'Sexually-transmitted debt': Over 30 per cent of Canadians have some form, survey shows
KITCHENER -- Relationships mean sharing everything, and that often includes finances.
A recent study shows that one third of Canadians carries an average of $17,000 in debt passed on from their spouse.
The term: "sexually-transmitted debt."
"We found that 31 per cent of Canadian adults have taken over some form of sexually-transmitted debt," says William Eve Country, the founder of finder.com.
You can run out of love just like you can run out of money. Sometimes the two go hand-in-hand, leaving you heartbroken and broke.
After more than seven years together, Brad Knarr and his ex split up.
"I actually had to plead bankruptcy," he says.
"A couple credit cards, a couple places we went to like The Brick and stuff."
That's consistent with the findings from finder.com – credit cards and personal loans are the most common types of inherited debt in Ontario.
The report also finds that women take on more than double the amount of debt than men.
But a local bankruptcy advisor says that you can prevent any form of sexually-transmitted debt by setting boundaries from the get-go.
"Don't sign for anything you don't need to," says licensed insolvency trustee Scott Schaefer with Hoyes Michalos.
"Let people have their own debts. Try to keep it as separate as possible."
Even if you keep debt separate, it can impact relationships.
"If one person has a lot more debt, a lot more of the budget is going to that person's debt and not to the household good," Schaefer explains.
The survey finds that Baby Boomers take on the most debt through relationships, while Generation Z is practically debt-free, averaging less than $2,000.