Cash Confident: Couples Talking Finances

Cash Confident: Couples Talking Finances

Discussing money with your significant other can cause some problems in the house hold.

This is seen frequently in couples that are engaged.

A recent poll hosted on the National Foundation for Credit Counseling website revealed the 68% of respondents have a negative attitude toward discussing money with their fiancé.  Five percent indicated that the discussion would cause them to call off the wedding.

Gail Cunningham, spokesperson for the NFCC, said, "the ability to have open and honest discussions is key in a successful marriage.  Since money impacts daily decisions, regardless of how difficult it may be, the conversation about personal finances is one that should be neither ignored or postponed."

The NFCC recommends the following Do's and Don'ts for the much needed financial discussion:


  • Spring the conversation on the other partner
  • Hide income or debt
  • Point the finger of blame


  • Make it a casual conversation about a serious subject
  • Be honest about the current financial situation
  • Probe to understand long-held financial attitudes
  • Acknowledge that one may be a saver and one a spender
  • Make a plan to deal with any skeletons that come out of the financial closet
  • Construct a budget that includes savings
  • Decide which person will be responsible for paying the monthly bills
  • Allow each person to have independence by setting aside money to be spent at his or her discretion
  • Decide upon short-term and long-term goals
  • Talk about loaning money to family members and friends
  • Talk about caring for aging parents and how to plan for their financial needs in the future

Court records show that financial stress is one of the main causes of divorce.  Taking action now could prevent a disaster later.

For professional assistance bringing two incomes, two lifestyles and two financial attitudes together, or for help in working through financial problems that have never been addressed, consider an appointment with a certified consumer credit counselor at an NFCC Member Agency.  To find the agency closest to you, call (800) 388-2227, or en Espanol call (800) 682-9832), or go online to <>.

The actual poll question and answer choices are below:

  • If I were getting married, I think that discussing money with my fiancé would...
  • Be a necessary, but awkward, conversation = 45%
  • Likely to lead to a fight, so I would avoid this topic = 7%
  • Reveal financial issues I wasn't aware of = 11%
  • Cause us to call off the wedding = 5%
  • Be a productive and easy conversation to have = 32%