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Money talks, love listens
Feb 22, 2024
Season 9

Money talks, love listens

They say opposites attract, but what happens when you add money to the mix?

This week, Reema Khrais chats money and (mis)communication with a couple we talked to during our very first season. Mandy Koohi and Zach Aman first wrote to us in 2019 with a story about gift giving gone wrong. 

Mandy and Zach love each other, but their personalities and approaches to spending couldn’t be more different. Zach is a quiet, no-nonsense kind of guy. He’s strict with his spending. Mandy is just the opposite — chatty and full of energy. If something brings her joy, she’s willing to pay for it. 

Nearly four years later, Mandy and Zach’s relationship has carried them through new milestones, and they’re still learning to become more fluent in how the other talks about finances.

A bride in a white wedding gown holds hands with a groom in a black tuxedo, as they walk down a path together in a garden.
Mandy and Zach at their wedding (photo courtesy of Zach Aman)

“I know that Zach’s brain works differently than mine,” Mandy explained. “[He’s] like, very analytic.” So she tailors her approach to suit his perspective, even if it doesn’t come naturally to her. “Let me pull out some spreadsheets, too, because I also have Excel on my computer. OK? I also own a calculator!” Meanwhile, Zach has figured out that Mandy is more values-based when it comes to big money decisions. 

Of course, these outlooks on money are about more than dollars and cents. While Zach and Mandy make room for each other’s dreams (and spreadsheets), they’re also learning to trust each other’s opinions about what matters most in life. 

Money, like so much else in relationships, boils down to communication. And for this couple, it’s always best to tell it like it is: “The way to make it less uncomfortable is to talk about it,” Zach said. “At least you have somebody to be uncomfortable together with.” 

If you liked this episode, share it with a friend. And to get even more Uncomfortable, subscribe to our newsletter. Each Friday you’ll get a note from Reema Khrais and some recs from the “This Is Uncomfortable” team. If you missed it, here’s the latest issue.

If you want to tell us what you thought about the episode or anything else, email us at uncomfortable@marketplace.org or fill out the form below.

This is Uncomfortable February 22, 2024 Transcript

Note: Marketplace podcasts are meant to be heard, with emphasis, tone and audio elements a transcript can’t capture. Transcripts are generated using a combination of automated software and human transcribers, and may contain errors. Please check the corresponding audio before quoting it.

Reema Khrais: Hey everyone, it’s Reema … so one of my favorite things to do on this show is to bring on couples to talk openly about their financial lives, you know, how they’ve had to work through uncomfortable conversations and issues and what they learned from them. 

In our very first season, back in 2019, this one couple – Mandy and Zach – they wrote in with a cute story about gift-giving…and the things they were discovering about each other.


And so for this week’s episode, I wanted to share that story again and also check back in with them to see how they’re doing today, more than four years later. 


So first you’ll hear the original story that aired back in 2019 and then in the second half of the show, after the break, you’ll hear the update. Alright I hope you enjoy it.  


When Mandy Koohi and Zach Aman first started dating, it was a long-distance relationship. 


Mandy was in Dallas and Zach lived a couple hours away in Oklahoma… and because both of them had such busy schedules…they had to get creative. 


Mandy: I remember being in the airport, and I would put the phone up, like in front of me at like a cheesecake factory in a Chicago airport. And then Zach would be eating his dinner. And it was a date. But we were literally thousands of miles apart.


Zach: The Dave Chappelle modern problems require modern solutions? 


Mandy: Yeah, literally like Zach would be like sitting in a, like in a sugar holder at a restaurant and the waiter would come by, and he’d be like, “Can I get you guys anything?” And I was like, you don’t have to pretend like there’s another person at the table, sir. It’s literally just me.


Reema: If Mandy and Zach were tv characters, they’d probably be Luke and Lorlei from Gilmore GIrls – they even dressed up as them one year for Halloween. Zack, like Luke, is kind of a no-nonsense guy


Zach: I am a man of few words. And it’s like I, I say just enough to like, get the point across and there’s no need for any of the extra.


Reema: And Mandy is definitely a little extra. She’s got strong Lorelai vibes…super chatty and confident. 


Anyway, about three months into their relationship, Valentine’s Day rolled around – their first one – and Zach really wanted to impress her….


Mandy: The year is 2016. I roll up to Zach’s place, I’m wearing black leggings and a T shirt. And I walk in. And we’re like Happy Valentine’s Day weekend. We haven’t seen each other in like five days. You know, we’re young and in love, and it’s so beautiful. And so he’s like, hey, come sit down. I bought you like a Valentine’s Day present. I’d like to give it to you like before we start our weekend.


