By Marc Mallett, ITV News Reporter.
It was always going to be a tough task dealing with those legacy issues - Northern Ireland's troubled past, contentious parades and also the flags issues.
But those huge financial pressures too, pressures that threatened to pull down the very institutions here.
But we now have a deal, it's called the Stormont House Agreement and it is a £2bn financial package from Westminster.
It includes money to deal with the past, to help with infrastructure and also to assist with shared education. Northern Ireland will also be able to sell of some of its assets, the family jewels, if you like.
It will also be able to set it's own corporation tax rate to enable business here to compete with business in the Republic of Ireland.
On flags and parades only an agreement for further talks on those thorny issues but it is an agreement nonetheless.
Now, the three smaller parties in this five-party coalition have said that this is a deal to do a deal - they have their concerns, but the two larger parties, Sinn Fein and the DUP, certainly seem content with what has been agreed.
The talking is over, the deal is done, but politicians know when they come back from their Christmas break the real heavy lifting begins to try and implement what they have agreed.