Press release:

Candid about cash: streetwise millennials check out partner’s finances before committing

  • More than nine in ten millennials (93%) say they are fully clued up on their partner’s finances, with half a million (4%) choosing to share this information on a first date[1]
  • 18-34 year-olds are quickest to suss out their new partner’s purse, with almost half (45%) doing so within the first six months of dating compared to only a quarter of over 55s (24%)[2]
  • The young are four times more likely (21%) than older generations (5%) to have shared their own financial information in order to find out their partner’s bank balance[3]
  • Knowledge does not stop there – clued up millennials are also significantly more likely to feel they know the financial situation of their best friends, siblings and colleagues[4]
  • With more than two thirds of consumers (67%) holding financial products with their partners, uSwitch.com urges older generations to follow the lead of millennials and get clued up on their partners finances[5].

Millions of millennial couples are setting a precedent for financial information sharing, with more than nine in ten (93%) of those aged 18 – 34 prioritising finding out about their other half’s finances before settling down, according to research from uSwitch.com, the price comparison and switching service[1].

Across the board, 18-34 year-olds were significantly more likely to have sussed out their partner’s finances very early in the relationship, with more than half a million saying they were candid about money during their first date[1]. Almost half (45%) of millennials had found out about their partner’s financial situation within the first six months compared to just a quarter (24%) of over 55s[2].

With more than two thirds of Brits (67%) holding financial products with their partners, the shrewd behaviour of the younger generation means they rest happy in the knowledge of the financial viability of their other half as they take on joint any financial liability[5].

However overall, financial candour and knowledge are considered important in a relationship whether the couple holds joint financial products or not – 82% of people say they know how much their partner earns, and 77% across all ages think their partners know the contents of their pay packet, rising to 81% among 18-34 year olds[6]. By contrast, only 10% of Brits think that their finances are none of their partner’s business[7].

Overwhelmingly, the motivation for sharing personal financial information is to help with household budgeting (59%), which is unsurprising considering that over half of couples (55%) have a joint current account and over three fifths (62%) have taken out a loan together such as a credit card, mortgage or other borrowing products[8]. However, romance is not dead with almost half (48%) saying the catalyst for sharing financial information with their partner was wanting to show a new level of commitment to the relationship[9].

Reflecting an increased openness to speak about their finances, millennials are also well-informed about the purses of their nearest and dearest. Almost a quarter (24%) of 18 – 34 years olds know about their best friend’s finances, compared to just 10% of the over 55s[10]. A fifth (22%) of young people know about their siblings’ finances, compared to just 4% of the over 55s, and perhaps surprisingly, 11% of millennials say they know about their colleagues’ finances, compared to just 1% of the over 55s[11].

The research found that only a minority of Brits deliberately hold back financial information from their partners. Indeed, just one in seven (14%) share nothing with their partner and one in twenty (4%) say they have not done so as they are embarrassed by their financial situation[12].

Tashema Jackson, money expert at uSwitch.com, says: “We celebrate the financial candour of millennials and would encourage all generations to take the lead from them and become more candid about their cash.

“Being clued up on your partner’s finances is not only wise if you are committing to each other, but is imperative if you are planning on taking out any form of credit together. Once you take out a joint financial product with someone else, you are both jointly and severally liable for the full balance of the loan, and any missed payments or defaults from either party will impact on both your credit ratings.

“Knowing about your partner’s financial situation before you commit to a new product can significantly reduce financial difficulties, such as problems keeping up with repayments later on.”

Find out how you could save over £1,000 a year with uSwitch here.

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Notes to editors

All research referred to was conducted by Opinium from 19th January to 22nd January 2018 among 2,005 UK adults

  1. When asked: Do you know any of the following about your partner? 93% of respondents aged 18-34 selected answers which suggested they knew something about their partner’s financial situation (options included: How much they earn, spend a week/month, save a week/month, owe on credit cards, owe on personal loans (e.g. bank loans, car finance products) or their credit score). When asked: You mentioned you and your partner have shared information about each other’s finances, when did you do so? 4% of 18-34 year olds selected ‘On our first date’. There are 14,747,810 number of people in the UK aged between 18 – 34 according to ONS, 4% of 14,747,810 is 589,912.
  2. When asked: You mentioned you and your partner have shared information about each other’s finances, when did you do so? 4% of respondents aged 18-34 selected ‘On our first date’, 22% of respondents aged 18-34 selected ‘in the first 3 months’, and 19% of respondents aged 18-34 selected ‘in the first 6 months’. 2% of respondents aged 55+ selected ‘On our first date’, 14% of respondents aged 55+ selected ‘in the first 3 months’, and 8% of respondents aged 55+ selected ‘in the first 6 months’.
  3. When asked: You mentioned your partner knows financial information about you, why did you choose to share this information with your partner? 21% of respondents aged 18-34 selected ‘I wanted to know how much my partner earned’ compared to 5% of respondents aged 55+.
  4. When asked: How much do you know about each of the following people’s finances – Best Friend? 24% of respondents aged 18-34 selected ‘I am knowledgeable about their financial situation’, How much do you know about each of the following people’s finances – Siblings? 22% of respondents aged 18-34 selected ‘I am knowledgeable about their financial situation’, How much do you know about each of the following people’s finances – Colleagues? 11% of respondents aged 18-34 selected ‘I am knowledgeable about their financial situation’
  5. When asked ‘Do you and your partner have any joint financial products?’, 67% of all respondents selected ‘Yes’.
  6. When asked: Do you know any of the following about your partner? 82% of all respondents selected ‘How much they earn’. When asked: Does your partner know any of the following about you? 77% of all respondents selected ‘How much you earn’, with 81% of respondents aged 18-31 selected ‘How much you earn’.
  7. When asked: You said you haven’t shared any financial information with your partner why have you not chosen to share this? 10% of all respondents selected ‘It’s none of their business’.
  8. When asked: You mentioned your partner knows financial information about you, why did you choose to share this information with your partner? 59% of all respondents selected ‘To help with household budgeting’ When asked: Do you and your partner have any joint financial products. If so, which of the below do you have together? 55% of all respondents selected ‘A joint current account’. When asked: Do you and your partner have any joint financial products. If so, which of the below do you have together? 27% of all respondents selected ‘A joint credit card’, 27% of all respondents selected ‘A joint mortgage’ and 8% of all respondents selected ‘A joint loan product (e.g. bank loan, car finance product).
  9. When asked: You mentioned your partner knows financial information about you, why did you choose to share this information with your partner? 48% of all respondents selected ‘It showed a new level of commitment to our relationship’.
  10. When asked: How much do you know about each of the following people’s finances – Best Friend? 24% of respondents aged 18-34 selected ‘I am knowledgeable about their financial situation’ compared to just 10% of respondents aged 55+.
  11. When asked: How much do you know about each of the following people’s finances – brother/sister? 22% of respondents aged 18-34 selected ‘I am knowledgeable about their financial situation’ compared to 4% of respondents aged 55+. When asked: How much do you know about each of the following people’s finances – colleagues? 11% of respondents aged 18-34 selected ‘I am knowledgeable about their financial situation’ compared to 1% of respondents aged 55+.
  12. When asked: Does your partner know any of the following about you? 14% of all respondents selected ‘None of the above’ (Options included How much you earn, how much you spend in a week/month, How much you save a week/month, How much you owe on credit cards, How much you owe on personal loans (e.g. bank loans, car finance products) and Your credit score). When asked: You said you haven’t shared any financial information with your partner why have you not chosen to share this? 4% of all respondents selected ‘I am embarrassed by my finances’.

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