Spendy spouses – conflict or compromise

01 Jul 2020

Married couple How to manage finances is probably one of the biggest causes of conflict between spouses. 

One wants to spend and worry about the consequences later, whilst the other one wants to save and budget for everything. Where do you draw the line between compromise and conflict?

It can be very frustrating if spouses have conflicting ideas about budgeting and finances or don’t even want to participate in the discussion.

There are common issues that can be identified and addressed to avoid making mistakes that could cost you financially in the long run.

If you don’t agree on how to manage your finances - Sit down together and discuss the reasons why you don’t agree on the finances, without accusation or reprimand. If this is difficult, then consider a third-party mediator or financial adviser to put things in perspective. By finding out the reasons behind the reluctance, you can agree on an approach that will help you to move forward and find a solution.
What do you do if your spouse refuses to stick to a budget? – It might seem like too much work or restrictive for them. It is important to come up with a solution that fits both spouses. Make a basic plan for the spouse that is resistant. A budget that covers the basic expenses like utilities and mortgages etc. Now discuss how to use the discretionary income remaining. Remember it’s about compromise. Let each spouse have their own individual spending money.
A good solution would be to go the cash route - Allocate weekly cash amounts for expenses so when the cash is gone, you have to stop spending. This is a good way to be more aware of spending by giving away physical cash. 
What if your spouse feels blamed or picked on for their spending habits? – It is very easy to blame a spouse for their spending habits or your financial troubles.  Blame makes the other party feel defensive and more reluctant to participate. Change your approach. Focus on the positive and the future and take baby steps to improve your situation. Forget the past. Use Us and We are working together towards the future. 
Are you perhaps excluding your spouse from the financial planning? They may feel resentment towards you or feel like you are treating them like a child, especially if you give them an allowance. Start over and include them in budget decisions. Decide together how to spend your remaining income. Seeing the spending in black and white may make them more willing to stick to the budget. (the balance.com)

Financial planning and budgeting should be a combined effort that involves both spouses. Avoid conflict and fights. Chat to your deVere Acuma adviser to help you plan your finances. [email protected]

Please note, the above is for education purposes only and does not constitute advice. You should always contact your deVere Acuma adviser for a personal consultation.

* No liability can be accepted for any actions taken or refrained from being taken, as a result of reading the above.