ATLANTA - It's wedding season. June and September are filled with 'I dos.' But when asked, "Do you know your partner's credit score?" Please don't say, I don't.
Talk about your finances before you tie the knot. If you haven't, let me tell you why you should. Topping the list year after year of why couples argue - and divorce - is over money. So, if you want 'til death do us part' to really mean something, get your separate finances on the same page.
If you don't believe me, listen to this. The Federal Reserve studied 12 million couples over 15 years and they found the higher your credit score the better chance you have for a long partnership.
But it's about more than the level of that score. The study also says the more closely a couple's score matches up the better you are.
For every 66-point difference between your credit score and your husband's the study shows there's a 24 percent chance your marriage will fail in the second, third or fourth year of marriage.
So are you doomed if you scores don't match up? No, if that lower score moves up and gets in line with the higher one, it's a sign of a healthier relationship.
Julie Bates is a certified financial planner with Delta Community Credit Union.
"We encourage our members to go on a money date. We've talked about that before, and sitting down and figuring out what's important. Do they want to go on a certain number of vacations each year? Do you want to have children, send them to private school or college or pay for their wedding?"
Ms. Bates said 12 percent of us are too embarrassed to tell other people our weight. Sixty-seven percent of us are too embarrassed to talk about our credit scores.
Listen, I know credit scores aren't romantic, but divorce isn't either. And the study showed that credit worthiness talks to how trustworthy a partner you are.