Finance Management Coach Chinmay Joshi shares how to strengthen the relationship as a couple through better financial planning

Budgeting to Investing: Finance Coach's Guide for Couples towards a Stronger Relationship

finance tips/advice for couples, money, chinmay joshi

This week on Baely we have Finance Management Coach Chinmay Joshi sharing how to strengthen relationship as a couple through better financial planning. Speaking to Consulting Editor Mahima Sharma, he not only shares a detailed guide towards joint money management, the importance of communication and planning but also the do’s and don’ts towards better emotional accord as well. Take a read…it’s an EXCLUSIVE at Baely

MS: Hello Chinmay, welcome to Baely. Let’s start the interview with your favorite topic - four money different personalities.  Also how to live under the same roof when two partners have different personalities? 

CJ: Hi Mahima, thanks for triggering an interaction that is very much essential in daily life, and is often left out. So let me start by sharing some basics before we delve deeper. 

In general, there are 4 different money personalities.

  • Saver
  • Spender 
  • Avoider 
  • Monk

We all have all 4 of these personality traits, but 1 of them is dominant. It depends on our upbringing and the kind of value system we have learnt from our environment, our past experiences and our preferences.

A saver personality worries about saving all the time, they are the ones who will find the best deals in the market, will save all the coupons and discounts for the future and will crib about spending. They will think many times before buying anything. They will come across as frugal and uncaring about people at times. A saver doesn't necessarily have a huge bank account, but they will panic a lot when they spend. Even when buying necessities. 

A spender will always rush into buying things because they love to spend. They will come across as impulse buyers. It's easy to convince them to buy anything. They will not be able to differentiate between their needs and wants. The singular focus of spenders is to buy things to feel good. Whether for themselves or others, they just love spending. Shopping is their favourite pastime and saving is their last priority. They will get angry or agitated when they cannot spend.

An avoider is the one who is least bothered about money management. He will keep the money in the account, pay the bills at times and even forget about it. They will be afraid of facing their money reality. They just want to not think or talk about money.

A monk is someone who thinks money is not important in life. It's all an illusion to think or talk about money. They feel they are too 'spiritual' to talk about money and that God or Universe will take care of their needs. They don't need to think about money.

Now there are pros and cons to each personality. When 2 people with different money personalities come together, it can be a major cause of their disagreements and quarrels.

So as a couple it's important to understand your partner's money personality and manage your household finance in such a way that it makes both of them happy.

It’s easy to understand your partner’s money personality. Just observe their pattern around money. If they are constantly worried about savings, they are savers, if they are always thinking of buying and spending, they are spenders. If they are avoiding talking about money, they are avoiders and if they think they don’t need to talk or think about money, only God will take care of it or the Universe will take care of it, they are Monks. 

You can also ask how they were brought up and what sort of situations their families faced when it comes to money. Be observant, not to judge them, just so that you can understand them better.

Once you know their money personality, you share your money personality and the way you were brought up. Your childhood stories play a very important role in shaping up your money personality. 

Once you understand your money personalities, you then sit together and discuss your future dreams and goals and how important it is to save and invest money for it.

Agree on a savings number per month and automate it via direct debit or automatic transfer. The rest you can use for your household expenses and lifestyle. Making savings automated can bring a lot of ease to your relationship. 

Having a system of money management should be a priority for both of you. A system that can automatically help you save and invest, spend on your necessities and luxuries, and also allows you to be worry-free every month. How can this be done? That I am sharing below by detailing the SIX JAR SYSTEM. 

MS: What is the ideal way to discuss money before one gets married? What are the major things that need to be kept in mind?

CJ: The best way is to be open and honest before one gets married.

Part of understanding the person you're going to marry involves understanding their relationship with money. Modern couples need to be considerate enough to talk about money beforehand so as to avoid financial difficulties in the future. It's a good thing to discuss. Ask respectfully what your style of managing money is. How will I be contributing towards the household expenses and how shall we plan our financial goals together?

It's important to discuss if you have taken any loans or you have any liabilities beforehand to avoid any misunderstanding in future. Have a mutual understanding and set expectations about the financial contribution from both sides and try to maintain that as far as possible. Don't keep money discussions a grey area or else it can lead to darkness in the future.

MS: After the wedding, if both partners are UNEQUAL earning members, how must they divide the funds towards - joint expenses, self-expenses, EMIs, kid's education, etc, parental needs, investment, and plus the rainy days in Life? In short what is the percentage that needs to be kept in mind to allocate for each, if they want an equitable relationship? 

CJ: I believe that income from all the family members should go into 1 POT. It shouldn’t be your money, my money. It should be our money regardless of who earns how much.

