Ginger is a fashionista in her late 20s — a wife and graduate student striving to have it all. She wrote this article for Consumerism Commentary, but Ginger also publishes the blog Girls Just Wanna Have Funds, and you can subscribe to the blog’s RSS feed here.
Let me preface this by stating that I am not suggesting that women marry solely for money, I am after all a believer in love and commitment as a solid foundation for marriage. However, I am suggesting that women who marry partners that are financially savvy, motivated by money and have aligned views about their attitudes to money, are indeed smarter than their counterparts who don’t when choosing a life partner. I will detail the benefits of choosing a partner that has a solid financial plan in place and uses money as a tool and not a crutch.
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Women who choose financially savvy partners fare better than their counterparts who don’t. Why? These women know that in order to have a marriage built to last that finances play a huge role in the viability of the marriage. I know it sounds like we’re discussing a corporate merger but bear with me; after all, marriage in some respects is like a business.
1969 Inc., said it best when asked for her insights to marriage,
It’s like running a corporation. A business venture. You have to go into it knowing that it could fail or it could succeed beyond your wildest dreams and make you rich… If the employees don’t share the vision, believe in the vision and work together, the endeavor will fail. Some businesses will get rich. Some will barely make ends meet. Some will never make a dime. The money does not measure success. The sense of accomplishment will come from the daily struggle… the love of what you do, working together day in and day out.
The reality is that personal finance issues are the leading cause of divorce and in order to live happily ever after, you must be on the same page as far as your finances are concerned. No, if, ands or buts about it. Capisce?
So what makes these women smarter?
Aligned financial values
When smart women meet a partner, they aren’t wooed by good looks and the smooth talk, after all those come a dime a dozen. These women are looking at how their potential partners spend money. Does he have an emergency fund? Is he current on their monthly bills such as the car payment and rent/mortgage? Does he spend more than he earns? Does he put money aside in his savings account? They’re listening keenly to understand how their potential mates relate to money. Is it a tool? Is it a crutch? They know the difference and conduct business accordingly. Should the potential mate fall into the category of the above mentioned then it’s time to say good-bye. After all, who wants a man who isn’t interested in learning how to manage his money effectively? They are in it for the long haul, not a few cheap dates.
Motivated by money to create the life they want
Smart women are up to date on the latest issues in personal finance. They understand rate chasing, investing for the long haul and understand that while they may have substantial savings, practice and embrace frugality. They look for similar if not the same qualities in their potential mates. Smart women want to be able to relate not only on a romantic level, but also on issues regarding personal finance.
A man with a plan
Who wants a man with no financial plan in place? I certainly don’t. Where does he see himself in 2 years? 5 years? 10 years? Is he thinking long or short term? That answer will determine the course of the relationship. Ideally he should be able to think past next month’s car payment and project how much he will have in his savings account by year’s end. This an expectation for smart women, not a hope or a dream, but something they demand and require in a potential mate.
Take a few minutes to let it all sink in. Gone are the days when gold diggers were secretly envied because they were able to go for the gusto and stifle high pitched screams during musty sex with a shriveled up oil tycoon. Move over and make way for women who are in control of their financial destinies and not afraid to say it. They are armed with a positive net worth and not afraid to flaunt it.
Are you a smart woman?
Updated October 21, 2015 and originally published February 19, 2008.