A family that eats together, prays together, always lives together! Let’s add one more line ‘A family that discuss money matters together, lives together’.
Since a lot of people still believe in the older version of the adage families are hardly involved in the financial decision making. Following could be the few reasons for non involvement:
1. Safeguarding my Family from money worries:
Karishma, 35 got a call from a bank’s credit card division on her landline number. She was shocked to hear why her husband, Shekhar, was avoiding calls on his mobile. In fact, their impulsive purchases have landed them into a huge credit card debt, which has been rolling over from one card to another. Shekhar could not muster courage to tell her about having insufficient funds to pay it off.
He was protecting her from money worries!
Geeta concerned herself only to her work and her family. From paying a bill to operating a bank account, from taking a house loan to investments all were done by Gaurav and ‘papaji’, her father-in-law. While Gaurav was out of country for work and papaji went on a pilgrimage, Geeta did not know where to pay the bills and how to pay the EMI.
Gaurav was frustrated because Geeta thought it was a ‘man’s’ domain!
3. Kids are too young:
When Shubham, 19 joined college and started living in the hostel, his new found freedom led him to reckless spending. He was enjoying his popularity as a friend who can always lend and was ever ready to pay the canteen bills. His parents got alarmed when he could not pay the college fees and demanded more money. As an apple of their eye he had never heard a NO for anything.
His parents considered him to be too young to have money lessons!
4. I can handle it alone:
After their marriage Raj and Nikita share the same house, same surname and same set of relatives but refuse to share their salary details, spending habits and bank accounts. They feel that it may lead to identity crisis!
Raj pays the bills (as the man of the house); he does not have money to invest after this, though he understands the need to do so. They compromised on a small house because Raj didn’t want to borrow money from Nikita.
Nikita, with a poor understanding of personal finance, has bought several insurance policies to save tax. She never discussed it with Raj who knew about various other tax saving instruments available in the market!
Both of them wanted to handle it alone!
5. Lot of time left to share:
Sudhakar, 45 was hospitalized. His family was paying endless medical bills from their savings because Sudhakar never discussed the benefits he can get from his company and his medical insurance policy. Though he had taken some sound financial decisions but he never communicated them to his family.
He was either too busy or thought that a lot of time was left to share!
Above situations and many more can be seen and heard in daily life.
They may not be acute at the moment but what if Shekhar loses his job or Gaurav goes out for a long term assignment and papaji falls critically ill?
What if Shubham starts ignoring his studies as he doesn’t fear about making a living in future? What if Nikita and Raj develop a communication gap between them and their married life suffers?
What if Sudhakar passes away suddenly and his family is unable to handle the loss both mentally and financially?
Talking about money matters at home will save a lot of “what if” situations. It will help you discover the spenders, savers, investors and financial disasters in the family. Talking money matters to your family can be your best investment! After all its joint happiness that matters, so it is a joint responsibility as well!