Reema: So, she sat down on the couch and Zach handed her a gift. 


Mandy: So I really love elephants. And he had bought me this really cute elephant necklace and I was like, Oh my gosh, thank you so much. I was so stoked. I was like, he put some thought into this. This is so sweet. I’m so excited to wear this, can’t wait. I was like, thank you, start to get up to like, give him a hug and he said no wait, I have more. And I was like, okay…


Mandy: So then he brings this like package and I unwrap it and it’s these like, six glass roses, which was truly beautiful. But I was like, this is like a lot, like what’s happening? So I was like, oh my god, this is really beautiful, thank you so much. 


Reema: She got ready to get up, and Zach was like wait, there’s more.. open this one… 


Mandy: And it’s this like, really cute Michael Kors jacket and I loved Michael Kors. I was like 22. And like, I was like obsessed with Michael. It was like really endearing. But like simultaneously mad uncomfortable. But I can’t tell him.


Reema: Especially cause in Zach’s mind he was like…yep, nailed it. 


Zach: It was like that, haha. Alright. 


Mandy: I just didn’t think it was necessary. It just felt like too much.


Reema: But she didn’t say anything…It’s too early in their relationship for that. So, she just smiled, hugged him and they went on with the rest of their night.  


Then, a few months later, it was Zach’s 25th birthday, and so Mandy came up with a plan. 


Mandy: because like he had done that he kind of, to me, set precedent of this is how I show that I care about you. So I am like, okay, maybe his thing is multiple gifts. So I’m like, Okay, I’m going to also buy him multiple gifts. So it was his 25th birthday, so I’m not joking, I bought 25 presents.


Reema: She got him a pair of Ray Bans, a superhero movie, a new tie for work, some socks. His favorite soda. A gift certificate to his favorite restaurant. Also, she hand-painted this bucket using the colors of his favorite sports team. 


Mandy: And then I put a little sign that said, “I like you almost as much as you like the Oklahoma City Thunder.” 


Reema: Cute. She wrapped up all the gifts, went over to his apartment while he was at work and laid them all out.


Mandy: And then he like comes in from work and he just is like, “Hi…?” and I’m like, “I bought you 25 presents because you bought me so many!” And literally he just stands there and he’s like what?


Zach: It was so uncomfortable. 


Mandy: He was super uncomfortable. I had no idea. So I was like, oh, maybe like …it wasn’t enough. Maybe I should’ve bought 100 presents


Reema: Here’s the thing, Zach actually doesn’t love gifts, but he didn’t tell Mandy that. He also just smiled and gave her a big hug. 


Reema: How much money do you think you spent?


Mandy: If I had to put money on it, I would probably say like $400. 


Zach: I think mine was close… it was probably three, 350 maybe.


Reema: Oh wow.


Reema: Without even realizing it, Mandy and Zach had created a gift-giving arms race in an attempt to express their love. 


After ten months of long-distance, Mandy and Zach took a huge step in their relationship – they moved to D.C. together. Mandy was starting grad school, and Zach took a job with an insurance company. 

And like a lot of couples who move in together, it was an adjustment. 


Zach: We had been, um, arguing a lot. 

Mandy: No, don’t make us sound like crazy. 

Zach: Well no we weren’t like–

Mandy: Well like a normal amount, but like a lot. 

Zach: No it wasn’t crazy. It was just–it was a lot because we were learning how to live with each other. 

Mandy: Yeah.


Reema: Then one day, Mandy was at the apartment, scrolling through Facebook…when she saw something that piqued her interest. It was a quiz…. to help “find your love language.” 


Mandy started taking the quiz, and then she texted Zach, telling him he should take it too so they can joke about it later. 


This quiz tells you which of the “five love languages” you prefer: words of affirmation, quality time, physical touch, gifts or acts of service. 


To give y’all a taste of what it’s like, in our interview, I pulled up the quiz and posed some of the questions to Mandy and Zach…


I like to sit close to friends and loved ones or I like when someone tells me they love and care about me.


Mandy: They love and care about me. 

Zach: I think sit close.


Reema: I like it when people compliment how I look. Or I like when people show genuine interest in what I say.


Mandy: Ooh, compliment what I look like, I’m here for that. 

Zach: Genuine interest.

Mandy: We are literally so different. It’s unreal.


