FARMERS BRANCH, Texas (2/19/14)--About a quarter of Americans polled don't discuss personal finances with their significant other, "because it's none of their business," according a recent survey by TransUnion.
Another 7.8% said they don't think couples should discuss personal finances until after they are married, reported the Cornerstone Credit Union Foundation, the public charity of the Cornerstone Credit Union League, which serves credit unions in Texas, Oklahoma and Arkansas (
Another 45% of married Americans surveyed said they do not know their partner's credit score.
"Mind your own business," is not a good financial strategy for couples, said Courtney Moran, executive director of the foundation.
"Of course couples should have frank and honest conversations about personal finance before--not after--they marry. When you get married, how your partner manages debt, assets and credit impacts you as a couple. If one person in the marriage is credit challenged, for example, it could impact the couple's ability to obtain joint credit. If one person is a saver and the other is a spender, it could lead to conflict in the marriage."
Before marriage, Moran encourages couples to:
- Talk about assets, as well as debts;
- Discuss savings and spending habits;
- Be honest and open about credit histories;
- Know each others' short and long-term financial goals; and
- Share thoughts on how the finances should be handled after marriage--with joint or separate accounts.
"Being honest and upfront about personal finances before you walk down the aisle will help to ensure a more harmonious union," Moran added.