If you’ve got $11,524 of credit card debt, good news for you! You’re officially way more dateable than someone who’s $11,525 in the red.
That’s the exact balance where the average American finds credit card debt unacceptable in a partner, according to a new survey from Finder. The site asked 2,000 people about what types of debt are the biggest dating deal breakers, and man, do things get judgy fast.
Of the major forms of household debt, credit card debt does the most damage to your dating potential, said 78% of respondents. Closely following are payday loans (77% with a $1,830 tipping point), student loans (76%, $51,000) and loans owed to family and friends (74%, $6,092). On the other end of the spectrum, people found business loans and home equity loans to be the most acceptable in a partner. Translation: Fire up those dating apps, entrepreneurial homeowners.
The fact that credit card debt, payday loans and personal loans top the list of unattractive debt makes sense, since many people see this as bad debt and a sign of poor budgeting — with potentially high interest-rate burdens to boot.
As far as student loans go, whether the balance is worth it depends so much on whether a higher degree can mean higher earning potential down the road. On the bright side, Pew Research Center data shows the median student loan borrower owes $17,000, and just one in four borrowers has a balance of $43,000 or more. So don’t sweat it, academic overachievers — you don’t have to worry about being single forever.
Whether you’re looking for love or just want to improve your financial situation, these tips can help you create a plan to pay off your debt. Hint: It starts with reining in your spending and getting organized. And even if you’re “just dating,” you shouldn’t leave important money conversations for future you to deal with later. Here are some topics you might want to broach early on — and yes, being transparent about your debt is one of them.