Why Love May Hinge on Your Credit Score

Credit scores were originally developed to help lenders gauge how likely a person is to pay back a loan. In a first-of-its-kind study by the Federal Reserve Board, researchers found evidence that your credit score has predictive value when it comes to relationships forming and potentially separating as well.

 

Relationships Forming

You're likely to find someone with a credit score close to your own when you're looking for love. The authors of the study note that even at the start of a relationship, two people tend to have more similar credit scores than if they were chosen at random from the general population. Although people might not exchange credit scores on their first date (or even for months to follow), a credit score is indicative of your potential partner's personality and can indicate whether he has budgeting and financial management skills.

 

Relationship Duration

Not all relationships last forever, and the difference between your credit score and that of your significant other can be indicative of whether your relationship is going to stand the test of time. Raising your credit score by about 100 points increases the likelihood of your relationship lasting by about a third each year, according to the study. One potential reason for this is that a lower score brings down the couple's average, which can impact their ability to get a mortgage or other financing.

 

Larger Implications of Credit Scores

Although your credit score is designed to reflect how likely you are to default on a loan, the behaviors that affect your credit score correlate with those that show you're trustworthy. Your relationship probably isn't going to last if you can't trust your partner. When the researchers substituted credit scores for "trustworthiness" as determined by a survey in predicting whether committed couples remained together, they found the two generated similar results.

 

Financial Impacts on Relationships

Your credit score isn't the be-all and end-all of your financial circumstances, but how you handle money has an impact on your relationships. You should have a heart-to-heart about your respective financial circumstances when you're considering making a romantic relationship permanent, including divulging what's in your credit report. It doesn't necessarily mean that your relationship is doomed if you and your honey have different scores, but being able to talk about your differences could be key if you want your relationship to last forever.
 

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