We Don’t Talk About Money – Couples Admit Cash Comes Between Them in New Survey

  • Research reveals couples are fighting, lying, and feeling the pressure over money
  • Financial wellness therapist offers top tips to help couples not fall out over finances as Valentine’s Day approaches

LOS ANGELES, Feb. 7, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Being in a relationship is good for your savings – but you may find yourself more likely to fight about it, according to new research released as Valentine’s Day approaches.

Financial well-being app Stackin surveyed 1,255 people based in the US who are in long-term, committed relationships about their money habits.

It found that those in a relationship had, on average, $19,865 in savings – whilst those who were not in long-term relationships had $14,377 stored away. This is despite the fact one in three men (36%) and one in four women (26%) in relationships feel pressured by their partners into spending more than they can afford – potentially eating into those savings pretty quickly.

The new couples cash report from Stackin also revealed one third of people in a relationship (30%) don’t feel at all comfortable talking to their partner about money. One in three (31%) admitted they’d had an argument with their partner about money in the last month – and for one in six (16%) that was as recent as the last week. People in the 34-54 age group are most likely to admit to arguing with their partner about money – which is likely to coincide with financial pressures around family life and home ownership for most.

These arguments may well be leading to secret-keeping. One in five (21%) admit they hide things they’ve spent money on from their partner – rising to 28% of 45-54s. That ties in with the same number (20%) suspecting their partner is being dishonest with them about their finances. More than one in eight (13%) have debt they’re keeping secret from their loved one.

Further reasons for tension are around an imbalance of earning – with 20% saying either they or their partner earn significantly more than the other, which causes issues.

One in five (20%) said they had a more relaxed attitude to spending than their loved one, according to the research, and 13% said their partner was more relaxed about money, creating tension.

Stackin is a financial wellness app which offers a personalized plan based on an individual’s core money beliefs, helping people reach their goals through a coach-based and supportive digital experience. As Stackin Co-Founder and COO Sam Garrison explains, “Financial wellness isn’t just about sticking to a budget, investing, or planning for retirement. It’s also about managing your thoughts and emotions around money in a healthy way. Too often, we’ve been programmed to bury or avoid money talk with others out of perceived politeness and social conditioning. But in a committed relationship that secrecy or resentment can so easily turn toxic.”

Stackin works alongside financial therapist, Megan Ford, Ph.D, to help consumers manage their financial wellbeing. She gives these top tips to having a healthy relationship with your partner around money.

  • Know Thyself: Exploring your own relationship with money is a foundation for navigating money more successfully with a partner. Recognize that your financial habits and beliefs are deeply rooted in your family experiences and money memories, both good and bad. Take the Stackin Money Beliefs quiz to discover more about the personal financial beliefs that inform your behaviors and impact your relationship.
  • Prepare to Get Financially Naked: Part of a healthy financial partnership is transparency and a willingness to let your partner into your financial world. This can be scary, but leaning into moments of sharing openly with one another can build financial intimacy, or the feeling of closeness, trust, and safety in the financial aspects of your relationship. Getting financially naked means sharing honestly about not only your income, assets, and debts, but also your money values, your spending & saving habits, and your financial goals.
  • Prioritize Money Dates: Setting aside time and space weekly or monthly to discuss your finances as a couple is the key to staying on top things and heading off conflict before it shows up. Most couples are busy, so be intentional and put it on the calendar to make sure you’re both accountable. If you tend to get overwhelmed by money discussions, experiment with making a list or agenda to keep you on-track.
  • Find What Fits: Finances for couples is not one-size-fits-all. No money strategy or practice will work the same way for everyone, so it’s best to avoid being overly concerned about how and what other couples do with money. Instead, use those examples as a starting point and find what works for you. Most importantly, stay flexible and open to renegotiating as life shifts.
  • Don’t Wait if This Area Needs Attention: Money is one of the top contributors to relationship conflict, and when left to fester, couples point to money problems and financial fights as a reason their relationship eventually ended. So, if you’re having trouble navigating this topic together, know that it’s totally normal, but more importantly, don’t wait to seek out a third party who can help you work through it. Reach out to a financial therapist, counselor, or coach.

To access the full report go to: https://stackin.com/blog/relationships-money-issues-report/

Research conducted by Censuswide with 1255 people in long term relationships, on behalf of Stackin.

For more media information please contact: Francesca Gallacher-Keen at 310.844.6650 or

Notes to editors

About the Expert

Megan Ford, Stackin Financial Therapist, Ph.D., LMFT, CFT-ITM

Dr. Megan Ford is a financial therapist and consultant who is passionate about helping individuals and couples find more balance and understanding in their relationship with money. She believes whole-heartedly that money is about so much more than the numbers and embraces a shame-free perspective on financial behavior. Through her own journey as a self-proclaimed money avoider and math phobe, Megan is especially attuned to the complexities surrounding our relationship with money and experiences of money stress, shame, and detachment. As one of the leading experts in the growing field of financial therapy, Megan has an interdisciplinary education and practice background, earning a Ph.D. in financial planning and a Master’s degree in marriage and family therapy. She served as a President of the Financial Therapy Association (FTA), has also co-authored a textbook, The Fundamentals of Writing a Financial Plan, and has published several peer-reviewed articles, including her own financial therapy model, the Ford Financial Empowerment Model (FFEM).

About Stackin

Headquartered in Los Angeles, CA, Stackin is the money guide you’ve been wanting in your life.

Stackin makes sense of your money in a straightforward and helpful way — embracing that money is emotional. With a personalized plan based on an individual’s core money beliefs, Stackin helps people reach their goals through a coach-based and supportive digital experience.

Stackin gives people the guidance, tools, and know-how to bring their financial well-being into the modern age. It empowers users to take actionable steps toward the life they’ve always dreamed of and to be in control of their money. Personalized support engages with members weekly on topics ranging from saving money toward goals, understanding their impulse purchases, diving into money behaviors, and more.

SOURCE Stackin