Today I want to talk about a big part of my life that doesn’t get much of the spotlight around here.
My darling, love of my life, Hubs.
Sadly, all I typically talk about are his horrible feet and how much they are costing us. Not the best legacy. 😦 Time to change that.
Hubs and I met nearly 7 years ago. The last 7 years have been an excellent adventure and I love the crap out of him. With that said, my darling Hubs has always been the spender in this relationship. Since this is a money blog, I wanted to share a major shift in my home that occurred recently.
I started this blog nearly 2 years ago to chronicle my journey of paying off my student loans. This is the only real debt I’ve ever taken on. I’ve never had credit card debt and while I technically have a car loan right now, the interest rate is effectively a wash against my savings account interest. For as long as I can remember, I’ve always been cost conscious and a saver. Hubs has a different story. This is his story.
Growing up, Hubs was a spender. He had a lot of credit cards and a lot of credit card debt. Most of this debt was incurred in his quest to collect ’em all. Yes, Hubs is a collector, a collector of many things. In addition to being a collector, Hubs is also a man of convenience. With food, he has often said, “Why should we eat at home? It takes time to make it, and time to clean it up. With all that time, we could go out to eat and be on our way.”
Limiting his collecting and increasing his inconvenience have been my greatest challenges as a frugal wife. These challenges are what I am so proudly updating today.
It’s time for an update because he’s made major progress. Maybe not even progress. Progress feels like incomplete recognition of what he’s done, he’s made major changes. Here are some of his highlights.
He started his financial transformation before I met him. He had some serious credit card debt (like $35,000!) and he faced it head on. He paid all of it off a few months before I met him.
Since he’s been in my life, my collector started selling his collection, with patience and pride. He’s realized that all of those collections are only worth what someone will pay for them. He’s also realized that if he is not enjoying them, he should sell them to someone who will enjoy them… or at least collect them. It’s been a slow mindset shift, but dollars in a bank account are now more prized than a collectable on a shelf.
My convenient man is learning the power of a little extra effort. He’s seeing our food bills and how they plummet dramatically when we eat at home. He’s also realizing that his wife is a darn good cook and can re-create most of what he wants from the restaurants at home (with the exception of Chipotle. We love you Chipotle. We can’t quit you.) Now, eating out is a treat not the norm.
My spender is holding on to the power of saving and investing. We recently had a conversation about adjusting our savings so we could shovel more money into the house fund, temporarily lowering our 401k contributions. He emphatically told me No. He won’t change his hearty 401k contribution. I was told the only direction his contribution is going is up.
My spender is also finding new ways to save or track our expenses. He sees value in places I may have missed and he’s generous where it matters. He challenges my frugality in the best possible ways and for that I am grateful.
In sum, it’s been a slow road but I am over the moon to report that I have a frugal husband.
Have you seen changes in your spouse as you challenge your own financial responsibility?