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Learning, Sharing, and Teaching => Ask a Mustachian => Topic started by: C. K. on November 02, 2013, 07:16:39 PM

Title: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: C. K. on November 02, 2013, 07:16:39 PM
I'm looking for stories. Were both you and spouse frugal before you met? Were you both not frugal then gradually became so after marriage? Did one of you convert the other?

If this topic has been done already (I couldn't find it), point me to the link and I can delete this one.

Thanks.

- CK

Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: NinetyFour on November 02, 2013, 07:25:37 PM
Haven't yet met her or him!
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Honest Abe on November 02, 2013, 07:51:37 PM
She's frugal. She's always been frugal and grew up that way due to her parents. She had a Roth and Savings account when we met and it made my jaw drop when I saw her acct. balance for the first time. She definitely inspired me to do better and get my life together. So I married her.  :)

Did I mention she can cook?
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: HappierAtHome on November 02, 2013, 07:54:09 PM
He was frugal. I spent 100% of my income. Was sort of set up by my sister, his friend.

He didn't actively convert me, it just kind of happened. Now I'm definitely more extreme than he is, but he's pretty great.

I'm definitely on the side of "pick someone who is at least open minded, they don't have to be frugal already". Money is just one of many, many issues you have to work together on in a relationship.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: brewer12345 on November 02, 2013, 08:08:40 PM
DW and I met when we were sophomores in college.  We were both living in the same cooperative dorm/dining hall run by students with co-ed cattle showers.  I was too young and dumb to be looking for a partner with frugality in mind, so I guess I got lucky.  Looking back on it now, that environment was a perfect way to screen out the high maintenance and finicky.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Frankies Girl on November 02, 2013, 08:14:58 PM
Met my husband at work. We are both graphic designers, and while we no longer work together, it's nice that we share so much in common as we can bitch about technical difficulties with our jobs to each other and know exactly what the other one is talking about.

He wasn't crazy with money, but not that super either when we first met. His parents were really stupid with money, and taught him nothing and pretty much everything he knows now, he's learned from me. He's much better now, and knows how to comparison shop and is in general good with saving. He has had some occasional lapses in spending on things where he just doesn't think, but he tries to be more conscious of not blowing money mindlessly. He definitely is great with delayed gratification so he'll save up for things, and does major research before purchase now, and those were a biggie for me.

I don't spend much on myself personally, so I have to constantly remind myself that it's okay for him to do so and I'm the weird one that doesn't like to buy things.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: iamlindoro on November 02, 2013, 08:24:00 PM
I met my SO in a charitable running group.  She's not frugal, but she's come a long way and I still have hope that she might someday be.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Norrie on November 02, 2013, 08:46:45 PM
I met my husband by writing a fan letter to my favorite band in 1994. He's the guitarist. This makes me sound like a huge groupie, but I wasn't. Promise.
We've both been coming to frugality at about the same rate over the past three and a half years. Neither of us was good with money (I was almost certainly worse than him), and neither of us was taught anything about it as kids. He's more frugal than I am in some ways, and I'm more so than him in others. I think that we balance each other out well.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Ms Betterhome on November 02, 2013, 09:31:33 PM
We met at a party, introduced by a mutal friend. She thought we would like each other - we did!

We were both comparatively frugal: he had already bought his apartment & an investment property, and was finishing a degree he was paying for up front. I was finishing my PhD while living off little bits of contract work and sessional lecturing contracts ( aka adjunct lecturing).

 I had just decided to 'learn about money' & cleared my credit card debt (forever) when we got together. Even so we were pretty spendy for the first couple of years - we went out to clubs or restaurants every couple of weeks, and often got takeout when we ate at his place. It wasn't until we decided to buy a place together that we got seriously frugal. I was fortunate enough to get a reasonably academic senior position as soon as I was awarded my PhD, but continued to budget as if I were a student with an allergy to debt.

 I think we both had it in us already, we just needed the motivation to go hardcore. His apartment was too small for two, and we both wanted a garden & a dog ( we have both now, and love them as much as we had hoped). We are very different people in lots of ways, but totally aligned on the frugality front.

Edited to add: we were in our mid 30s when we met, which I think made a difference in how we have negotiated things like budgets; and our individual wants & needs vs shared goals as a couple. I'm certainly way better at having 'big' conversations now than I was in my 20s.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Deano on November 02, 2013, 10:12:41 PM
I have a frugal spouse?
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Nords on November 02, 2013, 10:28:59 PM
I was too young and dumb to be looking for a partner with frugality in mind, so I guess I got lucky.  Looking back on it now, that environment was a perfect way to screen out the high maintenance and finicky.
Same here.

I met my spouse during my sophomore year of college when she needed a chemistry tutor.  I helped her get from a solid "F" to a low "B".  She's been paying that back for over 30 years now.

She caught me at a teachable moment when I was tired of running out of money.  She also knew lots of cheap ways & places to have fun in the local area, so we did.  Once we started saving money together, I never looked back.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Nudelkopf on November 03, 2013, 01:50:49 AM
Haven't yet met her or him!
Or maybe you have :P
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: kt on November 03, 2013, 01:05:36 AM
during my first year at uni. our first date ended with pizza from the market eaten sat on the kerb. that was a key moment for me! it was so chilled, fun and not what your told to do on a first date. another key moment in terms of frugality was the first time he mentioned something was or wasn't in his budget. that definitely made me feel more comfortable. i am frugal but was, like others, too young to be actively looking for anyone like that so i guess i too hit lucky. :D
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: gooki on November 03, 2013, 01:06:17 AM
Through various university friends parties. I was less frugal back then, she was still living at home.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: SauseBoss on November 03, 2013, 07:00:10 AM
I'm only 23 in Toronto, so I'm still looking!
On another note, it isn't easy putting all these ideas into practice in such a high cost of living city.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: sleepyguy on November 03, 2013, 07:07:35 AM
Haha, yeah Toronto is super expensive!  I used to live near the Beaches area (Woodbine).

I met my SO/DW playing beach volleyball (hey it's free!)... I was TERRIBLE with money... she's always been great with it.

Consider myself very fortunate in life and meeting her is top of the list.

I'm only 23 in Toronto, so I'm still looking!
On another note, it isn't easy putting all these ideas into practice in such a high cost of living city.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: davisgang90 on November 03, 2013, 11:54:53 AM
My wife was fairly frugal when we met in college.  We became less frugal as a couple and are becoming more frugal together.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Cecil on November 03, 2013, 12:25:40 PM
We shared a class in university.

I knew she was frugal from the way she talked, but it wasn't until we moved in after 2 years together that I found out she had saved up $20k (at the age of 22 while going to school full-time).

Then we did the supremely irresponsible thing and merged our finances and bought a house together before we got married. Ah, the folly of youth. At least it all worked out in the end. :)
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: ch12 on November 03, 2013, 12:31:38 PM
Haven't yet met her or him!

Ditto. I wish that guys were more receptive to the idea. I started out in 2009 by being really happy about Jacob on ERE and my nonconsumerist friend who loves Into the Wild and rejects society's obsession with material things totally made fun of me for an hour/infinity. He's never stopped cracking jokes about it. He's a cool guy and he and his girlfriend are doing Teach for America, so it's not like he's an i-banker or anything.

From another one of my posts on the Mr. Money Mustache forums:
https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/welcome-to-the-forum/mustachianism-almost-a-religion/msg75403/#msg75403 (https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/welcome-to-the-forum/mustachianism-almost-a-religion/msg75403/#msg75403)
Quote
One has agreed that early retirement is a worthy goal and something he's interested in pursuing when he's actually making money. He uses his bike or his own two legs for most things and minimizes his car use for financial and environmental reasons.

Those things are all true, and he's really happy that at Cambridge (UK) he doesn't have to use a motor at all to get around. I wasn't successful in getting him to be serious about it.

He'd heard about ERE and he said, "Oh yeah, that guy who saved all of his money and never spends it?"

ME: "Not exactly. If he never spent money, he'd be Mark Boyle."

[Discussion of moneyless existence ensues and I tell him to read the Moneyless Manifesto]

And another excerpt from me:
https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/ask-a-mustachian/really-strange-conversation-with-a-mustachian-friend-who-hates-mmm/
Quote
GL is a very dear friend of mine, but I was absolutely flabbergasted by the idea that he would hate MMM, who espouses the antimaterialism/anticonsumption and pro-freedom/pro-biking attitudes that GL is known for.

I'm not putting in the entire conversation, but GL goes on to say that he likes living in NYC and that he doesn't want to sit in a hacienda/farm for 40 years. These, to me, were valid points but he acted as if MMM was attacking GL's lifestyle...of low consumption and lots of fun experiences! Since that's what Mustachianism means to me, I was really confused.

#1 and 2 grew up with me. GL didn't; we met studying abroad in Ecuador and spent weekends traveling and having adventures together. Even though none of these guys has had a conversation with me similar to: "yes, we are now making decisions about being life partners. We both believe in financial austerity in our personal life and will only spend on things or experiences of real value", all of them are close enough friends that I felt safe pitching an off-the-beaten-path philosophy. No takers, except for a halfhearted buy-in from 2, and that's because he treats everything (including Soylent :( )as an interesting philosophical mind experiment.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: MrsPete on November 03, 2013, 12:38:27 PM
Met at work.  We attended the same (large) university, but we never met as students.

He was already thrifty in that he was already investing and depositing into a 401K, already thinking of long-term savings.  He quickly opened my eyes to what was possible if we started putting away a little bit of money from an early age, and as soon as I graduated and started working full-time, the two of us started saving a good percentage of our salary. 

I was already thrifty in day-to-day things such as watching prices at the grocery store, cooking nice meals instead of eating out, buying used clothing.  He had been shopping at the most expensive grocery store in town, thought coupons were for poor people, etc.  I surprised him by showing him it was possible to live much more cheaply than he had as a bachelor. 
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: teen persuasion on November 03, 2013, 12:59:34 PM
We met in college.  A personal event got us thinking about moving out of the dorms and into an apartment together, and we realized that we could rent a nice apartment for 12 months and cook our own food for less than paying R&B for 8 months (and getting kicked out for holidays and breaks).  He showed me how easy it was to find jobs on campus, I showed him how outrageous it was to pay the minimum only on his credit card bills and carry a balance.  We were still near campus, so we rarely used a car.  In fact, I gave my car back to my parents when I realized what a costly pain it was to deal w/ parking tickets - parking changed sides of the road at 4pm on Wednesdays, and I had a lab from 3:30 - 4:30 on Wednesdays, so it was damned if you do (switch early), damned if you don't (wait to switch after lab).

