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Podcast - The Psychology of Money

The Psychology of Money

The Psychology of Money

Some people are savers, and others are spenders.  Today, we break down the psychology of money.  Joining Richard Oring are certified financial planner Erik Garcia and clinical psychologist Matt Morris, hosts of their own podcast, Building Us.

We start by looking at different types of couples - pairs of savers, pairs of spenders, and one of each - and we tell you which pairing often changes...quickly.

Matt, Erik, and Rich break down the psychology behind what makes some people spenders and other savers.  Sometimes this is a product of upbringing, and this is often a source of friction in relationships.

It's important to note that saving isn't always good, and spending isn't always bad. There are happy mediums to everything, and we discuss strategies you can employ to change your financial behaviors.

COVID has been a terrible time for so many people for so many reasons, but for some, it's given us an opportunity to slow down, and spend more time with our families.



Jag: Welcome back to financial matters with Richard Oring. I am Jon Jag Gay. Rich, we've got a whole cast of characters today. So why don't we jump right in, introduce everybody to tell me where we're going and how we're getting there.

Rich: okay. This is really exciting. One of our, guests, his name is Eric Garcia. He and I have been working together for quite a while now, probably at least five, six years already. And I think I talked to this gentleman every day.  He's also a financial advisor.

we're in the same group. We talk about what's going on in industry regulations, how we're dealing with our clients, what software is out there. We brainstorm all the time. And he and I have been talking about doing a podcast together for a while. He has his own podcast, which he has another speaker.

He's going to introduce on. Ours for today, but we finally did it maybe over a year of talking about it, doing it together. We're here today and we're going to do it. Eric. You want to talk a little bit about yourself and introduce Matt? Okay.

Erik: Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. For the record, it was me dragging my feet. Rich, not you, appreciate you having me on. do work a lot together. We talk more than business. We taught kids. We, our work relationship has grown into a friendship. So I appreciate you having me on yeah.

So, Dr. Matt Morris,who's on this call with us is a good friend of mine and colleague about six or seven years ago, Matt. It gives me a call and that's a family therapist. gives me a call. I had this couple, we were talking and this was their issue.

Think it was a financial issue. This is what I told him, was that good advice. And that launched a working relationship between Matt and me, where we started taking the discipline of financial advising and financial planning and kind of combining it and integrating it with the discipline of couples counseling and family therapy.

And we found that there was this. the sweet spot where the two disciplines meet and we were better able to, help our clients add value to our client's lives. so we did a lot of work together with clients and we ended up launching a podcast called building us, invest in your relationships where we talk about.

relationships to, each other, our spouses to our community, to our money. some, you know, happy to have Matt on here and to talk about the topic, Matt, you introduce yourself real quick.

Matt: Yeah. Good afternoon. Thanks for having me on. I appreciate rich, uh, Hosting us on your show. as Eric said, I, am a family, therapist and couples counselor, which means that I sit with clients regularly and talk with them about things that aggravate them, irritate them and frustrate them money is one of those things.

So money is not the sole topic of my work with couples, but it often comes up a lot. And that means that my work with couples often interfaces with. your work with financial, advising and helping people make really good decisions financially. It also seems that what makes numerical sense does it doesn't always make emotional sense or relational sense.

And so for a lot of couples, you know, the best financial decision, maybe one that they haven't arrived to yet, just emotionally. So we talked through those things in couples counseling.

Jag: So it seems like this is, a rabbi and a priest walk into a bar. We've got two financial advisors and a family therapist on this call,but our main takeaway for this episode, So it's going to be understanding why some people are savers, others are spendthrifts, and understanding these different personalities and how that can affect people's relationships and personal happiness.

So, Matt, let me lead it off here with you. psychologically. What is the difference between a saver and a spendthrift?

Matt: Well, obviously savers are people who are putting money away for some future use and spenders are more focused on their need or desire want right now. And why that is, we could come up with a number of different explanations, where it becomes a problem in couples counseling.

Are when a,  they have spent all their money and aren't able to meet their needs currently. that's a problem, B they're, saving all of their money and not really enjoying life now to some extent. but most commonly see, they just fundamentally disagree about when to spend and when to save.

it's not a great idea to have two spenders. Managing the same account, but that generally doesn't happen. It's a, it's ironic the two spenders generally don't marry each other. What usually happens is that even you're a spender and you marry a spender, one of you quickly becomes a saver because you're freaked out at the other one's purchases.

