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Dating While Pursuing FI
Old 09-18-2018, 10:39 PM   #1
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Dating While Pursuing FI

I'm a 33-year-old single guy living in the NYC metro area and working really hard to reach FI in 10-15 years. I could probably happily retire single but it'd be nice to have company. But I'm having trouble finding a woman who shares my commitment to frugality (LBYM) and is either pursuing FI or could be easily converted. Most around here seem to be obsessed with spending and men who spend (fancy clothes, fancy restaurants, fancy cars, expensive shows, etc.).


Any tips on finding FI-friendly partners? And, assuming you were in my shoes, how would you figure out whether the person has compatible finances and goals? Thanks!
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Old 09-18-2018, 10:57 PM   #2
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Some of the couples we know met through the Sierra Club, and in general more couples from there seemed have retired early than other friends. Outdoor type hobbies like hiking and car camping tend to be cheap. Plus environmentalists tend to be naturally low on the consumption scale as a lifestyle choice. Good luck in your search.
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Old 09-18-2018, 11:32 PM   #3
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Stand in front of YMOYL in the library and check out whomever checks it (or books nearby) out?
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Old 09-19-2018, 04:15 AM   #4
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Start a Meetup group for frugal people and see who shows up.
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Old 09-19-2018, 04:57 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by daylatedollarshort View Post
Some of the couples we know met through the Sierra Club, and in general more couples from there seemed have retired early than other friends. Outdoor type hobbies like hiking and car camping tend to be cheap. Plus environmentalists tend to be naturally low on the consumption scale as a lifestyle choice. Good luck in your search.


I wonder if you might have a point. DW and I used to be into the outdoors before work got in the way. I like the library idea above... I’ve never been a fan of dating / matchmaking websites but that might have its place as it might help you filter through the ‘undesirables’ more efficiently?
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Old 09-19-2018, 05:49 AM   #6
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Some of the couples we know met through the Sierra Club, and in general more couples from there seemed have retired early than other friends. Outdoor type hobbies like hiking and car camping tend to be cheap. Plus environmentalists tend to be naturally low on the consumption scale as a lifestyle choice. Good luck in your search.
I also think that women in the resale shop industry might be more in line with the frugal thinking. In my area, the Sierra club has a strong political lean, so make sure that is in line with your thinking. I agree that the outdoors type tend to care less about consumption and more about preservation.
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Old 09-19-2018, 06:21 AM   #7
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I'm thinking living in NYC (one of the most expensive cities in the world) "might" have a little something to do with it?

Never been myself, but I can't imagine there are many gold diggers there.
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Old 09-19-2018, 07:48 AM   #8
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My experience, that obsession never ends. It is hard wired. Use the time you'd spend on dating and either: spend time doing free activities to weed out the gold diggers, spend time by yourself doing what you want, or do like I've done and get a second job on evenings and weekends, and get in your socialization while earning money instead of spending it.

It is a common situation for a man like yourself with his priorities in order to get married to a woman who seems ok at first but then blows rabidly through his entire life's work, and then at the end divorces him and takes whatever's left. Don't let this be you.
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Old 09-19-2018, 07:54 AM   #9
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My experience, that obsession never ends. It is hard wired. Use the time you'd spend on dating and either: spend time doing free activities to weed out the gold diggers, spend time by yourself doing what you want, or do like I've done and get a second job on evenings and weekends, and get in your socialization while earning money instead of spending it.

It is a common situation for a man like yourself with his priorities in order to get married to a woman who seems ok at first but then blows rabidly through his entire life's work, and then at the end divorces him and takes whatever's left. Don't let this be you.
what he said
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Old 09-19-2018, 08:08 AM   #10
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Why don't you get to know people first, before investing in expensive dates?

Sure, some may put on an "act," but those rarely hold up to closer inspection.
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Old 09-19-2018, 08:10 AM   #11
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Don’t kid yourself if those are signs of frugality. I used to go hiking with the Sierra Club, spent lots of time in the library and bookstore, plus I’ve loved camping. My husband and I did lots of camping when we were dating. Let me put it this way, I’m not frugal period. I used to be a spendthrift.
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Old 09-19-2018, 08:22 AM   #12
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Don’t kid yourself if those are signs of frugality. I used to go hiking with the Sierra Club, spent lots of time in the library and bookstore, plus I’ve loved camping. My husband and I did lots of camping when we were dating. Let me put it this way, I’m not frugal period. I used to be a spendthrift.