Reema: Right so if it’s not already obvious, Mandy and Zach’s results did not match up. That night, after they took the quiz, they sat on the couch and compared notes. 


A lot of it was stuff they already knew, but then there was one result that was a surprise to both of them.


Zach: Oh, wait. Oh, you don’t like gifts? Okay, I don’t like gifts either.


Remma: Neither of them cared about gifts as a form of expressing or receiving love. Like it was the lowest ranked thing in their results…


Zach: The one that we thought was each other’s…

Mandy: Yeah.

Zach: … was low, low on both of our lists.

Mandy: So neither of us like gifts. But at the beginning, we were both trying to get each other gifts.

Reema: That’s so funny, so wait the last thing y’all cared was gifts…

Mandy: Literally. And like nobody liked getting the gifts. Nobody liked receiving the gifts. The gifts were just made everybody uncomfortable. But everybody was buying everybody presents.


Reema: It was a relief, but also confusing. 


When they thought about it, really, it was Zach who kicked off the whole gift-giving extravaganza. 


For Valentine’s Day, he was doing what he thought Mandy wanted. Zach grew up in a blue-collar household, and Mandy came up from an upper-class family that immigrated to the states from Iran. 


Zach: I knew that she was from a much better off family than I was. So I felt that that’s probably what she expected.


Mandy: When we moved here, my mom worked really hard to make sure we were well off // and that I never looked like an outsider in any capacity, like with my clothes and things like that.


Reema: Zach remembers being taken aback the first time he visited her family in Dallas. Their home was in this pristine neighborhood with long driveways and big backyards. Meanwhile, he’d spent a good chunk of his childhood living in a double-wide trailer in a very small town in Oklahoma. 


Reema: Was there a part of you, even if it was just like a small voice that was like, uhhh, like, what if she doesn’t like me? Like, you know, can I fit into this world? 

Zach: Oh yeah! I was already kind of self conscious about where I was from and how that reflected on me…um is like, Oh, he’s from this small, rural poor town. He’s probably poor too. And it’s like, nope, not really I mean kinda, but I still have money to like, do nice things. So you don’t have to worry about that.


Reema: So that’s why on Valentine’s Day, he went all out.


Reema: Was that stressful? 

Zach: Oh, very much so. Like I’m pretty sure I picked up and put down the Michael Kors jacket. At least four times. Cause i was like I know she’s really gonna like this, but I just can’t afford it. And then I would take another lap around the store. And then I would go back to the jacket and pick it up and then stand and look at it for like five minutes and then put it back down. “I can’t afford this.” 


Reema: Zach says with these gifts… he was hoping they’d convey this message to Mandy.


Zach: Hey, even though I don’t have a lot of money, I’m willing to spend it on you.


Reema: So, you felt like you were showing your affection through like buying things essentially? 


Zach: Right yeah…. And I don’t know, probably, unhealthy stereotypes just in, about dating in general, like the man should shower the woman in gifts to show his affection. 


Reema: To be fair, Zach wasn’t totally off the mark. Mandy did grow up in a family where giving thoughtful, and sometimes expensive, gifts was the norm. But she says she didn’t expect that from her partner.


Mandy: I felt really guilty that Zach had to work so hard to purchase these things for me. Like, I didn’t think that he needed to purchase all of these things to show me that he cared about me, and that he was looking forward to dating me. 


Reema: And on the flip side, even though Zach was convinced he needed to prove his love with an outrageous amount of gifts, he absolutely did not want to be on the receiving end from Mandy. 


Zach: Receiving a gift almost feels like a debt. And it’s like, oh, okay, well, now I owe you one. Anytime you’re given money, it’s expected to be repaid usually with interest. So it’s like, “Okay, what interest do I pay on this gift? Like, what gift can I give you that’s THIS gift…. plus interest?” I don’t, I don’t know.


Reema: So that silly little love languages quiz, it ended up leading to a major conversation between Zach and Mandy. About what gifts mean to them and why they’re so stressful. And so they came up with a plan…


Zach: So we’ve been like, okay, we’re going to get one gift or two gifts, and there’s a spending limit on how much you can spend per gift. 


Mandy: For example, it’s our it’s, I dunno, Christmas. So how much money do we want to spend on a gift, like $50? Or are we looking for the like 50 to $75 range? 


Zach: We take the anxiety out of that


Mandy: So then instead of just buying, you know, some socks or some earrings or whatever, like Zach bought us tickets to go to an NBA game. And we went and it was so much fun. And we spent time together, and it was pretty low key.


