Pattie Lovett-Reid: Tips for a solid financial foundation
Valentine's Day may be considered a romantic day; however, there can be a few unromantic elements to a relationship many wish they didn't have to contend with.
Let's start with financial infidelity. According to a recent survey conducted by rates.ca, one-in-five Canadians admit to keeping money secrets – anything from credit cards, investments, reward points or even a payday loan – from their significant other. Nearly half said their secret is worth $1,000 or more, while 17 per cent said their lie was worth upwards of $10,000.
The survey also found millennials are the most likely to keep financial secrets, with almost 30 per cent of younger respondents admitting to financial infidelity. Meanwhile, men are more likely to lie about money (19 per cent) than women (13 per cent). Almost half of respondents didn't think there would be any consequence if their financial secret was discovered.
Those are not encouraging statistics.
A recent poll by RBC found successful long-term relationships rely on strong financial compatibility in addition to romantic chemistry. Eighty-five per cent of Canadians with partners said having similar financial goals and habits was a prerequisite to their healthy long-term relationship, while 62 per cent indicated the state of a potential partner's finances could be a deal-breaker.
Another survey from Credit Canada found one-in-three Ontario residents have either ended or would end a relationship because of their partner’s debt.
While debt can be a relationship deal-breaker, I think you should still celebrate Valentine's Day with your partner by doing the following.
- Develop a budget together
- Create an investment strategy for your future
- Toast to your joint financial plan
- Fully disclose all financial issues
Nothing says love more than a solid financial foundation built on honesty, openness and trust. Break up with debt, not your Valentine.
Happy Valentine's Day, everyone!
February is Your Money Month at BNN Bloomberg. For more content like this, visit BNNBloomberg.ca/personal-finance