Jag: Okay.

Matt: so why does all of that happen? again, there are different psychological, Theories for why that happens, but in general, somebody trying to protect the future, and the other, a person's trying to protect the now.

Rich: Matt, you kind of led in, With exactly how you explained it. What I want the goal for this episode to be, what I want is for listeners to understand relationships, and how spending habits can affect it and ultimately learn about yourself. Maybe if you need to make some changes, which will help with the relationship.

hopefully, we're going to be able to go over some tools and things for you to assess your own self. To make those changes. Matt, I know, when I got married, I like to spend money. I was the spendthrift between my wife and I, my friends have a nickname for me, the serial hobbyist, meaning I started a hobby, invest in it, get bored and move on to a new one.

Erik: I can attest to your cereal hoppiness.

Jag: I'm going to second that or third that as the case may

Rich: No. Do you want to go ahead? And, 

Matt: I don't know you that well, but I do like cereal.

Rich: so. caused a lot of friction between my wife and me, my wife's just the opposite. You know, she's about saving. She creates buckets. Like if I log into our bank account, I got a bucket for this goal, she has to see everything separated. So when she sees Amazon packages coming in every day, for me, she starts worrying about where's the money gonna come from the fund, those buckets.

So over time I've changed My spending habits, we communicate a lot more and we meet goals. And I got to tell you is, I guess I'm cured as a spendthrift. thank you. And it feels pretty good to be a saver. I got to tell you, not worrying about not being able to pay the credit cards each month, not being able to afford the mortgage, and things like that.

especially as a financial advisor, I should be responsible and I have to thank my wife. For being patient with me and helping me get there. I see the benefits of her bucket system and saving and meeting goals because when it comes time to write that check to pay for that goal, it feels really good having the money there.

mean, I guess I have to ask you a question, like, you kind of touched on a little bit about having two spenders or having two savers or maybe one of each, what have you seen in your practice? what stresses is this cause? And can people get help in resolving their spending habits if they're different than their spouses?

Matt: Sure. to your first part, what stressors do. It caused. I mean, so if we take out money and just substitute any behavior that they're different on, or that they disagree about,  relationships are naturally conflictual. They're going to lead to disagreements and disagreements are naturally stressful.

And so if they're disagreeing about money, it's going to cause stress for their relationship. Couples have dealt with this by trying to communicate clearly about what their spending plan is. Learn that word spending plan from Eric. it might also be known as a budget, but when couples have some language around what they're planning to spend money on and can talk about that regularly, and it, come to some level of agreement about that will reduce a lot of the conflict.

So rich back to you and your wife. if she lays out her plan of I've got these various buckets and rich, one of the buckets is your hobbies. Then, you know, clearly what's the hobby money allocated to me and she knows we've got money allocated to Rich's hobbies.

Rich: Matt, you got it all wrong. I have the Amazon packages now delivered to the office. She just doesn't know my spending. Totally different.

Erik: Matt and I did a show on financial infidelity, or we talked about it on a show. So maybe we need to talk about that. This could be a therapy session

Matt: secret spending.

Erik: let me add something really quick. Cause I think as I'm hearing this conversation develop, I want to make sure  that we don't kind of associate savor as good in spendthrifts as bad.

  I've had clients where I've talked to and I said, you need to spend money. Like you're almost. Borderline hoarder, and spending, I just published a podcast, this week and I talked about spending money on experiences. So spending, I think it's important just to note that saving isn't necessarily always good and spending isn't necessarily always bad.

And I think that's something to keep in mind here that. spending money can be good. It can be purposeful to spend money, and saving money can be, greedy. it can be hoarding. So I just wanted to make that point.

Rich: so let's go back to, the original questions we threw at mat regarding, how couples, deal with each other, being the same pattern spending or saving, or just the opposite.

Matt: so communicating about your spending and saving habits and coming to some level of agreement we'll help couples deal with this more fundamentally though, just more fundamentally, you know, relationships have to balance a couple of different forces.   one of the forces in the sense of security that I know that you're in this with me together.