Reema: It’s more about the experiences they can have together, and less about using money and gifts to prove their love.


Mandy: I think our relationship with money has changed in that we’re both willing to compromise and just communicate about it.


Reema: Because before, when they weren’t communicating about it, they were just buying gifts to project versions of themselves they thought the other person wanted. 


But when you do that, when you try to emotionally or financially care for the people you love, without really understanding what they need, well, that can create a lot of headache. 


Or in Mandy and Zach’s case, a closet full of glass roses, superhero DVDs and a pricey Michael Kors Jacket. 


Coming up after the break, I check in with Zach and Mandy to see how they’re doing today, more than four years later. 


Reema: So, what have y’all been up to since we last talked? 

Zach: What haven’t we been up to?

Mandy: What year did we talk, I don’t even remember.

Reema: Oh my gosh I think it was 2019 so…before the pandemic.

Mandy: Oh my gosh I feel like a lot has happened.

Reema: Well what’s the highlight….

Mandy: We got married. 

Reema: yayyy Congrats!! 


Reema: They got married last fall after a surprise proposal.


It was an elaborate wedding with a champagne tower, traditional Middle-Eastern drums and a getaway car. The wedding was a great time, just not the planning part 


Mandy:  I mean, the entire wedding industry is absolutely ridiculous, right?


Reema: Wild.


Mandy: Like, everything costs so much money for things that absolutely do not need to cost that much. Like, why is it so expensive…


Reema: I know. It’s like, why are we spending like 5,000 on flowers


Mandy: Like, why? Yeah. 


Reema: Or maybe that’s even low. I don’t even remember. 


Mandy: Exactly. That’s actually very low, Reema, that was very cute of you. I loved that.


Reema: Luckily, they got huge help from Mandy’s mom.

But if you’ve ever planned a wedding, you know just how overwhelming it can be…how much negotiation it can take. Mandy says at times Zach would be like ehh do we need to have this thing at our wedding, is it necessary? 


Mandy: And I was like, Zach, like there is not one detail of this wedding, of any wedding that’s ever been thrown in the history of the world that is necessary, right? Like, Zach, we’re literally talking about dark green cocktail napkins for the wedding that are a bit more expensive than the white cocktail napkins. Are they necessary? Absolutely not. Do I want them?  100%. So the question of is it necessary to me was so goofy cuz I was like, not one thing is necessary.


Reema: Mandy says this is just part of her general philosophy with money: if something brings you joy, and you can afford it, while still being responsible, then go for it. 

Zach is much more strict with how he spends, but when it came to the engagement ring, he says he tried to be more flexible. 


Zach: You know, this, this purchase was one of the largest that I have made. Um, and before whenever I was looking by myself to try to get an idea of how much things cost, I had an idea of what I would be able to make work and what I would be able to spend. And then, whenever I took Mandy to go look at stuff, you know the stuff that she liked did not fit what I had had in mind. And you know, there were times I was like, I’m not sure that I’m gonna to be able to make this work, but then, you know, once I sat and thought about it and, and talked to the jeweler and tried to work out a deal and things like that, um, I realized, oh, there is a way to make this work. 


Mandy: Which, if you know Zach is very unlike Zach, cause Zach is very much so like, the budget for this activity, for example, is like a hundred dollars, or let’s plan ahead, let’s do this, but I think when it came to the engagement ring, he was very much, so tell me what you want, and I’m going to figure it out, which I really appreciated.

Reema: Mmhmm.

Mandy: Like I liked that Zach took care of it and then just put it in this beautiful box and then got down on one knee and then was like “will you marry me? Here’s the most wonderful thing that you could ever have.”

Reema:  Well, speaking of gifts, so the last time we talked, right, you two shared how you had trouble initially communicating how you like to give and receive affection.

Mandy: Yikes. 


Reema: Well, have things changed at all since we last talked? Or are you all both still kind of meh when it comes to gift giving? How are y’all feeling?


Zach:  I think the amount of gift giving that we have attempted to do has decreased just because we know that that’s not each other’s love language anymore. 


Mandy: Yeah.


Zach: Um, but then in the moments that we still do give gifts, we’re a lot more effective at doing it. It’s it’s like quality over quantity.


Mandy: I think for me now, that we’ve been together twice as long, it feels a lot easier to handle, and I think we kind of talk, “Hey, in terms of like gifts and how you want to be loved and celebrated this year, what do you prefer? Do you want something thoughtful-slash-sentimental, something practical, or something fun?” So I think the categories really help, too.