He's not really interested in optimizing our finances; he's happy to let me do all the work, and occasionally complain that he'd like to spend more freely.  He does recognize that we wouldn't be nearly as comfortable as we are (on our low income) if I didn't run a tight ship, though.  Especially w/ 5 kids.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Zaga on November 03, 2013, 01:20:20 PM
DH isn't super frugal, but he's okay.  He was in pretty dire financial straights when we married, and tells people that he married me to be his household CFO.  Or at least he tells people that whenever I start going on about finances :-P

We met on the side of a battlefield in the 12th century.  We're medieval re-enactors, and both like going to events like the war where we met.  Our first date was a week after war, we went to the after party at a mutual friend's house.  Many of our dates are still frugal :-)
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: mm1970 on November 03, 2013, 02:20:24 PM
We met in the Navy, a few months after I graduated from college (he is two years older).

We were both relatively frugal.  We both grew up in families that had to budget, and did not buy things on credit.  My family was poorer than his. 

We both went to college on ROTC scholarships.  He graduated debt-free, I still had some debt for room and board. (The difference between being middle class and lower class.)

We both started saving money right out of college, though we did have times of spending more than we should - we still did not go into credit card debt.  We did, however, eat out a lot in our 20's.

I "rediscovered" frugality in my early 30's.  It all started with needing to lose weight, learning to cook, and reading about frugality in the LA Times, of all things.  I believe the LA Times article was about The Simple Living Network.  It led me to The Complete Tightwad Gazette.  And the rest is history.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: C. K. on November 03, 2013, 03:18:58 PM
Thanks, everyone, for your stories! You are all very interesting people.

This thread is not just some weird internet version of a Peeping Tom (well, maybe it is). I started this topic for the following reasons:

1. Because I'm genuinely interested in who we all are.
2. To discover if there must be some kind of frugality pattern in people before they set up house together or they are doomed to be extravagant spenders for life. [That doesn't seem to be the case.]
3. To give those whining want-to-be-married-but-can't-find-someone-who-would-like-an-inexpensive-date-so-I-guess-I'll-just-give-up singles on the forum a glimmer of hope.



Please continue.
-CK

P.S. Deano, if you look around and there is no frugal spouse, then the frugal spouse is you. :D
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Koala0924 on November 03, 2013, 07:57:05 PM
Current DH and I grew up near each other, and were friends all through high school. I would never date him, but always really liked him. We lost touch, for a variety of reasons, and went our separate ways. I met and married a wonderful man, but wedded bliss didn't last long due to cancer. At 27 I found myself a widow, that time period was the hardest I've ever had to endure. I not only lost my husband, I nearly lost myself.

I had been frugal prior to DH1 passing away, but I was a mess in all ways following his death. Eventually, I started putting myself back together and ended up reconnecting with current DH. DH was not frugal in anything when we met, and I wasn't either for the first part of our relationship. I have rediscovered my frugality muscles in the past 2 years and DH is building his own. He doesn't really believe we can accomplish the things I think we can, but I do. I see us becoming more and more frugal.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: expatartist on November 03, 2013, 08:15:11 PM
I first saw DH in a Korean cafe, in a university part of town where we were teaching at the time. Wondered, "who is that handsome guy?" He was gearing up to leave for China; I was scheming an escape to Cambodia. We bumped into one another at a hole-in-the-wall bar later that week. Needless to say, we postponed our plans for a while to see if we'd work out first ;) Our priorities were similar in that travel was important; the adventure of discovering new things every day in the culture where we lived; the challenges of everyday life, etc.

Frugality to an extent was determined by our lifestyle and priorities, but took different forms. I thought we were being frugal, but we weren't saving well, or consistently...What's really helped since finding MMM is rediscovering the power of saving, which has 100% changed my attitude to my day job, and working life in general. His, too.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: mrsggrowsveg on November 04, 2013, 06:49:25 AM
We met at the brewery where I worked full-time during college and he worked a few nights a week to pay off his mortgage in addition to his "real job".  We were both bartenders and didn't really like each other at first.  I was spending all of my income and he was really frugal.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: lizfish on November 04, 2013, 07:43:20 AM
I met mine at work (Christmas party - don't ask!) I don't think either of us ever thought of ourselves as frugal, until we talk to other people about money. A lot of the people we know are up their eyes in mortgages, credit card debt and loans from parents. We don't always agree about money, and we choose to manage it differently on a month-to-month basis. But we've never been wasteful (well we are compared to MMM, but not compared to the normal sukkas) and always put money aside or in the mortgage when there was extra rather than finding an excuse to spend it. We're lucky that we're so similar in outlook to money, because I've seen what it's like for couples when one is a big spender and the other isn't - it's really hard. And where they're both spenders? Even harder.

Having said all that, growing the 'stache is a whole new level of 'not wasteful' for us. We found ourselves in the bathroom with a bucket last night trying to work out how much a shower costs us! ;-)
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: oldtoyota on November 04, 2013, 08:02:08 AM
We met in grad school. Spouse was on degree three with. no. debt. Our school had a rule that we could not hold jobs outside of our assistantships. Thankfully, my future spouse told me to pay that no mind. I got a job and was able to get through my second year with no debt. I did have school debt for the first year and paid it off early.

When we were at a party, he brought homemade cookies and then washed dishes for the host/hostess. I figured he was a keeper based on that, and he then proved it many more times over.

Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: lackofstache on November 04, 2013, 10:57:29 AM
We met at work, though we were both in the same school as well. We were both fairly frugal out of necessity. We did okay seperately, but have gotten much better together.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Bruised_Pepper on November 04, 2013, 12:23:18 PM
Hmm...so meet at work or college.  In other words, people around here are only hooking up when they're forced to be around other people?
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: iamlindoro on November 04, 2013, 12:33:09 PM
Hmm...so meet at work or college.  In other words, people around here are only hooking up when they're forced to be around other people?

I would argue that there is little variation here from how most people meet significant others.  "We met in college" doesn't mean they were confined to a classroom, they were just both in college, and met at a social function!  MOST people don't meet their spouses at bars/other expensive functions.

http://voices.yahoo.com/top-5-ways-people-meet-their-spouses-significant-7031616.html

Quote
The top 5 ways to meet people for "Echo Boomers" (aged 18-27, which is my age bracket at my current age of 26, and I was 24 when I met my fiance) the most frequent way that people meet is via school, at 34%. Following is via work at 15%, through friends at 9%, social activities with friends at 8%, and 4% of "Echo Boomers" meet at a bar. The least popular way to meet someone is via a dating service (not online dating), at less than 1%.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Bruised_Pepper on November 04, 2013, 12:37:32 PM
Hmm...so meet at work or college.  In other words, people around here are only hooking up when they're forced to be around other people?

I would argue that there is little variation here from how most people meet significant others.  "We met in college" doesn't mean they were confined to a classroom, they were just both in college, and met at a social function!  MOST people don't meet their spouses at bars/other expensive functions.

I'm not suggesting it's different from the population at large, it's just interesting seeing the recurring theme here. 
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Mississippi Mudstache on November 04, 2013, 12:50:06 PM
Hmm...so meet at work or college.  In other words, people around here are only hooking up when they're forced to be around other people?

Nope, I met my spouse on eHarmony. I had been through 5 years of college without finding "the one". I was in my first job, in a very rural area, and the pickin's were slim hefty hard to find. My future wife was a junior in college when we met and lived about 2 hours away. We got married the month she graduated, about 3 1/2 years ago.

We both definitely had a frugal streak from the very beginning. Our first date was dinner at a deli and then a walk in the park. Our second date was watching movies at her apartment. Our third date was a football game that she was given tickets for. The commuting was the most expensive part of dating her, by far.

The funny thing was, we were frugal in different ways. She is the kind of person who would pick up a $5 item in the grocery store, then change her mind and decide to put it back before checking out. But she never had quite as much rationality about big-ticket items. She almost demanded that I replace my '70s vintage couch when we got married, even though we absolutely did not have the money after paying for rings and the honeymoon. (Her grandmother saved the day by replacing her living room furniture and giving us her barely-used and much-more-modern loveseat). The salesman talked her into a $2000 extended warranty when she bought a used Prius, even though I was adamant that she didn't need it (it expired this year and we never once used it).

I, on the other hand, have always had the exact opposite problem: I tend to optimize the big purchases, while ignoring the little stuff that adds up into big expenses. We work well together and have strengthened each other's frugal tendencies. She doesn't care much for the "big picture" stuff, but she does most of the grocery shopping and feeds our family for about $300/month. She cloth diapers (her idea) and shops at thrift stores for our clothes. I manage our taxes, investments, and any big ticket items, like cars, furniture, renovations, etc. We each have control over the part of our finances for which we are best suited. Works out nicely.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: CommonCents on November 04, 2013, 01:00:08 PM
Post college, both played on the same soccer team for an adult sports league.  It was our college alum team (plus some friends and family).  I had played before law school, he joined after I left, then we met when I was back in the city and rejoined.  He was 4 years up in college from me, and we discovered later we had some friends in common (I dated a fraternity brother of his throughout most of college and was good friends with others). 

Our first dates weren't so frugal.  I had a number of folks up to my parent's lake house for a holiday weekend and we stayed up really late talking like we were young'uns.  Our first official date was Thursday of that week, drinks out at the harbor followed by dinner.  Second date was Saturday, again dinner.  Sunday we went sailing (free, with my membership).  Thereafter...I think some dinners out, but just more spending time together.

He was saving more than I - but has some bigger blind spots.  For example, due in large part to a family gift, he had a paid-off mortgage and lived simply, thus amassing for his salary some very solid savings.  (Err, that and getting college+grad school largely paid for helped tremendously.  I had maybe $60K in college debt and $180K in grad school debt to pay back.)  But, he likes to eat out and eat take out rather than ever cooking at home.  I've taught him how to grocery shop carefully with coupons and sales.  I liked to travel a bit more (albeit relatively cheaply).  I'm more apt to buy more clothes - but I work much harder to get them fairly discounted.  I had no car - but his was pretty reasonable - a cheap, paid off 2002 Honda Civic bought used he would use just for driving to soccer games and his mom 30 minutes away (I'd take the bus 2 hrs to visit my parents). 
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: nawhite on November 04, 2013, 01:37:07 PM
Junior year of college, she was the lifeguard who checked me out for a concussion when a metal pipe fell on my head on the pool deck. I asked her out soon after.