And from that POT you can divide it into 6 Jars. This is applicable to everyone whether you’re single or married. 

  1. 50 % - Necessity Jar -   Your bills, groceries, school fees, maintenance, EMIs, rent,  etc.
  2. 10% - Financial Freedom Jar -  This is your seed money, you never touch it you let it grow until you earn so interest from it which can easily pay for your necessities and lifestyle
  3. 10% - Long term savings for spending Jar -  Save for your emergency funds and for your future dreams such as buying a home, car, vacation, kids education, marriage, etc.
  4. 10% - Education and Upskill - Invest in your learning, to upgrade your skills to better your income and lifestyle. For eg doing a program to learn how to manage money, or to expand your business, or to create a side hustle or learn to code) 
  5. 10% - Play ( Enjoy life, treat yourself for all the hard work you do, this should be used every month or at least once every 3 months) 
  6. 10% - Give (Contribute to the causes that are close to your heart and helps you feel great to support those in need) 

(Courtesy - My mentor T.Harv.Ekar taught me these 6 jars System) 

  • Pro tip - If you wish to have some money in your hand, keep the play and education money in your own account and spend on yourself
  • Ideally, if you’re young, it would be great if you can contribute more towards your Financial Freedom Jar and less towards your necessities.

MS: You always talk about relationship with money. How can two individuals strike a balanced relationship with money along with their bonding ? 

CJ: Your relationship with money depends on your deep rooted beliefs about money. If you heard “money doesn’t grow on trees” or “we don’t have enough” several times during your childhood, you will have a tough relationship with money. 

Both partners have to be considerate of their better half’s upbringing and help each other in removing negative beliefs about money.

That can be achieved by being grateful for what you have and working towards your dreams and goals together. When 1 meets 1 on a mission, they create the power of 11.  Understand that abundance in life is the result of mutual understanding and harmony. Gratitude is the key to bringing that understanding and harmony. When you are grateful, fear disappears and abundance appears. 

Doing self work, facing your fears about money, and creating a plan of action together makes the world of difference. It will not only make you financially stable, but it will also bring your relationship to a whole new level of trust and friendship. Ask yourself what are my limiting beliefs and fears about money. Sit in silence and think about your behavior around money when it comes to earning, spending, or investing it. Do you have fears like “what if I lose my money if I invest” or “what if I lost my Job” or beliefs like “I am not a good money manager” or “I am dumb when it comes to money”. Once you become aware of your negative beliefs, learn how to replace them with empowering beliefs. Most of these beliefs come from our childhood memories and experiences about money. If you saw your parents fighting about money or telling you “it is hard to earn money”, it affects your psychology and beliefs about money.

One of the ways to replace these beliefs is to gain knowledge from the ones who are already where you want to be. Associate with them. Another way is what I call ‘Positive Chanting’ where you repeat an affirmation such as “I am an excellent money manager” or “I am a champion Investor”. Back these affirmations with actions otherwise they won’t work. Support your partner to overcome their negative beliefs as well and you will see the magic unfold. 

It’s also good to seek professional help to rid of any negative beliefs or behavior that is affecting your financial future. 

A couple had come to me where the husband was a spender and avoider and the wife was constantly worried about savings. Their money personalities clashed and they had a lot of fights because of it. Husband would constantly spend on clothes and accessories, motorbikes and gears not thinking about how much money they need till the end of the month and the wife would then be worried about the end of the month. So when they met me, I made them aware of their money personalities and made a future plan. Also, the husband had a hidden belief that I don’t need to think about money as his wife is managing it and that he had learnt in his childhood from his parents. 

On the other hand, the wife was brought up by a single father, so she took on all the responsibilities and her father’s patterns of worrying about money for the future. As I made both of them aware of their beliefs, they understood where the misunderstandings were taking place. They mutually decided on a savings and investment plan that helped them to nullify the effect of their past shortcomings.

MS: What kind of investments should one do as a couple to ensure a good family life together?

CJ: Start with creating an emergency fund for your family. It should be around 12 months of your expenses. This should be kept in a low risk liquid or debt fund. 

Learn about your Risk Profile as a couple, then only you begin to invest. Your risk profile is a combination of your risk taking capacity, willingness and psychology.

Secondly, write down your goals as a couple and begin to invest according to those goals based on short term or long term goals.

  • For short term goals (Less than 3 years) invest in Bonds or liquid funds. Fixed deposits are also good. however they offer very low returns and therefore only a small amount (5 -10% of your portfolio) should be kept there.  This is applicable in the case of working professionals.
  • For long term goals (More than 3 years) invest in Mutual funds, Gold, REITs, and all medium risk platforms.
  • If you have time to study and learn, then invest in Stocks and Real Estate for your long term goals. 