Pulling in the same direction, we're on the same team. That's a sense of secure connection. I feel really close to you. And then a third, force that we talk a little bit less about is autonomy. Me having some right to my own individual needs wants desires, freedom things like that. And so spending then becomes a way in which all of those forces, get acted out.

And so, security financially it's a sense of you have enough to pay for our life. We're okay. we don't have to worry about the mortgage being paid this month. We have savings for all those things that we want to save for.  I know I'm going to need a car in the future and I can see, I have a sense of security, but we're putting money aside for that.

The kids are going to need, braces are going to need college are going to get married at some point. And we're, I could see that's not keeping me up at night worrying about all of that. That's all that sense of security sense of connection is, I feel like, we're spending money.  in a way that's aligned with our goals and our values as a couple that brings us closer together, but also just things like we spend money on dates so we can really connect together or we spend money on a trip so that we can go do something together and make a memory together.

That's all connected. And then autonomy is, Hey, I don't have to spend my money. I don't have to spend our money in the same way that you do all the time. If I want to have this hobby, that includes model airplanes and you think model airplanes are stupid. That's okay. I still am me. And you're still you.

And I can still spend some money on model airplanes. It just has to fit into those other categories of connection insecurity as well. So spending is an issue unto itself. But it fits into this larger framework of healthy relationships. Anyway,

Rich: Hey, man. I'm just curious about, the COVID situation and people being quarantine. those who are used to going to the office every day or, wherever they're placed to work, my B have you seen more couples arguing about spending because there's nothing else to do. They're stuck in the house.

They're looking for projects, hobbies, activities for the kids.

Matt: I have not seen couples arguing more about spending due to COVID. I mean, COVID has been really hard on lots of people. And so we have seen an uptick in mental health issues during COVID subsequently, more people are attending counseling. seems, in some ways though, rich, honestly.

there are families that are doing better too, that they've enjoyed the slower pace of life. They've enjoyed being home more, I have couples that are like, we haven't gotten to spend this much time together in a long time. And we've talked about wanting to slow down our life and spend more time together.

Or, kids saying, God, I haven't spent this much time with my parents. I haven't seen my dad this much in years. And so for some. Some, COVID has been good back to the financial piece. it's changed. People's spending. we are spending a lot less on travel and eating out and, other services we're spending more on, on buying Amazon stuff.

so home goods are up. People have new pots and pans.

Rich: It's interesting. When you talk about family time. not to get into politics, but Ivanka Trump was interviewed, when her dad became president, and like a lot of people know that she converted to Judaism and they asked her, what do you find most interesting about the Jewish faith? And she said, following the Sabbath, On Friday night, we unplug all the electronics.

We have a family meal and we sit down and we play with the kids. We play board games, we talk and we don't plug back into our phones, blackberries, whatever, you know, emails until Saturday night. So it was like a forced time for her to shut down, which she wasn't used to doing growing up. So. Maybe this one positive thing.

If anything, we could talk about COVID is realizing how important it is to take time to be with our loved ones. They're not just focusing on work and bearing your head in our emails and so forth.

Erik: I think there's a lot of opportunities we stop long enough to look at it. So we're sitting here talking about spenders. And savers and spending time. think the one really important thing here is just to recognize and become aware of that personality that you have, right. that money personality, if you, will you hear your, some people talk about that in our house recently?

a big topic of conversation has been the Enneagram. 

Rich: Say that word again.

Erik: Enneagram, don't ask me to spell it. Enneagram,  , looks at core features and core strengths, and it's kind of like a personality type thing.

That's been a big discussion in our household and it's been interesting as we discuss it's kind of given us insight into how we relate to each other and I can see how, wow, this is really interesting. My kids are getting into it, my wife's getting into it and we're having these conversations. So if you think about it in the context of the topic of spender and saver, sometimes you have these personalities, right?

You're to be more inclined to do one. Or the other. And I think as Matt's talking about the connection is having these conversations to recognize the fact that yeah, you know, I do like to buy things on Amazon. you know, I do like to save, why do I like to save? Why do you like to spend, are you doing it?

Because, you feel like you need the next best and greatest thing or your neighbor got, the Mavis three drone and you need it now to take a picture of your Christmas tree from, you know, 700 feet in the sky. Because you want to fit in?

