Does anyone in a couple budget alone?
I'm just wondering if there are other situations like mine out there. I'm a stay-at-home mom, and I've used YNAB for 10 years to manage our finances. My husband works. We have 3 kids. All of our accounts are joint. Hubs doesn't even have the login to the checking account which I've had since before we were married. Occasionally I've showed him the YNAB screen, but he just gives a quick glance.
There have been times where I've resented the entire burden falling on me, but for the most part I've made peace with it. I just refinanced our mortgage without even consulting him and just checked if his calendar was clear for the closing.
I don't think he has the YNAB app on his phone, but he might. I can't remember him ever entering a transaction, though. Before direct import, and when we were living day-to-day I had him put all receipts on a spindle/spike thing and it was super helpful. I'd collect them every day and enter. Now I just check for pending transactions online if I think he spent something, or ask for the Costco receipt immediately. And I have a receipt dropbox hanging of my office door too that he uses.
He grew up in a family with horrid money attitudes and habits, and in the first 5 years we were together I was totally unsuccessful in re-training him and we nearly broke up. He has never been able to move on from his crippling psychological anxiety when it comes to finances, so the solution seemed to be to exclude him completely. He DOES wash dishes, do laundry, cook dinner, so there's less resentment all around :). It's just sad when I hear all the couples discuss their regular "budget meetings" and I can't even imagine what something like that even looks like.
There have been times where I've resented the entire burden falling on me, but for the most part I've made peace with it.
This is all that matters, in my humble opinion. If its working and you are both happy with it, then no reason to change. Only thing I would add is that you should do up a "Legacy box" which is a file box (or drawer) where you list all the accounts, all the billing companies and account numbers, and where to find wills, passwords, powers of attorney, etc. In case something happens to you, he will have no clue where to start. This gives him that.Reply
Yep, this is me. My husband doesn't know logins to any of the accounts. We just moved and he can't even remember to enter the correct zip code when using his credit card. He gets annoyed when I tell him we can't do something right away, or plan his next big trip, but I tell him the reasons why and explain I'll go over it in detail, but he doesn't want to. This works better for us.Reply
A little bit.
I do all the actual budgeting work with the hubs entering his transactions. That is the one point where I make him do work, and he really doesn't mind it since the app is so easy to use. But I put our paychecks in and budget according to the plan. I set the plan, although I do consult with him on some big picture things. I'll show him how I have things set up in YNAB and he'll glance but doesn't really worry himself with the details. He just knows that he needs to keep spending within the category balances (I forbid him from moving money. If we need to adjust a balance I'll include him in the convo about what gets cut but I do the actual moving and make final decisions on that regard).
I also need to make sure I ask him when he has some needs coming up that I may not have accounted for and maybe pivot my plans a little bit. But at the end of the day it is a lot of me telling him what I want to do and he'll just go "yes, dear" and trust I have things under control.
It works for us, honestly. I wouldn't really want it any other way since this is one area where I prefer to have the control. I'm the planner and the analyzer. He is much more of an "in the moment" person and can lose the big picture easily. It's my contribution to our relationship and I know he is very grateful to me for doing it. He takes on much more of the care of our home and meal planning as his contribution since he is much better at planning for concrete concepts, whereas I am more abstract.Reply
Yeah, my wife has little to no interest. She'll enter transactions sometimes if I bother her enough about it but that hasn't been working lately and I think I'll have to put the receipt bowl back on the foyer table. She'll do that at least.
Monthly "meetings" mostly involve her aggressively shrugging at me over her budget meeting pizza. With one notable exception (the morning of July 28. 2019, she asked how much was left in Groceries) I just try to overshoot everything in hopes I don't have to rearrange during the last week of the month. Anything left over makes the next month easier.
It's not that bad. I have almost everything on autopay, we do virtually all spending on credit cards so I just reconcile about weekly and pay them manually once a month when the statement comes out. It's pretty mindless at this point. And she does the kids' laundry so I just make YNAB sound like way more work than it is and we call it even.Reply
I think that it's completely fine to handle your finances the way you do. My mom always handled the finances for similar reasons that you do. She grew up with less than my dad did so she's very conscious of their spending where he is not. They're on the same page with most things now. I would say that it might be good to discuss big things like refinancing your house. If he doesn't care, then it's not as urgent of a matter.
On the other hand, my partner and I can't talk about budgeting together because it becomes a huge argument. We're in that odd phase of splitting pretty much every bill, but no joint accounts yet. It's something that I want for us in the future but just isn't in the picture of our stressful lives now. You are not alone when it comes to budgeting alone!Reply
I'm single, but in my last relationship (pre-ynab but the budget was tight so I kept a really tight grasp) I handled all the finances too. Frankly, I'm a bit of a control freak when it comes to that...
