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“Honey, does my credit score make my butt look big?”
Obviously, the easy answer is no. But a new survey from Experian Consumer Services found that openness about personal finances and credit scores actually makes a potential spouse more attractive.
According to Experian, half of married adults say credit scores played an important role in choosing a spouse. What’s more, survey respondents valued financial responsibility above looks when selecting Mr. or Mrs. Right. That brings a whole new meaning to the “for richer or poorer” vow, doesn’t it?
“Survey findings show that once someone identifies a compatible partner, his or her next thought is about how that person manages personal finances, and credit plays a key role in that scenario,” said Ken Chaplin, senior vice president at Experian Consumer Services. “This holds true for both genders, and the study further shows that working toward compatible financial goals matters to the vast majority of married adults.”
When asked how important it is to have similar goals, married adults ranked financial compatibility high on the list, even slightly above sex and intimacy.
According to CNN Money, a one-time talk about personal finance is not enough; couples need to continually discuss finance issues.
Disclosing your credit history early in a relationship is especially important because it can affect everything from the mortgage interest you will pay as a couple to the car you can afford, [Pat Seamen, senior director at the nonprofit National Endowment for Financial Education] said.
“If you’ve got pristine credit and your fiancée’s credit is not so good, you need to know that because it will have a bearing on how you apply for loans or credit going forward,” she said.
How do you get that conversation started? Money Talks News finance expert Stacy Johnson offers some advice in this video.
My husband and I talk about money often. We also discussed our personal financial situations before we said “I do.” We rarely (if ever) fight about money, and I attribute that to our openness in talking about finances. We have only joint accounts, so we’re both aware of where we stand financially. And we discuss any large purchases before we make them. It’s a system that’s worked for us for more than eight years.
How important is financial responsibility in your relationship? Share your comments below or on our Facebook page.