Love and Marriage… and Credit
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Love and Marriage… and Credit

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The latest Experian Consumer Services reveals that half of married adults say credit played a role when choosing a life-long mate. ...

The latest Experian Consumer Services reveals that half of married adults say credit played a role when choosing a life-long mate.

When asked to rank important qualities in a partner, 95% of participants put “financial responsibility” as important, with “physical attractiveness” and “career ambition” following behind at 86 percent and 77 percent, respectively.

In fact, when asked about how important it is to have similar goals, married adults rank financial compatibility high on the list, even slightly higher than sex and intimacy. This and other fascinating statistics on marriage and credit are covered in this presentation.

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  • Survey methodology <br /> The data points referenced above come from a study commissioned by ConsumerInfo.com, Inc., an Experian company, produced by research firm Edelman Berland and conducted as an online survey of n=1,010 married adults nationwide. Interviewing took place from April 16-19, 2014. The margin of error is plus or minus 3.1 percent.

Love and Marriage… and Credit Love and Marriage… and Credit Presentation Transcript

  • 1 EDELMAN BERLAND Experian Credit Score Marriage Survey Report April / May 2014
  • 2 © Copyright 2014 Daniel J Edelman Inc. Intelligent Engagement WHO HOW MANY ACCURACY WHEN HOW Married Adults Nationwide n=1,010 Margin of Error = ± 3.1% Data Collection Occurred April 16-19, 2014 Online Survey Methodology Results are compared with those of an online survey of n=1,000 unmarried adults ages 30-49 nationwide was conducted June 12-17, 2013. Methodology
  • 3 © Copyright 2014 Daniel J Edelman Inc. Intelligent Engagement • Married couples value an open dialogue about finances; most discuss their financial goals at least once per month • Married adults are more apt to discuss large investments than small, everyday purchases. The average amount of money they will spend before discussing it with their spouse is $812. • Women and post-recession couples – those married after the 2008 recession – place greater value on financial dialogue and are more likely to discuss smaller-ticket items with their spouse. • Half of married adults say that credit scores were important to them when choosing a spouse • Credit scores were most important to women and to post-recession couples. • Half of married couples agree that credit played an important role in their marriage when securing a home loan or getting a good interest rate. • Credit scores are the only financial topic that couples do not discuss before their wedding day • One in ten married adults have never discussed credit scores with their spouse. • Post-recession couples are more apt than those wed before the 2008 recession to discuss credit scores with their spouse before tying the knot. • Credit scores are a source of stress in one in five marriages. • Spouses who discussed credit scores before getting married are more likely to agree on how to use credit as a couple. • One in ten married couples have been affected by identity theft (14%), have needed a co-signer after their wedding day (11%) or have needed to borrow money to avoid faulting on debt (11%). Key Findings
  • FINANCIAL COMPATIBILITY
  • 5 © Copyright 2014 Daniel J Edelman Inc. Intelligent Engagement 98% 95% 86% 77% 98% 93% 90% 81% Personality Compatibility Financial Responsibility Physical Attractiveness Career Ambition Attribute Importance (Shown: % Important) Married Unmarried Married adults value financial responsibility more than physical attractiveness in a spouse Q7: How important are each of the following attributes [when considering a long term romantic partner] / [in a spouse]? (Shown: % Important) Personality Compatibility 97% 98% Financial compatibility 94% 96% Physical Attractiveness 87% 85% Career Ambition 69% 86% Attribute Importance by Gender Among Married Adults
  • 6 © Copyright 2014 Daniel J Edelman Inc. Intelligent Engagement 98% 97% 96% 95% 77% 69% 44% 83% 95% 91% 95% 78% 63% 45% Family goals Life goals Finances Sex & intimacy Career goals Religion & spirituality Politics Compatibility Importance (Shown: % Important) Married Unmarried Financial compatibility is important to 96% of married adults and 91% of their unwed counterparts Q8: [In looking for a long term romantic partner] How important is it for you [and your spouse] to be compatible on each of the following? (Shown: % Important) Family goals 97% 98% Life goals 94% 99% Finances 96% 97% Sex & intimacy 95% 96% Career goals 72% 81% Religion & spirituality 64% 74% Politics 43% 44% Compatibility Importance by Gender Among Married Adults
  • 7 © Copyright 2014 Daniel J Edelman Inc. Intelligent Engagement 89% 85% 72% 67% 43% 35% 86% 84% 51% 36% 91% 86% 60% 35% 88% 48% 34% Married Unmarried Positive Attributes (Shown: % More Attractive) Negative Attributes (Shown: % Less Attractive) Financially responsible Pays bills on time Maintains a budget Open about personal finances / credit history Has reasonable amount of debt with plan to pay off Knows his/her credit score Q9: How does each of the following attributes influence the attractiveness of a [potential romantic partner] / [spouse]? N/AN/A N/A Spends beyond his/her means Has large amount of debt with no plan to pay off Avoids discussing personal finances / credit history Never checks credit score Married couples value openness about personal finances and credit history more than those who are dating N/A