In fact, I get why it irritates you that you spend your time going over things with him just to see him shrug and say "okay, looks good to me..." It used to irritate me when the ex did that...until I realized in a stunning moment of clarity that I found it even MORE irritating on the rare times that he DID express an opinion.
Because then I'd spend time explaining why I did it this way instead of another way and we'd end up doing it my way anyway. LOL.Reply
My husband is like this. I used to hate it that he didn't/wouldn't share the burden with me, because he "trusted me" to handle it. We're in a ton of debt, and sometimes it pissed me off that I was the only one that lost sleep over it.
Now, I don't care as much. I'm just stronger than he is, what can I say? 🤷♀️
HOWEVER, being the sole budget-er only works because he is not materialistic and doesn't have a lot of monetary needs, he's fine with me giving him a cash allowance and never spends more than that, and when I go on budget kicks of any sort, he's totally down with coming along for the ride.
If any of those statements weren't true, it never would work.Reply
I have tried to budget alone in my previous relationship but that was a complete fail. My current partner and I are budgeting together but I do most of the work, he wants to be involved though and if I want him to be involved we need to do some things his way, which is hard for me... I think I might be a little controlling where money comes in because in my previous relationship we always had $0 to our name unless I and I alone put it aside and as soon as he found out about any money that was set aside it was spent.
I'm trying really really hard to include my partner in this whole budgeting concept, we just need to larn to budget together :) and tbh its going to take baby steps as long as we keep moving forward, we've already had a few small successes and we will just keep trying.Reply
Just to add about the passwords and URLs to site etc., just use a password manager app. I know that means recording your password "out there" (although not really), but it was the advice of a policeman presenting on Online Safety.
Your partner needs to be ok with opening an account with the same software. But then you can simply share the passwords and sites you want with them, and give them a nickname. So you could have one called "bank" and they just click launch and they can access.
This way my husband and I are sharing a Paypal account. He didn't have one, but now when he pays, he selects Paypal and can select to fill in with my credentials. That makes it much easier for me to figure out what the paypal charges were for.
We use LastPass and it has an Emergency Access feature. You can nominate someone else who can get access to your whole password vault in case of Emergency. I think the access is only for 24 hours or something like that but still good to have.
And it can store and share more than passwords.
We are typically the same. I can discuss large goals, net worth or cash flow positions with him, but not "do we want to spend X or Y in category A?" I've tried to get him to enter transactions but we are still at the point where he tells me he will install the app (this has been going for several years now...).
The major issue I find is sometimes I wonder if I shortchange myself. Because I'm doing the budgeting it sometimes feels I try to enable everyone else to get what they want and it's my categories that get WAM for it. It's not completely true but that's one of the reasons I feel I'd like to be able to discuss with someone at times.
The other reason is we have decided to be cash-flow negative for 2 years (paying part of childcare from the savings of selling a house), but then there was never a good discussion of how much negative are we going to allow ourselves to be?
Finally, the difference is we are both working full time with 3 small kids (oldest is in year 1 at school). So it sometimes feels like a lot to manage and remember.Reply
My wife managed the money for the first 35 years of marriage. At some point, I realized we were in credit sink (like credit float, but increasing debt) and I took over. She trusts me, and otherwise doesn't care. I do get receipts, usually same day, but sometimes next week, or next month...
I tried to get her to enter receipts, but that never happened and I didn't get the receipts either, so not a win. Now we use the credit card for virtually everything, so I don't miss purchases even without the receipt, though it sometimes starts discussions. As many bills as possible are on autopay, and I have them entered as recurrent transactions in YNAB, so the work is a LOT less than when I started years ago. No debt now, credit card paid in full each month, and a decent buffer.
I use LastPass for all my and shared passwords. She won't consider that, either. The master password is in the safe deposit box, so she can get everything if I check out.Reply
I'm a stay-at-home mom, YNAB user for 10 years, and my husband wants nothing to do with a budget. I've tried too many times to get him onboard and honestly, at this point, I'm thankful that he knows next to nothing about our finances.
Over the years, I've tried on my own to get us to where we're living the 4 (original) rules. I've gotten close but something always sets us back. Usually it's him. As long as I don't tell him we're past due and unable to pay a bill or that we're too broke to buy groceries, he's good.
He gets a specific amount to spend on what he wishes each month. The problem is that he always finds a way to go over that amount. I've tried increasing it several times, doesn't matter. It's not important to him to stay within that amount. I doubt he even keeps a running balance of what he's spent and he certainly doesn't ask me how much he has left.
At this point, we're not paycheck to paycheck but neither are we a full month ahead. I don't like it but in the last year, I've taken to telling him we have less money than we do, more bills than we do, and that I'm close to timing bills to paychecks. Why? Because otherwise I'm not able to save for non-monthly bills, Christmas and such or even an emergency fund. I wouldn't be able to pay more than minimum on credit card bills. By not being honest with him, I saved enough money in rainy day funds to cover an unexpected medical bill that is several hundred dollars, I've paid off our new appliances early, and our last credit card with a balance will be PIF by January. If he knew the difference between his income and our monthly outflow, he'd spend even more money than he does. None of this would've been possible.
