Tired of arguing with your spouse over their spending?
The Mom and Dad Monthly Allowance
by Nicole Palacios
Couples Money Talk
I like to spend my money on shopping for things like pretty new shoes and the latest workout gear while my husband likes to save his money for a rainy day. How do we manage to spend our money in different ways without arguing over the finances at the end of the month?
Over a period of time, husbands and wives get to understand how their partner's money-spending habits work. That's why it's important to separate your money and be able to spend it as you wish without going broke at the end of the month. You give your kids a monthly allowance of money to spend as they wish, so why not do it yourselves? Here's how "The Mom and Dad Allowance" works:
Organize your household spending in separate categories, allotting what you need each month to pay each bill. For example, mortgage or rent, your gas, water and phone bills all have their own categories, and the funds allotted for those bills are not touched. Each month those bills will be paid for from the main account. Create a category for personal spending, as well as a category for monthly savings.
Each month, you and your partner get a previously agreed upon amount of money (an allowance if you will) to spend as you wish. Each partner gets his/her allowance and can spend it as desired, such as dining out, buying new clothes, or any kind of entertainment.
With the monthly allowance, the budget gets spared since you are never going back to the debit or credit card for independent purchases. It also keeps the peace; without overspending on personal expenditures, the bills are paid every month and everyone is happy.
- Don't go crazy giving yourselves too much money to spend, but try to figure out an amount that can keep you both happy and not looking for more.
- Reassess your personal spending amounts every six months or so to make sure that your other bills are not taking the flak (for example overspending at the grocery store because you needed more make up for beauty supplies).
- Budget your own monthly allowance as well; don't spend it all at once or you'll be waiting weeks to get your next allotment!
Having a monthly allowance may feel slightly constraining at first, especially if you have been used to freely spending whenever you wish on your debit or credit cards.
Tightening the purse strings by giving yourself a specific amount of spending money each month will eventually feel more freeing, and can alleviate the stress of sitting down and studying your spending for the month. There is nothing to study because you already know exactly what you spent.
Try it out for a few months and see how "The Mom and Dad Monthly Allowance" works for you. I have a feeling that it will be a great addition to your monthly budget.
Take the Next Step:
- For more on marriage and money, please visit The Dollar Stretcher Library.
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