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There are many articles out there that talk about spenders and savers. “Are you a saver married to a spender?” Basically, a saver is one who focuses mostly on saving money (obviously) and usually only spends money on necessities. On the other hand, a spender typically puts less effort into saving and is more prone to frequent and impulsive spending.
So if there is both a saver and a spender in a relationship, there is a fairly high chance of arguments regarding finances and how to manage the money in the household.
The saver gets upset when the spender goes on a shopping spree. The spender gets irritated that the saver is always so focused on needs and doesn’t allow any rewards.
So how does the spender get his/her splurges while the saver still feels the finances are in control?
The answer comes in two parts. Here is how to control your splurge spending:
A) Fun Money Accounts.
To begin with, you really should have these 7 bank accounts to get your finances in order. Included in these accounts are a Wife Fun Money account and a Husband Fun Money account. These accounts should also be included in your monthly budget.
Basically, it is an agreed upon monthly allowance for both the husband and wife. Instead of fighting about who is spending money, each spouse gets an amount each month that he/she can spend however they want. (Psst: You should still do this even if you’re single!)
This is great because it gives each person the freedom to spend money guilt free and feel some reward for the work they do. After all, it is tough to stay motivated to be financially responsible when you aren’t seeing any tangible, short term rewards.
This allows you some freedom in spending without messing up your budget. Ergo, a win-win for both the saver and the spender.
*Part A lays the foundation for Part B which is the trick that will further help you control your splurge spending. So make sure Part A is in place before implementing Part B!*
B) The List.
We all have different things that we would love to splurge on. A bigger screen TV, a new grill, an upgraded laptop, etc.
Sit down together and make a list of the all items that you want to splurge on, no matter the cost. Then rank the items by priority so that the most important/most wanted item is at the top of the list.
Then when you come in under budget or have some extra cash, you buy the item at the top of the list. Yippee!
Let me explain exactly how it works…
What’s on The List
Splurge items or wants.
This list is only for wants – AKA: not necessities! Any item that qualifies as a need should be factored into your normal monthly budget. If it truly is a need and cannot be covered by your budget, pull from your general savings account.
Also, it should be an item that would benefit the whole family or household. If it is only a want for one, he/she should save for it with his/her fun money account.
Can be as small as $50 or as large as $5000.
This is your splurge list. So let yourself live a little! If you and your significant other agree to put it on the list, don’t be afraid of how expensive it is! It’s only a list after all. You’re not committing to buying it right this second.
Set Your Ground Rules
Since this list is for the family/household, it must be decided on by those affected. Both you and your S.O. must agree on everything that goes on the list. Period. Even get your kids involved if appropriate. They will feel their opinions are highly valued if they have a hand in making family decisions.
This also goes with the priority order. Once you all agree on the order of the items on The List, any changes to the order must also be agreed upon.
Decide together on any other rules involving The List and write them down. Accountability people!
Okay so where does this splurge money come from? Your budget of course!
Decide on the amount that you want to save each month to go towards The List. Open a bank account and set up automatic transfers to the account. If you come in under budget one month or come up with some extra cash, you have the option to put that money towards The List fund.
Once you save up enough for the item at the top of the list, you can do your happy dance all the way to the store to buy it!
Guilt free. WOOT!
Then you start saving for the next item on The List. Rinse. Repeat.
Again: You must wait until you save up enough. That is the key to making The List work for both the spender and the saver!
The beauty of The List is that it offers appeasement for both the spender and the saver. The saver is able to keep the budget balanced while the spender is still able to splurge every now and then. You can now control your splurge spending!
Of course I cannot promise that this method will completely put an end of all financial arguments in your household, but it should lessen them quite a bit! Everyone is more willing to cooperate to maintain the budget and save when the family is excited about the next item on the list.
And when there is extra money for spending, there won’t be an argument over what to spend it on. The List has already been made! When everyone is on the same page about spending, everyone can enjoy the purchase instead of it causing resentment.