As I mentioned before, Girl Ninja and I are going through premarital counseling. We are three weeks in and it has been totally awesome. We meet with a local couple that has been married for 25 years. At the end of each counseling session GN and myself are usually tasked with homework assignments. One of Girl Ninja’s assignments, this last week, was to initiate a conversation about finances. Girl Ninja is not the biggest fan of talking money, so this was a GREAT exercise for her.
A few nights ago we had that talk, and it was absolutely wonderful. We shared with each other what financial commandments were most important to us. That’s right, financial commandments, kinda like the biblical ones (thou shalt not steal, thou shalt not murder, thou shalt not eat pop rocks and drink soda at the same time).
We each came up with a few of our own….
Girl Ninja’s Commandments:
- Thou shalt tithe 10% of gross income before any spending occurs.
- Thou shalt not take on any debt, except to purchase a home
- Thou shalt let me take yoga classes even though the membership is $80/month
- Thou shalt not take on any debt besides a mortgage
- Thou shalt put 15% of gross income in to retirement
- Thou shalt talk about money together at least once a quarter
It was really cool to hear Girl Ninja’s commandments. Obviously there are other things that we think are important, but these commandments are CORE to our financial principles. The best thing about our commandments is that we are more than happy to embrace each others.
Girl Ninja is a dedicated tither. I, however, have always struggled letting go of ‘my’ money. I’m excited to learn from Girl Ninja how to become less emotionally attached to cash. She is going to encourage and model to me what a faithful giver really looks like and I can’t wait to delight in that with her.
I can’t tell you how sexy it was to hear her say that debt was not an option….purrrrr. Knowing that she hates debt just as much as I do, allows me to sleep easy at night. I don’t have to worry about her pressuring me to finance our next car or worry about her charging up a ton of money on the credit cards behind my back.
Lastly, she really wants to stay involved in yoga class, even though she knows it’s kind of pricey. Umm excuse me Girl Ninja….what’s that…. you want to know if I’m okay with you taking a class that is going to give you buns of steel and rock hard abs? Let me think about it…. YES PLEASE! If you want to spend a little money so you can get your sexy on, by all means GO FOR IT. It will be a cold day in hell before you see me take sexification away from the wifey 🙂
Like I said before, it was totally awesome getting to listen to GN as she shared her fundamental financial beliefs. I’m going to give those of you with significant others a task. I want you to ask your partner what their HONEST financial commandments would be, even if you weren’t a part of their life (I don’t want them feeling pressured to say things they think you want to hear, but only things they truly believe). You might be surprised by some of the things that come out of their mouth. I sure was.
So, reader, what are you financial commandments???
Thou shalt save no less than 10% of thine gross income a month
Thou shalt immediately pay off any charges to thine credit card
Thou shalt check your accounts daily ("No more overdrafts, thy petulent child!")
1 – Thou shall have an emergency fund and only touch it whenth thou has a true emergency.
2 – Thou shall save at least 20% of gross income for savings (retirement, emergency fund, etc)
3 – Thou shall only take debt on to buy a house.
4 – Thou shall track expenditures.
5 – Thou shall always ask if one truly needs an item before purchase and if one can get it cheaper elsewhere.
I am trying to think of one that has not been previously stated…….this has kinda been stated by first commenter, but not exactly……thou shall use credit cards ONLY for convenience, not major purchases. And thou shall never carry a balance on said credit card, (once I pay it off by the end of next month).
1. always pay off your credit cards
2. save at least 15% of your income each month
3. save up for big ticket items instead of financing them
4. always ask myself if its worth it before buying anything substantial
Has GN sprouted a black beard?
Ok, here's mine.
Thou shalt pay cash
Thou shalt not spend too much on unnecessary toys
Thou shalt save 15% of gross income
Thou shalt tithe 10% and give more if you can.
Just wanted to comment on Girl Ninja's yoga classes. I think an investment in health is just as important as an investment in a retirement fund, if not more important.
Also, I find it sad that we all have to justify a mortgage. Too bad houses are so difficult to pay off in one shot. Maybe people should focus on getting a cheaper house than a lavish one.
No more overdraft fees is right!
Woohooo for not carrying a credit card balance. That definitely falls under my "no debt" commandment
I like the last one. Making sure money reflects my true internal values. I think I might steal that one
It's quite possible. I sure hope not though 🙂
You and me both brother on the consistent tithing gig!
Agreed. I'm glad she will be able to take those classes! should improve her (and my) quality of life 🙂
Yeah unfortunately we aren't consistent enough with it. Talk about living with guilt that follows you around! I need to learn the automatic method which is to take it off the top immediately and budget the rest.
i'm pretty sure these were on the back of Moses' tablets:
thou shall PAY OFF any credit card purchases immediately
thou shall save 15% of gross income
thou shall debt snowball our student loans and car payments, starting with triple payment on the student loan
thou shall NEVER hesitate to spend money (reasonalby) on those important to me (closely family and good friends). like ninja i have a difficult time parting with MY money…but thou WILL be generous with loved ones
thou will spend consciously so that my monetary outflow reflects my true values
I love this post! I've been married forever, recommend it highly! And think you guys are on the right track. Our financial commandments are a bit unorthodox. I have handled all finances since our 2nd month dating. We save and invest a ton. Only debt is a mortgage. Pay off all credit cards each month. Always spend less than we earn. and we have an awesome life!!!
Thou shalt not borrow another dime ever again.
Thou shalt save up to pay 100% down on our next house.
Thou shalt be more a more consistent tither.
Thou shalt never abandon smart financial principles.
LOVE the cartoon man! As always it is hilarious!!
Thou shalt use some means to track thy spending and review it each month
Thou shalt live within tracked spending leaving money to save
Thou shalt pay off thy credit cards each month
Thou shalt share as thou canst with those less fortunate
Thou shalt prepare a will, especially when thou hast minor children
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