Reema: Now that y’all are married, do you think that you’re going to manage your finances differently?

Zach: Hmm. I think we’ll still have the conversations that we’ve had prior to being married. I think structurally, maybe it might be a little bit different. We may set up a joint checking that all our bills come out of cuz then we don’t have to worry about paying, you know, one of us takes care of this bill and one of us takes care of that bill or this, that and the other. Um, so maybe like structurally just the logistics of our finances might be a little different, but I don’t think the conversations will change much. What do you think?

Mandy: Yeah, I agree. Cuz we have a joint savings account now, um, and that’s where like all of the money from, like, the gifts we got from the engagement party, my bridal shower, the wedding, like all that stuff is in the joint savings account, and then we’ve put in a little bit each of us as well. So that’s where, um, our, the down payment for our house is going to come from. But I think there’s more big purchases kind of coming our way. Like, I think the house is a really big one, deciding like when to have a family, financing that is a big thing. Um, Zach is about to start getting his, you know, attorney salary, I um, just got kind of promoted at work, so we want to start thinking about what are our top priorities as a couple as we’re moving into kind of the next season, right? 

Reema: Lately, they’ve been seriously talking about buying a house and it’s brought to surface just how differently they approach big financial decisions.

Mandy: I would like, you know, more space in a kitchen, I want to be able to like, grow some herbs, I would love a little garden, I want a patio. I want to sit outside and feel the sun on my face, cause that brings me joy. Zach is like, I love this for you, but like, I love that you want to go with the flow, but like, What time does the flow start is literally Zach as a person, okay?

Reema: Yeah.

Mandy: So for me, buying a house is more than just, like, making it an asset, not having to pay rent like to me it’s more than that, but I know that Zach’s brain works differently than mine, right like very analytic.

Zach: The spreadsheets are coming out… formulas are being… 

Mandy: Yeah the spreadsheets. Oh my god, the spreadsheets came out, it was a Friday night, I was like, this is the worst thing of my entire life, I immediately, it’s an immediate no for me, to be very honest, it’s a Friday, the day of pre rest, okay, Zach, and, but I know that, but I know to telling Zach, “Zach, I feel like in a new chapter of my life, I want more space, I would like a place to be able to grow our family” to him and his brain–

Reema: So you’re focused on the values, yeah.

Mandy: Yeah, to him in his brain, he’s like, “I don’t understand what you’re saying. This makes no sense. You’re just saying fluffy words that mean nothing.” 

Zach: I’m like, okay, I get it, cool but like, how are we going to pay for it? 

Mandy: Exactly, so yeah, so when I was presenting the information to him as to like why I think we need to purchase a house, the financial aspect is also obviously important to me, right? I was like okay, I have my own reasons why I would like to do this in the next six months, but I want to talk about it from your perspective first, so let’s talk about the numbers. Let me pull out some spreadsheets, too, because I also have Excel on my computer. Okay, I also own a calculator, so let me put on my analytic hat, let’s talk about the money, let’s talk about the monthly payments, let’s talk about percentages and interest and savings and all these very boring, dry topics. Then once he’s on board, and he’s like, “okay, I hear you now, I’m following,” then I can sprinkle in the like, but I really just want a frickin patio. And I think I’ve learned that, right?

Reema: You like tailoring the conversation to how his brain works and tailoring the conversation to that and being patient with that…

Mandy: Yeah, exactly. Exactly.

Reema: … before springing all of your thoughts and feelings. I think part of it is also knowing their communication style and not expecting them to, like, react and respond in the ways that you would react and respond.

Zach: It’s what I was about to say. 

Mandy: So I think that’s been really helpful for us is, knowing how the other person receives love, receives affection, receives, you know, financial information is really helpful because you can tailor it and then you have a more productive conversation than just being like, “I want a frckin patio and a basil garden, why can’t you just accept me for who I am?” Because then he’s like, right, but how much is the basil garden gonna cost me per month, right?

Reema: Like, do we need that garden? No, it’s not necessary.

Mandy: Yeah. The answer is it’s not necessary, but it will bring us joy. 

Reema: Yeah. Since we last talked, have you all made any new observations about your relationship with money? Either as individuals or as a couple?

