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Best Personal Finance Book for Your SO?

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  • #16



    I have given up on trying to I have given up on trying to interest my wife in reading and learning about personal finance. I am happy enough that she is out there making a ************************ good living. I have given her a list of resources, in case of my untimely death, including my recommendations for a financial advisor.  I update this list regularly.



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    Don't forget to also include a list of all the insurance policies, bank accounts, brokerage accounts, etc. that you both have, so she knows where everything is if the worst should actually happen.

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    • #17
      Sounds like me and my fiance. He just wants me to tell him what to do including what his spending allowance is per month.

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      • #18
        Maybe aim lower? Bernstein's "If You Can" takes less than 1 hour to get through.  PDF free online (www.etf.com/docs/IfYouCan.pdf).  This was the first "assignment" I asked my wife to read and it made her both more interested and conversant as financial decisions have come up in the few years since.

         

        My plan B is that I've told her several times, "If anything happens to me, take the financial files from the basement and call Joe" (financially savvy trusted friend).

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        • #19





          I don’t know if it’s appropriate to assume that sort of profound ignorance here. Hopefully Gas Doc has either enough life insurance or enough socked away in retirement etc that she can afford to waste a little and still be OK.  Necessity is the best teacher.  If she is already a responsible spender, then she’s already more than halfway there. Now if she were in fact some sort of imbecile then perhaps the best path is financial interdiction paired with the appointment of a good trustee, conservator… 
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          I’m with Gas_Doc here. Not infrequently, husbands who are the prime money manager will seek out our services so that the spouse will have a trusted advisor in the event the husband dies first (which, statistically speaking, will happen). I realize this is not “pc” and is changing, but the traditional financial spouse is predominantly the male. The wives are by no means imbeciles , they just leave it up to their husbands. And, as many on this forum have freely admitted (or there would be no purpose for the forum), finances are complicated – even WCI bought whole life insurance at one point. Coupled with profound grief at the loss of a spouse, the survivor is all too often prey to the scruples of the first advisor they run into – or even the first family member who takes them under their wing, not always the best result. I sure wouldn’t have wanted my mom to have been in that situation when my dad passed 25 years ago.
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          Absolutely.  I was laughing a little bit at Artemis's presumption that Gas Doc's wife is "too ignorant to safely take charge of the family's finances."  Just seemed a tad harsh

          I could drop dead today and I am completely confident that my wife would figure out how to pay the bills, where to park the insurance proceeds, and reasonably what to do with her money thereafter, despite her currently being satisfied with my handling these affairs for us.

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          • #20
            My wife tries to keep up and has skimmed some books. I just continue to yap at her everyday and it seems some things are sticking and she tries to humor me, and she does want to know whats going on, which helps.

             

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            • #21
              My husband is clueless about personal finance despite having a PhD in business.  He is not going to read a book about it either.  Someone has to do it.

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              • #22


                Absolutely.  I was laughing a little bit at Artemis’s presumption that Gas Doc’s wife is “too ignorant to safely take charge of the family’s finances.”  Just seemed a tad harshI could drop dead today and I am completely confident that my wife would figure out how to pay the bills, where to park the insurance proceeds, and reasonably what to do with her money thereafter, despite her currently being satisfied with my handling these affairs for us.
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                If your wife has never had any experience in managing significant amounts of money, your confidence could well be misplaced.  Money management is a learned skill.  And for some reason I've never understood, a lot of women (even some young women today) feel uncomfortable learning it.  That can cost them dearly.

                Now if your wife developed that skill in the years before you took over managing the family finances, and leaving the money stuff up to you is just a matter of preference, that is a completely different matter.

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                • #23







                  The real question… does it really matter if she reads anything?  Does she have a spending issue?  Or do you just want her to be included in the conversation?  The answer to that is what decides if it is a battle worth picking.
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                  No, not a spending issue. But having known someone who lost their SO and was completely uninvolved in their finances up to that point, I feel strongly that my wife should have at least some grasp of finance in case the worst happens to me. The added benefit of being able to talk to her about something that interests me is just gravy.
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                  Ditto. My wife has an accounting degree, but she'll barely look at our accounts when I open the spreadsheet right in front of her. (She does track our expenses in a spreadsheet though. :-))
                  Erstwhile Dance Theatre of Dayton performer cum bellhop. Carried (many) bags for a lovely and gracious 59 yo Cyd Charisse. (RIP) Hosted epic company parties after Friday night rehearsals.

