Involve your spouse in planning household finances?

Today, I will go straight to the point. I particularly wish to speak to fellow men on the importance of involving our spouses in the planning and management of household finances. While the message applies to all, men are the main culprits of living in financial secrecy.

Keeping your spouse involved in the management of finances can be a tough thing to some people, especially men, but yet very important.  In most situations, the man wants to show that he knows more about money than the woman even if the wife is a chartered accountant and the man a better-than-nothing guy.

In many cases, housewives do not have knowledge of how much money is in the bank account. They are only given money to spend on groceries and a few other budget categories. Other than that, the whole income and expenditure taking place in the family is greedily protected by the man.

The man is the financial analyst, financial controller, investment manager, accountant and auditor—all in one. Wives can sometimes be told ‘mayi ndimamanga nyumba ndiye mawa tikusamuka, muyambe kulongeza’ (I have been building a house and it’s now finished, so get ready, we are moving houses tomorrow). This is no pleasant surprise—it is bad investment planning and nauseating personal finance management.

Doping it all yourself is a dangerous approach to family finances. What if something happened to you?  Would the spouse know how to step-in and manage everything? Would the spouse know how to make and sustain sound investment decisions?

In the same vein, there are also a few high-earning women who treat their spouses unfairly. Men are reduced to beggars in their own homes with no knowledge of how much money the partner earns.

The spouse may not necessarily be involved in the day-to-day finances, but should have knowledge of the resources and how they are being used.  You may wish to consider these two tips to get your spouse more involved in the management of family finances.

Budget together every month. One of the most important things spouses can do together is budget their money together each month. Even though you have regular spending to be made, there are still planning decisions to be made each month for discretionary spending.

Seek your spouse’s input. A great way to involve your spouse is to ask them questions and seek their input about financial decisions. You are in dangerous territory if you are managing the money on an island by yourself without financial counsel or advice from your spouse, especially where long-term investments are concerned. 

If you are a male, do not make this mistake. Women have a great sense of intuition and often gifted with discernment. These are important qualities and characteristics you need on your family money management team.

What ideas do you have to involve your spouse in the management of family finances? Food for thought! 

Have a blessed weekend!


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