He's told me several times that he doesn't want to know about our finances because he doesn't want that stress. That I have to deal with the stress has never been a concern to him. He makes decent money so there's no reason we couldn't be better off. I don't like the dishonesty but I don't want to stress about finances when I don't have to.
Would I prefer to budget with him, compromising along the way? Yes. Since that hasn't/won't happen, I'll continue to lie and be thankful he doesn't know where we really stand. While I don't like the lies, I don't feel guilty about it. I'm working on getting my family closer and closer to a better financial future.Reply
Same situation here! I married him anyway--he looks good in an apron;) He lost his main source of income and that is now a stress, so I said if I have to help his expenses he needs to do YNAB. We started, but he isn't motivated.
When he first started doing his numbers--keeping track of his spending--he realized he had more money because he was more conscious of where he spent it. But there seems to be a weird psychological resistance to coping with finances and "being a grown up."
Maybe we should start a support group! I am just getting back into budgeting because I decided if he didn't do it I wouldn't--that's the jumping off the cliff mentality, if everyone is doing it it must be a good idea. This is a great thread and I look forward to hearing others experiences!Reply
We were the same as Mina except I had a business I ran out off the house. Also I’m an accountant so it was normal that I would handle everything. Without going into all the details, we were seeing a counselor to help me through some major life transitions and I brought up the fact that my husband wouldn’t budget with me. God bless the counselor. He basically said to my husband - why don’t you just do it. That’ll shut her up (of course not really what he said). Anyway my passive aggressive husband said sure. How about Sunday morning at 8 am. Argggh. I am not a morning person. But I did it. Skip to today. We still have a monthly budget meeting every month on Sunday morning (but at 9 ). And as we commute together we will sometimes do a few WAM conversations on the drive. And I have even got him
entering transactions (although split transactions I do).
And he likes it. Not the meeting per se but we set up spending categories for him with more money than I thought we should spend in them but at least it was done once and we didn’t argue over every little transaction another important thing we did was use the envelope system for groceries clothes Home Depot entertainment and Christmas. That was about 6 years ago now.
Him entering transactions just recently started mainly due to improvements YNAB made to the android platformReply
K. B. said:
HOWEVER, being the sole budget-er only works because he is not materialistic and doesn't have a lot of monetary needs,
That is my husband!
He has one debit card and one credit card that he uses. Because he travels extensively for work, his only real daily need is food. I budget money into his food category, but I don't tell him that and I will move money if I need to to cover it. Fuel and hotels are covered by his employer. He has always been very good about calling me to either ask if there is money to purchase something out of the ordinary or to let me know he used the credit card to purchase out of the ordinary which is usually work related. He does get a per diem check for food, but he uses that for his hobby money and since that is pretty much his only finance request, he gets it.
Last weekend I was entering transactions while he was watching tv, when out of the blue he asked, how many accounts do we have? Is my name on them? This is the most interactive he's been when it comes to our finances. He does not have the app, we do not meetings, and he has no clue what we have coming in or going out.
Because he does not know whats what, I made a list of all financial accounts, insurances, and bills. I included website addresses, passwords, payment due dates and how I pay the bills. I also included phone numbers and addresses. My husband does not like the electronic world and would rather pay by check, ugg!
I don't mind being the sole budget-er, for me I think its actually easier. But, more than likely it's only because my husband asks for very little.Reply
At the moment I (we?) don’t have his accounts in the budget, only my own and the shares ones, to which he pays a monthly amount. The amount was agreed on years ago. Since then we both raised our monthly amount a bit (I think I did a lot). But both our income changed even more.
I do want to budget together so much.... but he hates it. Budgeting in general. The wellknown restrictive thing... We can talk about big goals and priorities. Luckily.
As my job is insecure at the moment I crave for the biggen picture and really want his accounts in the budget too. I’ve told myself we should play to both our strenghts and also that seduction would work best. But sometimes its hard.Reply
This was a big reason for my divorce, honestly. My ex was like this.
I wasn't on YNAB so it was like trying to learn to juggle in the dark.
Also he wanted input on the big decisions even though he wanted nothing to do with the day to day and had no idea what the condition of our finances were. When I bought my car with my money from my paycheck he got super pissed off because I hadn't cleared it with him first. Yet he would make these horrible decisions that he thought were small but ended up costing thousands.
I say this to show you it could be worse. The fact that you at least have the kinks worked out enough to be at peace with it is HUGE.
