Family Meeting

Back when we had our awful spending month in January, I mentioned that Poopsie and I would need to sit down and talk about our life plans, our goals and our FIRE plans.

Poopsie and I were chatting about something the other day and I mentioned we’d need to add it to our list of things to talk about more in depth. He suggested we have a Family Meeting on the weekend. I joked that we’d need an agenda, and hilariously, he typed one up and sent it to me.

On Saturday afternoon, Poopsie made us each a cup of coffee and we sat down to go through our Family Meeting agenda.

The Meeting Itself

Family Meeting’s are a great idea, especially when you have something big planned like FIRE. While I haven’t read his book, I believe the Barefoot Investor advocates for couples to have a financial date, where they go out to dinner and discuss their finances in depth.

I wholeheartedly agree with this sentiment. While you certainly don’t need to go out, it is very important to have regular catch ups about all things financial. If we don’t set time aside to do this specifically, before we know it, life has gotten in the way and we never have these chats.

Even though personal finance is a hobby of mine, I still found that we were putting off conversations because we were seemingly too busy to have them. Make the time, have the discussions. It’s most definitely worth it!

Topics Discussed

If you were holding these meetings regularly, then perhaps you’d have a series of topics that you’d check off at each meeting. Our meeting was a first, however, and grappled with the issues we’d been contemplating for quite some time.

We discussed:

  • Life in general and our attitude towards various endeavours
  • Early retirement- why are we doing it? Are we still doing it?
  • If we are, should we set a new, more realistic date on it?
  • Setting spending priorities- budget vs. as little as possible, expensive things vs. not
  • Taking time off to travel- how?
  • Where do we want to live/retire? Should we have a two part plan for Canberra/Newcastle and timeframes?
  • House purchase (when and where)?
  • Me changing my career path- implications
  • Poopsie’s career intentions- implications
  • Minimalism

We discussed all of these things at our meeting, plus a few more. We came up with some solid answers for some, and some things to continue to ponder for others.

I plan to do some posts about some of the things we decided, particularly a BIG decision I have made and how that will impact our future early retirement plan. We are still on the path to early retirement, and we certainly intend to continue this blog. However, some of our goal posts may have changed, but we’re enthused and excited for that the future may hold!

Do you have regular financial meetings with your family? Have they been helpful? Share your experiences in the comments below!

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3 Responses to Family Meeting

  1. Jane says:

    Very good idea to have a family meeting! I’m curious about the last agenda item, as I consider myself an aspiring minimalist and get so inspired by hearing about other people’s experiences with it.

  2. Mrs. ETT says:

    I’m envious. I’ve broached the subject with Mr. ETT, but he’s against the structure. The closest we ever got was when I told him we were going to invest, and made him sit with me over a series of Saturdays to listen to a season of the Meaningful Money podcast.

    The best we might do is fall into a conversation, but they are rarely of the deep, philosophical “where is our life going and what do we want to do with it” type.

    I’ve done exercises about plans and goals and personal mission statements, but they don’t mean much when only half of a couple is involved. I’m glad you actually sat and did it. It sounds like this worked really well for you – you’ve found clarity for some topics, and you’ve opened the way to continue working on others.

  3. Miss Balance says:

    Oooh can’t wait to hear the exciting news
    I agree with you that discussing these things regularly and making the time to ponder the options and make an agreement together is so important.
    Having an agenda definitely appeals to me as well hahha.

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