After much discussion my wife and I have decided to go our separate ways. She has been unhappy with my increasingly frugal nature just as I have been unhappy with her increasingly flippant spending of money.
Our solution is not what it sounds like.
We have decided to eliminate all discretionary spending from our main bank account. We are going to use our main joint checking account for necessary purchases like groceries, and bills. We will use our separate accounts for everything else, haircuts, trips to the nail salon, domain name purchases, forays into peer to peer lending, eating out, etc etc. You get the idea.
It is not that she is spending excessively it is just that she is spending more than I thought was needed. The way we have arranged it, we will get a set amount, $200.00 each, every two weeks. That money is for everything outside of regular expenses. For instance: she wants some new furniture for the bathroom, I want to build a garden. Neither of these are “necessary” expenses and therefore we will fund them from our separate accounts. Same goes for dinners and lunches out one of us will have to pick it up from discretionary funding. We were easily spending close to $400.00 a month eating out, I know not very frugal, but this should reduce that because we will both be more accountable for our funds.
Keep in mind when I say separate I don’t mean individual accounts they are physically separate but still joint accounts, we each have full access to the others “Spending” account. This helps to make sure in the even something happens to one of us access to the money won’t be held up.
One of the biggest problem I have had with a joint account was my inability to “Surprise” my spouse. You can’t surprise someone with a purchase when they monitor the bank account daily. We will not be allowed to question or criticize what the other is doing with their funds nor will we monitor it daily. I will update our GNUCash tracking at the end of each month to accurately account for our spending, but that is all.
I think it is healthy for everyone in a relationship to feel they have control and the ability to buy what they want, to an extent.
I started a Poll yesterday and had little response, so instead of talking about it here I have included the poll, so vote and be heard and show me some love.