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Why Men Should (and Do) Prefer Money Over Looks

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What do you think a man looks for most in a woman? Looks? You're right-at least for those men older than 34 years of age. But a recent poll of men younger than 34 and resulted in a most interesting alternative.

As The Telegraph reports, a new study by found that "the majority of men aged 18 to 34 consider the finances of a potential significant other markedly more important than looks."

According to the study, 54% of the men surveyed preferred a woman's financial status over how she looked. Some speculation as to why this is the case included the importance of credit scores in building a life together for the long term.

That's a good thing, right?

You'd think that moving beyond anything other than a woman's looks as the measurement of eligibility would be a positive development. But not so for The Telegraph, which called millennial men "money-grabbing" in the article's title. Later, we're told that "it's not all bad news," at least those "money-grabbing" millennial men still like to pick up the tab on a first date and spend the most on their partners out of all age groups.

Which leads to an interesting contradiction. If these young men are "money-grabbing," why are they picking up tabs and spending more on gals? Seems like maybe they don't need the money these women make. So why place such importance on it?

Personally, I appreciate a man that can appreciate my earning potential. Why? Because it puts us on equal footing, and it shows he's thinking smartly about the future and respecting my role in it.

Financial alignment is key to long-term relationship success

A while back, I posted an article called " The Most Important Factor in Money and Marriage." I wrote:

When Robert and I were dating, we did a fun and helpful exercise together that helped us discover whether we were a good match for each other. One night, we each had a 3x5 index card on which we wrote the top ten values we thought the other had as a person.

When we were done, we compared our lists. We had some that were in common and a few that were not in common. But importantly for both of us, the things in common were big ones: money, business, and investing. (This is a good thing since the first birthday gift Robert ever gave me was an accounting class!)

At the end of the day, thing that attracted Robert and I to each other was our alignment on some of the most important things in life-money being one of them. Now, at the time, neither of us had any money to speak of! But we did have the same values, passion, and mindset around money. We knew that our commitment to financial education would result in money down the road, and we wanted to be with someone who would be a good partner, both in life and business.

So, I think it's a good thing that young men are starting to think about something other than looks. After all, they fade. My only suggestion? Think less about money now and more about money mindset. Because wealth can fade just as much as looks, if there's no financial education to protect it.

Original publish date: February 18, 2016

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