Rich: Can you, send the photo of your tree, Eric?

Erik: I don't buy a drone.

I see my friends buy it and I'm like, Oh, I'd love to have a drone. I'm like, what would I use it for? You know, 

Rich: said it to take a picture of your Christmas

Erik: a hurricane. but why am I saving? Because I feel insecure because I didn't have money when I was growing up because I'm fearful of it. What's going to happen tomorrow.

And I think that the power of having that conversation oftentimes is the real work. Not if I spend too much becoming a saver. I think having that conversation is the real one.

Rich: so, Eric, that's a good lead-in for the next question for Matt. Is our spending or saving traits learned at an early age? Is it taught by us? Is it something we learn as we go on? Can you talk a little bit about that?

Matt: the short answer is yes, that our spending traits or financial management traits are learned early on. you might think of this as kind of like financial genetics that was passed on to you they're not literal genes and that they're, you inherit them upon conception.

It's not that, but it is the house that you grew up in and how you saw money managed in that house it's hugely influential. On how you manage money later on a good activity to do in therapy. And you don't have to be informal therapy. You can just do this with your spouse is get out some old family photos, flip through the photos, and describe to your spouse what each person in the photo taught you about finances.

So you can look at your grandparents. And not just the people in the photo, but the scene of the photo. Oh, this was at my grandparent's house. And I remember that it was so fun and that it was so filled with warmth and love, but, you know, they didn't have a lot of money. So how did they do that?

you can look at the people in the photo talk about  what money meant to each of them, but you can also describe those scenes to your partner, your spouse in terms of. What you remember about finances in the home, and then your spouse can do the same. They can get out some old photos talk through that.

you could do kind of a financial family tree. You could talk about who's connected. Who's in your family, who's related to whom, and what financial messages they passed along to you. For instance, just as an example, my grandmother. grew up during the depression and was very poor at some point in her life. and her husband died before I was born. So she was single for much of her life. And so her possessions were really important to her. She didn't throw much away. she kept everything and it wasn't for a purpose. It was just throwing things away was really hard. And she wrote her name on a lot of things. she would get a permanent marker and write her name on it. And I noticed that I want to do the same thing. Like when I get my kids a new coat and they're going to school wearing their new coat, I want to write their name in it. I want to be able to find it if it gets lost, I guess.

And so we do inherit in some way, these financial behaviors from the family in which we were raised. It's interesting.

Erik: Matt, going to call you you're out here on Richard's show. Like why that's brilliant. How come you've never shared that with me? Like that little exercise. I love it. The financial family tree.

Matt: Thanks, man. I have lots of things

Erik: You know, as you were saying that, yeah, I was thinking about, I was thinking about like genetics and passing down financial traits.

There's a really interesting study from the University of Minnesota that studied that exact thing that, you can teach your kids about things, but ultimately they're going to model behavior in their parents and rich, a lot of our conversations. As we were talking about family trees. you know, I'll go to rich often for tax questions.

If you don't know this already rich as a, I think he's memorized all 77,000 pages of the tax code. 

Rich: can't wait for the new changes coming up in 2021.

Erik: So I go to rich, like enriches my, my tax guru and I'll ask him a question. He drives me crazy sometimes. Like he knows the answer. Okay. But he'll say, Hey, why don't you go pull tax code 5,500 or whatever, and go read it real quick.

I'm like, dude, just tell him and he'll send me to go find it. And then he'll share. He goes, that's what my dad did with me. That's how he taught me about taxes. I had to find everything I had to document everything I had to back up, all my recommendations with the tax code. So here we're talking about financial genetics, 

Rich: and remember, you can't use Google to do this.

Erik: Well, I mean, I can go

Rich: use Google, the backup recommendations.

Erik: no, but not backup recommendations for if compliance is listening. No, but we're in the tax code. Does it say you can do X, Y, and Z? so we're talking about financial genetics and whatnot. So I think that's interesting how we, yeah. Matt talks about how we learn these things.

Matt: so when we fall in love, get married. we. Don't often have these very explicit conversations around, how did you grow up financially? How did I grow up financially in this very detailed way so that we understand who we each are financially and how that's going to merge together in ways that are complementary to each other and problematic for each other.

