Finances can cause stress, but things often become more complicated when one person’s outlook on money is the exact opposite of the other partner’s outlook.
Don’t fret, the relationship is not doomed. In fact, a spender and a saver often have an attraction for another. The key to making it work will be to understand how your partner perceives money.
If we’re prepared for the differences, we can achieve a happy, cooperative relationship and move forward with a shared awareness towards money.
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Profile of a saver:
Savers are usually very organized. They know their current state of all financial affairs.
They know how much money they have in their bank, how much they’ve put on their credit card in any given month (if they use a credit card at all), how much they owe on their mortgage (if they have a mortgage) and how much money they’ve socked away for retirement, savings, and their kids’ university funds.
Savers spend less than they earn. They typically carry no credit card debt, are aware of their spending habits, and work from a very strict budget.
Savers may start saving from a very young age. They saved money from birthdays, allowances and, opened up a savings account at a very young age. It is not unusual to hear that a saver had a job at a very young age, and that they deposited their paychecks into their bank account.
Buying A Home
Savers prefer to buy an affordable home. They put a large down payment on the purchase. They take every opportunity to expedite payment in order to pay off their mortgage as quickly as possible in order to minimize the amount of interest they need to pay.
Planning For The Future
Savers earmark savings/investments for specific future expenses. They tend to have accounts set aside for a house, cottage, car, retirement, vacations, and/or kids’ university expenses. They are very deliberate in how they prepare to make a significant purchase. These are all itemized in their detailed and elaborate budgets.
Profile of a spender:
Spenders are often impulsive. They tend to be stressed out towards finances (especially at the end of the month when the bills are due). They often have no idea how much money they have in the bank and are highly dependent upon overdrafts.
Spenders spend more than they make. They are heavily dependent upon credit. They usually carry a credit card balance each month. They rarely shop using a list and tend to overspend every time they walk into a store.
They often don’t work off of a budget, and may overestimate how much money they have in the bank each month.
A spender may not put anything away. Birthday money and allowances were meant to be used immediately, and so they were spent.
Buying A Home
A spenders may rent for longer, and if in the position to buy a home, they tend to put the minimum amount of deposit down on the purchase of the home. They tend to utilize their home equity line of credit as a means of supplementing their income and making ends meet.
Planning For The Future
Spenders don’t always have a budget. They write cheques or pay bills not really knowing how much money they have to play with. Spenders tend to fare better with source deductions off of their paycheques so they never see the money in their account.
Now, not all spenders or savers check of every point in their profile. People do tend to be more of one type than the other though.
It may seems as though savers are the fiscally pragmatic, responsible ones and the spenders are more the “fly by the seat of their pants” types. But, spenders tend to love to give. They have a heart of gold and would give the shirt off their back if someone needed it.
We need to relish our strengths and acknowledge our limitations. It’s not that either a saver or a spender is better than the other. Instead, the goal should be to try and figure out a middle ground that will work for both types. Like all solid relationships, communication is the key to working through one’s differences.