Take our quiz to find out what your money personality is
Ever heard of a money personality? It’s a broad concept that helps you understand what money means to you and what you financially value the most. Some of us are spenders, who love big brands and luxury vacations. Some are savers, who prioritise their long-term happiness above all. And others fall into entirely different categories. Ready to find out which category you’re in?
What is a money personality?
Your money personality reflects your attitude towards spending and saving. Some people love to watch the dollars build up in savings and investment pots, while others prefer to see their cash turn into experiences and belongings. Psychologists say there are seven approaches to money — but we think it can be summarized even more simply.
There’s no right or wrong personality — but understanding your weaknesses can help you take better control of your finances and reach your fiscal goals. Take this short quiz and choose the answers you relate to most.
Are you good at managing your money?
a) No. Money seems to slip away from me.
b) Yes. Every cent is accounted for.
c) Yes, but I’m relaxed about it.
d) Sometimes. I can be too generous.
Do you feel comfortable spending money?
a) I love to shop.
b) No, not even on essentials.
c) I’m happy to spend on things I need.
d) Yes — especially on other people.
You get an unexpected five-figure amount of money. What do you do with it?
a) Use all of it to treat myself.
b) Put it all in my savings account immediately.
c) Book a vacation and put the rest into savings, or pay down debt.
d) Spend it on an all-expenses-paid vacation for family and friends, or pay off a family member’s debt.
You need to replace a household appliance. What’s your approach?
a) I choose the item based on its features, regardless of price.
b) I always go for the cheapest option.
c) I shop around to find a good deal but pick the best product in my budget.
d) I don’t prioritize spending on my home, so I’ll pick based on cost.
What’s your ultimate financial goal?
a) To afford whatever I want.
b) To have a large financial safety net and reduce outgoings as much as possible.
c) To have a safety net and enjoy life sensibly.
d) To help my family and friends get what they want.
Mostly As - The Spender
You’re not afraid to enjoy your hard-earned money and seize every experience that comes your way. You’re also not averse to investing in high-quality items that will last you a long time. Your main priority is to enjoy life right now and treat yourself as much as possible — sometimes at the expense of long-term savings goals.
Spenders can struggle to reach their savings goals and can be vulnerable to building up high levels of debt with non-essential items. You may overshoot your budget and end up borrowing beyond your means. Spenders often forget to give themselves a safety net for unexpected home or vehicle repairs and retirement, or to save for certain future events like retirement.
The learning curve
For spenders, there are lots of tricks that can help you live life to the fullest without blasting through the Benjamins. Here are a few simple ones:
Use price comparison tools to find the best price on big-ticket items
Consider off-brand items
Find coupons or money-off codes
Switch to zero per cent or low-interest lines of credit to consolidate your debts
If you find it hard to save, set aside an amount as soon as your paycheck comes in. Better yet, set up an automatic transfer to your savings account — you may not even notice it’s gone. If you’re trying to save for retirement and really want to avoid taking the money back out, set up an IRA or Roth IRA.
Mostly Bs - The Saver
You’re committed to saving money for the future and feel confident you could cover almost any financial emergency. You’re unlikely to cave and buy into trends and will avoid purchases until they’re absolutely essential — and you’ll always choose the cheapest option. If you have a mortgage or other loan, you may be a little obsessive about paying it off ASAP — or may be avoiding lines of credit altogether.
Being so averse to spending and accruing any form of debt can actually negatively impact your financial health. Savers may struggle to build good credit without utilizing any form of sensible, controlled debt — making it hard to access a favorable mortgage or business loan. You may also be prone to involuntarily cheaping out. Always going for the lowest-priced option in store and online can also be less cost-effective over time.
If you’re very risk-averse, your money may be stagnating in a low-interest bank account. Overlooking any form of investment means your pension fund could decrease in real-world value due to inflation, leaving you with a surprisingly underfunded retirement.
The learning curve
The concept of good debt can be intimidating, but it’s one of the best ways to build a great FICO credit score. Spending just a small amount on a credit card and paying it off each month is a responsible way to show lenders you’re trustworthy. You could also opt for a secured credit card, or get a family member or partner to add you as an authorized user on their card.
Allowing yourself to invest in quality items helps you avoid false economies, and can help you spend less frequently. What’s more cost-effective over five years — a $10 pair of sneakers that last six months, or a $60 pair that stay in great condition?
Mostly Cs – The Balanced
You’ve got a healthy approach to money. You know life is for living but prioritize saving for the future and spending on quality items that will last. You avoid excessive debt, but you’re not afraid to borrow money sensibly that you’re confident you can repay — such as to buy a house, complete home renovations or to improve your business.
For balanced spenders and savers, the biggest issue is often a lack of awareness. While debt is unlikely to be an issue, your savings could be outpaced by inflation — but you’re not confident enough to begin investing.
The learning curve
Speak to a financial advisor or accountant about how you could get even more out of your money. Boosting your financial education will help you make even wiser financial decisions and continue to enjoy your income sensibly.
Mostly Ds - The Sharer
You love to share your money to create experiences with others. You’re also happy to give your money to others, even if you’re not extremely well off. To you, wealth is nothing if others can’t enjoy it with you.
You’re generous — but maybe to a fault. Sharers love to help people out, but they can miss out on enjoying their money. In the worst cases, your generosity could prevent you building up a healthy amount of savings or buying the things you genuinely need. It can also mean you support others’ bad financial habits by giving them a safety net they haven’t sacrificed to build.
The learning curve
Don’t feel bad for investing in yourself and your future first. A comfortable home and future savings will help you continue sharing experiences with loved ones for as long as possible.
If you’re guilty of propping your family up financially, try and scale back your contributions. You’ll help them learn how to better manage their money, and you’ll get to spend on the things you love. And if you’re easily influenced into spending excess money on experiences, find more affordable ways to enjoy quality time with loved ones.
Charlie Barton is a writer at Unbiased. He has been writing about personal finance and investing since 2017, with extensive knowledge of platforms and products. Charlie has a first-class degree from the London School of Economics.