Financially Irresponsibility Plagues Personal Partnerships

One in five people in a relationship says their partner is financially irresponsible, according to a new survey from Policygenius, the nation’s leading online insurance marketplace.

These people are over ten times more likely to break up over money issues than people who say their partner is good with money.

“Our new survey findings support the notion that money issues can cause relationship issues,” Hanna Horvath, data analyst and personal finance expert at Policygenius, said. “This year’s results also echo what people said in our survey last year. Not talking about money can exacerbate conflict between couples.”

Policygenius found a majority of couples are tackling finances together: 78% keep and manage joint finances, while only 16% don’t know core financial facts about their partner. Overall, 22% of people manage money separately from their partner, consistent with the 21% who said they managed money separately from their partner in 2018.

The second annual Couples and Money survey also found:

  • Half of people (50%) don’t know their partner’s credit score.
  • One in ten people (12%) have a secret credit card
  • One in ten people (12%) have hidden a purchase from their partner in the last 6 months
  • 25% of people would spend over $100 on their partner to end a fight 
  • 19% of people don’t spend any money without telling their partner.

“What you don’t know about your partner’s finances can hurt you,” Patrick Hanzel, a CFP® and advanced planning specialist at Policygenius, said. “No one wants to be blindsided by their partner’s bad credit score or outstanding bills. As scary as a money talk might seem, every couple should aim to have it sooner rather than later.”

Policygenius’ survey is based on responses from a nationally representative group of 2,005 adults in a relationship. It was conducted through Google Surveys from August 21 through August 30, 2019. You can read the full report here.

Policygenius is the nation’s leading online insurance marketplace, with headquarters in New York City and Durham, North Carolina. We’ve helped more than 30 million people shop for all types of insurance like they shop for everything else — online. We launched in 2014 and are one of the early insurtech pioneers. We were named one of Inc. Magazine’s Best Workplaces for 2018 and 2019.