In our study on finances and relationships, we asked respondents what financial traits they found attractive in a potential romantic partner. It turns out that every generation has their own unique preferences. Here are the top five money habits that millennials find attractive.
1. Setting financial goals
Given that millennials are still in their twenties and thirties, it makes sense that they value setting financial goals more than any other money habit. 72% of millennials want a partner who does this.
At this stage in life, most people haven’t hit their peak in terms of their careers or personal success. That’s understandable, and no one expects you to be at the top of the mountain yet. What’s important is that you're pursuing financial goals, even if it’s something as simple as saving a certain amount in your bank account every month.
It shows that you have a desire to improve your situation. That’s much more attractive than floating around aimlessly with the exact same life at 35 as you had at 25.
2. Following a budget
Following a budget is basically #adulting101, and it’s an attractive trait for multiple reasons:
Having a budget demonstrates that you’ve given some thought to managing your finances.
When you follow a budget, it shows that you can be disciplined about your spending habits.
Someone who stays on top of their financial situation is less likely to tell you at the last minute, “By the way, dinner’s on you tonight.”
This trait was a close second: 71.5% wanted their romantic partner to have a budget.
3. Going to work full-time
A full-time job is a good sign to potential romantic partners. It indicates stability, both from a personal and a financial perspective, and it’s something 71% of millennials want in a partner.
Your employment status isn’t just important because it allows you to support yourself. It can also have a significant effect on your mental health. Studies have shown that unemployment can lead to much higher anxiety and stress levels, neither of which are appealing to romantic partners.
4. Not relying on mom and dad for cash
If you have your own place and you don’t need money from your parents to survive, you’ll have a leg up on the competition in the dating world. 66.2% of millennials value financial independence in the people they date.
This is one of those traits that isn’t very common among millennials yet. In our research, we found that only 37% of millennials have achieved financial independence. The average millennial doesn’t reach that point until the age of 31.
Of course, the good news is that if you are financially independent, you’ll stand out from your peers that much more.
5. Making payments on time
Your payment history is the most significant factor in determining your credit score. That’s reason enough to take it seriously. But if you need more motivation, it’s also a money habit that 65.8% of millennials like to see.
Just like following a budget, paying your bills on time is a sign of financial responsibility. It’s especially important for those looking for a long-term relationship because people get annoyed when their partner constantly incurs late fees (especially if you combine your finances and you’re both responsible for those fees).
The money habits millennials want
There’s nothing particularly challenging about any of these attractive money habits.
Anybody can set financial goals, follow a budget, and pay their bills on time; you just need to put in the effort. Finding full-time work and achieving financial independence can be more difficult, but they’re also important steps in every young adult’s life.