Research conducted recently by Experian of more than one thousand US couples has shown that the vast majority of spouses did not have any real understanding of their other half’s financial situation until they were married. Nearly one third confessed to being surprised by the things they learned once they saw their partner’s bank.
36% of participants said they understood nothing regarding how their partner spent their cash, one out of three were not aware of the balance of a partners remaining student loan, and one out of four did not know their partner’s salary. These figures become all the more surprising when considering that 92% of men and women surveyed stated that one of the more significant things they look for in a spouse is ‘financial stability’.
Four in ten participants confessed to not being aware of their partner’s credit rating before getting married to them, with a similar number of individuals revealing they had been stressed because of their husband or wife’s credit rating prior to marriage.
There is additionally a substantial disparity within the statistics for males and females, with men more prone to keeping their financial circumstances hidden. 20% of males admitted to owning secret personal accounts, a number which reduces to 12% in females. Males also said they’d happily spend as much as $1,259 (around £877) without talking to their partner, and the average for women was only $383 (around £267).
Rod Griffin, Experian’s Director said the study indicated two major reasons for the differences in how open males and females are regarding their finances. Not only are females generally more likely to reveal information that is personal to other people, but males are also still getting, typically, a larger wage than females.
Couples who come together to control their finances may well be better at attaining financial stability, however in truth this should not be restricted to your partner alone. Openness with your family, including your parents and your children, can boost the advantages of full financial planning, meaning everyone is able to obtain access to long lasting views of their own wealth, now and in the future.