There goes the theory. Perhaps a dating classifieds in this forum
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Old 09-19-2018, 08:25 AM   #13
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Lots of good ideas but I will add don't marry or cohabit with someone thinking you can change their money views. IMO by your age that stuff is pretty hard wired and extremely difficult to change.
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Old 09-19-2018, 08:33 AM   #14
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I think you should focus on doing things you enjoy with your free time, particularly if they don't involve spending a lot of money. Volunteering for a cause you support is a good way to meet people who share your values (and are willing to spend their time doing something non-money oriented). Hanging out at clubs in NY or beach clubs on Long Island, is more likely to attract people with those interests and habits.



However, if your main focus is early retirement and frugality, it may be hard to find someone singularly committed to that goal. I'd expect finding someone with LBYM lifestyle and a commitment to a thought out savings plan would be easier.
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Old 09-19-2018, 09:00 AM   #15
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Where are you going to find these women? Sure, you live in Manhattan, but that also means about a lot more potential partners in your radius.

So if you're meeting on tinder or bars - fail.

Instead, if you're meeting through friends, or through sites with more detailed profiles Have a smart blunt female friend read your profile and give you honest feedback. (pro-tip, if your online profile name on dating sites is the same as your name here, it's not a match to your goal). Shed any pics that show you next to a car or anything that screams money.

Other things are meeting through like-minded activities (local off off off broadway theatre, indie-movies, museums - whatever floats your boat is within walking distance), there are ways, no matter who you are or what you want, to filter to the right group of potential partners before you even go on that first date.

Now, you're 33, so use the language of a 33'year old:

Don't open with words like frugal vs. fancy - you might be coming off as cheap vs. conscientious, and alienate even sensible types. o more like...sustainable living, non-material interests, shunning the commercial fads. Go hang out in brooklyn and pick up the lingo a bit.
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Old 09-19-2018, 09:52 AM   #16
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Several guys say immigrant women are where it's at. Yes, such women may come to America seeking wealth but they are often not spoiled, are hard workers, and to them any guy with decent food and a non-leaky roof is rich.
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Old 09-19-2018, 10:00 AM   #17
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I guess I would approach it this way:

When I pick you up it will be in my seven year old Camry rather than a two year old BMW. When we travel, we will go off season, stay in family owned 3-star hotels and weather permitting have a picnic for lunch. In return for this, it is my hope that by the time the kids are about 18+ we can toss the alarm clock in the trash and experience work vicariously through them.
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Old 09-19-2018, 11:00 AM   #18
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Any tips on finding FI-friendly partners? And, assuming you were in my shoes, how would you figure out whether the person has compatible finances and goals? Thanks!
Before I went out on a date with my now-husband, I already knew that he drove used hand-me-down cars. Our first date was a movie and dinner at a modestly-priced restaurant. On our second date, I offered to pay for part of it. He refused to let me. I told him that we didn't always have to dine out. I was fine with renting a movie and ordering pizza in. So that's what we did on our second date. He'd bought a home a year earlier in an older part of a big city, not lavish, but not ghetto either. Small, less than 1000 sq. ft. He didn't even have a stove and was living mostly off of sandwiches and microwaveable stuff. None of this discouraged me. We've been married for 26 years.

Bottom line, don't try too hard to impress someone in the beginning. Even if you can afford it, don't go for the expensive meals and entertainment. See if she's OK with who you are, not how much you can spend on her.

P.S. My husband is no longer living on sandwiches and microwaveable meals.
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Old 09-19-2018, 12:12 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by gwraigty View Post
Before I went out on a date with my now-husband, I already knew that he drove used hand-me-down cars. Our first date was a movie and dinner at a modestly-priced restaurant. On our second date, I offered to pay for part of it. He refused to let me. I told him that we didn't always have to dine out. I was fine with renting a movie and ordering pizza in. So that's what we did on our second date. He'd bought a home a year earlier in an older part of a big city, not lavish, but not ghetto either. Small, less than 1000 sq. ft. He didn't even have a stove and was living mostly off of sandwiches and microwaveable stuff. None of this discouraged me. We've been married for 26 years.

Bottom line, don't try too hard to impress someone in the beginning. Even if you can afford it, don't go for the expensive meals and entertainment. See if she's OK with who you are, not how much you can spend on her.

P.S. My husband is no longer living on sandwiches and microwaveable meals.
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Old 09-19-2018, 12:19 PM   #20
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Be up front with them about your goals and values. There's really no other way. Anything else is being dishonest and setting the relationship up for failure. Talking about this will cause most women to turn away, but that's just the way it goes.

Keep in mind that your FI is not in much jeopardy just by dating or having a relationship with someone. You can break those off with minimal consequence. Getting married, however, and having children, subjects you to many times greater risk. Think very carefully before getting married, and get educated about the risks. Knowing the risks, it is not something I would do (but then, I don't expect others see the world the way I do, so that's okay). I'm not sure what your eventual goal is -- a relationship or a marriage -- so I'll just throw that out there as a caution.
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