How do you and your spouse resolve "small" money disputes?

Discussion in 'Budget Board' started by BeatingtheOdds, Aug 27, 2013.

  1. Sheaboys

    Sheaboys DIS Veteran

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    We have been married 17 yrs and we also don't sweat that stuff. I have been a SAHM since 2002. Now 5 kids deep, we know how to spend what money we do have. We don't live week to week or month to month. We don't really keep track of what we spend our money on either. I buy the kids clothes as needed. If it is needed, they get it, shoes, soccer equipment, winter coats, ski equipment etc. Now, some weeks it will be not this week maybe next because lets face it ski equipment is expensive for 3 older kids. I also buy that used, since they grow out of so fast and sell our stuff at swap as well.

    We don't have a vacation fund, we also don't use our tax refund towards vacation. If we decide on a vacation, I just plan it, pay for it etc. If we have no money to pay for it, we don't go. We just flew from MA to CA and spent 9 days in San Diego, did Zoo, Sea World, Legoland and few other things.

    Big items, like we need a roof or kitchen remodel, those come from our tax refund, saved over time, sometimes 1-2yrs worth. DH does most of the work himself.

    I just began working as a realtor, I close about 1 home a month, average is about $1,800 (I split with my team leader), so I just put that into savings. It may go towards our kitchen or roof we need, or maybe vacation next year, not sure yet. Or like August I brought cash on vacation I made.

    As for eating out and what not. If I notice a pattern or us eating out alot or buying lunches, coffee etc. I mention we need to curb back and tell him how much we have been spending and we stop.
     
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  3. gray52

    gray52 Mouseketeer

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    Just is. From what I've seen, I think it creates more arguments.
     
  4. pryncess527

    pryncess527 DIS Veteran

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    DH and I have lived together for 14 years, married for the last 9 of that. I can honestly say I don't think we've ever had a fight about money. We combined all of our finances when we moved in together, it's just what works best for us. I have many friends with separate finances and while it seems to work for them, it wouldn't feel right for us.

    We used to just kind of make it up as we went along and honestly, that was fine in terms of our conversations with each other. We've recently started a budget program (YNAB) so now we each have our own fun money budget categories, and that is nice because it's money I know can be spent on any frivolous want I have without taking away from any plans we had as a family.
     
  5. shortbun

    shortbun <font color=green>Peacenik<br><font color=purple><

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    We are always in agreement with small money issues. Any big leisure item the other one wants is subject to the spouse's approval. We have only disagreed once over spending when he spent a lot unexpectedly on something desirable but not discussed. We kept it and made the spousal approval rule. :) That was way early in our marriage. To clarify, he spends what he needs and so do I. Car, computer, motorcycle, electronics like IPADs or more expensive are in the spousal approval area. This is mainly because we need to make sure the money is where it needs to be to pay for things or not already allotted.
     
  6. mm1971

    mm1971 DIS Veteran

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    I'm sure a lot of couples have disputes over these types of things, but in my 17 years of marriage I cannot remember ever arguing about buying clothes for the kids and such. We actually have a vacation account set up where we deposit a set amount. We may argue where we are heading, but not on funding the account. We do have discussions on any large purchases and usually come up with a viable solution. Just never really thought small purchases were worth arguing over. I guess we are lucky.
     
  7. sk!mom

    sk!mom DIS Veteran

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    Over 30 years here too and this is my experience as well. We don't even discuss small things. We both know our budget and trust the other to spend wisely.

    As an example, I really hate letting money slip away eating out a lot so I cook every night. I always make extra and freeze portions because if he has something healthy and yummy in the freezer DH loves to take his lunch. I'm willing to make the effort to save that lunch money.

    We both would prefer to increase our vacation budget rather than pay a housekeeper so we meet at home every Friday at 5:15 and spend an hour cleaning the house. We reward ourselves with Happy Hour on the patio!
     
  8. honeybunches

    honeybunches That sounds like a cat poster, but it's true

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    My DH is super sweet and easygoing. He lets me have my way on most things, including money. He never ever complains about what I buy or what we put money toward. Which has not always been the best idea because I'm a spender, not a saver. We've learned the hard way how to get on a budget.
     
  9. si-am

    si-am DIS Veteran

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    See, I think my husband and I would argue more if all our money was in one account. I like having "my own."
     
  10. Angie789

    Angie789 Mouseketeer

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    Married 6 years, dual income, joint checking account. Never had a money argument, nor do we ask each other's permission to spend money (if it's a larger purchase, we both respect each other by giving a "heads up" so no one is surprised by a withdrawal).

    If it is truly is a small matter, it is not worth mentioning. For example, my DH buys lottery tickets a couple of times a week. I hate that - to me, that is just flushing money down the drain. But honestly... who cares? Not even worth bringing up. He earned it, he enjoys doing it, and I make my own non-essential purchases that make me happy (hello, designer bags & K-cups!), so who am I to gripe about his?

    We are fortunate that a.) we are on the same page for all of our big money issues, and b.) we both have great jobs so we don't have to worry about every penny. But for us, any money issue definitely falls into the category of "small stuff."
     
  11. ssawka

    ssawka DIS Veteran

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    I think it depends on how equally matched your earnings are. When there is a large discrepancy in income, I think having separate accounts would lead to more arguments.
     
  12. gray52

    gray52 Mouseketeer

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    All comes down to perspective.
     
  13. pryncess527

    pryncess527 DIS Veteran

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    I like having a little of our own spending money each, but could not imagine keeping our finances separate in general. We combined our lives when we got married and that includes money. It's just what works best for us.
     
  14. Pesky

    Pesky "Who's the monkey?!"

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    We compromise. We have a joint account and each have a separate account. We met later in life so this works well but even for big spends out of personal accounts, we have made a pact to talk with each other so we are comfortable where money is going. It works out because our savings and spending patterns are a little different and so we compliment each other. One of the key things is we are in synch when it comes to long term goals -- little to no debt, fully-funded retirement, college for kids, etc. -- so it's easier to agree on little stuff as well.
     
  15. Alexander

    Alexander DIS Veteran

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    We've never had a money dispute. He makes it, I spend it, end of conversation!:lmao:
     

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