Zach: I’m not gonna say that one of us has completely changed their, their view of life. But a lot of the success that we have now is we built up that trust within each other, within the relationship to be able to come and have the conversations of saying like, you know, Mandy can say, “I know you don’t like spending money, however, we should look at doing this.” You know, before, whereas I might’ve been saying like, “Oh, We don’t need to do that.” Now it’s more of a “if we’re gonna do it, then here’s some of the things that we need to be focused on for the next, you know, three, four, six months until we get to that point.” It’s now, okay, let’s put our heads together, and it’s me and you versus solving this math problem. 

Reema: It is a math problem at the end of the day. 

Mandy: Yeah, I think, I think Zack is, is completely right we always kind of look at it as, okay this is the problem, how can the two of us figure out the best way to tackle it. 

Reema: Yeah as a team.

Mandy: Yeah in a way that we’re both comfortable with, in a timeline that works for both of us, I think it really helps to feel like okay we’re partners in this together. 

Reema: So I feel like I have to ask you all, what is one piece of financial advice, practical or emotional, that you all have learned together as a couple? That you’d like to share with people? 

Zach: Um, I think the, the advice that I would have is to communicate early and often. Uh, and that’s about anything, not necessarily finances, but since this is talking about money and how it makes us uncomfortable, the way to make it less uncomfortable is to, is to talk about it early whenever it might be a small issue, or, you know, at least you have somebody to be uncomfortable together with… 

Reema: Mm hmm. 

Mandy: That’s a good one!

Zach: …and, so, so it’s a deal of, hey, I’m not really sure how to tackle this problem, maybe your partner doesn’t know how to do it either, but the fact that there’s somebody that you trust and whose opinion you value enough to be their partner, if they’re also saying like, “yeah, that’s difficult,” that’s comforting in a way.

Reema: Right. 

Zach: And I think another important thing is to make sure that you time the conversation well because…

Mandy: That’s a really good one.

Zach: …it may be, you know, I have found that our conversations typically will revolve around the end of the month because that’s whenever bills are about to be due. And so that’s when we’re already looking at our finances anyway. But that may not work for everybody. It may be, you know, at the end of the month, you may not have hit and got a paycheck yet. It’s not a really good headspace to talk about how much something is going to cost when you’re like, I have to eat for the rest of the week.

Reema: Mm-hmm. Yeah.

Zach: And so just finding the right time to have the discussion where both partners are in the headspace to talk about financial decisions. 

Reema: Like so many of us, they’re constantly learning how to have these hard conversations. 

And it’s an imperfect process, because even when we do figure out solutions that work in our relationships, you have to keep adapting for when life inevitably changes. 

Mandy: Hopefully you’re still doing this, like, through all these chapters of our lives, because I was like thinking about it, and I was like, we talked to her when we were like dating and then got engaged and then got married and then, like, we’ll talk to you whenever we have, like, a baby and then like…

Reema: Yeah!

Mandy: you know, it’s, like, so cute, like, I feel like

Reema: I know!

Mandy: you could just keep updating.

Reema: I always love talking to you guys.

Mandy: Oh my god, we love talking to you.

Reema: So I’m like, ah, well, let’s keep this going. 

Mandy: We’re obsessed with you.

Reema: Oh my God, no, I’m obsessed with you guys.

Mandy: Oh my god, you stop. We’re obsessed with you, Reema.

Reema: Alright that is all for our show this week…


If you have any thoughts about this story, or just wanna send us a note, you can always email me and the team at uncomfortable@marketplace.org, we love hearing from you all. 


Also want to plug the newsletter. This week, we’re sharing some practical financial tips…we asked the staff at Marketplace how they budget their money, so if you want solid advice from business reporters, be sure to check that out. And if you’re not already signed up for our newsletter you can do that by going to marketplace dot org slash comfort.  


This episode was produced by senior producer Zoë Saunders and hosted by me, Reema Khrais. We wrote the script together. Peter Balanon-Rosen produced and scripted the original story back in 2019.

The episode got additional support from our producers, Alice Wilder and Hannah Harris Green, as well as our intern Marika Proctor. 

Our editor is Jasmine Romero.

Sound design and audio engineering by Drew Jostad.

Bridget Bodnar is Marketplace’s Director of Podcasts.

Francesca Levy is the Executive Director of Digital.

Neal Scarborough is Vice President and General Manager of Marketplace.

And our theme music is by Wonderly.

Alright, we’ll catch y’all next week.

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The team

Zoë Saunders Senior Producer
Alice Wilder Producer
Jasmine Romero Editor

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