Forget what's your sign? How about what's your score?
The most important numbers to get from a new love
We've always heard how vital it is to discuss your sexual history with a new partner. No one ever tells you to swap credit history too. Who knew that three little numbers could have such a big effect and influence on your life? If you did, tell your friends because there are a lot of us walking around without a clue as to how important our credit score is to our personal and professional futures.
Okay, tell the truth, how old were you when you first knew not only what your credit score was, but, what it meant? By a show of hands, how many people out there has ever dated someone that they thought wasn't very good with money (i.e. Always broke, borrowing money, utilities turned off, etc.) but, you thought there were cute so you overlooked it?
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Too many times people have no idea that their mate has poor credit until after the wedding. That's like tying the knot with someone before you know if they want to have children or what their religious beliefs are. We know more about our mate's sexual history than their financial history and the truth is that ignorance in both instances can prove to be fatal.
So, how do you bring up such a subject with your significant other and not cause a ugly scene? Well, first they should be your significant other. There is nothing that will kill a relationship quicker than someone getting all in your "wallet" when all you wanted was to get into their "pants". After the two of you have made the decision to get serious and talk about a future "together" would be a good time to ask a couple of simple questions. Are you very good with money? How do you feel about investing vs. saving? What kind of house would you like to buy? Not too much at once...just enough to see if you share common thoughts about money. Don't be afraid to say that you aren't very good at saving, balancing your check-book, etc, and ask for their help if that's a strong talent of theirs. If you are both challenged in that area, suggest that you get a third party (accountant, financial adviser, etc.) to assist you in planning your future together. Ignorance is never bliss when it comes to having enough money to get the things you need to survive, let alone the things that you want to have fun.
The biggest reason that marriages fail is because of money. It's not always because people don't have it either. Sometimes it's because they have different ways of treating it. Some hold on too tight and others not tight enough. You must make it a point to discuss attitudes towards money with your potential life partner. Even if you have to make it out as a game, I love the "if you won one million dollars in the lottery what would you do with it" game. If taken seriously, you can find out a lot about a persons beliefs, values and spending habits. Recently, I heard the best advice given by one of those "financial experts". When asked about getting professional assistance with making financial decisions the expert said that the best person to get and give you advice is you. No one knows you better. What you don't know about money, investments and credit can easily be learned by reading more. What you don't know about your mate's financial situation and views on money can be learned by sitting down and asking them the right questions.
Feel free to play my favorite game...show and tell...with your credit reports. You know what they say "there's no romance without finance". Or my new favorite saying... we get more with a higher score!
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