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DPs parents versus your parents attitude to money and how has it affected you both?

(10 Posts)
foxdongle Sun 22-Jun-14 09:27:18

my parents attitude-
live mainly for the moment,
save a bit for a rainy day/retirement,
spend money on your dcs when they are young and need it, if it means missing out yourself,
help dcs out when older if they have a problem,
never have debt other than a mortgage,
shop locally to support local business,
treats for the grandchildren
make your own things if your a bit skint
use your money to do what you've always dreamed of.

dps parents-
save for the future,
children don't need xyz to be happy (think latest gadget or gizmo)
help your dcs out when they have grown up, (even if they don't need you to) and you have plenty to dish out,
go where the bargains are,
treats for the grandchildren,
no debt except mortgage and pay it before any other bill,
make do and mend if you have to
use your money to do nice things, but not fulfil your dreams, even though you could afford to.

both Dfs received inheritance, both Dms didn't.

DH always wants our dcs to have the latest gadget for xmas/birthday, as he felt he missed out a bit.
Neither of us have ever been in any debt other than mortgages. we do a mixture of supporting local and getting the best deal.
we save loads for the future and dcs do, but splash out on dream holidays and going out as a family.

DazzleBall Sun 22-Jun-14 23:59:36

My parents have always been savers and held back from getting gadgets, great at bargain hunting and would rather do a bit extra themselves than pay for convenience. No debt and only ever had very small mortgage which was paid off quickly. Not great at giving treats but always generous with time. Low income, no expectations of inheritance.

DH's parents are from a country with little state support for retirement/higher education, so they've had to spend a lot on savings for that. Have a very modest home despite being able to afford much more. Are generous with treats and time, and spend a lot on the leisure activities that matter to them but don't care about keeping up appearances.

In many ways they're actually quite similar, but the significant difference is that DH's parents came from an educated, professional background and my folks aren't degree educated and have low-paid jobs. I've learned to be frugal through my parents, but DH is well qualified and has a high income but saves most of it as he just doesn't have any interest in buying stuff, although he'll spend a lot on dining/going out. It works well for us, I'm very good at saving the pennies even though we are very comfortably off. We only have one dc so can afford to be a bit generous and frivolous every now and then, but it's generally for experiences that we'll remember as a family.

My parents, separate finances, both always worked
Mother very selfish, big spender and was always in debt whereby father had to bail her out even after they separated
Father, tight as a camels butt in a sandstorm. Good saver, buys cheaply, and has a load stashed for retirement. Me, a little between the too, shop when unhappy or bored but not in debt, anxious if I don't have savings and am saving for the DC to get them started in life.

PIL
MIL quit work on marriage, likes to spend but not in debt. FIL retired too soon. If he ever did OT instead of saving it up, he'd treat the family to dinner or a day out. Hence having a poorish retirement. DH is a don't worry about tomorrow kind of guy. If we're not sticking to budget. I'll just work overtime he says, no thought for the future and retirement. He says we won't end up poor but has no plan of how to avoid that!

Oh yes and while my DP were seemingly more comfortable than pIL I don't remember having many toys at all, nothing really fancy in terms of appliances. Mother would though buy expensive clothes for us and herself and redo orate or buy new furniture when she fancied. DF also of opinion don't borrow to buy apart from house, and that should be paid off as quickly as possible.

1944girl Mon 23-Jun-14 00:44:45

Both sets of parents now dead.

My mother controlled the family finances as my father was a heavy drinker.She could account for every penny she spent.There were five of us children so money was tight but we never went without essentials.She did not believe in debt of any kind, what she could not afford had to wait until she could afford it.Would buy second hand if it was in good condition. She only thing she did not skimp on was food, and I have inherited this from her.I believe in buying good cuts of meat etc as cheaper ones do not get eaten and are therefore a waste.

PILs.
I never knew my FIL as he had died before I met DH.MIL was mean to the point of stinginess.To be fair she had grown up in very poor conditions and she spent all her life worrying about money.No debt what so ever, and a constant fear of bills.Electric and gas was on the meter and she would even turn off the electricity at night in case someone would want to read in bed.There was a stret lamp outside her house and when it grew dark she would keep her living room curtains open to use the light from that.She would only buy the cheapest of foods and would sometimes re use tea bags.Nearly all her clothing came from jumble sales she was an expert on the best ones.She would re sell them in second hand shops.DH inherited some of these traitsbecause this was the way he was brought up.Later on he would become less so but he still has a fear of debt, even more now that we are both retired.

