Behind-The-Back Spending

Jennifer recently discovered her husband has $30,000 in credit card debt. The interest rates are high, so how do they go about reducing the interest rates to pay this debt off?

QUESTION: Jennifer in Washington, D.C., recently discovered her husband has $30,000 in credit card debt. He asked for assistance in coming up with a payment schedule. The interest rates are high, so how do they go about reducing the interest rates to pay this debt off? Dave suggests to Jennifer that they have some marriage issues to work on before the debt.

ANSWER: My recommendation of how to handle money is considerably different than what you all have been doing. I look at the whole picture, and here is what I see. Couples that are married should be handling all of their finances together. It’s all “we.” We have a house, we have an income, we have debt. With your income, you can clean this debt up in a year.

I don’t disagree with you that your relationship is screwed up. I think it is, and I think he hasn’t been playing right. If you could do it together and you have a vote and you both do things that are more toward your side of the spectrum of how to handle it, then you can clean this mess up. If he’s unwilling to do that, we’ve got a lot more issues than $30,000 in debt. You’ve got a marriage problem.

You need to work on that. I want to see the two of you come together and him be worthy of trust, be open and transparent, and the two of you working together on “our” financial situation. The only way to do that is if he stops screwing around, lying, hiding, and hoarding stuff.