Canadians more optimistic about money than their love lives this Valentines


Despite Valentines Day being right around the corner, Canadians appear to be more optimistic about their financial futures than their love lives, according to a survey released Wednesday. Here is the press release.

TD’s second annual Love and Money survey gauged the financial behaviours of more than 1,700 Canadians who were married, in a relationship, or divorced in 2021.

It found that 60% of respondents claimed it’s harder to find true love than financial success, up from 51% in 2020’s report.

  • For those in committed relationships, 51% said they’re experiencing barriers to meeting their financial goals and are delaying milestones like planning a wedding.
  • 74%  of divorced Canadians feel their financial status is the same or better than when married: 54% said it is easier to manage their finances post-divorce.

The survey also explored millennials’ unique approach to love and money, including their intolerance for financial ‘red flags’ that would cause them to leave their partner:

  • They never offered to pay for anything (86%)
  • They were secretive about their finances (81%)
  • They didn’t seek professional financial advice (77%)

 As for life post-divorce, 52% said they learned a new financial skill like tracking their spending (28%), making bill payments (24%) and saving for retirement (23%). 57% said they are spending less after divorce while 45% consider themselves financially better off. 54% said it’s easier to manage their finances post-divorce.

TD says the survey also reveals the downside of not talking about finances in relationships. Divorced couples were less likely to have regularly discussed money during their marriage, with only 29% of divorced respondents saying they talked about money weekly with their former partner, compared to 50% of married couples who say they have the talk weekly.

Millennials, Love and Money

Millennials are more likely than other demographic cohorts to keep their money separate from their partners, with 49% of respondents saying they have no common accounts or shared credit cards. Millennials are also less tolerant of ‘red flag’ financial behaviours: they say they would leave their partner if they never offered to pay for anything (86%); if they were secretive about their finances (81%); or if they didn’t seek professional financial advice (77%).

Financial challenges of committed couples

The survey also shines a light on the financial challenges of committed couples. It found 28%  are keeping a financial secret from their partner, up from 8% from the 2020 report. Of those keeping a secret, 64% don’t plan to ever tell their partner. The survey also shows that a secret purchase is the most kept (42%), followed by a secret bank account (29%).

The survey also shows that couples polled are choosing “forever” over “fun” when it comes to spending money. One in three couples believe buying a home is a higher priority than hosting a wedding. “Forever purchases” also seem to be more important, with surveyed couples saying they’ve spent more on engagement rings in 2021: $2,309 compared to $1,800 in 2020.

Greater need for Financial Advice

Consistent with the 2020 survey  is a greater need for financial advice: couples say they are most in need of help when it comes to how to invest (20%), pay off debt (12%) and plan for retirement (12%). By contrast, millennials are looking for advice on buying a home (19% vs. 9% of others surveyed).

Research company MARU/Matchbox conducted the survey among a nationally representative sample of Canadian consumers focused on couples and money. The online fieldwork occurred between November 10, 2021 and November 18, 2021. A total of 1751 completes were gathered in Canada and have been weighted by age, gender and region to reflect the population. Margin of Error cannot be calculated as the audience comes from a non-probability sample, however the Margin of Error on a probability sample of this size would be +/- 2.3%.


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