Marriage Hack Allowance

The Hunk and I meet with couples before they get married often–especially when he’s officiating their wedding or doing pre-marital mentoring.  I love doing this!  Throughout the meetings, in addition to contributing to skills related to conflict resolution and other key marriage issues, I drop in a little marriage hack we’ve used to make the practical elements of marriage go more smoothly–causing fewer unnecessary friction.  And I want to share a marriage hack or two here and there for you to employ in your own marriage.  I’ve already shared a marriage hack for your schedules and one about budgeting and if you missed it, you’ll want to check it out, for sure!  Be on the lookout for future marriage hacks to help you simplify and/or make your marriage run more smoothly. Today, I’d like to share how an allowance setup can help you simplify your married life.

Marriage Hack: Allowance

Here’s the thing: Even though a married couple is one in the eyes of God, a small amount of independence can really empower both the husband and the wife.  For this reason, The Hunk and I set up an allowance system.  We build this into our budget and we automate it (we love automating as much as possible).

We have a lot of financial goals.  We want to be debt free except our mortgage.  We want to travel every other year or so.  Incidental spending can get in the way of these dreams.  We’ve eaten out far fewer times since implementing this system, since our allowance pays for eating out, as well.

We can spend this money however we want.  For instance, I subscribe to a t-shirt of the month club and use my allowance for that. The Hunk has gotten men’s Birchbox for a few months.  These are things we would have to discuss with each other if we didn’t have our own allowance.  Wallet helps us treat ourselves (say it like they do on Parks and Rec!) to things without cutting into our monthly budget, and derailing our path to financial freedom. This is a great way to control spending on hobbies or interests.

I’m sure there are a bunch of ways to set up an allowance system, but we use Google.

Shocker, right?

May I introduce you to Google Wallet?

Marriage Hack: How to

  1. Start by logging into your Google account.
  2. Then, go to  Set-up should be pretty much simple.  Much of Google is.
  3. The important part of this setup is that you’re going to want to request a Google Wallet card.
  4. Connect your Wallet to your checking account.
  5. Download the app at the App store or the Play store.

All of this is free.  I love free; don’t you?

After receiving your card, go into your dashboard or app and set up your allowance–or repeating transfer.  The Hunk and I have a flat amount transferred from our checking account on the first of every month.  (Tomorrow’s allowance day!)

How much? Well, we started out at $60 each month, but have since adjusted. Go ahead and try an amount that sounds reasonable for the two of you.  If, after a month or two, you realize that you need more, change it.  If you find that you could spend less and end up saving more, decrease your allowance together.

You might set up your allowance so that it transfers on pay day or at the end of the month.  All of this depends on how you budget.  Talk with one another and agree on the best time of the month for your allowance to be transferred.

Here are a few things to know about how Google Wallet works:

Your wallet acts like a debit card–without any fees.  You can’t use them at an ATM, but you can make purchases anywhere MasterCard is accepted.

If you are an Android user, you can use your Google Wallet to pay for in-app purchases; I do this when I purchase devotional collections from SheReadsTruth.

If your smartphone has NFC, you might couple the Google Wallet app with the Android Pay app and use your smartphone to pay for items where Android Pay is accepted.  As of this writing, Android Pay is somewhat new.  There are a lot of things you can do with Android Pay, as well.