Arranging Your Family Budget: Key Factors for Your Proper Plan

Different income levels and different attitudes toward budget allocation cause conflicts in the family. Let’s find out how not to quarrel with your partner over money and arrange a family budget.

Why People Quarrel About Money in the Family

Often, quarrels in couples arise because of how to manage money. For example, the husband is used to saving, and the wife loves shopping. Or a husband loves reading Playamo casino review pages and gamble for free, while his wife prefers to play for real money to hit the jackpot. If the opinions on how to spend money differ, the family is at risk. So, to solve the conflict, determine what caused it.

Different Attitudes to Money

Different financial goals among partners can provoke a conflict. For example, one partner wants to buy a car, and the second wants to save for the down payment on the mortgage, and neither of them wants to give in and set goals according to common priorities.

The family is one team, and shared financial goals bring the family closer together and strengthen the family. It’s important to remember that, besides common goals, each spouse has their own desires to consider.

Quarrels arise if partners have different financial attitudes from childhood. For example, the husband lived in a family where they constantly saved money, and the wife lived in a well-to-do family. As a result, partners cannot decide how to spend joint money and quarrel.

Unequal Income and Unfair Division of Responsibilities

Conflicts arise when a husband and wife have the same income, but only one of the partners manages the money. For example, the family has a common budget, but the wife alone decides what they need to buy this month. The husband is dissatisfied that he earns money but doesn’t manage it, and he starts a quarrel.

Abrupt Financial Changes in the Family

If one of the partners lost their job and the family didn’t have savings, the lack of money would be the cause of conflict. As a result, the money issue will start to pop up.

How to Solve Financial Conflicts in the Family

When you’ve found the cause of a financial conflict, it’s time to talk to your partner about the problem. Here are some ways to discuss the financial issue so that quarrels don’t arise in the future.

Decide on a Family Budget Model

You can try one of three budgeting options: shared, separate, or mixed.

There is no perfect model; each family chooses the option that is comfortable for them.

  • Shared. Combining income and spending in agreement with all family members.
  • Separate. Each spouse has their own money, of which, by agreement, one pays utility bills, the other buys groceries. For major purposes, they save in a single account.
  • Mixed. Each spouse contributes a certain percentage or amount of income to the joint account, and leaves the rest of the money for their own needs.

Identify the Financial Roles in the Family

Discuss who is responsible for what in the budget. For example, one partner pays for utilities, and Internet and sets a spending plan, while the other decides how to increase the budget: investing, saving, or making interest-bearing deposits.

Discuss Financial Spending

Once a month, discuss the family budget: what you have to spend this month and how much will remain after these expenses. For example, a third of the money will be spent on food and utilities, part of it on the mortgage, and the remaining money can be divided into personal expenses or put aside for a vacation.

Often, partners don’t know how or are afraid to talk about money because it’s mercantile. If you cannot agree on your own, turn to a psychologist or a financial consultant.

Reveal the Secrets

In behavioral therapy, there is a concept of “financial infidelity” when one or both partners withhold information about their finances: loans, spending part of the money from their savings, the amount of real income, and so on.

For example, a young man tried to please his girlfriend and take her out monthly on a trip, so he took out loans. The future wife thought that the young man had a high salary, so he easily parted with money. Withholding income on the part of the young man is financial infidelity.

If it’s a matter of financial infidelity, don’t reproach your partner, but discuss with him how far the reticence about spending money has gone and whether something would change if the partner, for example, would help pay back debts.

Set Common Financial Goals

To determine common financial goals, try an exercise with your partner: write down five to ten financial goals, compare them with your partner’s goals, and find the intersections; these are your common financial goals. As the author page suggests, it’s better to invest most of your money in them. After the exercise, make a joint financial plan and prioritize your goals.

Don’t allocate the entire budget to common goals. Within the family, each spouse needs personal money. This is an aspect of financial freedom.

Sort Out Your Partner’s Money Attitudes

When partners share their personal financial experiences and how their families budgeted, it will be easier to negotiate spending. For example, if the husband grew up in poverty, the wife’s phrase “we can’t afford a new coffee machine” will anger the husband or cause him to want to buy a coffee machine no matter what. So, it’s important to know exactly how your partner feels about money.

Daniel Matthews, a professor at the University of North Carolina, suggests that couples answer the following questions to better understand each other’s attitudes:

  • Who will earn: one or both?
  • How will the money be spent?
  • How much should be saved?
  • Can I take out a loan?
  • Do I need to buy my own home or live in a rented one?

Establish Financial Traditions Within the Family

Financial traditions should be simple, such as setting aside 5% of income for a joint vacation or discussing last month’s spending once a month. There is no point in the tradition of contributing 50% of income to a shared budget if it’s hard for both partners to do it every month.