  • FINANCIAL BEHAVIORS
  • 9 © Copyright 2014 Daniel J Edelman Inc. Intelligent Engagement Most married couples discuss their financial goals on a monthly basis, and they are more likely to discuss large investments than everyday purchases Q13: Approximately how often do you discuss financial goals with your spouse? Q11: How likely are you to discuss the following financial topics with your spouse? Q12: What is the maximum amount of money that you would spend before discussing it with your spouse? $812 Average amount married adults will spend before discussing it with their spouse 20% 31% 19% 24% 5% Financial Goal Discussions (Shown: % Frequency of Discussions) Weekly A few times a month Monthly A few times a year Annually or less often 64% 96% Small, everyday purchases Large investments Purchase Discussions (Shown: % Likely to Discuss) 70% MONTHL Y Gen Y 85% Post-Recession 82% Gen Y 77% Post-Recession 75%
  • 10 © Copyright 2014 Daniel J Edelman Inc. Intelligent Engagement Two in five married adults consider their household finances a shared responsibility that evolves over the course of a marriage Q6: Who would you say is primarily responsible for each of the following in your household? Finances Q15: Please indicate whether you would agree with that statement and whether you think your spouse would agree. 48% 39% 13% Responsibility for Household Finances (Shown: % Definitely/Probably) Self Shared Spouse 86% 85% 78% 73% We usually agree on financial decisions Our financial decision-making has changed over the course of our marriage Financial Decision-Making Statements (Shown: % Agree) I would agree My spouse would agree Men 53% Boomers 44%
  • 11 © Copyright 2014 Daniel J Edelman Inc. Intelligent Engagement Most married couples are focusing on saving for retirement or paying off a home loan, yet many still feel comfortable taking on additional debt Q14: Currently, which of the following do you consider to be your and your spouse’s biggest financial goal? Q15: Please indicate whether you would agree with that statement and whether you think your spouse would agree. 10% 1% 7% 9% 9% 13% 18% 33% Other Paying off wedding debt Saving for a vacation Paying off student debt Saving for college education Saving for a home Paying off a home loan Saving for retirement Top Financial Goal (Shown: % Selected) 61% 59% 64% 67% Our bills are overwhelming We feel comfortable taking on more debt Financial Decision-Making Statements (Shown: % Agree) I would agree My spouse would agree Men 62% Boomers 56% Gen Y 23% Gen Y 22%
  • CREDIT SCORES
  • 13 © Copyright 2014 Daniel J Edelman Inc. Intelligent Engagement Nearly half say it was important for their spouse to have a good credit score; a third considered the impact of their spouse’s credit on their own finances Q16: When choosing your spouse, how important was it for him/her to have a good credit score? Q20: To what extent do you agree or disagree with the following statement: “Before I was married, I considered how a potential spouse’s credit score could affect my finances.” 14% 35% 30% 20% Credit Score Importance in Choosing a Spouse Very important Somewhat important Not too important Not at all important 49% IMPORTAN T 33% considered how a potential spouse's credit score could affect their finances before getting married Women 56% Women 38% Gen Y 44% Unmarried Adults: 66% IMPORTANT
  • 14 © Copyright 2014 Daniel J Edelman Inc. Intelligent Engagement Credit scores are the only financial topic that couples do not discuss before their wedding day Q10: Please indicate when, if ever, you learned each of these things about your spouse. His/her… 79% 76% 73% 69% 60% 55% 43% 18% 21% 10% 26% 32% 35% 43% 3% 3% 17% 5% 9% 10% 14% Annual income Spending habits Student loan debt Bill payment history Long term financial goals Retirement savings Credit score Financial Topic Discovery (Shown: % Learned about Spouse) Before marriage After marriage Never Gen Y 56% Women 46% Men 19% Gen X 16% Boomers 16%
  • 15 © Copyright 2014 Daniel J Edelman Inc. Intelligent Engagement One in ten married couples have never discussed credit scores; credit has been a source of stress in 21% of marriages Q17: Have you ever discussed credit scores with your spouse? Q20: To what extent do you agree or disagree with the following statements: “My spouse’s credit score / My credit score has been a source of stress in our marriage.” 86% 12% 2% Credit Score Discussions with a Spouse Yes No Unsure 21% 79% Credit Score as a Source of Stress in Marriage Yes No Unmarried Adults: 48% HAVE DISCUSSED CREDIT SCORES WITH A ROMANTIC PROSPECT / PARTNER
  • 16 © Copyright 2014 Daniel J Edelman Inc. Intelligent Engagement Most Likely to Agree 85% Overall • Those who have discussed credit scores (88%) • Those who discuss financial goals monthly (88%) Q20: To what extent do you agree or disagree with the following statement: “My spouse and I agree about how to use credit as a couple.” 49% 36% 10% 5% Spousal Agreement on How to Use Credit as a Couple Strongly agree Somewhat agree Somewhat disagree Strongly disagree Most Likely to Disagree 15% OVERALL • Those who have not discussed credit scores (32%) • Those who discuss financial goals less than monthly (21%) 85% AGREE Most married couples agree on how to use credit; those with an open dialogue about credit scores are more apt to agree