As for the frugality thing, I think I just kinda forced the frugality on her after we graduated and it somehow took for both of us. In school we would go on expensive dates and dinner and drinks and shows etc. And then I learned what she'd have for student loans after graduation... She got out of school with over $160k in student loans. I just said "we are going to pay $3000 per month towards these loans." And it wasn't really a discussion. Given what we were making at the time it meant we had to be pretty darn frugal but as long as the loan money came out first, she just accepted that we only had X dollars per month left over and would budget effectively based on that number.

As we've gotten better jobs and paid off loans, I've just set up our bank accounts so that money is always coming out before we really see the account balance. We now are putting money into 401k, Roth IRA , Mortgage, Employee Stock Purchase Plan, and some leftover low interest student loans. The amount that ends up leftover to go towards the checking account has remained pretty constant and my wife just accepts that that is the amount of money we have (its not much compared to how much we make). When she asks if we can afford something, we look at the checking account balance together and, since we keep the balance low, it acts like a speed limiter.

I'm pretty sure that if I had never put my foot down about that student loan, we'd both be spending at a level much more normal for our income level.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Ms Betterhome on November 04, 2013, 02:13:58 PM
I didn't reflect on family background in my first post, but I think it has made a difference to how we del with our money as a couple. Both my partner and I had parents whose first baby was a college 'surprise'. My folks were academics, his mum was a librarian & his dad was a schoolteacher; and both our mums stayed home with the kids for the early years. My mum was into health food, and made her own yogurt, and cooked everything from scratch - not unusual in the early 70s.

Basically, we both had fairly standard frugal 70s childhoods, which focused on sharing experiences, not status buying. I think it's easier living this way as an adult - it feels 'normal'.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: pachnik on November 04, 2013, 03:03:13 PM
I met my husband at a social group brunch for people with a particular health problem.   

He's better at not spending here and there during the day and I am better at long-term financial planning so we work well together. 
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: avonlea on November 04, 2013, 03:52:40 PM
We were both frugal in different ways before meeting the October of our senior year in college. I was impressed by his voluntary simplicity but more by his kindness. We started dating in December, got engaged in April, married the following October. Frugality is wise, love is kind of stupid.  It's been great!

Actually, now that I think about it, he was definitely more frugal than I was.  I didn't care about status symbols and was used to living as a poor college student.  I guess I was just pretty malleable.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: ender on November 04, 2013, 04:46:39 PM
3. To give those whining want-to-be-married-but-can't-find-someone-who-would-like-an-inexpensive-date-so-I-guess-I'll-just-give-up singles on the forum a glimmer of hope.

Thanks... I think?

:)
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: ch12 on November 04, 2013, 05:27:26 PM
3. To give those whining want-to-be-married-but-can't-find-someone-who-would-like-an-inexpensive-date-so-I-guess-I'll-just-give-up singles on the forum a glimmer of hope.

Thanks... I think?

:)

I don't want to be married, actually; you give up a ton of independence. I have enough low level bickering in my pseudo-household with my best friend and she's really laid back. I've definitely dated guys who were really high strung (like me) and probably would not be good choices.

I'd settle for finding a boyfriend (with no thoughts of marriage) who voluntarily wanted to wander around the parks next to my house with me.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Bruised_Pepper on November 04, 2013, 05:31:32 PM
I don't want to be married, actually; you give up a ton of independence. I have enough low level bickering in my pseudo-household with my best friend and she's really laid back. I've definitely dated guys who were really high strung (like me) and probably would not be good choices.

I'd settle for finding a boyfriend (with no thoughts of marriage) who voluntarily wanted to wander around the parks next to my house with me.

...marry me.  I mean, don't.  You know what I mean.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Caoineag on November 04, 2013, 08:49:19 PM
Met in college at the ROTC barbecue, the only source of free food on campus at that time due to it being move in weekend.

I was paying my own way through college using jobs, loans and scholarships and I wanted to run up as little debt as possible and he was too cheap to go buy food. Weren't looking for frugal (okay, we weren't looking period) but neither of us are idiots. When we found someone who we didn't want to strangle after spending a whole day together with, we knew better than to let them get away. Everything else, we have just figured out together along the way.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Osprey on November 05, 2013, 09:35:18 AM
Hmm...so meet at work or college.  In other words, people around here are only hooking up when they're forced to be around other people?

In our first year at med school the professor told us to look around the room and then he said, "There is a very good chance that your future partner is sitting right here."
Everyone laughed at him.
Ten years later, I find myself sitting with my partner (who was in that room) and facebook stalking the weddings of our classmates, many of whom married each other...

I was brought up frugal by immigrant parents. He is oblivious/avoidant about money but finally beginning to come around, especially since I started getting broody.
:)
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: KulshanGirl on November 05, 2013, 09:52:12 AM
I will be looking to meet a new, hopefully frugal companion before too much longer I think.  My guess is that it will end up being some local single dad that I meet through match.com or on the playground, or I'll run into an old flame somewhere, or maybe I'll even throw down in the personals section here.  Heh.  Marriage isn't really something I'm looking for, although I'm not going to say never.  I'll be looking for a few other attributes above frugality, to be honest, but it would be preferable that he's not totally stoopit about finances.  I live in a pretty sustainability-minded town/area, so chances are good.  :)
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: hlca on November 05, 2013, 02:37:49 PM
My wife and I met at a bar/club.  I went up to talk to her and she was receptive.  She probably wasn't very frugal at the time we met, but I've been working on her for a few years.  She's getting into the right mindset.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: C. K. on November 14, 2013, 06:41:58 PM
Thanks for the stories everyone. More, please.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: chasesfish on November 14, 2013, 07:42:36 PM
Nothing about how we met was frugal, she was an acquaintance of an ex girlfriend and I know it involved AOL instant messenger, alcohol, and her dorm room freshman year...long before internet dating became formal.

She was always frugal and I was always so interested in investing (and figured out that NOT having money created stress), I quickly figured out the habits it would take to have money.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: iris lily on November 14, 2013, 10:03:45 PM
He was in grad school and was very frugal, but had a newish car, a nice but typical 2 BR apartment (that he shared with another frugal guy.) Ok, here's what really impressed me prior to financial disclosure: each night he cooked a real dinner, set the table with a plate and cutlery, and ate dinner like a civilized person.

Me--I was grazing things from the microwave and eating in front of the tv, like an uncivilized student. Only I wasn't the student, he was.

On the financials: he had houses that he owned and rented out. After a while, I found out how many of them he owned free and clear --2 of the 3. I was on my 2nd professional job and back in those days people didn't have students loans. So I graduated from college with no debt, had a car that was paid for, and was saving money at the rate of--I specifically remember this: $500/month. Then I bought a house and my savings rate went down, ugh.

Anyway, we were both frugal. Men who have to spend money were an immediate turn off to me.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: SisterX on November 15, 2013, 02:24:05 PM
I love the story of how we met.  Technically we met once at a party before this, but I didn't notice him so I don't think that counts.  The better one is when I called him an asshole.  Seriously.  I was on my second semester at a new school (I'd gone to community college for my first couple of years) and didn't know too many people still.  I was also in a new dorm due to a horrible roommate situation and only sort of knew one guy down on the first floor, but that was about it in my building.  I was participating in one of the school's recreational sports leagues and had played a game earlier in the evening against this team of absolute jerks.  My team was not very athletic, and we knew it, but we were playing for fun.  They were obviously playing to crush others.  So I'm in my friend's room with about five guys (most of whom I'd just met) and going on and on about what douchebags this other team was.  I finally realized that most of the guys were snickering at me and I found out it was because, "Uh, he's on that team."  (The sport required helmets with face masks, so I hadn't seen his face during play.)  He gave me a sheepish little wave and nod and I looked right at him, smiled real big, and said, "Asshole."  He laughed, then he made me laugh for the rest of the evening.  We were pretty much inseparable by the end of the week.
Oh, and the friend whose room we met in?  One of our groomsmen.  :)
As for frugality, we both had pretty frugal tendencies when we met, but of course we each had blind spots about our spending.  When we decided to move off campus together was when we really kicked it up.  First we moved into a big house with 9 people, which didn't work out due to personality conflicts.  Then we moved into a dry (no running water) cabin for the winter and had to spend most of it pinching pennies any way possible to stay afloat on our pathetic student salaries and still pay for heat.  We talked about getting married, someday, before we moved in together but I think it slowly dawned on both of us that if we could make it through that winter (think of using an outhouse when it's -40 or colder!) with our senses of humor intact and not have thought even once of killing the other person, we could do anything together.
However, I will add this: my mom always told me to marry a man who makes me laugh and that's exactly what I did.  So while his frugality helps a lot, it's not why I married him.  The fact that he can always make me laugh is far, far more important to me.  I could work on a less-than-ideal money situation, but a lack of laughter in my life would kill me.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: C. K. on November 19, 2013, 12:10:32 PM
my mom always told me to marry a man who makes me laugh and that's exactly what I did.  So while his frugality helps a lot, it's not why I married him.  The fact that he can always make me laugh is far, far more important to me.  I could work on a less-than-ideal money situation, but a lack of laughter in my life would kill me.
Your mother gave you great advice. Thanks.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: scrubbyfish on November 19, 2013, 12:35:19 PM
Not married or living together, but committed. We were both frugal before we met. I had been extremely frugal earlier in my life, but when we met he was moreso. He was dumpster-diving, etc. I had been forced by poverty to eat from dumpsters before and wanted none of that now, so he eventually began honouring my request that the food *I* eat be not from a dumpster. This cost him more, but he also learned from me how to save much, much larger amounts in other areas. We've both learned from each other to spend more in some areas (e.g., investing in legal consultation that can preserve or increase the financial oomph of a given project) and to spend less in others -while I still won't eat from dumpsters, I will now buy or accept dated food and eat more of what's currently cheap and less of my ideal/favourites. I think we've been a great influence on each other, with each of us (separate finances) gaining accordingly. We have different strengths and areas of knowledge and end up with lots of bases covered. We both know very little about investing, though, so we're both working on that.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: homehandymum on February 07, 2014, 02:43:33 PM
I was friends with his brother, and met at the brother's wedding.

We are both fairly frugal - identical cultural background and spending assumptions (All branches of both families originally come from Scotland).  He had already paid off his student debt by working during college.  Mine was big, despite working all through college! 