So these are conversations that couples could have before the wedding or before their, you know, the commit their lives to each other. even if you didn't and you have to learn the hard way that dang we're different, you can still have these conversations in an ongoing, productive way.

Rich: Hey, Matt, if you can create a checklist for me. So when I have clients, kids who are going to be getting married right before they sign the marriage license, we'll just check off a whole bunch of boxes before they actually finalized going through with it. That would be really helpful.

Erik: okay. Are you a spender? Are you a saver?

Matt: out there.

Jag: I think that's three years ago when I got married to my wife. And then part of the whole deal was you meet with a rabbi and have a counseling session beforehand, which was very beneficial. I'm thinking it wouldn't be the worst thing in the world to meet with a financial advisor beforehand, too.

Erik: that's actually where we started. we offered a package, it was like premarital counseling building us originally was premarital counseling, where Matt did kind of communication and sex and whatever other stuff, 

Matt: a problem-solving family of origin, having kids, all that stuff. And you handled  financial discussions.

Rich: Yeah, by the way, JAG, I chose my rabbi based on not required to have those meetings first.

Jag: and your loopholes? Rich. Jeez.

Erik: and then you picked up like 16 hobbies within like three weeks

Jag: See, if you had met with the rabbi like Eric is saying maybe he would have to caution you against picking up a new hobby every week. Rich.

Erik: you should hire a financial advisor rich.

Rich: I think the rabbi would have been praying is free. Just pay your membership dues.

Matt: Down here in New Orleans, a very Catholic city, most couples are required to go to their Pre-Cana, their, their Catholic, premarital conversations. And they often meet with a priest. Who's taken a vow of poverty. So I wonder how those discussions go around. Finances.

Rich: you know, it's interesting because Eric and I are both going for different professional designations right now. Eric's going for one understanding of behavioral finance, understanding, how people mentally make decisions, and how to work with them. And I'm working on getting one as a certified financial instructor.

. Eric, you want to talk about what does Asian you're going for?

Erik: Yeah, it's called the behavioral financial advisor and essentially it looks at the emotions behind making financial decisions, how do we make better financial decisions? Understanding human. Emotions and human behavior that if you look at people's long-term financial success,their saving and investing behaviors will have way more impact, on their financial success.

And some of the factors that we often, say are important as financial advisors,

Jag: Eric with that in mind. I know you spoke earlier about maybe somebody saving to the point of detriment, where they save too much and it's okay to spend some money on things. What about the other side? What are some ideas that you have for people who come to you that tend to spend too much, they tend to be spent?

Or what suggestions do you have for them?

Erik: You know, what's funny is we talk about budgeting and the simple answer is, well, they just need a budget. Well, the reality is the majority of people I've talked to, like the budget's one of those things where everyone knows that they should be doing and they're not doing, and there's like this guilt, like, ah, I know I need a budget.

I know I need a budget. 

Rich: I know we both stress the budget has to be created by both in the household, not just one of the spouses.

Erik: Yeah. sometimes I think the way that budget they're typically taught by the big talking heads is most people don't have that personality type to sit down and manage a spreadsheet and manage pennies and budgets, nothing more. Then spending plans. I think the most important, fundamental thing that I'll tell people is, one, they have to want to stop spending.

And my next question inevitably is Y  why do you wanna stop spending? Well, cause I need to say, well, why do you need to say, because I'm going to retire one day. And I think it's connecting emotionally with something bigger with something that's the value. So it often happens in people's.

values are out of whack with what they're doing with their money and they know it. And when  you believe something and you're acting contrary and Matt could part there's the price of research, to suggest this when you're acting contrary to what you believe, you're going to feel depression, you're going to feel anxious.

You're going to feel not right. Things are just out of sorts. You're going to be restless. So I think the first thing is people need to say, why do I need to stop spending? And why do I need to save it's for retirement? It's because I want to send my kid, I want to give my kid and this, I hear this often from people.

I want my kids to have a better opportunity than I had. That is a good motivator. Right. So I think it's taking that value and keeping it in front of them. And then we can come behind that and say, how are we going to fund that?  a running joke on our podcast is, you know, buying coffee every day.

