When Should You Get “Financially Naked” With a Partner?

updated May 3, 2019
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(Image credit: Nancy Mitchell)

In the course of a relationship, there are many milestones. Some are for celebrating, some for deliberating, and there are others that you cross just in order to stay in step on your path to domestic bliss.

Deciding to go Dutch on the third date is one of the latter. So is the (much bigger, tougher) decision to start a joint bank account. But somewhere in between splitting dinner and combining paychecks, you should make it a point to hit another milestone with your partner:

Getting naked.

Financially naked.

What Does it Mean to Get Financially Naked?

I first heard the term from writer Erin Lowry on her personal finance blog, Broke Millennial. Getting financially naked with your partner means sharing intimate details of your financial situation. Instead of baring skin, you’re baring bank accounts. Discussing—in potentially rough, but very real numbers—how much money you own (in cash and savings) and how much you owe (in loans and credit card debt).

Getting financially naked is an opportunity to divulge your financial situation with a serious partner and bring up a discussion of how each of you handle your finances today, and possibly how you’d like to handle them in the future, together.

When is the Right Time to Talk Money With a Partner?

The question of exactly when to get financially naked is a tough one. Because money can be such a personal topic, divulging your debt and net worth details isn’t something you’d do early in a relationship. But it would certainly be unwise to get married or even move in together before having a frank talk about your individual financial situations.

So I turn it over to you, Apartment Therapy commenters: When did you first get financially naked with your partner?