Newlyweds and a Checkbook

by Rocket Finance

original-rocket-finance.jpgI love my wife immensely and she is the best thing that has ever happened to me. However, she is a little financially challenged – or maybe it would be better to call her “mathematically challenged”. She is quite frugal, she takes good care of our money, but she has trouble keeping track of it. In fact, when we were first married, she wanted to take care of the checkbook and being the progressive guy that I am, I agreed.  She was the one shopping and actually spending the majority of the money. Frankly, it was just one less thing that I had to worry about – less work for me and at that time the subject of personal finance seemed pretty boring. I tried not to spend more than we made and left it at that. I was happy to let her take care of that annoyance.

So, for the first year of our marriage she “kept the books”. We never bounced a check, our account was never overdrawn, but we never really knew how much money was in the account. We did not keep a budget.

Then, on three different occasions, she came to me to announce that we did not have enough money for some essential items. I was always incredulous – we were both working full-time, had no rent, house payment or utilities and no children. How in the world could we be low on cash?

This was before the days of online access to bank accounts, so I would then take all of our statements, cancelled checks, any receipts I could find and go through the long process of balancing our books for the previous two, three or four months.

Every time I did this, I discovered that we had anywhere from $500 to $1,500 more in our account than what the ledger kept by my darling wife showed. We started joking that everytime we get short on money, all we need to do is balance the checkbook. . .

I take care of our financial records these days. However, now that we have one income, a mortgage, a car payment and three kids, just balancing the checkbook does not generate the cash that it once did. My wife claims that if she “balanced” the checkbook that we would have more money.

I’m not sure. . .

Bank bonuses and stoozing, here we come!