about ice cream that always feels like a special treat, right?
Get Your Spouse on Board
Ever since my husband and I started communicating more about our finances, our relationship has improved significantly. We are no longer having constant fights about how to spend our money because we are both on the same page. It's absolutely the best thing we could have ever done and I love that my husband is excited about budgets!
Have you had to get your spouse excited about budgets? How did you do it?
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