[I]f you’ve been dating someone for a while, you may be getting serious. Before you start dreaming about the perfect wedding day or what life will be like with 2.5 kids and a dog, you need to know you’re on the same page about important issues.
While many people think nothing of talking about how many kids they want or where they will live, they are uncomfortable discussing someone’s credit. Even if you have discussed finances in general, you need to know about their credit rating.
Before you broach the subject, you can find out some information on your own just by observations. For instance, what is their attitude towards money? Do they like to spend it or are they frugal? Notice where they suggest going to dinner, especially when they are paying. Pay attention to how they dress and what kind of items they own. Your boyfriend/girlfriend will likely tell you when they make a big purchase or buy something they really wanted.
This information tells you if they are a spender or saver or if they are too frugal for your liking. It also tells you if they are responsible or if they’re likely to get in to trouble with money.
How to Bring Up the Subject of Credit
Talking about money is still often easier than discussing credit, but you need to have this discussion. It’s not just about how they feel about money, but about any mistakes they’ve made in the past. The reason they are so frugal and responsible now may be because they made mistakes in the past. While they have learned their lesson, it can still haunt you if you try to get credit or a loan together.
Your partner’s credit will impact you whenever you try to buy a home together, rent a place, get other loans or credit cards if you try to apply together. The time to find out about their credit past is before you start planning a future with this person, so you can be prepared for what it will mean.
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