With online dating, the whole world of dating has changed drastically. Now in just a few clicks, you can decide if the person is worth another minute of your time, or just give up on what could potentially have been a great relationship had you met face to face. I am no expert in online dating, but unless you are looking for a quick fling on sites like http://www.justonenightstands.com/, where your main criteria would be physical, there are many things to look for in a potential match, and financial compatibility is one of them.
If you are a regular reader of The Savvy Scot, you are probably doing better than average with your finances. You like reading about money, probably earning, saving and investing it too. What if your new date is a financial wreck? Could you date someone in debt? Are there some serious money deal breakers for you?
I know I don’t really care about how much someone earn. I would rather be with someone who has a low income but doesn’t need much, and knows how to live well on a small budget, than with a high earner who is always broke and has credit card debt. We would probably fight all the time about money, and break up shortly after it started. Actually, without being too nosy, there are some signs during a first date. Guy shows up in a flashy car and is a primary school teacher? Unless he just inherited some money, or explains that this is his one splurge and he finds it worth it because XYZ, there is a problem somewhere.
In a perfect world, my perfect match would have the same money values. That means we wouldn’t mind spending on what is important to us, which for me would be travel, good eats, nice things to make life easier like good kitchen knifes and bed sheets, and quality time together. I spend more on travel every year than most people on their rent or mortgage. On the other hand, I didn’t have a car until age 29, and shop for clothes once every blue moon. It is just how I live, there is no right or wrong, but if your thing is going to the mall every Saturday and shop until you drop, you will probably get tired of me as quickly as I will of you. So what is the point in getting together in the first place?
I find money matters fascinating, and I have quite the eye to know if a potential boyfriend would be a good financial match. I told you about the guy showing up in a car that doesn’t reflect his income range, you can see the same thing with the place he picked for the date (although he really wanted to impress you on the first one, and the second is more low key), how he talks about his education, his lifestyle, if he lives alone, with roommates, with his parents… Again, there is no right answer for everyone, only the right answer for you. Most marriages end because of tensions and fights related to money, so if you start dating someone, having talks about money early on shouldn’t be taboo, and could save you both a lot of time if your priorities don’t align.