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What Motherhood Has Taught Me About Money.

Posted on 29 June, 2018 at 9:55 Comments comments (0)

So, your wondering what got in to us to post an article about mothering and money! We're definitely not speaking from experience but thought it was a good article. I hope you enjoy it.


What Motherhood Has Taught Me About Money.

I never realized just how much disposable income I had until I gave birth to my first kid.

Before my daughter was born, it was so easy to throw money around. Weekend getaway? Sure, let’s go! Get my hair highlighted for $200? Yes, please!


Now every penny that we have that isn’t socked away for the future is accounted for—and the vast majority of it goes towards our family.

If you’re looking for a lesson in personal finance, all you have to do is get pregnant. Parents learn so many life lessons, in such a short time, that they form a special club of their own. I’ve found that, when you’re a mom, you just get it.


Here are six things I learned about money after I became a mom. If you’re a mother, you may know what I mean. If not, well, here’s what you have to look forward to:


1. Going out for lunch is a luxury — diapers aren’t.

When you become a mom, your priorities change. Drastically. Enough said.


2. You won’t believe how fast kids grow.

A pair of tennis shoes for a 4-year-old can cost as much as $50! So your best bet is to often shop consignment stores for the wee ones because kids grow so fast that second-hand clothes are basically brand new. If you shop carefully, you’ll likely find expensive brands that you may not be able to purchase new. The same goes for you: Gently worn clothing is a great way to save on items that you won’t wear often—like maternity clothes!


3. If you grocery shop without a list, you’ll spend double.

When you have a family, planning ahead for meals and snacks reduces your food budget significantly. Additionally, before you make an impulse buy, think seriously about the trade-off between time and money. For example, some moms will advise you to forgo the bag of pre-cut baby carrots, but I think my time is worth more–it’s a fast, healthy snack kids love that you don’t have to prepare


4. Rainy days happen (and umbrellas are important).

Even a few dollars saved every month can build a significant nest egg–or an emergency fund. Should you or your spouse get laid off, that cushion can see you through tough times. Or if one of your children suffers a significant illness, you won’t have to worry so much about paying for treatments. Being a mom means being prepared for everything … even the worst-case scenario.


5. Don’t feel guilty about spending on yourself.

Okay, spending your monthly mortgage payment on a spa weekend isn’t smart, but a good haircut or a new dress every now and then makes for a happier mom. Here’s why splurges are important and how to splurge wisely as a mother. For example, check out local deals site for coupons for a massage. You’ll feel even better because you got pampered for a steal.


6. The desire to spoil kids is almost overwhelming.

If we could give them the world, we would. There are lots of reasons not to create your own little Veruca Salt, but saying no all of the time can be a real bore–and not just for your child. No matter how hard you try to shelter them from the massive amount of marketing aimed at kids, they will inevitably want the latest gadget and the hottest toy. At some point, all of us wonder, “Am I spoiling my child?”

Here’s a secret: Although it’s important for kids to hear “no,” timing your gifts responsibly and making sure kids understand the value of a dollar means that you can sometimes indulge them. For example, you can find toys, sporting goods and entertainment for cheap if you shop carefully, and you’ll reap huge rewards in the form of that big smile on your little one’s face.


Amy L. Hatch is a writer and editor, as well as the co-founder of chambanamoms.com. She currently lives in Illinois with her husband and two children.

Four Tips For Talking Money With Your Spouse

Posted on 25 May, 2018 at 11:00 Comments comments (0)

Forbes

Liz Frazier Peck

May 15, 2018

Think back to the last time you and your honey talked about money? I’m going to guess that it wasn’t a positive experience. That’s because most of our money conversations are reactive; they’re based around bills, budgets, overspending or other issues that pop up. Rarely do couples have positive discussions about their dreams, values and feelings around money. Talking about money with your spouse is critical not only to your future planning but also to the strength of your marriage. Marriage.com lists money as the No. 2 reason for divorce among couples (only behind infidelity). And it’s easy to see why. Money touches everything. If you and your spouse don’t have positive communication around money and support each other’s values, it can lead to constant bickering, fighting and worse.

The good news is if you’re reading this article, you want to improve your communication with your partner. Congrats. Below are four tips to having positive and open money discussions as a couple.

Set a “money date”:

As the very first step, Megan Lathrop, co-creator of Capital One’s Money Coaching Program, recommends setting a money date with your partner. Don’t worry, this isn’t what you’re thinking; we’re not asking you to bring your budget spreadsheet to review over a romantic dinner. The focus of this date is to have an open conversation about your relationships around money. Don’t even set an outcome or goal, just talk. Make sure you’re in a supportive and connecting environment, such as a hike or over wine (wine always helps). This begins to build a foundation of trust and understanding as you embark on future conversations.

Discuss your values around money:

In Lathrop’s workshops, she encourages couples to list their top five values. It doesn’t need to be about money, just whatever’s important to them. From there, compare your lists and identify your similarities and differences. This can be eye-opening to why you may have issues with your spouse around money. Lathrop states that typically what comes out of her workshops is the realization that the couple is not arguing about money, but about values. For example, your spouse may list adventure as a value, while you may list stability. After digging deeper you may realize that this is why he spends so much money on travel, and why you are always buying pieces for the home. The beauty of this conversation is if you make the discussion around values, both partners typically step in and want to support each other. This type of larger structured conversation is non threatening and positive. 

Plan for your future: 

This seems obvious enough, but according to Capital One’s Financial Freedom survey, one-third of couples never talk about their retirement plans with each other. If you don’t discuss your hopes for retirement then you end up making assumptions about what the other wants. Maybe your husband wants to garden with you ten hours a day like you planned. Maybe he doesn’t. The only way you’ll know is by asking him. Most importantly, having open conversations about your future allows you to plan for it, rather than just letting your future happen by default. 

Turning triggers around:

We are all human and we all have our triggers. You know how it goes. You intend on just having a quick talk about the budget, and within five minutes both of you have your arms crossed and are glaring a hole through the other. What’s the best way to avoid these trigger flare ups, according to Lathrop? Slow down. “If one person is triggered, how they respond naturally can trigger the other person. Then we have two triggered people.” Think of it as the stop, drop and roll fire safety method. When you feel your blood heating, take a pause. Acknowledge how you’re feeling and take a break from each other to reflect. Then come back together to discuss when you’ve settled down.

This article was written by Liz Frazier Peck from Forbes and was legally licensed by AdvisorStream through the NewsCred publisher network.