When relationships start, the spark and connection can make them seem perfect. No matter what your partner does, you don’t mind because you’re so smitten. Bankruptcy? Foreclosure? Credit card fraud? Who cares? You’re in love. Everything is wonderful.
The one glaring flaw you’re refusing to see is your new love is terrible with money. You’re the frugal one with a solid financial plan in place, but your significant other can’t seem to hold on to a paycheck longer than a couple of days. Is your romantic future doomed? Unfortunately, if your partner has poor financial management skills, you’re going to have a tough time. Here’s why you shouldn’t date someone who is bad with money.
1. You’ll fight a lot
If you don’t like to argue, don’t date someone who is terrible with money. More often than not, money trouble leads to friction. At some point in your relationship, you’re bound to have a fight about finances. In a survey conducted by SunTrust Bank, 44% of respondents between the ages of 44 and 54 said money was the primary cause of stress in their relationships. And roughly 47% of all respondents said they and their partners don’t have the same spending habits.
Next: Headed for divorce court?
2. If you marry, you’re setting yourself up for divorce
One of the top reasons for marital discord, and eventually divorce, is money. Usually there’s not enough of it, or it’s being mishandled. Surprisingly, when it came to reasons for divorce, money problems ranked higher than emotional or physical abuse in a survey conducted by Institute for Divorce Financial Analysts. So if you want to get married, live in financial chaos, and then eventually get divorced after years of being at each other’s throats over the bills, date someone who is financially illiterate.
Next: A stressful situation
3. You’ll be under a lot of stress
You can’t entirely avoid stress, but there are things you can do to keep it at a minimum. If you keep someone around who can’t manage money properly, you’re likely going to introduce more stress into your life. Save yourself the heartache now, and choose your dating partners wisely. The person you choose to marry will have an effect on your overall happiness and quality of life. When there’s trouble with your household finances, no one is happy. Make sure you’re both on the same page when it comes to money before you tie the knot.
Next: Wishing your partner would go away
4. You’ll become resentful
In the beginning of the relationship, you might reason that you can help your partner work through his or her money issues. Perhaps your significant other became sort of a “project” for you. You might have had good intentions, but attempting to fix someone usually doesn’t work out well. You’ll likely get to the point where you become tired of trying to show your partner how to be more responsible with money. And if your partner has been asking for loans every now and then, you’ll start to be resentful that you are better at managing money than he or she is. You’ll feel like you’re being used for your financial resources instead of being valued as a supportive partner.
Next: Bad habits
5. Bad habits might rub off on you
You might be good with money now. But if you hang around someone with bad habits long enough, those habits will start to rub off on you. Perhaps you’ll put a purchase on your credit card and reason that you’ll pay it off later. Before you know it, you have a balance you can barely pay down. Or maybe your significant other’s shopping habits have now become your own, as you convince yourself it’s OK to buy that outfit because you work hard and deserve it. Are you starting to sound like your partner? If so, it’s time to reality check yourself and get back on track with your budget.
Next: Nothing to write home about
6. Your dates won’t be all that spectacular
When you’re dating someone who is bad with money, he or she will be more concerned about saving cash than having fun. Although it’s great to want to save money, your interactions will be strained over money concerns. That’s not very romantic. So expect a lot of dates at home, always splitting the bill, or canceled dates due to lack of money. Dr. J., who blogs for Single Black Male, said if you can’t afford to go on a date you probably shouldn’t be dating.
Next: Debt mountain
7. You could get stuck with unwanted debt
Some couples choose to share everything. If they go out to eat, they might share a meal. Once things get really serious, they might go a step further and decide to move in together and share a home. Another decision you might think about is adding your partner to your credit card as an authorized user. However, this is a risky move. If your partner charges an item and he or she can’t pay the bill, guess who’s responsible. That’s right, it’s you. Do you really want to give someone who doesn’t know how to handle money access to your credit card?
Next: Say goodbye to your new home.
8. You could get rejected by lenders
If you and your significant other decide to purchase a home, you could find yourself in a tough spot. If his or her credit isn’t so great, you might get rejected for a mortgage or find yourself paying higher interest rates. As you can see from this and the previous examples, being in a relationship with a person who doesn’t understand the basics of responsible financial management could impact you in several areas of your life for years to come.
Follow Sheiresa on Twitter @SheiresaNgo.