Data from ClearScore, a UK free credit score and credit marketplace, shows that a staggering 40% of people deem being financially responsible a more attractive quality in a potential partner than being attractive themselves. Given that finances are on the tip of everyone’s tongue due to furlough schemes, increased redundancies and economic instability, it’s surprising that Brits are more than twice as likely to say ‘I love you’ in the first month of dating (16%), when compared to talking about their finances (7%).
When thinking about the ideal attributes in a potential partner over a third of Brits (37%) ranked being financially responsible the most irresistible quality above being empathetic (21%), modest (13%), or outgoing (12%), and deemed it just as important as being intelligent (37%). However, if you’re keen to make a match in 2021, a sense of humour beats everything else, with 63% of people choosing it as the most important attribute in a potential partner.
And if you’re hoping a flashy car or impressive job title might seal the deal for you, you’re in for a rude awakening, as almost three-quarters of people find having a good credit score and being good with money a more attractive feature in a potential partner than having a nice car (73%), or an impressive job title (72%). In fact, when asked to describe the attributes of someone with a good credit score, 69% said ‘responsible’, 63% said ‘trustworthy’, 48% said ‘honest’, and 42% said ‘intelligent’ – who wouldn’t want to be described in these ways?
Once you’re in a relationship, talking about your personal finances with your partner seems to still be the last real ‘taboo’, with a third of people (29%) avoiding the topic of personal finances with their partner as they don’t believe it’s any of their partner’s business. Indeed one in five (19%) say they wouldn’t talk about their personal finances within the first year of dating. The unease in sharing information about personal finances doesn’t seem to end as relationships progress either, with a staggering one in 10 people admitting to not talking about their personal finances until after they’re married, and 5% of people willing to do so only if they were planning to have children.
Talking – or not talking – about your personal finances with your partner is not only a roadblock in current relationships, it can cause serious future issues and even breakups. Almost half (42%) of people would break up with their partner if they found out they had lied about their personal finances, with over a third (36%) breaking up with their partner if they found out they had large debts, and a quarter (26%) if they believed their partner was bad with money.
Positively, 40% say they speak about their personal finances with their partner whenever they’re considering a big financial decision, and one in 10 people (10%) set up a regular date once a month or more to discuss their personal finances.
Justin Basini, CEO and Co-founder of ClearScore, says, “Talking about your personal finances can be nerve-wracking, but as soon as your finances begin to intertwine – whether that’s through a joint account, mortgage or loan, – you become financially associated and that person can impact your credit score.
Debt can be another hard topic to broach, with 10% of the general population saying they’re worried to talk about their personal finances with their partner due to personal debt, rising to 20% among 18-24yr olds. The first step is always the hardest, but setting up a personal finance date night can help create a safe space to talk through your finances in a constructive and empowering way.”