Difficult financial decisions

Oct 18, 2023 | Insights

Three types of money maturity will help you with difficult financial decisions around property after your kids leave home.
Money is central to the downsize/rent/buy dilemma for empty nest parents I addressed last week.

Money makes the world go round. Money might even be the prime motivation for selling the house where you raised your family, so your relationship with money will influence your property decision.

The more mature your attitude to your financial affairs, the better your decision will be. Many practical and emotional elements make up your financial maturity, and you can assess your money maturity with this quick and free scorecard.

Three elements of financial maturity are particularly influential.

Childhood beliefs around money.

Dealing with innocence and pain are the first steps in achieving a financially mature approach to your decisions around property. I remember being sceptical about the influence of childhood hopes and fears on my adult financial behaviour. Still, as I dug deeper and experienced the effects of childhood beliefs around money, I grew more understanding of their role.

It is worth exploring with a friend some of the painful experiences around money that happened to you all those years ago. What was your reaction to the wealth and income of others? What was their response to your approach to money? Did you experience pain or envy? Do those feelings still influence your financial decisions?

Don’t be fooled into thinking it happened so long ago that childhood financial pain and shame no longer matter.

Used asset or investment asset?

A hundred years ago, house prices rarely moved. That has now changed, of course, and a house is seen as a financial asset more than a used asset.

It is certainly possible to make money out of property. Like friends of mine, you buy a wreck, live in it whilst putting it to rights, then sell, hopefully at a profit.

The question, though, is, what is enough for you, and do you have enough? The answers to these questions are central to your decision about your house, and financial maturity involves identifying your financial goals, assessing your financial resources and planning your finances.

House or home?

This is the emotional side of the second question, summed up in the words of Ralph Waldo Emerson: “A house is built of bricks and beams; a home is made of hopes and dreams.” You have probably addressed the question in your dreams when you think about the place you want to live in.

Your approach to your family and friends will probably influence your choice. In money maturity terms, it is about having a clear vision centred not on yourself but on your more expansive community.

The journey to financial maturity

Financial maturity is a valuable skill that will help you with those difficult decisions around your way of life because nearly everything involves money. However, the real benefit of the journey to financial maturity is to set you thinking about your relationship with money and the broader aspects of money that you may only sometimes be aware of.

I'm Jeremy Deedes. I coach experienced independent consultants who are overwhelmed by the demands of life and work. Through my unique FUTURE program, clients become financially mature and organised and create a plan to achieve their personal, professional, and financial goals confidently and clearly.

Discover your money maturity score by taking the Money Maturity Quiz at https://shrtm.nu/n2D. It’s free, takes only a few minutes, and you will get your score and recommendations by email immediately.

Then, use the link below to schedule a free 20-minute call with me so we can start you on the path to understanding your money and creating a new story to tell your family and friends.

Photo attribution

Photo by Arno Smit on Unsplash

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