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Money and Relationships | Part 2 | EP 301




Jillian Johnsrud

What You’ll Get Out Of Today’s Show

  • What are you getting hung up on with relationships and money? We continue the conversation in Part 2 of the Relationships and Money series with Jillian Johnsrud.
  • Although March is finally here and the sunshine is motivating Jonathan to push away the processed carbs in favor of broccoli and hummus, Richmond’s recent ice storms had Brad using his stash of travel rewards for the first time in over a year.
  • Travel rewards come in handy at home too. After losing power from the storm, Brad called up a local Hyatt to see if they had power and was able to use 5,000 with Hyatt to book a room, and quickly move his family out of a cold home for the night.
  • Even if you aren’t ready to travel now, plan ahead and start stockpiling travel rewards points now so you have them once you do want to travel again. Take the travel course at to learn how.
  • The next roundup episodes will feature Alan Donegan and focus on building a business in 2021. Submit a voicemail with the questions and concerns you would like to have addressed at
  • Have a question on a different topic? Submit your voicemail and join the live radio shows held on Stereo, Tuesdays at 7:30 pm Eastern.
  • In Episode 300 with Jillian, she discussed how your past money story motivates you and creates fear as it pertains to money and relationships. Part 2 of the series examines being financially independent while still dependent.
  • Listener Asia is engaged and works full-time while her partner is still going to school and works part-time. They each have vastly different money stories and have started combining finances. Her partner is still receiving some financial support from her parents. While her partner wants to begin become more independent, Asia wonders if it would be smarter to continue as things are.
  • Jonathan sees three issues with Asia and her partner’s situation: attachment, boundaries, and economics. For Jillian, one of the elements was what habits and practices Asia’s fiance can take to feel like a financial grown-up and equal partner in the relationship. She also considered what it might mean for the fiance to receive from her parents, as well as what it might mean to the fiance’s parent to give.
  • Jonathan sees nothing wrong with accepting help so long as there are no boundary or communication issues or strings attached. Brad thinks it sounds like a positive situation but is also concerned about ulterior motives.
  • After graduating college, Brad lived at home with his parents while saving 90% of his income which gave him a huge jumpstart on his path to FI.
  • Jonathan noted that there could potentially be some tax-filing issues that could be related to the child tax credit and paying for dependent healthcare that could be important to figure out.
  • Jillian says society’s rules don’t matter, you can write your own rules of what it means to be a financial grown-up without there being a contradiction. Help can be a sweet thing family can do, but even she had issues with family members trying to control her with financial assistance while she went to school.
  • There are other things you can do to feel like a financial grown-up, like tracking expenses or coming up with a debt repayment plan. You can be a financial grown-up, take advantage of opportunities without taking advantage of relatives as long as your goals are aligned and they want to see you succeed.
  • Brad wants to be able to help his kids out when they are older. He respects parents who charge their children rent and teach them to be financially responsible, but he hopes to instill those lessons throughout childhood.
  • Listener Precious will be getting married soon. So far they have been sending money back and forth to each other, but she wants to be more efficient and is wondering what the best way to begin combining finances is.
  • While Jillian wants to believe all love will last forever, she advises against opening up a credit card together in the first few years of marriage due to the bills being divided up in a painful divorce process. However, opening up a joint checking account is a good baby step since at worst only the money in the account can be spent without going into debt. How much each person contributes and what bills get paid from it opens up the lines of communication.
  • When you are young and your finances are simple, combining all of your finances makes a lot of sense. In contrast, Jillian’s financial life is much more complicated and if she had to remarry, she isn’t sure she would combine her finances with anyone else.
  • Credit card and car debt can be kept separate, but it’s usually better to have both names on a home loan since real estate is an asset being grown together. But also so that it doesn’t become a painful process to untether if necessary in the future.
  • In a new marriage, Jonathan says he wouldn’t feel comfortable being a co-signer on a credit card since he would be legally responsible but have no insight into what was going on until it crashes into a wall. On the other hand, adding an authorized user gives you more control and insight into how the card is being used and it can be revoked.
  • Brad and Jonathan have their own bobblehead figure! It was given to them by All-Star Money for being creators of content who inspire readers to improve their financial situations and helped develop an engaged personal finance community.

Resources Mentioned In Today’s Conversation

Choose FI has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Choose FI and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities. American Express is a ChooseFI advertiser. Disclosures.
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