I have mentioned in the past that money is not my strong area, and it is not for Hubby either. We decided though that we have to quit just saying that and having an “excuse”. We are both working together to really get a handle on what money comes in, what goes out, and how to better plan for our future. Here is what we have done so far.
This is where we started a bit. There are a lot of free online classes and information about personal finance. We have read and watched a few short things together. Not a ton – maybe 3 hours in all – but it is something and we did actually learn some things. I am going to keep looking for other education in personal finance that we can continue with.
We are trying to find the tools that will work best for the both of us to be in charge on our finances. One simple thing was to buy an inexpensive accordion file where we can store incoming bills, tax information, etc. Prior to today those papers just lived on my desk (which is a mess usually). The goal is to file these things immediately when they arrive in the mail. Our bank has online banking which I have used for several years now but Hubby had never used. Tonight I helped him go through the setup and get everything started for him. Not only did he have to set up the online accounts, but I also had to walk him through how to use the basics. We also are trying Mint.com – again something I have known about for a while – but something he was unfamiliar with. We began setting up those things.
- Researching Our Money
Because we haven’t been great about keeping track of things, we are now having to research our own money. In order for us to make a budget we have to know what those monthly bills actually are for. I honestly did not know how much exactly our car payments were, credit card payments, grocery costs, etc. I am going through our bank statements and incoming bills to find those numbers. We are also writing down every penny we spend now for a few weeks to track all those little things here and there.
This is one of our biggest things that we know is crucial. We both have to communicate with each other about all of this. No one can yell about it either. We realize both of us have our strengths and weaknesses in this area and where I may need help Hubby will step in and where he needs help I will step in. It is a total team effort.
Do you have a grasp on your money habits? Any tips to share? Or are you in a spot where you need to learn just like Hubby and I?
© 2012, Robyn Wright. All rights reserved.