Family Happiness or Financial Security ~ Which Would You Choose?


Well after 7 years of trying Mrs.B has finally got her way and dragged the kids and I over to the other side of the UK so that she can be closer to her family. Whilst I wouldn’t say that we’ve been dragged kicking and screaming (Well not the kids anyway) it certainly has been a tough decision and it’s one that has been hanging over our heads for a long time. Why was it so tough? What makes every decision so tough? Money!!

Those of you who read Money Bulldog regularly will know that I’ve spent the last 10 years of my life running my own business, a business that has allowed us to maintain a relatively good standard of living. When you’ve spent such a long time establishing a business and building up a very loyal customer base it can be tough to leave all that behind and start over.

The other financial roadblock we faced was what on earth to do with our house. Mrs.B and I have been married for over 6 years now and a good chunk of that time was spent renovating a house we bought just after we got married. When we bought our house the housing market was booming and not many people would have envisaged the financial crisis that, unfortunately for us, was just around the corner. As has been the case for many people who own their own home the ongoing housing market downturn presented us with some tough decisions to make, of which the main one was this. Do we stay in a house that we love and have put our heart and soul into renovating just because we might not see a great financial return considering the money we’d spent and the work that we’d put into the house, or, do we sell the house for less than we would ideally like to just to make the move across the country possible?

Economies may stall, Life doesn’t     

As much as we’d all love to be able to hold off making major decisions forever, unfortunately life doesn’t always give you that option. My wife and I are the proud parents to two beautiful boys, I know it’s a little self praising to say that but what parent isn’t immensely proud of their kids? They’re all beautiful in our eyes aren’t they? Anyway our eldest is due to start school in just a few months. Now I understand that some people would have no problem with moving a child to another school halfway through their time there and I’m not at all saying that this is a bad thing to do. For me though, I really didn’t want to uproot my kids and start shipping them off from school to school. During my youth I attended 7 different schools and I’ve lived in roughly 27 different houses throughout my life, ridiculous I know and I don’t want that for my kids.

So basically if I was ever going to achieve my life goal of sending my kids to just 1 school (2 including high school) and also make my wife happy by moving the family back to her hometown where she has a tight knit family network then a decision was going to have to be made, so we made it. 6 months ago we sold our house and moved into a temporary rental property until I sorted out the sale of my business. Finally, at long last, my wife is back with her family.

Love or Money ~ Which would you choose?

I know that’s kind of a leading question because ideally we’d all like to think that we’d choose the happiness of our loved ones over financial security any day of the week, but life isn’t always that simple. Most of the time, we get caught up in a merry go round of thought, frantically trying to balance the ever pressing need for financial security with the emotional needs of our family.  Some make brave decisions like swapping employment for self-employment, some go the other way and return to employment because they find that their business is taking over their home life, others emigrate to the ends of the earth just so that they can spend the rest of their lives with the person they love.

Then there are people like myself who sell our houses, sell our businesses and move across the country just to make our loved ones happy. There’s an old saying that many people have been mentioning to me over the past few months which simply says ‘If you have a happy wife, you’ll have a happy home’, they’d better be right about that!

I’ve mentioned a couple of posts from some great bloggers in this article, here are a few other posts you might like from around the web this week.

Reach Financial Independence ~ The cost of living in Guatemala

Edward Antrobus ~ Talks about paid search rewards programs

Femme Frugality ~ Asks which Disney World Tickets are the best buy?

The Frugal Farmer ~ Gee, Can I Please Walk Over a Bed of Hot Burning Coals?

Make Money Your Way ~ Learn how to start investing

12 Responses to Family Happiness or Financial Security ~ Which Would You Choose?

  1. Pauline says:

    I would take happiness, if you are able to succeed somewhere you can do it somewhere else. I hope you enjoy the new location, it is nice of you not to want to move your kids around too much. I hated changing schools as well, having make new friends was harder later on.

    • Thanks Pauline. It shouldn’t be too difficult to rebuild things here, it’s just always a risk leaving a loyal customer base behind. Changing schools all the time was a nightmare, I still made good friends but it wasn’t the same. Have a great weekend.

  2. Thanks for linking to my article, I really appreciate it Adam. As you know, I chose Happiness and it is working out for me. I use the old saying “Happy wife, Happy Life” and it seems to work out best for me.

  3. Thanks so much for linking to my article Adam, I really appreciate it. That is always a tough call to make, but hands down I would take happiness. You can almost always earn more money somehow. Life though is too short and happiness makes it sweeter.

    • It was a tough call John but fortunately the money from the sale of the business should make the transition much easier. I think I was ready for a new challenge anyway so we’ll see what life has in store. Have a good weekend mate.

  4. That’s a tough decision mate, I know I had to make a similar one. When we got married one of us had to decide to pick up, leave our life and move across the country. We both had good jobs and we both owned a home but who was going to do it. In then end I gave everything up I worked so hard for in the UK to be with my wife in Canada. I had to go back to school again to get a Canadian education and now I’m in a happy place with a great wife, a great house and a career I love. Sometimes money isn’t everything mate and if it means starting over then find a way. I had to , it was rough going, but I did it. Keep the faith mate. Have a great weekend. Mr.CBB

    • I can already tell the decision is the right one mate, my wife and kids are loving it here. I just need to work out what direction I want to head in with work in the future now, fortunately I’m in no rush to figure that one out. Have a great weekend Mr.CBB!

  5. Susan Wilson says:

    Great thoughts on the subject, Adam. I hear that parents are more concerned with changing the kids’ schools than they are, though yours are young right now. Five years from now you’ll look back and KNOW you made the right decision. I made a similar choice in 2009 and our family is definitely happier. I wouldn’t change my decision if I could – we have a much richer life now.

    • Thanks Susan, I’m sure you’re right. I think my case with schooling was extreme but it did make me aware of how important stability is for a child. I’m really happy things worked out for you and your move.

  6. MB, thanks for the mention – I appreciate it! Personally, it sounds to me like you did the right thing. It’s so awesome to be near a close-knit family when you have kids. The kids will learn about the importance of extended family relationships, and you guys will have extra support to help with raising the kids, etc. You guys are responsible with your cash, so the money thing will work itself out. 🙂

  7. I would like to think I would move and make my wife happy, but I guess you can’t really tell unless you are put in the situation.

    Thanks for the include 🙂

    • No problem Glen. Well I’ve done it now but it was a tough decision. I thought that given enough time she’d stop missing home, but that never happened, She’s happy now though so it’s all good.

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