He Said, She Said: Do You Tell Your Spouse What You Spend?

Katie Simon

do-you-tell-spouse-before-spendWould you tell your partner if you went on a $1,200 shopping spree? The answer probably depends on your gender.

According to a new survey by Experian Consumer Services, men are more likely than women to stay silent about their purchases. On average, men said they’d spend no more than $1,231 before consulting their spouses, while women said they wouldn’t spend more than about $396. These results build on earlier research, which found that as many as 30% of people report hiding purchases from their partner.

The survey also found that conversations about money are lacking in many marriages. While 96% of couples discuss large investments on (at least) a monthly basis, only 64% will discuss small, everyday purchases. And even though couples communicate well about bigger financial goals, only 43% of couples discuss their credit after getting married, and 14% of couples have never had a conversation about credit.

So what’s the big deal about keeping our spending habits to ourselves? As it turns out, regularly syncing up on financial issues is one of the keys to marital harmony. Experts say that having money secrets is even more damaging than arguing about them because it causes bigger fights down the line.

RELATED: 8 Financial Red Flags in a Relationship

At this point, it’s still unclear why women tend to be more disclosing about how much they spend. What is certain is that it’s important for both partners in a relationship to be as honest as possible about their finances. To avoid money disputes, check out some of LearnVest’s top strategies for greater financial intimacy in your relationship.

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