I admit to have been a bit extravagant when I was working but not now.We put money aside for the grandchildren and have always helped the children.We both have private works pensions but are very careful.Niether of us had childhoods that were priviledged in the money sense and it has stayed with us.

redskyatnight Mon 23-Jun-14 12:00:46

My parents are savers and bedgrudge spending money. The value of everything was costed and examined. However they were happy to spend money on things they saw as important e.g. private education.

DH's parents think that money is for enjoyment and spend it when they can. Also very generous (would give you their last fiver if they thought you needed it more).

So basically polar opposites! I think DH and I have found a happy medium - he sees the value of saving and not spending if you don't have they money. I see that it is ok to buy something occasionally just because you want it!

mandy214 Tue 24-Jun-14 10:30:49

Polar opposites too. My parents - working class roots. Saved for everything. Never had any debt. Spent on things that were important to them (pensions / holidays / children) but were never frivolous / extravagant. Never had the latest gadget / best clothes but never felt I went without. Unbelievably generous. No expectation of inheritance. Quite comfortably off now. I would LOVE to follow in their footsteps and think its been a great example.

PIL - lived for the moment. Own business. Spent as they earned. Didn't save a penny. Luxury lifestyle until it all went pear shaped. Divorced. Both (separately) stony broke. MIL inherited from her parents (which she fully believed was her entitlement and expected). Generous with children but no idea of money / cost of family life.

Causes friction between us because H has absolutely no idea about finances or money. I manage everything. I started pension as soon as I got a job, he didn't have one until I made him smile at 35. He has gone for years for example paying for something he didn't need by direct debit, because he never checked his statement. I think its one of the most important lessons you can teach your children, to be independent and responsible with money.

Ragwort Tue 24-Jun-14 10:42:35

Fairly similar attitudes (save sensibly but enjoy the odd treat) but with one big exception in that DH's father died young and had made no insurance provision so everything was a real struggle for MIL for many years. DH is now meticulous about having generous life insurance etc for both of us should the worse happen.

I think similar attitudes towards financial matters are so important - DH and I have been married over 25 years and have never disagreed on money matters (plenty of other disagreements though grin) - we are both 'careful' with money to the extent that we paid off our mortgage in our early 40s and have built up savings. I feel sad when I read about the financial disputes some couples get into on Mumsnet. I would find it incredibly hard to find any respect and love for a partner that routinely spent £££££££s on 'stuff' if the family was struggling or the other partner not allowed treats of their own. I don't believe in each of you having exactly the same amount, ie: my DH has a hobby which is quite expensive; I don't feel I have to 'match spend' that amount but I know that within reason, I can spend what I want (which isn't actually much grin).

Tallandgracefulmum Sat 28-Jun-14 02:35:14

My father family had no money but loved the finer things in life. How, well default on the electricity bill, but have money to spend down the pub. Till he met my mother who was poor but had ambition, worked mainly 3 jobs but at one point for a few years had a 4th. Mum would save every extra penny after bills and spent the money on education for us and buying a house. I spent like crazy when first started work, as bought what I felt I missed out on as a kid, became super stylish after always being in rags as a kid. Spending and never saving. Met my DH and then things changed, we lived like students and saved saved saved, so we can now enjoy enjoy enjoy.

As soon as we get paid, we pay our selves first so we are not working for nothing. The the rest is for out goings and household expenses. You don't have to be disciplined, just set aside an amount you can do without and have a SO on pay day, to a notice account. You do with out. If you baldy need cash, you sell an item or raise the funds. I teach my children the value of money. My kids 3 under 6 all know I go to work for money and work for daily bread. They know if I give them £2.00 they can spend £1.00 and save a £1.00, my 3 year old sometimes goes to the shop with me and likes at items then says in a cute voice "mummy that is soooo expensive it is £0.59p" which always amuses me. My eldest wants to by a style queen toy which is £40 so is saving her money and keeps counting the coins regularly to see how close she is. These are valuable lessons we can teach our kids.

foxdongle Sat 28-Jun-14 13:43:57

These replies are fascinating - makes me wonder what our dcs will take or discard from us re money advice.

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