Cents and Sensibility is a combination of psychology, economics, counseling, and even autobiography. Family management advisors Scott and Bethany Palmer begin by confessing to their own great failings as money managers early in their marriage and how this led to a serious division in their relationship. By going on a drastic budget, learning how to reduce debt, curbing all spending, and setting long range goals, they were finally able to become debt free and save their marriage. Since then, they have been working to help other couples do likewise, and their book is filled with anecdotes, confessions, and examples drawn from many of the people who have come to them for help.
From a strictly pragmatic analysis, this book does, indeed, have chapters that teach factors found in most other financial management books, i.e., lessons on how to buy insurance, invest in property or stocks and bonds, set up a budget, reduce debt, tithe your income, prepare for financial setbacks such as job loss, and plan for large purchases such as a car or home. Additionally, however, are blunt discussions about communicating as a couple about money, discovering your "history" of money management (conservative or carefree), setting mutually agreeable goals for saving and investing and spending, and growing close to God by honoring Him in your decisions related to tithing, sharing, and giving.
The book contains quizzes that the Palmers suggest should be taken separately by spouses or fiancées and then used for later comparison and discussion. It also has a detailed footnote section that can be used to discover other reference books that discuss everything from property management to seeking employment.
Because the examples in the book are drawn from contemporary 21st century people struggling with money challenges, the book will resonate with folks of all ages. Engaged couples should discuss in advance of their marriage the fundamentals found here about earning and spending. Couples considering divorce should first read here about how money often causes problems that genuine love, talking, and working together can overcome.
The book is written in a conversation style, with no complicated financial lingo. It's direct and honest, but uplifting and extremely helpful. It would be a great gift for newlyweds or for couples celebrating a wedding anniversary of any year.--Dr. Dennis E. Hensley, Christian Book Previews.com
Conflicts about money are often the key source of arguments between couples. That's because most of the time, spouses look at financial matters very differently. One might be a "saver" while the other is a "spender." But neither type is necessarily "right" in the way they choose to handle family funds.
This is a guidebook to help married and engaged couples build (or rebuild) their relationship by working together on financial issues. With God's principles at work, there is hope for arriving at financial balance! Couples learn to understand and respect each other, and by communicating more effectively, can begin the journey to financial harmony—and joy!