I was pretty good at the little frugal stuff - buying bulk, using store-brands, mending clothes, buying second hand, etc.  But not so flash at the big picture stuff.  I'd easily wipe out all the gains from my frugality by deciding I needed a new bed. Now.  And getting it on the credit card.  And not having a clear idea about my cash-flow so only making minimum payments.  Thankfully this tendency is a long way in the past.

He's good at the big picture planning stuff, and is now also excellent at optimising the grocery shopping etc.  His weakness is that once he decides a purchase is necessary he just goes and gets it, without comparison shopping.

But what drew me to him wasn't his frugality or our financial compatability.  It was the fact that he was totally at home with a group of strangers (at the wedding), treated me like a good buddy from our very first meeting, and gave thoughtful answers to personal questions (from a much more extroverted acquaintance).   As an introvert, it was just wonderful to hang out with someone who didn't need us to jump through the awkward getting to know you conversations.  And I actually felt more energised after spending a day with him. 

Still do :)
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Threshkin on February 07, 2014, 04:09:17 PM
We met on-line.  Plenty of Fish is a great (free!) dating site.  For our first date I met her at a Dim Sum restaurant where I had a 50% off coupon.  I told here about the discount and she did not mind.  Several future dates were at a local brew pub because she had received a stack of free drink coupons as a work gift.  Most other dates were at her house (already paid off) or mine.  Our major first summer dating project was DIY building a brick walkway at my house.  We clicked on many levels: frugality, DIY, life priorities to name a few.

Fast forward two years and I move into her place (too small for both of us long term), rent out my house (bad real estate market - cannot sell for a good price), and six months later buy a house we both love (hot deal had to act quickly).  About a year later we sell my house and use the proceeds plus joint savings to pay off our new house. 

From a cash flow perspective if may have been better to invest the money rather than pay off a low rate mortgage but the piece of mind that comes from no recurring debt was more important to us.  Plus we live in a good RE market and my wife negotiated a great price on the new house so our current "gain" in house value equate to very, although psudo, investment returns.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Dicey on February 08, 2014, 12:14:18 AM
Oh, I love this question! DH and I met when he painted my house in 2001. He works for a local utility company and he's also a licensed painting contractor, so painting's his side gig. He did a great job at a very fair price and I recommended him to several others over the years. I knew that he was married to his high school sweetheart and that they had two kids.

In 2012, I got a screaming deal on new carpet and needed to repaint. I called him again. Sadly, he told me his wife of 29 years had passed away recently. He agreed to do the job. We talked as he worked, and then kept on talking after he was done. Neither one of us remembers exactly when it turned into a dating thing, but next thing you know, he proposed and I said yes. I had never been married before (I was 54!) and I worried that it was too soon after his wife's death, but we decided to look toward the future and not be afraid of the past. We married on 10-11-12. I am here to tell you that being married is more amazing than I ever imagined.

We are both frugal, but in different ways. He is outstanding at managing his needs. He can fix anything and keeps busy. If he's quiet, I will always find him at the computer, figuring out how to do something. He buys quality and takes care of it. His truck is a 2002, has only 70k miles and looks brand new. No punches - he's a painter. He walks to his regular job every day with a lunchbox that I fill with homemade goodness.

I was raised in a large family with a SAHM. My dad was a civil servant. They both knew how to stretch a buck. From them I learned about getting the maximum value for the dollars spent. I am also more focused on retirement savings, as I always believed I'd be going it alone and I didn't always love my work, to put it politely.  He is more relaxed about retirement, because he loves his low-stress job which includes incredible benefits and a pension. He also owns a motor home and two jet skis, which I would never buy. He bought them used and fixed them up. He enjoys camping and uses the jet skis to fish(!). Neither of us has trouble managing credit cards. We charge everything and pay it off every month.

We laugh together all the time and every morning we wake up with smiles on our faces, knowing how lucky we are. As crazy as this sounds, we love just being together, no matter what we're doing.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: train_writer on February 08, 2014, 03:36:05 AM
We met on the train where we discovered we had made a major similar life choice and exchanged
e-mail addresses.

We signed up for the same 2-week summer job abroad (agricultural) a few months later and have been together ever since.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: soccerluvof4 on February 08, 2014, 04:12:56 AM
I met my wife at the YMCA. I was divorced for about 4 years and really was just into work all day gym in the morning gym at night. We like each other for over a year which came out later. When i finally asked her out and picked her up I had a Harley and she had on the same clothes (Jeans, Jean Shirt and black vest) i had on. Im 6"3 and she was 6' (was because we have had 4 kids and I am sure she shrunk a bit) we went out and never were seperate again until after being married and years later maybe because of work for a day here or there. Been together 18 years. Anyhow she was a full ride everything from books to meals D1 volleyball player so had no debt and her parents didnt have much money growing up so she was low maintance, simple. I was on my way chasing the dream business wise so I was spending alot more but I wasnt over the top. I didnt have time to be. Over the years we did get caught up in always chasing the bigger house and having kids , cars, cabin, snowmobiles, atv's boats etc...but never out of our means and saved. However i always was looking for the next challenge as i liked starting biz and we would literally build our own house and move two years later and finally got stung but it was with our own money. So we sold took the loss bought a different house with cash and after being here a year and a half and age setting in , kids getting older decided time to really knuckle down. Ironically It started with me, thinking it must be the business guy in me again trying to see what i can do and she is appreciative of what i am trying to do because its in our best interest and I am basically ER she is running our biz 5-6 hours a week (goes to office does the accounting). So here we are at MM and I am tackling learning what I need to to be much more efficient and sharing what i know as well. So day by day we as a family are becoming more frugal. Shaved off at least 1k a month in expenses. Sold 3 snowmobiles. Have our Cabin up for sale in which all assets will go toward securing ER and some college stuff etc... Alot of work done. ALot to do. We also would like to buy at least one 4 family but i have alot to learn yet.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: C. K. on February 08, 2014, 07:43:21 AM
I had never been married before (I was 54!) and I worried that it was too soon after his wife's death, but we decided to look toward the future and not be afraid of the past. We married on 10-11-12. I am here to tell you that being married is more amazing than I ever imagined.

Congratulations to both of you. I wish you the best.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: C. K. on February 08, 2014, 07:53:44 AM
Thanks, everyone.

Your stories help to provide a little light on the subject for those jaded about finding a spouse or  who do not believe there is such a thing as a fun marriage.

Thanks again.

- C.K.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Dicey on February 08, 2014, 06:57:41 PM
Thanks, everyone.

Your stories help to provide a little light on the subject for those jaded about finding a spouse or  who do not believe there is such a thing as a fun marriage.

Thanks again.

- C.K.

Oh, C.K., I wish I could reach out and hug every person who feels this way. I didn't want to post a long-winded response, but I have written more of my happy story on other threads, particularly libraryjoy's.

One thing I wrote and then edited out of my reply to you was that if I had known how wonderful it was going to be when I finally found the right person, then I really could have been miserable all those years before him. Suicidal, even. Instead, I made it a point to strive for financial independence, always keep a positive attitude, get involved in my community, have FUN at whatever point I was at in life and (forgive me, some of you won't like this) not to let myself go. If you feel fit and attractive, it shows! If you've fallen off that wagon, it's an emergency. If you have to spend a little money wisely to get out of that rut (assuming no piles of cc debt) then do it!

Finally, years ago, my younger brother advised me not to settle. It was so hard to listen to that advice, but now I am endlessly glad I did. P.S. My married name is Young, to which same brother retorted, "Your name may be Young now, but I'll always be younger." Smart and a smart ass. Best kind of brother.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: DanielleS on February 14, 2014, 03:15:48 PM
I married quite late, we were both in our early 40's although we'd been together for a few years before that. It was our 2-year anniversary last week. We are both retired, and we got there separately-yet-together :)

We met in a university where I was working and he was getting his MS in physics.

We were both very very frugal when we met. We were both vegetarian (and we are now both LF/vegan). We both love to read. Neither of us had a television. Neither of us had been married before. I could go on and on about what was similar about us. One of my husband's favorite stories is on our first date, he met me at my place of business which was on the 4th floor, and he was trying to think of some way of asking me if we could take the stairs down to the first floor instead of the elevator, while I was just heading for the stairs anyway, since I don't like taking elevators either!

Waiting for someone who shares my values was the 100% right thing to do. I never wanted children so this made it easier for me to wait, I assume. There are two long-term relationships in my past, and I ended them in part due to financial incompatibility. I knew I never wanted to get married if I wasn't sure of the other person. I knew it could wreak havoc on my life! In my last longterm relationship before I met my husband, the man made $100,000+ a year yet carried a $90,000+ credit card balance!! O.O He hid it from me for a long time, which was not a good sign either.... I tried to educate him in financial matters but he never listened. While he kept racking up dept I was saving tens of thousands of dollars. We bought a house together, which was the right thing to do financially because it appreciated $200,000 within 5 years, so when I ended the relationship he bought my 'half' by taking out an enormous new mortgage.

This is one thing I just cannot stress to anyone who is in the doldrums about finding someone. Don't give up, but don't settle. I admit to being depressed sometimes about relationships - who hasn't - but I didn't give up and I'm so happy now!
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: scrubbyfish on February 14, 2014, 10:25:27 PM
DanielleS: WOW! And thank you!!!!!!!!!! That was awesome! Totally inspiring.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: taperted on February 15, 2014, 08:39:01 AM
My spouse and I met at work. We worked in separate groups, and were on the same floor, so we saw each other constantly. We had a lot in common, and I was able to use that to my advantage!! :D

My wife is intensely frugal, whereas I don't sweat the small stuff. You could say that she is penny-wise, pound-foolish and I am penny-foolish, pound-wise. So we meet somewhere in the middle and I think that has a lot to do with our financial well being.

She handles the day-to-day bargain hunting, coupon clipping, etc. I allocate our money, track our finances, plan our retirement and handle our portfolio, although when I buy stocks, we sit down together and discuss the companies. It sort of works out that she is responsible for maximizing the cash we have on hand, and I am responsible for taking that cash and growing it.

I think we've both converted each other a bit. Before, whenever I saw a stray charge on my bank account or statement, I would just let it go. But now, I call them up and argue with them until they reverse it. Also, we are debt-free and I am in the habit now of paying off the monthly balance. I am also very good about paying bills promptly (which I never was before meeting her). I also find myself looking more for bargains, such as deals or buying used.

