Divorce rates are at an all-time high and SmartMoney’s recent survey has revealed that debt is the number one reason for the majority of rows that can lead to a couple filing for their Decree Nisi.
Couples have varying views on what constitutes debt, with some seeing a sizeable overdraft or credit card as nothing to be alarmed by, whereas a more astute person who has never used any form of credit may find the whole idea quite daunting.
As a result, an incredible 13% of UK citizens have admitted to concealing debts from their partners.
The report discussed in the International Business Times states that over 5 million Brits are in debt, of which 46% owe over £2,500, yet they have not informed their partner (nor do they plan to do so.)
What if my partner has accrued debt?
If you are part of a couple and one or both of you have brought debt to the relationship or accrued it during your marriage, it is important that you work together to pay off the debt. Marriage.about.com advise that the best way to preserve and maintain a healthy marriage is to discuss your personal finances openly on a regular basis.
Credit where credit is due
High interest pay day loans are often cited as the reason for individuals to spiral into unmanageable debt, as borrowers over commit themselves to loans that they cannot repay on time. We have all seen the media in recent months slating such companies. However, pay day loans aren’t all doom and gloom and many reputable lenders have impressed and assisted customers in managing their personal debt.
Knowing who to go for
Here’s a tip: When looking for a pay day loan company, look for recommendations. Some websites offer you a customer satisfaction rating (Wonga.com for instance, which cites its customer rating as 90% on the front page of its website.) Websites which offer customers a way to manage debt can actually be extremely helpful, if you plan your repayments properly. Check out their websites and ask people at work or family members who they have used in the past. This can also help you to form a judgement.
How they work
Whether you need 100 pounds or 1000 pounds you can borrow money for anything between a few days or a few weeks and pay day loans can bridge the gap for any financial emergency until your next pay check comes through. The main reason that people fall down with pay day loans is that they do not repay the loan within the agreed time frame or they miss payments which can adversely affect their credit score. Providing you adhere to the rules clearly stipulated by your lender, a pay day loan can be an incredibly useful and convenient method of short term lending for careful borrowers.
Can I avoid debt devastating my marriage?
It is expected that more than two thirds of marriages will end in divorce regardless of the couple’s financial status, and interestingly law firms have experienced a rise in the number of people filing for divorce since the economic climate has improved. This rise in applications is possibly due to individuals seeing a more stable economy where they can find a secure job and sustain themselves and any dependents financially on their own.
It is clear to see that the effect pay day loans and any resulting financial difficulties are just the tip of the iceberg on a much wider list of factors that have a part to play in a relationship breakdown. However debt is certainly an issue that cannot and must not be ignored. The important thing when deciding on ways to resolve financial situations, including whether to take out a pay day loan or seek alternative methods of credit, is to approach it together as a couple. You must discuss your circumstances and make a decision to move forward together, there is no point ignoring debt, or even assuming that your spouse’s debt is not your responsibility as the credit rating of each member of a married couples will be affected regardless of who accrued the debt in the first place.
Time to get money smart
Managing our finances has never been easier thanks to mobile banking, and providing you have mobile broadband and a smartphone you can check your balances and pay bills on the go. However with tough economic climates forcing families to seek out other sources of financial income, debts are piling up including credit cards, overdrafts, personal loans and payday loans.
There are several finance apps available for smart phones that can help couples and families to better manage their money and prevent them from getting into debt. Most major banks now have their own app available to download or website on which you can make the most of online banking. With the ability to check your balances, pay bills or transfer money between accounts on the go, it is far easier to keep track of your spending and prevent yourself going over budget or into your overdraft.
This writer is passionate about financial matters, as well as local politics, the economy and the UK legal system.