Talking About Finances
Talking to your spouse, family, or a financial advisor about finances can be very stressful. Here’s how to make it work:
Step 1: Schedule a meeting
Financial guru Pete the Planner suggests meeting monthly to discuss finances, making it a regular (and therefore, less stressful) conversation. Here’s how he suggests running a budget meeting.
Step 2: Plan for your future
Saving for the future is important—both for the security it will bring and the stress it can relieve. Decide what is most important to you and your family, and then start making small steps to get there. A general rule of thumb is to save 10% of your income. If you don’t have an extra 10% available after making your budget, change your spending habits—saving is more important than dining out, wardrobe updates, or cable TV.
Step 3: Make a budget together
Making a budget might seem tedious, but it can give great insight into how you spend your money. There are hundreds of budgeting tools available, but the point is that your income should not exceed your expenses. Here are some great resources to get you started:
- Mint.com | Website that links with all your bank accounts, credit cards, and financial institutions to help you create a budget and manage your money.
- Pete the Planner’s Ideal Household Budget | General tips and percentage breakdowns for budgeters of all incomes.
- Dave Ramsey’s Online Budgeting Tool | An online fillable budgeting form.
- Budgeting 101: How a Simple Budget Helped Me—And Can Help You, Too | An article about one man’s budgeting journey.
Interested in learning more about budgeting? Check out the book that introduced the 50/30/20 budget, All Your Worth: The Ultimate Lifetime Money Plan, by Elizabeth Warren and Amelia Warren Tyagi!