Have a credit card account that your significant other has no idea exists? If so, you aren't alone.
A report by Creditcards.com reveals nearly 12 million consumers have concealed a credit card or bank account from their spouses. Why they do that, we'll leave to your imagination.
But what's interesting is the age demographic breakdown. The older you are, the more likely you are to have a secret account. Baby Boomers are four times as likely to conceal an account than Millennials.
Matt Schulz, senior industry analyst at CreditCards.com, says keeping secrets in a relationship is no trivial matter and never a good idea.
Starts out small
"Like any indiscretion, what starts out small tends to build,” he said. Spending $25 without consulting your partner may seem incidental, but when those purchases become more frequent or if the amount grows, it can wreak havoc on your accounts and your budget."
Financial cheating is not always about marital cheating. Many people, it seems, just want to be able to buy what they want without having to seek approval from a partner. And often, these are big purchases.
The report found about 28% of consumers with a secret account sometimes spend $500 or more on a secret purchase. Again, age is a contributing factor. Baby Boomers are much more likely to be big secret spenders than Millennials.
Many don't care
Could it be that the longer people have been together the less they care what the other does with money? Creditcards.com found a surprising number of married people who say they don't need to knew what their partner is spending. Not surprisingly, the more money you make the more you are likely to hold this attitude.
Relationship counselors warn that spending in secret, what's known as “financial infidelity,” can be a problem if the reason is based on a lack of trust. They say problems quickly arise when one spouse is afraid to tell the other how much debt they've accumulated.
Personal finance blogger Dave Ramsey writes that “financial infidelity” can cover a wide range of spending issues. At the root of it, he points to two problems – one with a couple's financial life, the other with their relationship.