With her, she was always very risk-averse. She didn't understand stocks and if she had her way, we would be stashing our money in coffee cans buried in our backyard. But over the last 10 years, she has seen that the stock market and real estate can be wealth building vehicles, as long as they are used wisely.

I think this middle of the road, constant push-pull between us has kept us on the right path to financial freedom. I wouldn't want to be traveling this path with anyone else! :)
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Spork on February 15, 2014, 09:03:23 AM

I was working in IT at a very large company.  Her computer broke.  When I went to fix it, we talked and I was immediately smitten.... in fact, so smitten that when I "fixed" her computer, I was flustered and took out the bad motherboard ... and replaced it with the very same bad motherboard.  I made a really lame excuse that "it must be a bad chassis"... but years later she admits she totally saw what I did.

We both grew up in the same small town and had quite a number of shared family contacts between us -- and met in a large city a few hours away.   

Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: RedMaple on February 15, 2014, 10:47:30 AM
I'm still looking. Having a very tough time finding someone frugal especially with online dating. Guys think that spending money on me will make me more receptive. When I suggest doing something other than restaurants or bars, they say I'm being finicky. This happened 2ce in a row.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: TheRedHead on February 15, 2014, 04:47:22 PM
Enjoying the responses. My husband and I met in college. I saw him across the cafe and said "who is that gorgeous Kappa Sig Freshman?!"  Literally felt like a physical blow. It was definitely lust at first sight if not love :) took us 2 years to start dating (had a lot of growing up to do) and then we never looked back. We will have been married for 19 years this May.

He wasn't frugal but definitely VERY aware of money and how much things cost. His parents did a great job of raising him to be very thoughtful and educated about money. He's definitely more of a saver than a spender though he doesn't mind spending money when he wants something. Me on the other hand? Oh boy. I was a train wreck. My parents NEVER taught me about money, I never had an allowance (I just asked for cash and they gave it to me) and I responded to every credit card deal that came my way not really understanding anything about interest. Ended up having to get a bank loan to consolidate my monthly payments. Felt pretty good when I paid that off BUT I didn't learn my lesson then. Took years before I finally figured it out. All those wasted years and dollars and my poor husband putting up with it (did I mention he's amazing? And patient.) I was the type to have my bonus spent before it hit. I shake my head now, we would be so much closer to his being able to retire if we (I) hadn't spent so much over the past 20 years. The only thing I wouldn't change is the travel we did and our sons adoption. Everything else was so meaningless. I am much more frugal now, focused on what's important. My neighbor called me frugal as a compliment and it really felt like one. I don't feel like I'm denied anything - it feels good.

And at least I will be able to raise our son how my husband was raised. We are already starting his education about money (he's almost 4). I won't start him off in life being clueless! We teach safe sex in school but nothing about finance. Sigh.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: mikefixac on February 15, 2014, 10:11:56 PM
Quote
When we were at a party, he brought homemade cookies and then washed dishes for the host/hostess. I figured he was a keeper based on that, and he then proved it many more times over. 

I love that story.

Met wife in college, but never dated. Then when she graduated, she had a party at her house and I was her first dance. Months later I took her to a baseball game at Angel's stadium. DW doesn't remember either dates. That's the overall impression I make on most people.

We've now been married over a decade and she's just starting to get my name right. On the good side, compared to her friends she's frugal. Compared to me, I make Jacob at ERE look like a spendthrift.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: KLina on February 16, 2014, 12:27:31 PM
I met my future spouse in high school, technically, but we didn't date until we were in college. I'd never thought much about the best way to use my money. It was for food and shows and clothing, right? I didn't spend much, but I wasn't careful, either. His frugality made him seem like the smartest guy in our group of friends. That, along with his flowing, curly locks, made him extremely attractive to me.
 
We were both broke college students, as were most of our friends, but he was so smart about it. One friend used to go to Barnes & Noble and just buy like $50 worth of books and magazines any time he got the notion. Another guy I dated expected to go out to fancy meals with me, places I would never normally go, and split the cost. My husband knew how to bring a peanut butter and jelly sandwich along with him, and he lived in the cheapest co-op in our college town.

Our first "date" was taking a long walk all around town, and then eating at Subway. We just loved to talk, walk, and be together. Our wedding was very small and inexpensive, and he sold his car so we could backpack across Mexico for our Honeymoon.

He is finishing his medical residency now, and has taken a job in Texas that will help him pay off his loans quickly. We had been thinking of buying a big house and new cars, too, when we moved, but I am so glad I found MMM before we did. It's my turn to flex my frugality muscles and keep us on track to early retirement and FI.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Spork on February 16, 2014, 04:22:47 PM
He is finishing his medical residency now, and has taken a job in Texas that will help him pay off his loans quickly. We had been thinking of buying a big house and new cars, too, when we moved, but I am so glad I found MMM before we did. It's my turn to flex my frugality muscles and keep us on track to early retirement and FI.

I think you'll be pleasantly surprised at how much house you get for your money here.  I think you'll be able to find a merger of "nice house" and "frugal house" if you are so inclined.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: KLina on February 16, 2014, 08:01:01 PM
He is finishing his medical residency now, and has taken a job in Texas that will help him pay off his loans quickly. We had been thinking of buying a big house and new cars, too, when we moved, but I am so glad I found MMM before we did. It's my turn to flex my frugality muscles and keep us on track to early retirement and FI.

I think you'll be pleasantly surprised at how much house you get for your money here.  I think you'll be able to find a merger of "nice house" and "frugal house" if you are so inclined.

Yes, I am very pleased with what I am seeing! It looks like $100-200k will get us something big enough for our family of 5 (or more, as I am thinking of fostering), and well-maintained, to boot. We will be renting for a while first, but with the prices in East TX, I am eager to buy.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: jhartt3 on February 17, 2014, 09:45:10 AM
I met her then built her frugality.  She came from a long line of spending without thinking.  We started living together before we got married and she didnt believe she made enough to fund an IRA.  well after a year of saying make a budget make a budget make a budget.  She finally looked at her numbers and saw how much money she was wasting.  Now she has a budget and we can fully fund her IRA and 401k. 
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: RadicalPersonalFinance on February 22, 2014, 01:56:36 PM
We met in college and were friends for years. The fact that she wasn't/isn't "high maintenance" was a very important attractant for me.  I admired her sense of thrift. I simply always knew it was an important character quality in choosing a spouse and I wouldn't have considered one who wasn't thrifty.

In my mind, I wasn't looking for "extreme" frugality; merely someone who was sensible.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Dicey on February 28, 2014, 06:07:12 PM
I'm still looking. Having a very tough time finding someone frugal especially with online dating. Guys think that spending money on me will make me more receptive. When I suggest doing something other than restaurants or bars, they say I'm being finicky. This happened 2ce in a row.

Hi Red Maple, I was going to gently sugggest that you soft-pedal the whole frugality thing initially. It can be a buzz kill of a lead-in. I have a friend who is too frugal (always wants me to drive, asking me to take her to the airport for her cheap 6:00am flights multiple times with no offer of gas money). It tends to obscure her other terrific personality traits. By leading with frugality, you could also attract someone who's a cheap bastard. What you really want is someone who is able to distinguish wants from needs and practices self control. People who can do that don't necessarily describe themselves as frugal. Hope this helps! Also, I second the two great comments from jhartt3 and 7years.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: scrubbyfish on March 01, 2014, 08:14:41 AM
+1.

I was thinking the last couple of days what Diane just said out loud. Specifically, I was thinking about how the most frugal people I know are so extreme in it that this would (and does) kill any attraction in me. There is a big difference between "frugality as a primary goal" and "living according to one's values", which I think MMM and YMOYL are about far more.

The extremely frugal people I know personally have a strong poverty/"victim"/defeatest mentality driving their frugality. I have my biggest happiness being with people who approach their finances with a joyful consideration of a wider range of values than "savings" alone.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: meadow lark on March 02, 2014, 08:27:51 AM
+1. 
My father is VERY frugal.  And in several ways it has served him well - he retired at 50, he has always done what he wanted with his time (fishing, kayaking, camping, hiking.). Excellent role model except in 1 major way - he is a pretty selfish person.  There are a lot of reasons for it, and mitigating factors, but at the end of the day he thinks what he wants to spend money on is reasonable, and what my mother wanted to spend on was stupid. 
I don't put up with selfish.  Married someone not very frugal - pretty middle of the road financially.  But she is very, very generous.  It took her hitting 50 to get really on board with frugality, if she had been more focused we might be FI by now, but that's okay.  She's worth it.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: ch12 on March 02, 2014, 10:59:37 AM
+1. 
My father is VERY frugal.  And in several ways it has served him well - he retired at 50, he has always done what he wanted with his time (fishing, kayaking, camping, hiking.). Excellent role model except in 1 major way - he is a pretty selfish person.  There are a lot of reasons for it, and mitigating factors, but at the end of the day he thinks what he wants to spend money on is reasonable, and what my mother wanted to spend on was stupid. 
I don't put up with selfish.  Married someone not very frugal - pretty middle of the road financially.  But she is very, very generous.  It took her hitting 50 to get really on board with frugality, if she had been more focused we might be FI by now, but that's okay.  She's worth it.

My parents have a totally great financial relationship, but yeah, I've seen that in one of my friend's parents's finances. I hate the idea that anyone would categorize my spending as stupid [Mustachians get a free pass on this], even though I occasionally make frivolous purchases. I feel like someone like that is throwing stones in a glass house.