  • 17 © Copyright 2014 Daniel J Edelman Inc. Intelligent Engagement 55% 48% 42% 29% 28% 19% 9% 68% 52% 42% 53% Poor Credit: Areas of Concern (Shown: % Important Role in Marriage / Potential Impact) Married Unmarried % Credit plays the biggest role in marriages when spouses are securing a home loan or applying for good interest rates Q19: [If your long term romantic partner had a poor credit score, in which of the following ways would you be worried it might affect you?] / [In which of the following ways has your or your spouse’s credit score played an important role in your marriage?] Securing a loan to buy a house Getting good interest rates Securing a loan to buy a car Managing a joint credit account Getting good insurance rates Saving for retirement Saving for children’s college education N/A N/A N/A
  • 18 © Copyright 2014 Daniel J Edelman Inc. Intelligent Engagement 63% 54% 49% 32% 30% 24% 10% 59% 47% 42% 25% 25% 17% 8% 42% 44% 37% 30% 29% 16% 9… Poor Credit: Areas of Concern (Shown: % Important Role in Marriage) Married more than 20 yrs Married 5-20 years Married 5 yrs or fewer % Couples married over 20 years know that credit plays an instrumental role in marriages Q19: In which of the following ways has your or your spouse’s credit score played an important role in your marriage? Securing a loan to buy a house Getting good interest rates Securing a loan to buy a car Managing a joint credit account Getting good insurance rates Saving for retirement Saving for children’s college education
  • IDENTITY THEFT & CO- SIGNING
  • 20 © Copyright 2014 Daniel J Edelman Inc. Intelligent Engagement More than one in ten marriages have been affected by identify theft; one in five victims say fraud impacted their family’s financial goals Q21: Please indicate whether you and your spouse have ever encountered each of the following financial situations since getting married: Identity theft Q23: To what extent has identity theft impacted your family’s financial goals? [Asked of those who have been / whose spouses have been victims of identity theft, n=141] 14% of marriages have at least one spouse that has been a victim of identity theft 7% 13% 37% 43% Identity Theft Impact on Financial Goals (Shown: Victims of Identity Theft) Impacted a great deal Impacted somewhat Not impacted too much Not impacted at all 20% IMPACTED
  • 21 © Copyright 2014 Daniel J Edelman Inc. Intelligent Engagement Q21: Please indicate whether you and your spouse have ever encountered each of the following financial situations since getting married. Q22: Which of the following describes the reason(s) you needed a parent or in-law to co-sign on your behalf? [Asked of those who have required a parent / in-law to co-sign on their behalf, n=108] 11% have required a parent-in-law to co-sign on their behalf after getting married 11% have borrowed a significant amount of money from a family member to avoid defaulting on debt One in ten married couples have required a co-signer since their wedding day, largely due to having poor credit 6% 24% 34% 45% Debt from previous marriage Not been employed long enough Insufficient income Poor credit Reasons for Needing a Co-Signer (Shown: Those who Required a Cosigner)
  • KEY SUBGROUP ANALYSIS
  • 23 © Copyright 2014 Daniel J Edelman Inc. Intelligent Engagement In line with the dating survey findings, wives place greater value than husbands on financial dialogue and openness about credit scores Q9: How does each of the following attributes influence the attractiveness of a spouse? Q16: When choosing your spouse, how important was it for him/her to have a good credit score? Q12: What is the maximum amount of money that you would spend before discussing it with your spouse? %More attractive Is open about his/her personal finances and credit history 60% 73% Knows his/her credit history 30% 40% %Less attractive Avoids talking about personal finances and credit history 44% 59% Never checks his/her credit score 28% 43% % Important Has a good credit score 43% 56% 34% 42% 25% 28% 52% 20% < $100 $100-500 $500+ Maximum Amount Spent Before Discussing with Spouse Men Women $1,231 (MEAN) $396 (MEAN)
  • 24 © Copyright 2014 Daniel J Edelman Inc. Intelligent Engagement Q13: Approximately how often do you discuss financial goals with your spouse? Q11: How likely are you to discuss the following financial topics with your spouse: Small, everyday purchases Q10: Please indicate when, if ever, you learned each of these things about your spouse: Credit score, Pre-Marriage Q12: What is the maximum amount of money that you would spend before discussing it with your spouse? Pre-Recession Couples (Married Before 2008) Post-Recession Couples (Married 2008 or Later) Discuss financial goals with spouse at least monthly 65% 82% Likely to discuss small, everyday purchases with spouse 59% 75% Discussed credit scores before marriage 35% 61% The 2008 recession has made couples increasingly conscious of the importance of credit scores and discussing finances 26% 51% 23% 42% 38% 20% < $100 $100-500 $500+ Maximum Amount Spent Before Discussing with Spouse Pre-Recssion Post-Recession $1,022 (MEAN) $256 (MEAN)