More than eight million people across the UK are hiding personal debts from their partners, according to a new set of figures on the subject.
Polling of British adults suggests that there could be as much as £69 billion worth of collective debt being hidden away from partners at an average of £8,293 per person.
Credit cards are believed to account for the largest number of hidden debts, with roughly 5.6 million people throughout the country having racked up debts on their cards and then kept the details from their partners.
The average scale of a concealed credit card debt was just over £2,000, according to researchers from the polling company Opinium, who were commissioned by Direct Line Life Insurance.
Meanwhile, around 2.6 million Brits are understood to have kept a personal loan debt secret from their partner, with car loans, child support arears and store card debts also being widely concealed by significant numbers of UK consumers.
According to the recent polling, almost half a million people around the country wouldn’t have started the relationship they’re currently in if they’d known the full truth about their partner’s financial position.
The research also suggests that married people with hidden debts often keep elements of their finances under wraps in order to avoid arguments but 30 per cent say they consider it to be none of their partner’s business.
It’s clear from the research that personal debts are difficult for many people to talk about even with those closest to them.
Almost two thirds of people with secret debts suggested that they’d rather talk about politics with their partners than money-related matters.
“A conversation about your finances can be awkward and if you’ve got debt even somewhat distressing,” says Jane Morgan from Direct Line. “But it’s important to ensure your partner is aware of your financial position, especially if you live together or are married, as they could be liable for any outstanding debts.”
“Given so many people are hiding debts from their nearest and dearest, we’d suggest having these discussions as early as possible to make sure you are prepared.”
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