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Love and Money: People Say They Save, Partner Spends, According to SunTrust Survey


ATLANTA, Feb. 4, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- The label of "spender" or "saver" in a relationship may be in the eye of the beholder, according to a recent SunTrust survey conducted online by Harris Poll. People are more than twice as likely to say they are the "saver" and their partner is the "spender" versus the opposite (34 percent compared to 13 percent), and nearly half (47 percent) say they have different spending habits from their spouse or partner.

SunTrust's "Love & Money" Survey Infographic

Do these differences cause any friction? Among those who indicate they have relationship stress, finances top the list of reasons: 35 percent say finances are the primary cause, followed by annoying habits (25 percent).

"Every couple shares dreams that require an open dialogue on finances – whether it's planning for the future, opening a business together, buying a house, having a baby or taking a vacation," said Rilla Delorier, SunTrust consumer channels executive. "Laying the financial groundwork to make these aspirations a reality can be an uplifting process that strengthens the relationship."

Just in time for Valentine's Day, SunTrust is offering a Money Personality Quiz to help people understand how they approach spending and saving. Through the SunTrust Resource Center's Love and Money page, the quiz asks questions to draw out an individual's financial habits, identifying strengths and recommending areas of financial focus.

To have a healthy financial relationship with your significant other, Delorier offers the following tips:

  • Talk first. Bring up the issue of money sooner rather than later. While every relationship is different, you should be aware of your partner's financial situation – such as debt, income and spending habits – before making a major commitment. Take the Money Personality Quiz and have your partner do the same. Discuss how the two of you are similar or different when it comes to managing money, and discuss what that means for your relationship.
  • Alternate CFOs. If one person is the "Chief Financial Officer" in the relationship and always manages the budget, bills and savings, consider alternating the role so that each person understands your collective financial situation. Also, meet with a financial advisor or personal banker to create a financial plan that works for both of you.
  • Set a "date" to budget. Don't wait until your partner makes a financial blunder to talk about money. Set aside a time to talk about finances and agree on your savings goals in a comfortable, no-judgment-allowed environment. Visit the Planning and Budgeting section in SunTrust's Resource Center for tips on how to create a budget and stay on financial track.
  • Adapt together. As life changes, so will your goals and financial priorities. Your financial plan will need to adapt to changing circumstances, whether it's a growing family, moving for a different job, building an inheritance – or facing a temporary set-back. Check your financial plan at least once a year to keep it relevant to your life.

Additional SunTrust Survey Findings

  • More than a third of respondents – 37 percent – identify both themselves and their partner as "savers" and 15 percent say they are both "spenders." However, nearly half – 47 percent – say they and their partner do not have the same spending habits.
  • Among those with stress in their relationship, finances are the most common cause cited (35 percent), easily outpacing the number two cause of annoying habits (25 percent). Of those age 45 to 54 with stress in their relationship, 44 percent rated finances first.
  • 64 percent say they seek the advice of their spouse or partner before making a purchase above a specific amount; 36 percent do not, no matter how much the purchase.
  • 36 percent discussed finances with their spouse/partner within three months of beginning their relationship, while 41 percent took more than three months. Seven percent say they have never discussed finances.

About SunTrust Banks, Inc.
SunTrust Banks, Inc. (NYSE: STI), headquartered in Atlanta, is one of the nation's largest banking organizations, serving a broad range of consumer, commercial, corporate and institutional clients. As of December 31, 2014, SunTrust had total assets of $190.3 billion and total deposits of $140.6 billion. Through its flagship subsidiary, SunTrust Bank, the Company operates an extensive branch and ATM network throughout the high-growth Southeast and Mid-Atlantic states and a full array of technology-based, 24-hour delivery channels. The company also serves clients in selected markets nationally. Its primary businesses include deposit, credit, trust and investment services. Through its various subsidiaries, the company provides mortgage banking, asset management, securities brokerage, and capital market services. SunTrust's Internet address is

Survey Methodology
This survey was conducted online within the United States by Harris Poll on behalf of SunTrust from January 23-27, 2015 among 2,030 adults ages 18 and older, among which 1,172 were married, in a civil union or living with their partner. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated. For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables, please contact

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SOURCE SunTrust Banks, Inc.

Suzanne Vincent, (404) 813-7162