Is that how your husband would describe you?
Women have an infamous reputation of squandering their husband’s paycheck, over-spending at the mall and accumulating debt at top-speed. Do you fall into these stereotypical categories or do you balance the budget and meticulously plan your spending expenditures?
One of the top three causes of divorce in this generation is disagreements concerning money. No doubt these are from either spouse not being a good steward with the finances, over-spending or just providing an insufficient income for the family. Past debts can also haunt marriages for years if careful spending is not in place to pay off the entirety of debts in a reasonable amount of time.
Do you desire for your husband to trust you in all things — even money? You can begin to gain his trust if you make some necessary changes in your lifestyle.
- Tell the truth. You come back home from the grocery store and your husband wants to know how much you spent. Your actual total was $99.52. You shrug and say, “Ninety dollars.” While that is somewhat close to the total, you rounded incorrectly because ninety dollars sounds a lot better than one hundred! But any simple mathematician knows that your total grocery bill should be rounded up — not down. Be honest when your husband asks you financial questions. Do not skimp on the truth. This will only come back and bite you and cause further distrust.
- Consider his desires. Before you head to the shopping mall, ask him how much he thinks is reasonable for you to spend on make-up, clothes and accessories. Don’t hesitate to give him rough estimates as well as acknowledge that you may stumble upon a major sale that is too tempting to pass up! Discussing your shopping plans with your husband prior to your trip will clear up any confusion as well as skirmishes that may happen about the total of your shopping expenditures.
- Purchase large items together. Want to buy a new car or boat? Don’t surprise your husband with such a large investment. Instead, discuss these items together, plan together and eventually, purchase them together. Not only will this build your marriage bond, but it will help your husband learn that he can safely trust you not to make large purchases without his knowledge.
- Stretch your budget. Your husband may receive a hefty paycheck, but that doesn’t mean you have to spend every last cent! Learn to stretch your budget by planning, couponing, buying used, not wasting what you already have and just simply learning to be content. Show your husband that your family’s income and budget is important to you. You want to make the wisest decisions possible. Only over time can you prove that you are indeed a wise consumer as well as a budget-friendly wife.
- Differentiate between needs and wants. If your budget has become unexpectedly tight, you need to make some adjustments. First, decide what you really need and what items are only extras. Do you really need to purchase the expensive line of make-up or could you pull off a CoverGirl or Revlon look? Do you really need to eat out several times per week, or could you cook more home-made meals? Once you identify your extras, purchase these items last — after all the major needs have been accounted for.
- Always put money back. You should never spend all the money you and your husband bring in. It is inevitable that unexpected circumstances will arise. Your husband might be layed off, expensive medical needs might arise or the car might need repairs. Always plan for the unexpected and put away a percentage of your family’s income to save for those events.
- Respect your husband’s money. Don’t view your husband’s salary as “Mine, mine, mine!” Instead, consider the money a representative of all his hours of hard work and labor. Don’t take it for granted and be sure to thank him for working to make provision for your needs. If you view his income as hard-earned money, then you will indeed be more careful on how it is spent.
As your husband’s hand wraps around yours, you can know that you have his heart, his trust and his respect when you have proven to be a financially-frugal wife that saves and spends her husband’s money with discretion. Yes, one day your husband will call you trustworthy, diligent, hard-working and frugal. That day may be sooner than you think!