Reading this makes me realize that I'd be fine marrying someone who is middle of the road, but higher up in spending IF they could 1) separate wants from needs and 2) were a wonderful person who was worth it.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: G-dog on March 02, 2014, 05:17:51 PM
I don't have a frugal spouse, but a non-frugal one I met in college.  I think our money views are very much colored by each of our families.
 Both my parents were much older when I was born, and both had experienced The Great Depression, which influenced their view of money mostly in a good way.  My mom managed the money, and she and dad were frugal - if you don't have the cash, you cannot afford it, start saving. By used, and only what you need.  There were almost no financial investment options for the little guy back then, but there were savings accounts - they started mine ( with gift money I received) when I was in grade school. My parents felt you only borrowed money for two things:
1. To buy a house; and/or,
2. To pay for college
My parents had strict criteria for what you need vs. what you want (except for cigarettes - don't get me started; and definitely modeled delayed gratification (again, except for cigs!).
 My spouses parents were one generation away from TGD, and came from slightly poorer background.  When they got money, they spent it.  And they borrowed more/ used more credit. Sadly, when they bought things, they often bought the cheapest crap vs. saving a little more and getting something a little better made.
 Spouses family models the poverty cycle, and more instant or quick gratification.  They are both retired now and have both worked hard at low paying jobs. Luckily my FIL benefitted from a job with good retirement benefits (pension, healthcare, at least for now), and they get SS, likely Medicare.  They seem to have some savings, they had their family very young, so at least the highest earning years later on are after most of your kids are out on their own.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: mh1361 on March 03, 2014, 12:18:10 PM
I met my SO in college. I've always been more frugal, but she's playing along for now. We'll be paying off debt for a couple years and I think she'll buy into doing it as soon as possible. She still thinks some of the things I suggest to save money are ridiculous, but I'm sure I'll wear her down :).
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Elaine on March 03, 2014, 12:45:55 PM
We met purely by chance at a bar. I had just turned 21 but was already done with college, and he was working and hadn't gone to college. It turned out he actually knew my roommates (who I was with), but we had somehow never crossed paths before. We hung out as friends for about two months before we even kissed, but then once we started actually dating we moved in together after about two weeks. We were extremely frugal out of necessity. I am definitely better at the planning aspect of frugal living (budgeting, long term goals, research on purchases), and my SO is better at eschewing basically all consumerism. Basically he will wear clothing until I actively remove it from his body and throw it in the garbage. And he won't get new clothing unless I select it and purchase it and then place it in his closet. He has been a good influence on me in this way because I am more swayed by little bits of luxury (a new scarf, a cute top). I'd say that I have been a good influence on him by actually planning and researching things (he's more apt to just buy something at the store closest to our house, etc.). I feel like at this point we're helping each other be frugal, I'd say we're pretty even.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: MandyM on March 03, 2014, 01:10:19 PM
I'm still looking. Having a very tough time finding someone frugal especially with online dating. Guys think that spending money on me will make me more receptive. When I suggest doing something other than restaurants or bars, they say I'm being finicky. This happened 2ce in a row.

I'm still looking too. I have actually found a guy or two online that are frugal, it just didn't work out otherwise. So they are out there. Of course, I also met a guy that worked in finance but somehow justified renting his furniture.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: jscott2135 on March 03, 2014, 01:24:14 PM
At work.  We were both ending bad marriages.  He was a financial disaster and filed bankruptcy right after we got together.  I was always debt adverse.  I took over the money as soon as we moved in together and have managed it ever since.  He is super laid back so he goes with the flow.  We spent a few years making over 200k together and absolutely indulging our whims (never with debt, just stupid consumerism and impulse buys) Then I found Dave Ramsey and got smart.  Once I found MMM I got even smarter and more focused.  Now on one income we have tightened up, had kids and got smart.  There are a few things that I can't tolerate in a relationship (personal preference) Theists, Republicans, and spenders. Wait I don't like cowards either, or liars, well ok maybe there are a lot of things I can't tolerate :D
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: tmac on March 23, 2014, 06:26:38 PM
At work.  We were both ending bad marriages.  He was a financial disaster. ...  Now on one income we have tightened up, had kids and got smart.  There are a few things that I can't tolerate in a relationship (personal preference) Theists, Republicans, and spenders. Wait I don't like cowards either, or liars, well ok maybe there are a lot of things I can't tolerate :D

Did I write this?
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: iris lily on March 24, 2014, 08:13:12 AM
There was a couple who met on the Simple Living Network more than 10 years ago. I'm pretty sure that they are still together.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: C. K. on July 13, 2014, 08:52:15 PM
Lots of new people have come since the last post. I hope they will share their story on this thread instead of having to start another one.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: lizzzi on July 13, 2014, 09:10:16 PM
I met my first husband in the Air Force, my first day on base. We were neighbors in the BOQ. I met my second husband in our church rectory--we were both there for a support group for divorced or separated Catholics. (No, we're not holy rollers.) Both were relatively frugal and handled money well, although the first was super-controlling, came from money, and had a huge sense of entitlement. Even as a much-younger person, I was never interested in guys who were foolish with money. I always made sure that I could support myself, and I just thought it was good common sense to go with guys who were also financially sound. Many other factors go into a relationship, of course. I've known financially stable guys who I wouldn't touch with a bargepole.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: ketchup on July 13, 2014, 09:24:49 PM
Not yet married, but we met on Omegle.com in 2009.  Yes, really.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: decembeir on July 13, 2014, 09:28:31 PM
I met my future husband at age 14 playing Dungeons and Dragons with friends. We started dating 9 days after I turned 15 and we got married exactly 7 years after that. We were both fairly frugal all along, but we really started saving more so we could go on a 3 month backpacking style honeymoon in Europe. Our wedding cost us about $150 and the honeymoon about $13k :) Once we got back we found MMM and realized we could be even more frugal, retire early, and travel as much as we want. We've been together 10 years total now and we make a great team- we should fire in 5 years when I turn 30 (and he'll be 32.5).
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: MBot on July 13, 2014, 10:13:49 PM
My spouse had a great work ethic and low expenses (except for some stupid spending). He had dropped out of a degree program he hated and was working. I was a second-year.

As soon as we went over his checking account and saw where, things turned around pretty fast. Now he's more frugal than I  am. Although we both have our weak points, it's been a good journey so far (8 years married and counting)
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Sunnymo on July 13, 2014, 10:22:38 PM
As today is our wedding anniversary this is a very apt thread to reply to.

I did a very old fashioned thing - I married the boy (well, man) next door! I had purchased and moved in to my townhouse two months prior and one day in the driveway I met the neighbour who lived opposite me. And the rest is, as they say history! Dating a neighbour certainly cut down the costs of seeing each other. Our first date was me inviting him over for a home cooked meal. The second was him inviting me over for pizza and a movie.

While I wouldn't call us frugal we were both living below our means and there were so many similarities. We both were paying off homes and planned to pay them off well before the bank expected, cars paid off and several years from new with no concerns about what others thought. Both our credit cards were paid off in full each month (what is this 'interest' of which you speak?) and simple needs (no designer anything). I was on to my second property with an investment portfolio while living alone. No student debt (paid in full on the way through) for me and he didn't attend. Since marrying I have started him on share investing and we both have healthy retirement accounts.

We had similar upbringings with SAHMs and fathers earning middle incomes. My parents lived off one income while paying a mortgage at 18% in the 80s and sending three kids through private school. Holidays were low key and generally spent visiting family. His parents married young (21 & 18) and had him three years later. So frugality was modelled for both of us.

Now married, I am a stay at home while he earns about $140k gross per year. I am the financial controller, managing two investments properties and the share portfolios along with the budget. He works away and we pay for his travel; it is cheaper to live where we live and have him commute by plane than to live anywhere near his work. If we did what we currently spend for housing in a month would become our weekly cost. I flex the frugality muscles by optimising and minimising the commuting costs.

Like others have said we didn't marry because of financial compatability but it has definitely removed a potential source of friction. This is fortuitous as we met two weeks before my 40th birthday so were both quite set in our ways.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Glenstache on July 13, 2014, 10:34:11 PM
Over beers and talk of bikes. It was as close to instant as these things get. We share a lot of common views and interests and give each other freedom to pursue those things that we don't share. We have slightly different takes on finances, but both recognize that there is an explicit need to save with specific goals in mind, and what the tradeoffs are. We are not married, but celebrate our anniversary as the day we met by going back to the original terrible beer and pizza place.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Cressida on July 13, 2014, 11:26:08 PM
In grad school, as often happens. We were both sensible with money (lived within our means) but not Mustachian (saving as much as possible). I discovered MMM several months ago. DH is coming round slowly.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: N on July 14, 2014, 08:59:00 PM
I met my husband when I was almost 24 and he was 34.

We met in a bar. I had moved into an apartment a couple blocks away and had started going in to meet people. He was a regular there and knew the bartenders. He invited me to a pumpkin carving party and I went and now its almost 17 years and two kids later.

We had similar middle class upbringings and a lot in common and we got along great. He didnt have any savings or assets, and neither did I. We stretched to buy a condo that we couldnt really afford and we never got smart about financial stuff.

We've only been frugal for the last two years. We pretty much hit rock bottom and I realized that I had to get serious and massively change our ways.
I can only shake my head at the many missed opportunities and mistakes we made.

In some ways, he is pretty frugal-he doesnt want "stuff", he doesnt really care about labels or stuff like that, but he does like certain things: eating out, cable, a/c on a lot, high heat in the winter...he used to smoke cigarettes a pack a day, and now I think he its a pack or two a month (so frustrating).

Im reforming from my spendy spenderson ways. I like collecting things, I like starting new hobbies, I like gadgets and kitchen stuff, and eating out and spending money on my kids.

So, I guess my husband met his frugal spouse about 15 years into our relationship! Ha!
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: S.S. on July 14, 2014, 10:18:30 PM
Met my guy on OKC when I was in school.  I was 19, he 21.  When he deployed 2 months after we eloped, he gave me power of attorney and left me in charge of all his affairs, financial and otherwise.  Things have been that way ever since. 

I think the love really started to blossom when he didn't come back several months later to an empty apartment and an even emptier bank account.

He's not particularly frugal by nature, but he respects me and my decisions regarding our finances.  He loves to gloat to me about the fact that he's the only guy in the command not sweating the days before payday.  When an anxious co-worker asks him if he knows when they'll be paid, he tells me his favorite thing is being able to say, "I have no idea."

Things aren't always perfect, but there has never been a single fight or power struggle between us about money, and for that I am extremely grateful.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: socaso on July 15, 2014, 12:42:39 PM
We met via online dating. I was frugal and he was not. I don't think I factored that into my decision at all at the time. By the time I noticed that his finances had been a mess when we got together he was already working to change things and he has only gotten better. He has helped me, too because I used to always go for the cheapest solution to any problem and now I research my options much more and make better decisions. If I had picked apart his personality I might have said there were things that weren't going to work for me but I just liked him so much I didn't focus on individual bits and pieces. I thought he treated me like my dad treats my mom and he really let me know how much he liked me without playing any games. I think we have both become much better people because we married each other, both financially and personally.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: MillenialMustache on July 15, 2014, 02:38:28 PM
I met my husband through a camping club at our university. I had always been careful with my money, although not as careful as he was, I later found out. Our first date after the camping trip we went to a pizza place and he wanted to split a calzone. I knew he was a keeper then - brave enough about his frugal ways to share it on a first date. I later found out that he still had $6,000 in savings and less than one semester of college left - no loans. I think right about then I decided I was going to marry him.