I'm a big coffee drinker. I hate picking on coffee, but it's a good one, right? If I don't buy a $5 latte every day or a $6 latte every day and maybe only do it three days, Hey, could that help me support that value? And I think

Rich: Eric, if you want two years ago, that was my hobby roasting coffee beans. You can, I can talk offline about how we can reduce that cost of buying green beans, roasting them on the stove. And maybe we can cut that budget down for you.

Erik: Yeah. Roast your own coffee beans, except you're going to spend money on like how expensive is your roaster. And anyway, but that's the first thing I would say, Jack, is sitting back and saying, Hey, do we value? Why do we want to stop spending? And why do we want to save?

Matt: Just to add to that, Eric I think part of what you're acknowledging is it's really hard to twist someone's arm into new behavior. But it's much easier. If you can connect their behavior to their value. What do you really want? What do you really want to do? what would you be doing with this money?

If you didn't spend it on model airplanes and coffee roasters, what would you be doing? Oh, I would be doing this and this. Oh, okay. Let's set that up. It's so much easier to engage someone. Once you figure out what they're into, what they value.

Rich: Okay. I feel like I'm getting picked on now by U2, Matt. I never said I did model airplanes.

Erik: you're giving them a new hobby.

Jag: Oh, no.

Rich: never mentioned model airplanes.

Erik: So another thing you can do to save money, check this one out, on the back of your credit cards, you can call them and freeze it for like 24 hours. So rich, you may want to freeze your credit card so that you don't get model airplanes delivered to your house.

Rich: crap. , after my wife listens to this episode, I think all spending's gonna be cut off from me. The only thing I'm going to have in my wallet is my license.

Jag: W we're rich as we start to wrap up here, let me make you feel a little better and bring this back around for you. I know, and we've kind of been hitting on this throughout the podcast,  financial success really has a lot of psychology behind it.

That's something we've been kind of getting at all four of us for the last 30 minutes or so.  And having that financial success sometimes involves bringing in a financial advisor. So rich talk a little bit about what you do in terms of helping people get on track financially.

Rich: I think at least once a week, I get asked that question. What do you do actually?

Jag: What is it you say you do here to

Rich: So I answer it simply. My job is to get an individual or a couple sitting across me and asking them the questions they should be asking themselves. You heard this on previous podcasts. My job is to ask them what their goals are, what.

keeps them up at night. What do you want to, you know, accomplish in your short-term mid-term, and long-term goals? are you taking care of her, parent? You have a special needs child. I challenged them asking the questions, what they should be asking themselves, but they're too busy taking their kids to the soccer, catching up on Grey's anatomy, just doing everything, but what they need to do, nobody likes to sit down.

And have this conversation. I mean, if you really think about it, wife says, I want to say for this husband says, they want to say for this, they disagree. Who's going to get the money who's going to, whose goal is going to get accomplished first.

Erik: what's you're talking about doing with your clients is connecting them to their value.

Rich: Exactly.

Erik: what a planner or a financial planner should do is we should connect our clients to their values so that they do with their money, what they value.

Rich: Right. Once we have these conversations, it's interesting. A lot of times they know what their goals are and other times they go, wow. You know, there's a lot to think about. We need to go home and talk about it. And I explained to them when they come back, goals can change too. it's not like you say, you have to do this goal and now you have to fulfill it.

there's a lot of times, you know, you told me you want to retire at age 68, but when 60 comes around, you're getting tired. Well, we can reproject your retirement projections to see if you can retire early. so I say that's the easiest way to explain what I do is. I asked the questions, which you should be asking yourself with that information.

I develop a financial plan and within that financial plan, and I might come with, investment recommendations, insurance, cash flow planning, budget, debt reduction, you know, Eric mentioned something earlier, a saver, you know, everyone thinks, Oh, I'm a saver. That's great, but you could be a saver to the point where you might not be happy or fulfilling your goals.

I remember when I had a tax practice, I had a client, a single lady, with no children never been married. She lived in a townhouse and she used to cut the grass in the backyard with a pair of scissors. She was saving money for cabinets and a trip to London to see our friend, she had over $6 million in investments.

She worked full time and she was going to inherit at least another nine or $10 million in a few years. But in her mind, she didn't have enough to hire a landscaper, buy those cabinets and go on that trip to England unless she saved for it separately. What she needed was to see a documented, she needed a financial plan.

