Dating advice for Young People

Posted: March 28, 2007 in Blogging, blogroll, Blogs I'm reading!, Budget, Friends, Life, Relationships, Saving, Spending

I’m not going to say that I’m perfect, or that I’ve never made any dating mistakes, but there are a few things that young people do that hurt them financially, and they can be corrected easily.

1. If you are trying to make sure you are financially literate, why would you want to date someone who isn’t. I understand that they may be smokin’ hot, but is that really enough? (hint: no it isn’t) Avoid anybody who doesn’t understand your goals, or who is stupid about money. Believe me, you will thank yourself later.

2. Let’s be adults. If you are young, you probably don’t have a lot of money. Neither does the young person you are dating. Now that that has been said, we can move on to other things. If you can only afford McDonalds, don’t suggest Stewart Anderson’s. You are interested in dating the person, not their money, right?

Also, in this age of equality, girls, don’t feel like you have to make the guy pay for everything, and guys, don’t feel like you have something to prove by trying to pay for everything. Special occasions aside, there is nothing wrong with going “dutch”, where you each pay your own way, or with one person paying for dinner and the other paying for the entertainment, or even alternating who pays for dates. In the best of cases, you may eventually marry this person, and all the money will come out of the household anyways. In the worst of cases, you are saving by not spending on someone who isn’t worth your sacrifice.

3. There are plenty of cheap or free things to do. Going to the movie theater is not one of them. Also, day dates (great for spring and summer breaks from school) are usually far cheaper than evening dates. There’s nothing wrong with this, as long as you are enjoying the company of whoever you are dating.

4. This is really the most important, but I will go into the least detail. KIDS ARE EXPENSIVE!!! There are any number of ways to avoid having kids, pick one that works for your beliefs. I guarantee you that nothing will screw up a young person’s budget quicker than having an unplanned child.

I’m sure there are many more ideas, and if you have some, feel free to comment, or email me!

  1. […] (Financially Sound) Dating Advice For Young People In short, dumping a C-note on your date when you’re young is not much different than tossing cash up in the air. (@ finance 4 youth) […]

  2. Bill says:

    Those are great points. I’ve run into #1 a lot, and it’s taken me a long time to learn A) how to ask those questions and B) realize that no matter how much I think someone might change to understand my goals, they won’t.

    I’m one of the lucky ones that has goals and plans for the little bit of money I do have. And I’m certainly happy to go out for entertainment and dates, life is too short to not splurge once in a while, but when the other party wants to splurge all the time it’s not going to work out.

    I think another point to touch on is travel. I’m not a big traveler other than the yearly vacation, and that’s generally within driving distance. So, for those of you with goals that don’t include that, don’t expect to be happy with someone (or them happy with you) that wants to jet-set once per month.

  3. Wil says:


    Spot on about travel! I’ll admit that the wife and I do tend to overspend on vacation, but we only take one a year, and we budget for it.

  4. Adam Lehman says:

    I just convinced zenhabits to write an article on cheap date ideas (im a single, college guy so money is something i have a lot of). This article gives some great ideas.

  5. Wil says:


    I was not aware of this post. Thanks for pointing it out. Personally, I think the blogosphere has gotten something wrong about the term “cheap”. I don’t mean to pick on anyone specific, but cheap to me implies giving something up. Especially when dating, I don’t think you should give anything up. In dating, I believe I am there to enjoy the company of someone who could be special. Hopefully they feel the same way; if they do, it doesn’t really matter where you are, as long as you are enjoying it.

    Once again, thanks for pointing out the Zen Habits post.


  6. Bank says:

    Those are great points. I’ve run into #1 a lot, and it’s taken me a long time to learn A) how to ask those questions and B) realize that no matter how much I think someone might change to understand my goals, they won’t.

    • Wil says:

      In my experience, people don’t change. Ever. That being said, I sort of believe that if they did, I wouldn’t be interested in them, since there is something different. It makes sense, but not in as short a form as I’m using for this comment!

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