Valentine's Day spending expected to rise, but who'll admit it?

Valentine's Day spending expected to rise, but who'll admit it?

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Valentine's Day will cost couples more this year, but a third of people are more likely to say their spouse or partner is the real spender in the relationship, according to a new survey.

Men surveyed said they expect to spend an average of $380, up from $275 in 2014, while women are expected to spend $213, up from $157 last year, the American Express Spending & Saving Tracker found.

The survey also found more men view the day as an "important" time to celebrate a relationship, while more women feel it is "fun but not a major occasion."

When it comes to first dates, 49 percent of those surveyed say the man should pay, while 31 percent say the tab should be picked up by whomever asked for the date. Fourteen percent favor splitting the bill. Only one percent said a woman should foot the bill.

Meanwhile, a "Love & Money" survey conducted by SunTrust Bank revealed people are more than twice as likely to say they are the "saver" in the relationship while it's their partner who does the most spending.

More than a third say both partners are "savers," but almost half say they don't have the same spending habits as their partner.

Spending was blamed by 35 percent as the primary cause of relationship stress, with "annoying habits" taking second place at 25 percent.

Thirty-six percent admitted they do not seek the advice of their spouse or partner before making a purchase, no matter how much they spend.

Experts suggest it's better to make a "date" to talk finances sooner rather than later, before either partner makes a blunder.

"Every couple shares dreams that require an open dialogue on finances – whether it's planning for the future, opening a business together, buying a house, having a baby or taking a vacation," SunTrust spokesperson Rilla Delorier said.

Slightly more than a third of couples say they discussed finances with each other within three months of the beginning of their relationship. Forty-one percent say that talk took more than three months, and only seven percent say they've never discussed finances, the study found.

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