A new study from Creditcards.com found that 20% of respondents who are in a relationship admitted to spending $500 or more behind their partner’s back, and 6% admitted to having a secret bank account or credit card.
Although 31% of men and 18% of women do not object to their partner spending $500 or more without informing them, 31% of all respondents want to know if their partner spends more than $100.
Men vs. Women. Men are more likely than women to maintain a secret account or credit card (8% of men vs. 5% of women). They are also more likely to hide large purchases (26% of men vs. 14% of women).
Young vs. Seniors. Couples who are seniors (65+) are less likely to cheat financially than are younger couples (those 18-29). Significantly more young survey respondents made secret $500+ purchases (25% of youths vs. 15% of seniors) and had secret accounts or credit cards (7% of youths vs. 4% of seniors).
Be open. Openness related to money is a key ingredient to avoid arguments and secrecy about family finances. If both partners are involved in bill paying and have agreed upon savings and spending plans together, they will be more likely to achieve their financial goals and less likely to fight about money or be financial cheaters.
Decide together. Make joint decisions about how to handle your finances.
Have you or your partner already crossed the line into financial infidelity? Is one partner’s overspending or debt having a negative impact on your relationship and your family’s financial security? If so, before you throw in the towel on your relationship, try to address the underlying issues (a lack of the openness and joint decision-making we outlined in the above bullets). It’s not too late to salvage your family finances and lessen relationship stresses.