A survey noted that 48% of American couples have arguments about their finances. That’s nearly half! The clash is the result of being on different pages about money. Over time, it can certainly put a strain on your relationship.
One way that can be a big help in turning this around for financially feuding couples is making a budget.
It’s a great way to alleviate the stress of money-centered conflict and it offers an opportunity to build a strong financial foundation together.
It’s also no secret that when both partners are on board with making a budget and sticking to it. Reaching your joint goals is a lot easier. So how do you approach the subject of budgeting with a skeptical partner?
Here are some great strategies that can help you and your spouse create a budget game plan and finally get on the same page.
Ask Them Out On A Budget-Friendly Date
Although a difficult subject, there is no reason why talking about budgets can’t become a positive experience. Take your spouse somewhere that is cost-effective and fun for you both to discuss your finances.
This is also a great way to show your spouse that budgets don’t have to be strict and entertainment can be incorporated into it if that is something important to them. Fun activities are a great way to reward your budgeting commitment and it helps your spouse to see it as an upside to budgeting.
Some frugal budget date ideas include:
• Taking a walk
• Getting ice cream
• Going to the movies
• Hanging out at a coffee shop
• Riding bikes together
• Open mic night for comedy or karaoke
• Paint night
Demonstrating that fun can happen on a budget will help foster a positive connection to budgeting for your spouse.
Highlight The Benefits of Making a Budget with Your Spouse
As you open up the conversation with your spouse, share some positive benefits associated with budgeting:
- Having a sense of security from being in control of your money
- Getting/staying out of and avoiding more debt
- Being able to work towards your dreams
- Creating a stable financial foundation for your family
- Opening other doors of opportunity
- Gaining more knowledge about finances in general
- Creating organization and order for spending and saving
- Open up the communication channel for you both
- Creates focus and awareness on your money goals and habits
You can also share key areas that you can save money to provide a real example of how this benefits you
Having positive points lined up can help hit home for your spouse. It will help them see that this is a great way to move forward on your financial journey.
Do Some Goal Work
Now for the really fun part: dreams and goals talk!
Discussing your future and dreaming big can be fun and rewarding for each of you and it builds your bond as you decide what is truly important in your lives. This is also a great opportunity for each of you to share your personal insights on how you view money.
When speaking with your spouse, be honest and open about your personal goals, your money mindset and why making a budget is important to you. Then ask your spouse to share their views about the subject as well. After this, discuss your joint financial goals, both short and long-term.
A deep discussion will give you a full view of your spouse’s concerns, fears, and dreams. This will help to deepen your bond together and set the stage for growth in your financial relationship as well. It also demonstrates why budgeting is a useful tool for your life goals together and eases you into the actual budgeting work – which can be emotionally and mentally challenging.
As you generate ideas during your conversation, take notes and be sure to review them together at each budget meeting to make sure you are on track.
Work With And Grow Your Budget
After you both get an idea of your dreams and goals, this is a great time to think of where you can make changes to your budget. With a focus on your goals, you’ll be able to make choices together that you agree upon.
One way to do this is to set up monthly allowances. This introduces a new way to build trust and freedom so you don’t have to micromanage everything spent. An example is giving each person $150 to spend on whatever they want, no questions asked.
This way, if someone is more prone to spending, they will be able to without feeling restricted. The number you decide on for each person will be a conversation you both have and agree upon so you’re on the same page.
Bright IDEA💡: Budgeting software or a budgeting app can be a great way to get on the same page financially and take the pressure off both parties to closely track your spending in the beginning. My husband and I started using Simplifi by Quicken and we love it.
Simplifi connects to all your financial accounts to help you manage your budget, track your net worth, set financial goals and more. Learn more about Simplifi here.
Bonus Idea: Earn Extra Money Together
Another great idea is earning more money through a side hustle! You can do this together or separately. It’s a fantastic way to add more cash flow to your budget and create more room for the spender in the relationship, minus the guilt.
Some great side hustle ideas to look into are:
Doggie Treats Bakery At Home – This is a super fun side hustle in a BOOMING industry.
Virtual Assistant – Another industry that is on the rise. Even if you have no experience you can grow this side hustle as a beginner.
Freelance Writing – This is a great way to earn extra income and there is always a demand for freelance writers!
E-Printables – If you love those awesome downloadable printables you get from Etsy shops, you can easily create you’re own and earn money!
Take Surveys – Earn gift cards and cash for taking surveys online.
Bring In The Advisor
Utilizing the services of a finance professional can add a deeper level to your support of budgets and sometimes this level of expertise can help make your partner feel more comfortable.
If visiting a professional one-on-one isn’t an option, taking an online course is a fantastic way to show your spouse why budgets are a great idea.
Lead By Example
Spouse still not on board? Another great way to get your reluctant significant other on board with budgeting is by making a budget for yourself and following it daily.
As you stick to your budget and still enjoy your life, your spouse will see that budgets don’t have to be difficult to follow and maintain, nor do they have to suck all the joy from your life.
In addition, your spouse will see that money can be used in many different ways, and deciding how you make it work for you is empowering.
Remember, sometimes showing not just telling can be more effective in your pursuit to get on the same budget page.
Some other great tips are:
- Speak as a team by using “we”. You want to have your spouse feel included in the process in every way and if your perspective is one of togetherness, in the ups and downs of budgeting and life, they will be more receptive.
- Reassure them that while it isn’t always easy, reaching your goals is achievable with a budget that BOTH of you agree to.
- Find free budgeting tools and applications online to make the process even easier and more interactive.
Budgeting with your spouse truly has many benefits and although it may be hard getting them on board, using these tips above will help them recognize the highlights of working together on your finances with a budget.
What ways helped you to get your spouse on board with budgeting? How long have you been successfully budgeting together?
Stop Worrying About Money and Regain Control
Join 5,000+ others to get access to free printables to help you manage your monthly bills, reduce expenses, pay off debt, and more. Receive just two emails per month with exclusive content to help you on your journey.