P.S. - I have found that typically people who like to camp are also frugal in nature, so that would be a good way to meet people if you are trying!
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Spartana on July 16, 2014, 02:23:53 PM
Divorced now (amiable and having nothing to do with money) but was married 17 years (together for 20). Meet him when we were both in the Coast Guard at a Maritime Law Enforcement school in VA.  Sort of lust at first sight but, being that I was the only female in a class of 50 or so guys and that I had a "no dating anyone I was stationed with" policy, we couldn't get together until after we left the school 8 or so weeks later. That lust grew into love and, fortunately, he was an even more mustachian person then I was. After almost 3 years of living in different states on different ships, we decided that the only way the CG would put us together was to get married. By that time we were both on our second 6 year tours and both ready to make a commitment (something I run from usually).  Neither of us ever had any debt, saved most of our money, and lived well below our means. Helped to make the eventual divorce an easy financial thing for us both.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Mrs. Frugalwoods on July 16, 2014, 04:03:39 PM
Love (pun intended) this thread! My husband and I met our freshman year of college in a lecture hall class of 500 students. He later proposed in the very seats where we met and we visited those seats on our 5th anniversary.

We discovered early on in our relationship that we were both extremely frugal by nature. We had basically $0 when we got married at age 24 and so had no choice but to start saving and living frugally and, we never stopped. As our salaries have increased, our lifestyle has remained pretty much the same, which is key for our FIRE goals. We're really thankful that we're on the same page and that we found each other! We know that our approach to our finances is unusual (well, not to you guys) and I'm grateful that he's on board with me and vice versa.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: libertarian4321 on July 16, 2014, 04:57:04 PM
We met through professional friends at a party.

Had to go through a few nice, but "in debt up to her eyeballs" girls, which I absolutely refused to marry, before I found her.

I can't imagine how much life would have sucked if I'd married one of those consumerist, spendy types that I used to date.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: boarder42 on July 16, 2014, 05:10:20 PM
Met her dated her turned her frugal. She was already pretty frugal for the stereotypical woman. She doesn't buy much make up or get her hair or nails done or buy clothes or shoes. Her vice was decorations for the house. But now its decorated so we are good. I grew up frugal she didn't so she keeps and maintains a budget.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: CaptainFrugal on July 16, 2014, 10:04:39 PM
The wife was completely clean shaven without even a hint of upper lip stubble when we met. Was spending 100% of income with some CC debt on top of it. I've had a Wilford Brimley mustache my entire life.

We've had some rough times due to our differences, but I'm proud to say she at least has a Charlie Chaplin now. I felt proud when her car was wrecked and she said "I don't want a car payment, let's just search for something used I can pay cash for". We're now well on our way to FI together, but there were definitely some compromises along the road and still are to this day.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: C. K. on November 17, 2014, 04:35:25 AM
I've read of a couple who met at a Dave Ramsey seminar. Go to places with your interests and you'll likely meet compatible people. It's cliche, but it seems to work.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Malaysia41 on November 17, 2014, 05:20:28 AM
DH and I hated each other at first. I thought he was sooo arrogant.  Turns out, he thought the same of me.

We met at an adventure race.  We were on different teams sponsored by our common employer (we worked in different departments and hadn't met). 

I'd say we were neither frugal nor profligate when we met. We both should have been maxing out our 401k contributions but at least we were contributing to our 401ks beyond the employer match.  I've had my ups and downs with frugality / investing / saying 'f* it' and spending a lot, whereas he never really put a lot of thought into money.  He made it and spent it.  That was it. (of course he had no problem dropping coin on music equipment or biking gear).

Now in FIRE, he understands his freedom hinges on frugality and he's amazing at it.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: DecD on November 17, 2014, 05:30:48 AM
We didn't start dating until we were 28, but we grew up around the corner from each other and were close friends starting in high school.  So our friendship goes way back- we'd been close friends for 12 years when we started dating.

We are both naturally frugal.  Both had parents who taught us to spend within our means.  So we're both savers, making financial stuff pretty easy for us. 
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: 2ndTimer on November 17, 2014, 06:36:13 AM
We met and married in grad school.  We were both frugal to the extent that we finished out PhDs with a total of $500 debt between us. 
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: rubybeth on November 17, 2014, 09:14:43 AM
I love this thread!

DH and I met in high school, he was 16 and I was 17. It was 1998, and I had switched schools just prior to my senior year, and became friends with his friends. I thought he was cute, and knew he was a good guy from what all our friends said. I finally admitted liking him (via a note passed via one of our friends), and he took me out on one date in the summer after I graduated, but then we fell out of touch due to school stuff. He occasionally e-mailed me to check in. Fast forward to 2003, I was living in another state, he was studying abroad. He e-mailed me again, and we started e-mailing more regularly, and we got to hang out a bit when he was on semester break and back in the states (I'd moved home). It wasn't until he finally graduated and was back in our hometown that we hung out more and more, until he finally officially asked me out in November 2005. He admitted he'd liked me all along, and after just a month of so of dating, basically said we'd probably get married eventually. We've been together ever since, got married in 2008. We've now known each other about half of our lives, which I think is pretty cool. I still think he's really cute. :)

As for frugality, I guess we just aren't big spenders and we agree on how to spend the money we have. He grew up kind of poor with a single mom, and I grew up in a frugal middle class family. We never argue about what to spend on, and we were nearly done with the goal of paying off our student loan debt when I shared the idea of early retirement, and he was immediately on board with very minimal discussion. The discussion went nearly exactly like this:

"Hey, you know all that money we're putting toward student loans right now? What if, when that's paid off, we just take that money and invest it? I read this blog and I think we could easily retire before age 50 if we do this."
"Really? Sounds excellent. Let's do it." [I showed him the actual math a bit later.]

I think a lot of this financial happiness/accord/whatever comes down to shared values and priorities. For example, we have season tickets to the orchestra, and while it's kind of expensive, it's a shared value so there's no disagreement about it being a priority. We also discuss any major purchases (things over $100) and easily come to agreement on what's a need and what's a want (and sometimes I even encourage his wants, because they are so few and he works so hard).
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: justplucky on November 17, 2014, 05:36:04 PM
My husband and I met at work. He thought he didn't have a chance with me; I avoided him in order to not come off as a creeper by ogling him too much. We spent about two years being vaguely friendly before hanging out an office holiday party where I gave him my number at the end.

One of the top reasons I married him was his frugality.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: sobezen on November 19, 2014, 10:27:52 PM
What a refreshingly optimistic thread!  :)  Currently single but with the last serious significant other, we both were students so we struggled together and knew how to find value. I am enjoying reading these stories as it gives us single Mustachians, hope.  Thank you.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: flamingo25 on November 19, 2014, 11:39:31 PM
I was fairly frugal but still bad at buying too much "stuff." Even cheap stuff.

My husband was also fairly frugal but did have a ridiculous car loan (no more!).

We've cleaned things up and become more frugal in our 5 years of marriage.

We met at mutual friends' wedding.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: mak1277 on November 20, 2014, 07:39:54 AM
My wife and I met at work.

She was always the frugal one, and I was ridiculously spendy and irresponsible - mainly spending on "experiences", not stuff, but still living basically paycheck to paycheck (despite a fairly high paying job for my age), with car loan, student loan and CC debt.  She fronted the entire down payment for our first house...got me to pay off CC's and accelerated student loan payments. 

I'm lucky to have found her, and lucky that she and I have very similar views on not needing "stuff". 
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Jon_Snow on November 20, 2014, 07:43:44 AM
A computer paired us up. That reminds me, I should buy that computer a drink.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: brian313313 on November 20, 2014, 07:47:57 AM
When I was dating, I had a few "rules" of compatibility. One of them was that she should have NO credit card debt unless there was a valid reason, like a recent unpredictable health event or something like that. Definitely a no on shopping debt. I made pretty good money and knew that spending can escalate to any level of income easily so wanted to protect myself. My wife met those criteria, however, our first couple of years were still difficult. She did not want to borrow, but she did want to spend all of it. She came from a poor background (as did I) and it was the first time she had any access to money. Finally, we came to an agreement and spent quite a bit less getting back on track for early retirement. Recently, thanks to MMM, she has really seen the light and is actually pushing me to save more. She wants out of the workforce and finally gets that it's what you spend more than what you save. Each $50 we knock off our spend is $15k less we have to save. It can also be addicting trying to find "another" $10 or so to knock off. We're at about 2k/month now which is about as low as we'll get. We've even finally lowered our winter heat to 68, which she always insisted on 74 before. :)
 
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Dicey on November 20, 2014, 12:19:28 PM
Our story began in 2001. I bought a 1700 sf town house and my realtor's contractor bid the interior painting job at 7k. I mentioned to a neighbor/friend that the bid was crazy high. He said "Well, I know a guy..." to which I responded that I was looking for a licensed contractor because the work needed to be done while I was away on a business trip. He said his guy was a licensed contractor. Since he had steady employment in a related field, he painted houses on the side and his preference was empty houses. So I hired the guy, who did a beautiful job for $2300. His work was so good, I recommended him to friends, neighbors, and customers over the years.
In 2012, I called him after I scored a killer deal on new wool carpet (I worked for the mfr.) and needed to repaint. His high school sweetheart wife had recently passed away, so he was happy to do the work to fill some time. The carpet was mistakenly sent back to the mill, so I had to postpone the painting until I got the carpet back. In between, we just started talking. And talking. When he asked me out to dinner, I wasn't even sure if it was a date. It was summer, so I decided if he wore long pants and hard-soled shoes, it was indeed a date. I was grinning from ear-to-ear when he showed up at the door. We were married on 10-11-12.
P.S. It is my first marriage. I was 54 and well on my way to solo FIRE because I didn't think the right guy was ever going to come along. All you single ladies who want to be married - never stop looking! It can happen to you.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: blue mutant on November 20, 2014, 12:54:20 PM
DW and I met while working a part time job at a Building Materials Store. I was and continue to be frugal and had RRSPs while still completing my undergrad while she wasn't and still struggles with frugality. Having said that, we have only 1 car, no cell phones and lots of second hand clothes at a pretty high income so relatively speaking, we're both pretty frugal. My inclination would be to be a bit more extreme.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Mesmoiselle on November 21, 2014, 07:45:54 AM
I met him online November 2010. We clicked on so many levels (his willingness to be vegetarian one of them)but money was barely one of them. I mean, it was attitude about debt and money that was more important, not how or what they spent it on. I'd been with someone before that just shrugged off debt loans given to him because he couldn't afford them and wouldn't even try. I'd rather be with someone who was willing to mail a $1 a month to who they owed than a person who would give up and still buy a $5 video game. When I broke it off with him, part of the long drawn out break up discussion is that marrying him would ruin my credit.

