My wife and I stay on track with our finances through constant communication. We go over our budget twice a week to ensure we’re in sync with every aspect of our finances including:
- Income amounts to be received in the current two week budget period
- Bills due during the current two week budget period
- Amount to be put into savings
- Spending plan for discretionary funds
We are both fully aware of how much money we have at all times, and what it’s going to be used for. Unfortunately there’s one thing that’s very difficult to do within the parameters of our system.
It’s virtually impossible to surprise my wife with any gesture of romance or appreciation. Seeing as we share an account and are always updated on the financial moves of our household, this is nearly impossible.
My wife loves surprises, but planning a surprise date or spontaneously giving her a bouquet of flowers on a Friday afternoon is tough when we plan how every dollar of our money is going to be spent together.
The question becomes, how can couples who combine their finances accomplish that element of surprise and romance?
Many couples choose to allocate an amount of money to each person to spend on whatever they want, no questions asked. This gives a person the ability to spend money on a spontaneous or unexpected gift for their loved one without having to tip their hand that anything is going on.
The downside to this is that depending upon the amount agreed upon as weekly individual funds, it may take a long time to save up for a significant gift.
One spouse could request that a certain amount of money be set aside from the budget for a future item. This could allow for larger amounts of funds to be set aside, but it would also make it obvious that something is going on.
It would be fairly easy for me to underspend our grocery allowance, and tuck away a little bit here and there. This would allow the accumulation of funds, but this method can feel rather deceptive.
One spouse could ask their partner if they can plan an upcoming weekend, using all the discretionary funds. It would certainly announce your intentions, but, the recipient would not know the specifics until the event arrived.
None of these options are perfect, but they all provide a feasible way to surprise your partner even if your family’s finances are combined. Do you and your significant other have combined finances?
How else can you surprise your partner but at the same time give them as few details as possible?