It’s important to not get distracted from your investment path just because someone is offering you a very high yield. High yields are equal to high risk. Every now and then you should review your investment plan.If you are not as good at making a plan, seek help from a professional who has the education, experience, and ethical standing to assist you in your investment journey.

MS: How does one deal with difficult financial emergencies, debts, or related situations? 

CJ: A couple had come to me for guidance on their finances as they got into huge debt due to some medical emergencies in the family, they went into a debt of Rs.50 Lakh. They had to literally cut corners and work extra hours to pay off this debt. 

Another couple had an issue with the husband taking huge risks and taking loans to invest in the stock market and real estate because he was hoping to earn “Big Money” in a short time. It all didn’t go as planned and they fell into a bad debt hole for 8 years.  

Prevention is better than cure. It is true when you plan your finances as well.

The first priority should be having term insurance and health insurance so that your family is well protected in case of any mishaps.

Your term insurance should cover all your liabilities and loans plus at least 10 years worth of your income. Your health insurance should cover the entire family in case of any medical emergencies. 

If you’re running a business that requires a lot of resources, consider having business insurance as well. Never take loans to invest in the stock market or any high risk investments. In case of emergencies, work together as a team, and seek guidance and support 

MS: Often having a single pool of funds takes away the charm of gifting and surprises. How can couples manage that? 

CJ: Mahima here I would advice the couples to divide their play jar money and education jar money into their personal accounts if they wish to surprise their partner. Also, gifts and surprises can be in the form of good gestures, or understanding them better. It can also be a wise gift like starting an SIP for your partner’s future dreams.

MS: How often should couples check on joint financial health? Please elaborate on  why it should be done and things to discuss

CJ: Once a month you should set aside a special time or a Money Date, where both partners can talk about Money and budgeting together. Begin by sharing 3 good things your partner is doing to improve the family's finances.

Appreciate each other’s efforts. For eg. share a written note or say it verbally and mention “Thank you for taking care of the home when I am away, Thank you for working so hard for the family, Thank you for doing chores so that we live a comfortable life, thank you for taking care of kids so that I can focus on work….The list can go on….The key is to show genuine appreciation and not just say it for the sake of it. 

Sometimes in the mundane of life we forget to acknowledge how much our partners are doing for us to keep the home team growing and glowing.

Even if a partner is a home engineer (homemaker), he/she has equal contribution to the home team budgeting as they are the decision makers for the day to day necessities. 

On your Money Date, you should discuss

  1. All the 6 Jars and the progress that has happened in the last month.
  2. If you are anticipating any big expenses such as school fees, taxes, etc., create a plan to manage them.
  3. If you have any surplus income coming in, discuss how to manage it. 
  4. If there are any changes required, create a plan of action.

Money dates help in having clarity and mutual understanding. Apart from these Money dates, once every 6 months you should have a (G.P.S) Goal Planning Session where you discuss any changes in your financial goals.

MS: When is the best time to start having money related conversations with your partner? 

CJ: The moment you begin trusting the person, you should start the conversation about money. These conversations also help uncover any masks that sometimes people wear just to impress. 

Even in arranged marriages, people should talk about their money matters, not from the point of view of how much am I getting, but to consider that post marriage on average the household expenses will be increasing by at least 20% to 50%. How will both of them manage this change? It’s very important to discuss this beforehand.

Also, people nowadays take huge loans for their weddings, and then they bury themselves in a huge debt. Both of them should discuss everything to avoid any nightmares in the future.


Since 2010, Chinmay has helped thousands of individuals from all walks of life to choose the correct path and experience breakthroughs in their financial plans. He has dedicated his life to helping individuals achieve their highest potential and strategically guiding them to achieve success in their personal finance which will help in every area of their lives through his videos, seminars, and TV interviews. He has worked with people from various backgrounds which includes Corporate Executives, Doctors, Army Officers, Police Officers, Athletes, Bollywood Actors, and Students. He is an AMFI certified Mutual Fund Advisor as well.


The opinions expressed within this interview are the personal opinions of the protagonist/protagonists. The facts & statistics, the work profile details of the protagonist/ protagonists do not reflect the views of Baely or the Journalist. Neither Baely nor the Journalist hold any responsibility or liability for the same.

About the Interviewer
About the Author
Mahima Sharma
Mahima Sharma is a Senior Journalist based in Delhi NCR. She has been in the field of TV, Print & Online Journalism since 2005 and previously an additional three years in allied media.
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