So it was more like financial responsibility and pride about promise keeping. Any who.

We met online and he was struggling in debt with temp jobs he walked or took the bus to get to in winter. When he moved in in January 2011, and saw my expense tracking spread sheet, he told me I was spending way too much money on food. I had only known him three months, but paid off the $2500 of CC debt he had. To further represent the "financial responsibility and pride" I was mentioning, he still paid rent to his brother for the apartment he had just abandoned to live with me; $300/month until the lease ended. Hubba Hubba. My kind of ethical till it hurts man.

Some of his frugality rubbed off on me. Some of my luxury spending rubbed off on him.

7 months ago he lost his job, my beloved dog got ill,and we had a whole lot less income and a crap ton of medical bills on our plate. I fretted, I Googled. I found YNAB (thank goodness) and then the YNAB forum introduced me to MMM. I have heavily impressed my husband with my adaptability to the new financial situation. We're still in that middle ground but way closer to his side of frugality now. At 27 and 28, I'm gung ho about FI or semi retirement in 10-13 years so we can work low paying dream jobs (with exotic travel) without worry and stress.

Our financial attitudes were on par,I think was the most important thing not really frugality.

Together almost 4 years, married almost 18 months.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: flashpacker on November 21, 2014, 09:12:50 AM
We were both frugal, and in fact our families are complaining that we have made each other "worse" hahaha. Guess I will laugh all the way to the bank on that one.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: myrax on November 21, 2014, 03:43:12 PM
Mutual friends set us up on a blind date because both of us are bike helmet skeptics. I suggested we meet for happy hour at a place that didn't serve food, so there would be no possibility of the date stretching into dinner. We hit it off so well that we stayed at the bar for three hours talking and drinking pricey beer.

When we met, we were both pretty frugal on big ticket items, but spent too much money on going out or buying clothes (me) and video games (him). We both had student loan debt from graduate school and I even had credit card debt, as I had moved cross country to take a new job and financed my first month of living expenses, along with furnishings, on a 0% interest credit card. (I moved via train as I didn't have or want a car, so I ended up needing to buy basic stuff like a bed, a pillow, and a couple of pans). Luckily, he overlooked my CC debt, and we got married within 5 months of our first date.

About a year ago, I discovered MMM and became way more frugal and my husband has joined me for the most part. I had already taken over all of the food/cooking and finance tasks, as he was busy working full time and finishing his PhD, so I could make adjustments without my husband noticing. He's been pretty enthusiastic though- and now he even makes our laundry soap!

My husband successfully defended his dissertation yesterday and we made the final payments on our student loans today, so now we get to start saving and thinking about the future! It's weird to think that less than three years ago I was sleeping on a cardboard box in an empty apartment and knew no one in this city.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: jeromedawg on November 21, 2014, 04:09:04 PM
Met my wife through church. I am the ultimate cheapskate though. She wasn't as mindful about expenses and 'frugality' per se but has always lived with a mindset of "living with less" because she had a rough financial and emotional childhood. Her parents couldn't really provide a whole lot for her financially and also were so busy running their restaurant that they didn't spend much time with her. Of course, after she went off to college and now that we're married, the dynamic has changed but a lot of how she grew up has made her into who she is. Her parents have little to no concept of financial health and absolutely no idea of anything related to investing. They used to spend their money very recklessly, even while they weren't doing so well, which I think in turn caused my wife to flip the other way. However, she never learned about or got into investments (big scary word) so we're trying to move that direction. When we first got married she brought some student loans and car payments into the picture but fortunately she was pretty responsible about her payments beforehand so they weren't out of order, and we got those paid off the first year.

I grew up relatively privileged so I think I took financial freedom and also investments for granted. Now I'm trying to smarten up a bit and get things on a better track for the both of us. In general though, I think my wife and I are very similar in that we play it "safe" - we're the kind of people who generally fret over being late to some event, only to show up early enough to where we really didn't have to fret at all. I think I have more of this trait and get this from my mom.

Anyway, my wife is pretty frugal but she tries not to be cheap, which is something I've sort of rubbed off on her. Early on in our relationship before marriage she got really upset at me when I paid for dinner at Wood Ranch one time with a gift card (this was on our second or third date), as well as another time when I used BOGOF coupons to eat somewhere with her (also early in the relationship). Hahahaha, so guys, try to be sensitive about this - she keeps telling me that most girls would have dumped me not long after for pulling stuff like that.  I think it just made her feel under-appreciated and not very special considering we were just starting out. Ironically, now she always reminds me to use coupons whenever we go out.
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: FrugalInTheBigSky on November 29, 2014, 01:53:29 PM
We met over 17 years go and still not married. I had just moved to Montana in the past year. Needed a "town bike" to go the bars (young then!). He worked at a local bike shop and sold me a cheap bike from his buddy. Apparently asked me all sorts of questions that I don't remember. He was the outgoing guy, I was the reserved (snobby)girl. A few weeks later I was invited to a 4th of July party at my friend's family ranch. Ugh- I thought. A bunch of old people I won't know. When we can go to the rodeo in our skirts looking for hot cowboys. Anyway, as I walked across the ranch lawn, a guy called out my name. I was horrified. Dirty straw hat, wrap around sunglasses, shorts, flip flops, weird mustache-- who was this guy and why did he know my name? Turns out he was the "bunkhouse boy" caretaker at the ranch, and the same guy who sold me the bike.

We run in to each other a few more times that fall. I accept another invite out to the ranch to "look at the stars". Good grief. But I'm a country girl and being out there captured my heart. He also knew how to cook and to bake bread. He also captured my stomach.

We were both raised with a frugal consciousness and I think that helped us in our life together (see post on "amazing relationships).
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: Zarya on November 29, 2014, 03:39:22 PM
Like many others here, we met in college -- at a school that had offered both of us free-ride scholarships (covering room and board as well as tuition and fees). We got married in 1990 at the courthouse; I guess it cost us $20 for the license. (Sensing a theme yet?) Our honeymoon consisted of driving around the U.S. in our 1964 VW Karmann Ghia and visiting all the relatives we had cheated out of a fancy wedding (thereby having free places to sleep and eat along the way). Oh, we did include a brief visit to Paradise (MI), where we stayed in a budget motel and had a beautiful, clean, sandy beach (Lake Superior) just a few steps away and entirely to ourselves. That was luxury.

Graduate school? You guessed it, we went to the one city where we both got fellowships and completed master's degrees with zero debt (including a life-changing year abroad funded by a Rotary Club fellowship). Doctoral studies followed a similar path. The only student loan we ever took out was used to buy a piano, which I immediately started using to earn money (by teaching lessons). The loan interest was paid by the government until I graduated, and the day that happened I paid it off in full.

Despite all of this (and more), I wasn't looking for frugality in a partner. It wasn't even on my radar screen. (I don't think most people in their early 20s actually have a coherent "shopping list" for desired characteristics in a partner.) He was more inclined to frugality than I was, having grown up one of several kids putting in hard work on the family farm. But neither of us felt comfortable buying things we couldn't afford (we only carried CC debt once in our lives, and that was only a couple of months because we hated the expense so much that we borrowed the money from my brother to pay it off and then repaid him as quickly as possible).
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: GuitarJim on December 03, 2014, 08:19:55 AM
My SO (25+ years together) got her skills from her mom who made the kids keep a ledger of what they did with their allowance FROM THE AGE OF FIVE!!!!  They had to provide a financial report each week and show the balance before they could get the next allowance.   By the age of 8, she was making interest-bearing loans to her two older brothers so that their books would balance out.

I'm retiring next year at 52 because of her, there's no doubt about it.  We met right after I got out of the military at age 24 and went to work at the company where she had worked for some time.  The company was immediately shipping me off to Korea for 6 months, so I didn't know anyone there, and she offered to write letters to me (no email back in those days) to keep me up to date on what was going on in company.  By the end of the 6 months, we were writing every day.  From the letters, I had no idea she was frugal, just that she had integrity and solid decision-making skills.  As it turned out, she's a total mustachian and helped me to curb my enthusiasms as I transitioned from being a low-ranking military NCO to making decent money in IT.  I hit the lottery with her.

And, we both know we ultimately owe it all to her mom for whom we are creating a memorial scholarship for her at Baylor University where she graduated in 1947.



Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: cacaoheart on December 03, 2014, 09:20:00 AM
My wife and I met in college at an information session for a volunteer trip to help rebuild houses in New Orleans in 2007. She was one of the drivers since she had an on-campus job and I came along with about a dozen of my friends. She was and remains more frugal than me, while I was just getting back to my frugal roots, having camped out for the last 7 months of college and saving my scholarship/grant money for a cushion after graduation. I skipped graduation to go on the trip while she was still a junior.

Our first date involved sharing a root beer float at a nearby cafe (the only expense of the date) and then walking around the arboretum and climbing a tree. I was impressed at how well she shimmied up the tree barefoot. It was in putting down floors and installing fiberglass insulation in hot attics together that we really grew close, and we were effectively living together within a few months, marrying 3.5 years later. This month marks 7 years together. For Christmas she wants a rack to put on her bike :-)

Given that we're polyamorous we have other frugal partners as well. We haven't made any of them thrifty, rather we seem to be drawn to each other from similar interests. We hang out at each other's homes and craft together, cook together, do partner acrobatics where we make each other fly in the air. Most of it doesn't cost much if any money. I was actually introduced to the Mr Money Mustache blog by one of the women I date, and then found that the other woman I date also reads it :-)
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: PtboEliz on December 03, 2014, 09:13:36 PM
And, we both know we ultimately owe it all to her mom for whom we are creating a memorial scholarship for her at Baylor University where she graduated in 1947.

What a lovely tribute! :)
Title: Re: How Did You Meet Your Frugal Spouse?
Post by: C. K. on August 13, 2015, 11:53:31 AM
We got married in 1990 at the courthouse; I guess it cost us $20 for the license.

Sounds very mustachian. :)