When it comes to finances, I will admit that I haven’t always made the best choices. Before I got married, I spent my money as soon as I got a paycheck. I wasn’t concerned with saving for the future, or even until the next month – I just lived paycheck to paycheck like many high school and college students.
After marriage, my husband and I became somewhat impulsive buyers together. Sadly, we still have debts that we accrued within the first 2 years of marriage – and we will be celebrating our 8th anniversary this year. We have gotten smarter with our money, thankfully, so we are paying down these debts and are able to put back money for our family.
For the longest, I have let James handle 90% of the household finances, since he’s the primary breadwinner. Last year, I became more actively involved so that I could help budget our money and learn where all of it was going. Awareness is a wonderful thing, especially when it comes to your wallet!
Since reading the Financial Literacy Guide put together by David Lerner Associates, Inc., I am happy to see that I’ve taken steps in the right direction when it comes to our money. We strive to keep our financial related documents organized, thanks to file folders, old shoeboxes (hey, it works for us!), and an Excel spreadsheet.
Our monthly budget shows us everything that needs to be paid and when the money will be sent (or directly debited, depending on the arrangement). It also lets us know what we have left over for “running money” – gas, groceries, entertainment, etc. I am able to contribute money from my blogging/online work account because I how much to put forth. I also know how much we can save for an emergency fund, which we are [very slowly] building.
There are still things I have no clue about when it comes to finances, which are mentioned in the guide. Things like investing, taxes, and asset protection. Now that I’m aware of how important it is to know more about money and these subjects, I’m going to make it a point to find out more!