Financial compatibility: what does money have to do with love?
Our latest members’ survey asked singles to dish the dirt on whether cashflow matters when looking for romance and they came through, revealing the truth about love, money and how to blend the two.1
Love vs. money; men vs. women
Throughout history, there have been some pretty strong stereotypes about men, women and money. In much of popular culture, men are providers and bread-winners2 whilst women are only attracted to the size of male wallets.3 But just how accurate are these generalisations? Do they have any basis in reality?
The only real answer is that it is complicated. When it comes to dating, our survey participants were pretty unanimous: you don’t date for the money. 96% of male and 92% of female respondents would refuse to date someone ‘’just based on their wealth.’’
Read more: What do women want if not wealth? Find out here.
However, when it comes to financial compatibility and making a real, committed love match, the answers were more varied. 80% of men said that a potential partner’s income doesn’t matter and 92% of them would go so far as to marry someone earning less than them. The women had a very different perspective: just 30% of women rated a partner’s income level as unimportant, with 69% preferring it to be equal or higher than their own. Furthermore, just 25% of women would marry someone who earned less money than themselves.
What does this mean for modern women?
These results are particularly interesting when the question of financial independence is analysed. Again, the genders had divided views on the best way to merge a love match with one’s finances. 58% of men expected to ‘’support each other financially’’ in a relationship, while 42% required monetary independence and none wanted to be supported.
With women, the popularity of these requirements was quite different: 8% wanted to lean on their partner, 37% wanted mutual economic support and 55% craved independence. So, it would seem that the majority of women want a man with an equal or greater level of income but – crucially, for most this isn’t a matter of wanting to be supported. It is more about not having to be the one doing the supporting. It's about financial compatibility.
EliteSingles‘ resident psychologist and researcher, Dr Wiebke Neberich, thinks this is due in large part to the fact that ‘’women today have long fought for social and financial independence from men, and rightly treasure this achievement.’’ In other words, most women don’t want to hold on to their money because they are miserly or gold digging; they want to hold on to it because it is hard to become a high-earning, successful woman4 and, as a result, many prioritise their resulting independence.