anchored in light

A lifestyle blog about finding light in every avenue of life

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Couples Finance

One of the hardest parts of adjusting to marriage for me was figuring out how to do finances. Before we were married I was so used to taking care of my own finances and having complete control over where my money went. When we got married it seemed like all of a sudden the money was always gone. I had no idea where it went or how we spent it, I just knew it was gone. 

For someone who asked her mother to start a savings account for her when she was around 7, having the money just be gone was horrifying. I knew going into marriage that I would be acquiring a lot of debt due to some unfortunate circumstances in Brian's life (hello breaking your back and not getting compensated for it by the school whose property it happened on), but it didn't seem like the money should just be gone. 

After a while (read: the first three years of our marriage), I just gave up and let Brian take care of paying all the bills without me asking any questions. Every once in a while I would try to take an interest again, but it just never seemed to add up. We went through several budgeting apps until we found Honeydue. It was specifically designed for couples and it definitely helped, but it wasn't until last August that we found a strategy that really worked for us.

Here's what we do. Every payday we sit down together and we go over how much we got paid, what bills are due, and any other expenses we have. We plan what we're going to spend any extra we have, whether that be savings or extra debt payments or putting it toward any things we've needed but have put off for a while. We also give ourselves an allowance every month. Money that we don't have to account for how it's spent. Everything else we discuss before we spend it. We have a google spreadsheet that we both have access to where we enter in our bills (using Honeydue) and then track them as we pay them that night. We also have a separate tab in the spreadsheet for our debts and we update the totals each month.

It has become the perfect system for us and has made me feel like I have so much more control over how our money is spent. Even though, honestly, we haven't changed the way that we spend our money. The money is still generally gone, but now it doesn't seem to have disappeared into thin air. Plus, I know where our debts are and how much progress we are making on each one. 

If this is something that sounds like it might work for you, HERE is a link to a copy of our spreadsheet. It will give you a basic template to go off of for your own couples finance meeting. And HERE is a link to Honeydue. It's a free app, that you can choose to pay for if you want. I would if I felt like we had any money because honestly, I think it's worth it. They do a great job of tracking all your bank accounts and credit cards while also keeping track of your bills and when they are due. 

I hope this helps! If you have any tips for how you do couples finance, I'd love to hear them!
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