Couples & Money
The second book I ever wrote was a book called, "Smart Couples Finish Rich". Which I think, you said you read that?
So, "Smart Couples Finish Rich" came to be. I wrote "Smart Woman Finish Rich" and I put my personal email in the original book, back in the day when I had an AOL email and then I started getting all these emails and I was like, oh my god, like, I can't believe I put my personal email in the book, but it turned out to be the best thing I ever did because from my readers' questions, well, first thing that happens when you write a book is you hope you answered everything that could possibly be going on in your minds. Just like teaching this class. Lot of time we're gonna be creating in this class. You guys have already given me things I hadn't thought about. So, I write "Smart Women Finish Rich", I start getting lots of questions and the bulk of the questions are about couples. Women coming back to me and saying, "This is great. How do I get my partner to do this wi...
th me? We're fighting about money. We're not agreeing. How do we do this as a team?" and I had printed a bunch of these emails and I was showing them to my wife and she's like, "We were actually fighting about money." and the point which I showed it to her, she turned to me and she's like, "You should write that book cause we could definitely use it." and the funny part about this is that my wife is a financial advisor also. So, here we are, both money people and we're not agreeing about money. And what I realized is that we were normal. So, here's a study that was done on couples and money. This is like 4,000 couples participated in this. Traits that make a spouse sexy, hot, attractive. You know what the number one people said? Financially responsible. Really sexy to pay bills on time. By the way, this is women and this is men. Pay bills on time, 91%. Maintains a budget. Open about personal finances. Knows their credit score. Yeah, people weren't so, like, okay you know your credit score, you're hot. (audience laughs) But these are the things that made a spouse or a partner attractive. So, how do people look at themselves? This is what's interesting. We all think we're pretty awesome, but we're solidly convinced our spouse doesn't have their act together. So, they said, you know, are you practical? People self reported that 42% of them. Yeah, yeah, I'm totally practical. How's your spouse doing? No, not so good, 27%. Are you conservative with money? Oh, yeah, pretty conservative, 22%. How bout your spouse? No, definitely not. Are you impulsive? I am not impulsive. Is your partner impulsive? Totally impulsive. (audience laughs) Look at this. 21% impulsive. Do you avoid dealing with your finances? People like, nope, never avoid. Does your partner avoid? Yeah, my partner avoids. Are you emotional? No, I'm not emotional. Is your partner, yup. So, we think we're amazing and we're like, it's all our partner's fault. So, we started digging into this and found out there's this huge couple and money disconnect. So, 33% of couples don't agree or know where they plan to retire. That's one in three couples. One in three couples and by the way we have a whole lotta baby boomers. One in three have not actually had a real discussion about when they were retiring and where they were retiring. 62% don't agree on the retirement age. Pretty big deal, right? Like, many of you will be retired as long as you work. We're talking 23 years of retirement here. Pretty important to agree on the retirement age. 47% don't agree on whether to "continue" work at retirement. 73% disagree on whether they have completed a retirement income plan. Now, that's kind of fascinating, right? Like, because it seems like to me, you either met with a financial planner and you did a financial plan and you have a clear idea of what your income needs are or you didn't. So, then they said, well, what are the worst habits? 14% of couples surveyed said spending more than I make. 28% said spending money on unnecessary things. 23% said not saving any money. Okay. How many of you can relate to this? So, now the question was Do married couples talk about money? What do you think? Do married couples talk about money? When's the number one time that couples talk about money? If you had to guess. (audience laughs) When it's gone? What do you think? Tax time.
Bill paying time. It's bill paying time. The number one time that couples talk about money is bill paying time. Why? Because there's not enough money often to pay the bills. The problem with bill paying time is that bills can come at least twice a month, right? And usually in most households, still to this day, often one person's paying the bills, right? Usually one person takes a job on and then that one person, wherever they pay the bills, they just, they got their little bill paying cave. Is that person happy or are they sad when they're in the bill paying cave? They are pissed off. You'd be going through the day and all of a sudden the person's in that bill paying cave and you're like I'm staying away from that room. They're gonna come out, they're like, Do you know how much we spend? And you're like yeah, cause I've been with you spending it. (audience laughs) So, people talk about money, couples talk about money when they pay the bills. The second time they talk about money, believe it or not, often is in the car. Get that person in the car, doors locked, windows up. We really need to talk about what's going on. Not a good time. Third time couples talk about money: In bed. Yeah, how's that working out? (audience laughs) I did this speech once, and I'm like, you know, couples talk about money in bed. That doesn't work and a woman goes, "It depends on how much money we're talking about." (audience laughs) Well I go, okay, well I wasn't Beverley Hills when that conversation took place. The key to talking about money is you need to have a money day. You need to create a time, a safe time, when both of you are ready to talk about money. So, you literally put a date on the calendar, and you're like, okay, you know what either we're not agreeing about money or we just, you don't have to go into the negative. You're just like, let's have a date to sit down and talk about our finances. Now, I'm gonna go through some exercises that you can do as a couple. Like, how to get your finances organized, great couples exercise. How to do your values? Great couples exercise. Agreeing, taking this blue print out and going, you know what, let's just work on one thing. Let's just work on this. Let's agree as a couple on a pay yourself first plan, let's pick a percentage of our income, let's start there. Fantastic. Small wins can change the course of a couple's relationship when it comes to money. The other thing with couples and money is honesty. So, when you look at why couples often break down their relationship with money, is that it goes to the root of trust. And this happens to be a huge issue for lots of couples. So, you're not alone if you're dealing with this. Let's just look at some stats here. Small, everyday purchases, we didn't, go back to the study here. We asked married couples, "How often do you talk about small purchases?" What do you think? What do you think couples said? 64% said they talk about small, everyday purchases. Yeah, really, amazing right? Now look at this one. How about large investments? What percentage of couples talk about large investments? Think it should be very high. 96%. Okay, so that makes sense, right? So, I actually don't believe this one over here. I don't really think that people talk about small purchases, but here's what's interesting. Let's take a look at what a small purchase is. What do you think a small purchase for a woman is? (audience laughs) before she talks about money.
$500. $200. Yeah, but what's the dollar amount? (audience laughs) What's small, before you guys get a phone call, what do you think is that she's spending? 300? That's pretty close actually. $396. So, that's a small purchase. Around that number or higher she's gonna call up and say, "What do you think about this?". So, now let's talk about men. Do we think the number's higher or lower? Lower? You think the guys gonna call up and tell you it's lower? Here's the man's number. He's gonna call you. $1,231, that's his small purchase. Which is funny, right? Because guys, we're all like, ah, you know what, she's spending all the money. Like, no. We're spending a whole bunch of money, too. So, how do couples get on the same page with where the money's going?