I’m super proud of both myself and my husband for budgeting to buy a a new to us car–with cash. However, it took a lot of hard work, tears (mostly from me, and fine tuning our monthly finances in order to grow our savings. What is the one thing you and your partner argue about the most? I bet you just said, “Money!” In most relationships, there is a saver and a spender. I was (and still am) the latter in my marriage. I love the convenience of shopping online, getting a coffee here and there and going out to eat. However, all of that adds up over time. My hubby, on the other hand, still has money saved from Christmas 2 years ago from his grandma because he just hasn’t found the right thing to spend it on yet (it’s like $100…we’re not talking 1000’s of dollars here).
My spending always caused little arguments—usually when we had to transfer from our saving’s account to make sure we could pay daycare and the mortgage on top of everything else. He stopped checking our accounts online because all it did was cause arguments. However, our savings was dwindling down over time below where we were comfortable and my husband had enough. This past January, he decided we needed to do a budget together every month to go over where our money was going and what it needed to go toward instead. He printed out our statement each month and we went through every single purchase. Whoa. Talk about an eye opener to me. I felt embarrassed by how much stupid stuff I was spending our money on. We agreed to check with each other anytime we needed to spend over $25 that wasn’t related to our monthly bills. I hated this. I felt like I had to ask permission to buy things and I didn’t like that at all. But, I for sure needed the accountability and over time stopped buying stupid stuff—because that’s all it was—stuff. I also desperately needed a new car so we set a goal to buy a particular car later this year.
In August, we met our goal in savings (with plenty left to spare) to buy a new-to-us car with cash (woohoo!) Do I still overspend at times? Absolutely. However, we have accounted for fun money each month in our budget so I don’t feel guilty if I want to buy a new top for myself or treat our boys to ice cream. It’s all about communicating with each other and doing a check-in with each other to see where you’re at. We still go over our budget each month and plan on being able to give more each month to charity now that we’re where we want to be with our saving and spending each month. As hard as it was getting started (and sometimes it still is), this has brought us closer and allowed to be able to provide our family a financially secure future…all by just communicating with each other.