Newspaper article The Canadian Press

'Money Moron' Host Gail Vaz-Oxlade Offers Tips on How to Avoid Financial Spats

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

'Money Moron' Host Gail Vaz-Oxlade Offers Tips on How to Avoid Financial Spats

Article excerpt

Gail Vaz-Oxlade on how to avoid money fights

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TORONTO - Celebrity money expert Gail Vaz-Oxlade has helped many budget-challenged Canadians put their bank accounts back in order on national television.

Now, with her new series "Money Moron" (premiering Friday on Slice), the frank-talking financial guru comes to the aid of those who feel they are victims of such over-spenders -- from spouses and friends, to parents and their children.

In each episode, Vaz-Oxlade helps a "tattler" confront a "money moron" in hopes of saving their ailing relationship. If they follow through on the tasks she assigns, which include a spending journal and a cash-flow budget, she gives them up to $10,000.

"People at home will watch this and all to learn how to tell the truth, how to lovingly tell the person that they're genuinely interested in helping, 'This is not working, we have to do something,'" says Vaz-Oxlade, who previously hosted the series "Til Debt Do Us Part" and "Princess."

Telling the truth is also the key to avoid fighting with a spouse about money, says Vaz-Oxlade, who recently spoke with The Canadian Press about that very topic.

Here are Vaz-Oxlade's five tips for preventing money meltdowns in relationships:

1. Simply fess up about your financial issues, whether they concern your own money or your partner's.

"The majority of people fight about money because they're not honest, so rule No. 1 for not fighting about money is to be honest with each other," says the author of over a dozen books, the latest of which is "Money Rules."

"Tell each other what you're thinking. Don't expect the other person to know what you're thinking. Please, we don't read minds, OK?"

2. Don't deceive each other in money matters.

"Don't do things like bring home stuff and take the tags off or stuff in bags and bring it into the house and hide it in the laundry hamper," says Vaz-Oxlade, who also has a weekly radio show on Toronto's Newstalk 1010.

"That kind of deception, you may think it's not a big deal but it is fundamentally saying you don't trust your partner and you're telling your partner not to trust you."

There is one exception to the rule: If you're married to a money moron, you may have to keep financial information from your partner, she notes.

3. Have constructive -- not confrontational -- cash chats. And communicate your longer-term financial goals to find a common ground.

"Talking about the money outside of just, 'The bills need to be paid,'" says the straight-talking Jamaican native. …

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