Dear Valentine, Can You Love Me for My Credit Score?

It’s common to have a checklist in the quest for finding love. People set all sorts of criteria, both in their minds and explicitly in their online dating profiles, specifying what sort of mate or lifestyle they’re seeking. If you can’t imagine a life without your dog or cat, screen for pet lovers. If having kids is a deal breaker for you, then toss that into the mix. And as marketers remind us every Valentine’s Day, entire dating apps exist to cull potential prospects based on age, political views, religion, occupation and even height.

Yet one of the few online dating moves that still makes people squeamish is filtering prospective partners based on financial status.

It shouldn’t. Getting on the same financial page is a foundational part of relationships and marriage, so why not include money on your love list? Just know that involving money in the hunt for love limits your options and might eliminate potential partners who in many other ways could provide you with a meaningful and fulfilling relationship. For me, overall compatibility and happiness was far more important than finding a husband who would match my income.

Marrying for money is as old as marriage itself. Well, it’s really the history of marriage. It wasn’t until the 18th and 19th centuries that love matches gained wider acceptance in Western culture. Even then, financial status remained key. Novelists like Jane Austen explored the tension between pursuing economic security and following one’s heart, a dilemma that took on enormous importance at a time when women — even those who inherited great wealth — didn’t legally control their own finances in marriage.

Today, finding a mate who fulfills some financial expectations is less about reputation and more about a desire for a certain lifestyle or a partner who can seamlessly transition into your social circle. There are, naturally, apps for people seeking their financial soulmate. One is Scores, a dating app that requires users to have a credit score of at least 675 to be eligible. First of all, in terms of credit scores, that isn’t setting the bar very high. Also, a strong credit score doesn’t mean someone has a healthy financial life. It could just reflect the responsible management of significant debt. (It also indicates that, for better or worse, someone has given a dating site access to their credit report.)

Sites such as Millionaire Match emphasize prioritizing money — though it doesn’t require members to be millionaires. Others, such as The League and Raya, lean heavily on exclusivity and vet potential members to give the impression of offering a high-earning-potential dating pool.