Can’t Buy Me Love, But Money Definitely Helps

Although Lennon & McCartney crooned “Can’t Buy Me Love” almost 50 years ago the true meaning of the song is still up for debate.  I would assume that the meaning is ultimately determined by whose interpreting the lyrics and perhaps their socio-economic standing or background.  Is it simply about prostitution or more of a deep dive commentary on materialism?

According to the school of Human Scale Development subsistence appears at the top of the list of fundamental human needs, along with protection, affection, understanding, participation, leisure, creation, identity and freedom.

Once considering the somewhat conflicting statements above there should be no surprises then at the outcome of a survey conducted earlier this year by TD Ameritrade entitled; Till "Debt" Due Us Part – Couples and Money Survey. Would you call off your wedding upon finding out that your partner was deeply in debt, has a black mark on their credit report, facing foreclosure, or was on their way down the bankruptcy highway?  The survey results ultimately concluded that it depends on who you ask and the extent of the financial carnage.

Some key outcomes to the survey include:

  • 42% of women and 24% of men said bankruptcy would be a reason to call off the wedding.
  • 32% of women and 21% of men said they would flee the relationship if their partner lost a house to foreclosure.
  • 31% of women and 17% of men said they would call off or postpone their wedding in a situation where their future spouse was suddenly unemployed.
  • 20% of women and 6% of men said a lack of retirement savings would be cause of serious concern.
  • 23% of women and 21% of men indicated that the existence of high credit card debt would cause them to think twice about marriage.
  • 15% of women and 9% of men indicated that a bad credit score would scare them off.

Although the odds may be in your favour that not taking seriously the value of keeping your personal fiscal house in order will likely not affect your plans for the big wedding day the "old fashioned statistically driven romantic" in me can conclude that the probabilities are excellent that a union in such circumstances will find themselves, in due course, as part of the 4 in 10 first marriages that end in divorce.