How Do You Get Your Spouse Interested in the Family's Finances?
How do you get your spouse interested and engaged in the finances? How do you create a partnership? This is a tough one. I hear the same story often. I want my spouse to be involved however they just don't want to be. I think that it is important to rethink how we look at money and marriage. For all of the reasons I gave yesterday it is important that a couple be in partnership when it comes to the family's finances.
What do I mean by partnership? One person pays the bills and manages the family finances. Then one time a month the two sit down together to review and prepare for whats to come financially. That meeting is important. It is about reviewing the prior month expenditures, upcoming expenditures, and overall financial goals.
Unfortunately, this is not happening in the majority of marriages. What is the roadblock?
The spouse in charge of the finances is probably going to be the one who is very number detailed while the other spouse is perhaps not. Now that is not the case in all cases. However, I would suspect that is the majority.
That is the key right there. The goal is to create a partnership. The key is to understand at what level of partnership your spouse wants to start at and then build from there.
Here is what typically happens:
The numbers oriented spouse presents a spreadsheet to their spouse and overwhelms them with numbers. The numbers oriented spouse can't understand why his or her spouse doesn't get it. They both get frustrated and give up.
Instead, start out asking their opinions on how the family finances are going. Show them how much various items are costing. Show them if the family finances are working or not working and why not. Take it slow. Always ask for feedback on how the non-numbers oriented spouse likes taking in information. Talk in concepts and pictures, rather than numbers.
You will be surprised at how much progress and buy in you will get respecting and working to learn how your spouse processes information.
The only non-negotiable aspect about the process is the mandatory appointment between a husband and wife each month to discuss the family finances. If there is not an intentional commitment to that time, it will never work.