How to Get Your Spouse On Board with Budgeting and Debt Freedom
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This post is in response to one of my lovely readers and personal friend. She’s having a hard time getting her husband on board with the whole budgeting thing and can’t seem to convince him that they should pay off their credit card debt. Money is a controversial topic, especially in marriage. Most marriages consist of a spender and a saver. Rarely will any marriage have two spenders or two savers. They say opposites attract, and that is SO true. In my marriage, I’m the saver and my husband is the spender.
It wasn’t hard to get my husband on board, though. He already liked the idea of being debt free, but he wasn’t passionate about it. He’s a reader, so I simply made a book suggestion for him. He read Dave Ramsey’s Total Money Makeover and that was that. He was hooked. It may not be that easy to get your spouse on board.
Money is one of the biggest causes of marital fights and divorce, but it doesn’t have to be that way. You CAN get on the same page as a couple when it comes to money, and I’m going to do my best to give you some tips to make that happen within your own marriage.
1. Create a Vision
Dream together, and don’t bring up money. If your spouse mentions money, ask what his dreams would be if money were no issue. Then, sell him that dream as if it COULD happen. Get him excited about it. Get him to believe those dreams are worth going for. Because they are!
2. Explain Why Getting out of Debt Would be Amazing for Both of You
Show him WHY, not WHAT. The last thing you want to do is start telling him WHAT needs to be done in your finances. You want to show him WHY budgeting or getting out of debt is a good idea in a way that speaks to him. What could you do if you had no debt? What could you do if you had no mortgage or car payments? What types of vacations could you take? What organizations could you help? You could even get him to think it’s all his idea by doing this. Some people think an idea is a bad idea if it wasn’t theirs to begin with. We all know people like that, don’t we?
3. Create Your Budget Alone and Ask for Input Afterwards
Start by creating a budget of the PREVIOUS month. This will show your spouse what happened to all your money last month and get him to understand even more why a budget would be life changing. Then create a budget for the following month, showing what could be if the budget is followed. Get his approval. This is important. If he doesn’t agree, there’s only so much you can do by yourself. You both need to be in agreement about where your money goes.
4. Lead by Example
The words you say, the tone and body language you use, and the timing you choose to bring up finances is important. Keep it all positive and encouraging. Avoid phrases like “you always” and “you never.” Your spouse won’t want to follow your lead if you’re condescending and angry.
5. Celebrate Together
Ask your spouse how you should spend the saved money after paying some towards debt. Make it fun and exciting by spending a little of the money you worked so hard on saving. Maybe have a special date night or buy something you’ve both been wanting to purchase. Don’t make budgeting all about restriction. Keep everything positive and fun.
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Getting your spouse on board may take a little or a lot of work, but the end result will be worth it. It’s so important to be on the same page as a couple. Have you succeeded at doing this? How did you do it? Do you have any tips? I’d love to read about it in the comments below!
I’m Kari, founder of Mom For More. Do you often lie awake at night dreaming about what it would be like if your family was debt-free? What if you could make that dream come true with a business that allowed you to stay home and be fully present with your babies? Mom for More teaches moms that they can start a home business, become debt-free, and gain more overall peace in motherhood. It equips moms with the tools they need to succeed in their finances, home businesses, and daily lives. You don't have to put your life on hold when you become a mother. It's okay to dream. It's okay to believe that you were made for more. I’d love for you to subscribe and follow along with me!