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                  • #24
                    Having remarried in the last year I worry about this as well.  It appears the posters on this thread can agree the other spouse is never going to read a book and they trust us to run things right now.  But what are people doing if that horrible thing does happen?  Detailed instructions of what to do with each account and each life insurance policy?  Find a trusted person yourself and direct them there? Try to find the best book to get them to read now?

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                    • #25
                      A few goods books that are relatively easy reads include The Only Investment Guide You'll Ever Need by Andrew Tobias; Bogleheads Guide to Investing (a little dry, but good information in it) and Unshakeabe by Tony Robbins - They've actually released some podcasts that cover the main ideas of the book that would make it even easier for your SO to listen to. I believe they'll be releasing the remaining podcasts to cover the rest of the book in the near future. The book was just recently released but it's a very easy read.

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                      • #26




                        Detailed instructions of what to do with each account and each life insurance policy?  Find a trusted person yourself and direct them there?
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                        I think combining those two approaches is the best option.  Your spouse needs the bank account and insurance info in order to file any insurance claims and manage day-to-day bill paying in the immediate aftermath of your death or lengthy hospitalization; a GOOD investment professional could guide your spouse with regard to managing the family investment portfolio for the long-term.

                        (We seem to be co-mingling personal finance and investment finance in this thread.  They are related, but are not identical.)

                        Think about this scenario:  the partner managing the finances is in the ICU, is going to be there for weeks, and then in a rehab facility for who knows how long after that.  They may have insured against such an event, but does their spouse even know their partner has a long-term care policy or a disability policy?  Does the spouse know which insurance company issued those policies, or the policy numbers, or how to go about filing a claim?  Does the spouse know the password for their joint bank account, and how to move money and pay bills electronically?  Or where the checkbook for that account is kept?  (Remember, the spouse in question may be used to just paying for everything via a credit card issued by an entirely different bank!)

                        The problem GasDoc is worried about isn't simply related to managing investments.  It's more basic than that.  All the theoretical knowledge of finance in the world is useless if you literally don't know how much money you have, where your money is being kept, or how to access it!

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                        • #27
                          Good points.

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                          • #28




                            Having remarried in the last year I worry about this as well.  It appears the posters on this thread can agree the other spouse is never going to read a book and they trust us to run things right now.  But what are people doing if that horrible thing does happen?  Detailed instructions of what to do with each account and each life insurance policy?  Find a trusted person yourself and direct them there? Try to find the best book to get them to read now?
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                            If you don't have a relationship with a trusted advisor (and maybe if you do), you should have a list of instructions for the survivor as a supplement to your Last Will and Testament. You should also keep an updated list of passwords to all accounts and online sites (unless you really do want to live forever on Facebook). For example, my business partner and I use the online password aggregator Dashlane and we each have the other's master password because our spouses are the same as most spouses we are talking about here.

                            If you'll go to our website, my partner has put together a Financial Emergency Kit that you can download and complete online. It is a really neat little guide, if I do say so myself. Yes, you'll have to sign up for our newsletter, but you can just as easily opt out.
                            Our passion is protecting clients and others from predatory advisors. Fox & Co CPAs, Fox & Co Wealth Mgmt. 270-247-6087

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                            • #29
                              Letter of instructions after death
                              Our passion is protecting clients and others from predatory advisors. Fox & Co CPAs, Fox & Co Wealth Mgmt. 270-247-6087

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                              • #30
                                I have given up on my wife reading a finance book ever, but you might try The Index Card

                                https://www.amazon.com/Index-Card-Personal-Finance-Complicated/dp/0143130528/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1489020816&sr=8-1&keywords=Index+card+book

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