Powder Blue Pony said:
Last week he gave me a receipt for the first time "because you said you wanted them, didn't you?" :-)
Love this! I am not sure whether to feel this is progress for him and you or not. But it certainly rang true.Reply
I am drawn to this thread, and relate but in a weird way. I'm a SAHM (kind of retired, the twins just left for college). Hubby and I married at 30. I knew when I married him, that he did not do debt. He should have known I was not good at money, since he had to bail me out a few times while we were dating. When we first were married, he handled finances. Later in the marriage, for whatever reason, I ended up taking over. Where I promptly ran us $30,000 into credit card debt in about 5 years. Which he discovered when I didn't get to the mail in time. Talk about some stress!!! It was a relief when he found out. I still don't know why I felt I couldn't tell him, it's not like he would have yelled and screamed. That's not his way. Heck, he was angry when he discovered what I had done, but we worked through it and got a stronger marriage. We got a loan, cut out all things fun, stuck the CC in the freezer, and he took over again. The boys were at an age where they didn't notice much. It helps that we live in one of the poorest parts of the country, so their friends didn't have a lot of money either. About 5 years in, we had it mostly paid down, when a relative died and we received a nice inheritance. All was good.
By this time I had gotten really good and not overspending, so once again, I took over--but with him checking in. (which was my request) Time went on, the three boys turned into teenagers, and things got expensive. Once again I had overspent, but this time was able to bring it up with the hubby right away. (who was there the whole time, but is pretty clueless on how expensive everything is) I am a nickle and dimer. I'm good on not making large purchases, but the little stuff just doesn't add up in my mind until I see it on paper. And I'm always forgetting something. I don't know if I need to say it, but in all of this time, we never had a budget on paper. When I thought I overspent on the CC, I was more prone to not look at the balance. (because if I don't look, then it's not there, right?)
So, we take money out of the OS fund, back at zero. I was determined to do this right. Of course, then it was the summer before the twins went away to college, and my oldest was starting his final year (thank goodness! This 3 in school is a killer!) To say it was an expensive summer is an understatement! So I started with Mint. Only, all it was good for was for me to learn *WHERE* we were overspending. Which was helpful. Reinforced to the family that we have *GOT* to stop eating out so much!!! Hotels were a killer because of 2 kids in 2 different college towns, with two orientations. Hotels meant eating out. We didn't think this out. I knew there had to be a better way. Enter YNAB.
One of the things I gained with mint was having all the accounts in one place. As weird as it sounds, it actually helped me want to spend less because I was starting to see the fruit of my husbands labor. He had been socking away as much money as possible, (and I never touched the OS fund even, in my darkest days, without talking to him about it, even I had my standards and knew what the breaking point for my husband would have been). Our kids won't have to take out student loans. (although they have to pay us back. When they have a vested interest, it's amazing how they try to spend as little money as possible) But I wanted to to do better. I wanted to not have to eat sandwiches the last 3 days of the pay period.
I've had some struggles with YNAB. CC are driving me nuts. I think I've figured out how to transfer money from our account to the kids tracking fund without really messing things up. And with all the kids out of the house, our budget is totally different. I've gone from filling my car up with gas once a week, to filling it up once a month!
I know this is long and rambling, but I feel like I've been on both sides of the budget/spend/partner/myself coin. I have a little bit of understanding of the psychology of why I overspend, and it's taken decades for me to figure out how to fix it. Honestly, I think one of the biggest assets of YNAB is this forum. It brings me back, forces me to look at the budget, and prevents me from going into ostrich mode. And every night, when I'm on the computer looking at the money, we talk about it. What a concept. But I had to come to this myself. No amount of forcing was going to work.Reply
I do the majority of the budgeting work, he puts in most of his transactions. We share funds but each have our own accounts and fun money as well as joint accounts. I need to do the money, I have money security issues. OTOH, I'm open and honest about the finances. He doesn't generally care about the details, but it's all there if he's interested. I don't hide anything. We discuss bigger picture things, he runs purchases over a couple hundred bucks past me, he lets me know if there's a tool he wants and then we discuss where it goes on the wish list. I should get his retirement passwords and stuff, but he can get mine if he can get into my computer (which I know he can, he's our family's tech support). It works for us. If he'd been in charge of the money all these, we'd be in debt or more likely we'd be divorced because I couldn't handle the stress.Reply
And I have even got him entering transactions
ok, I just have to share this. My hubby puts comments in the memo field and sometimes they are so funny. I hardly ever use the memo field and when I do, it is very utilitarian. Here is a screenshot to show you a few.Reply
I handle all of the money and budgeting in my marriage. All our accounts are joint but we have "his and her" checking accounts. A specific amount of his check gets deposited into my account to use for bills every week. Leaving just a little bit for him to spend and do what he wants with without feeling like I am micro managing him. I do not YNAB his checking account. When he works overtime we decide together what to put the extra towards, at that point I will move it into YNAB and my checking account to disperse to our goals.Reply