Is Your Date A Financial Mess?

Wish you could tell if your date is a cash connoisseur or a financial flop? Don’t worry, you’re not the only one who wishes they could. Finding your soul mate means searching for someone who has the same values as you, both in and out of the bank account. While a financial mess doesn’t need to be a deal breaker, it’s something you may want to know about the other person sooner rather than later to discover if you’re truly compatible. Might not be first date material, but if they aren’t honest with you about their finances, it makes you wonder what else they might not be telling you about.
If you feel it’s a bit too premature to ask your date to log into their online banking so you can take a peek, here are six other ways to tell if your date has made a mess of their money.

1. They Want To Go On A Walk . . . For Every Date

The idea of a romantic stroll sounds great at first. You can get to know each other better, maybe your hands will brush up against one another, with the sweet smell of romance in the air. You know what else this date idea might smell like? A lack of money. If your date always suggests you go on walks, watch movies in the basement or only go for coffee instead of dinner, they may not have much cash in tow.

2. Date on a Thursday? But Payday is Friday!

Weekday dates can be a casual way to get to know your date without staying out all night. But if your date refuses to go out with you on a Thursday, and suggests the following Friday, it might be a sign that they’ve run out of money before their next payday.

3. They’ve Mastered the ‘Fake Reach’ For the Bill

Come on, you know what I’m talking about. The bill comes to the table, and one second after you reach for the bill, they reach for it too. Even before you finish saying, “Oh no, I’ll get it,” their hand is already back in their lap. Even worse is when the cheque comes and your date is nowhere in sight. People have actually mastered this intentionally-timed bathroom trip. If your date is dining and dashing to the bathroom, it may mean they don’t have the cash to pay or are afraid their credit cards may be declined.

4. Their Phone Rings Off the Hook

Before you jump to conclusions and assume they’re talking to 8 other people, consider that a phone ringing non-stop can be a sign of debts in collections. Collectors are relentless and will call repeatedly if your date owes them money. See an 800-number on call display? Look for me in the background waiving two red flags.
Want to solidify your suspicion? Piles of unopened mail at their house are another hint that they’re neglecting their bills.

5. Their Flashy Lifestyle Doesn’t Match Their Job

Impressed by their big ride, chrome rims and leather interior? How about their great taste in designer clothes? Dig that golden tan? If you’re loving what you see, only to find out your date’s flashy lifestyle doesn’t match their job or income level, consider it a buyer beware. What someone appears to be on the outside is absolutely no reflection of what’s happening inside their bank account. In fact, it can often mean the exact opposite.

6. They’ve Got Tons of Baggage . . . Under Their Eyes

No one wants a date with a ton of baggage, and you definitely don’t want to see baggage right under their eyes. Dark circles are an indication of lack of sleep, and one of the most common reasons people can’t sleep is because of money troubles. Try and catch a glimpse of the inside of their wallet. If you see more than one or two credit cards, odds are that your date has got a money mess on the mind.

But Don’t Stress…

Many people get excited thinking they’ve met their soul mate, and then suddenly their love bubble pops once they realize they’re dating someone who has totally opposite views on money. Money conversations should happen early in a relationship, but remember,  just because someone is struggling with their finances doesn’t mean this should be a deal breaker. There are many causes for financial strain – their hours could have been cut at work, they could have taken time off to help a sick relative, or they could have been devastated financially from a previous relationship. Not everyone struggles with money because they’re irresponsible.

Despite the past, there are many ways to tell your date is trying to get on the right track financially for their future. They may have spoken with a professional, created a money plan for themselves and committed to paying down their debt and living within their means. In fact, they may be so committed to a frugal lifestyle that they’re suggesting coffee dates or have bags under their eyes from working overtime!
Have you ever dated a financial mess? Leave your story below to help others know what to watch for!

Christi Posner

Posted by Christi Posner

Christi Posner is passionate about helping people climb out of debt. Having dealt with her own personal debt, she made it her career, and now works for a non-profit credit counselling organization. She has written blogs for Gail Vaz-Oxlade, made many guest appearances on TV and radio as a personal financial expert and is the lead writer for

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