She needed to see it in writing in print to show that she can afford this. And it wasn't going to affect her long-term goals and meeting her retirement needs. So a lot of times savers, it's not that they're not willing to spend the money. They just don't know. It's okay to spend the money. one of the things I mentioned earlier when Eric was talking, it's really important that both people in the household, both spouses are communicating about income, expenses, and debt. a lot of times I will get a phone call. unfortunately like at the beginning of my career, this phone call never happened. But it seems like, at least once every couple of months I'm getting a phone call from a client, say, Hey rates, I have a lot of credit card debt and I don't know what I'm going to do.

And I think I'm going to go through credit counseling and I go, Whoa, hold up. Before you do that, let's come up with a debt reduction plan to see if we could do it within your own cashflow before you jeopardize your credit. And then the next thing I say is if it's a husband I'm talking to, does your wife know about the debt? And then there's silence. And I'm going to tell you about half the time  the spouse does not know about the debt. I think it has to do with, some upbringings as we talked about earlier. I know my dad handled all the financials. In the household. My mom had nothing to do with it. You know, when my dad passed away, I'll never forget my mom asking me if she could buy a Vera Bradley kitchen mat for like 200 bucks.

And I asked her why she was calling me. She's like, I don't want to outlive my money. I said, mom, when you started spending so much where there's the jeopardy that you might be moving in with me, I'll let you know it's not going to happen. Trust me. So, you know, I think there's an upbringing. As for me, dad handled everything.

When I got married, I handled everything. It took years of my marriage for me to, get my wife involved with the financials. I just assumed it was my responsibility. I see my younger clients where both spouses are very involved to the point where they might even have separate checking counts for the bills.

You know, they split the bills or, the electric bill comes in, they each write a check or they have one joint account where they transfer money every month. You know, it's very common with younger clients. But I don't see it as much. I hate the salmon was 50, with my age group and above it's more the traditional way where one joint account and one person is handling the finances.

So one of the things I do with that age group is I encourage them for the other spouse to be involved. Even if it's not at every single meeting we have at least on an annual meeting. And Eric and I have tools where we aggregate. clients' accounts and insurance documents and legal documents, everything into a client portal.

So this way, if something happens to the person who knows everything, the other spouse can just make a phone call or log in and we can walk them through and explain everything. to them. I actually had that phone call coming this Monday. I have a client who just died unexpectedly with a heart attack, and I have a call with their children and the wife this Monday to go through all their accounts and what their options are, they'd even know who their accountant was.

I had to send them their own accountants, contact information.

Jag: scary how that can happen and rich, regardless of whether it's a situation like that, or just worrying about your financial future and thinking about what's ahead for you, it really pays to meet with a financial advisor. What are the best ways for people to reach out to

Rich: Well, before I even do that, I just want to, say thank you to both Eric and Matt for taking the time and preparing for this podcast. I greatly appreciated that you did this for me. And Eric, I'm finally glad that we did this. We did try it once before and we couldn't get past the intro without cracking up. I think Matt grounded us today. So,

Matt: but thanks for having me on your show. It's my pleasure.

Rich: This is great. I really do appreciate it. Hey Jack. just like every other episode, the best way to contact me is one, you know, I'm a phone person. Feel free to call me at (609) 924-2049. If you want to schedule a time to talk to me, you can always go to my

or you can always shoot me an email at R. O R I N And before we sign off, I want to give Eric an opportunity to promote his podcast with Matt. It is great. I look forward to,downloading it automatically into iTunes. Go ahead, Eric, give a promotion to your podcasts. I hope everyone listens to it.

Erik: Yeah, thanks again, rich for having us. So it's subscribe because we're actually kicking off 2021 with a mini-series called the next normal. And the idea is 2020 dictated a lot to us, and we really want to look at very significant parts of our life, our habits, our money, our relationships.

Our spirituality. And we're going to talk about all these things and how we take back control of that. So, building us, invest in your relationships.

Rich: looking forward to it.

Jag: There really is so much tied together between money and psychology. I feel like we could do podcasts on podcasts and podcasts about this just as Eric and Matt do. So we want to thank you guys for joining all of us today. happy holidays to all, and we'll talk soon.

Rich: Great. Thank you.