Valentine’s + Money: A Couple’s Guide


Valentine’s Day, the day to “prove” your love by buying things you can’t afford and wasting money in the same old ways that you do every other day. This year, why not switch things up by showing your partner that you really love them while building a solid financial future and making them feel special?

Don’t Follow the Crowd

Every year from January to February 14th I hear tons of ads for chocolates, red roses. flowers and stuffed animals. Demand is ridiculous. According to Visual Economics (see images below) people will end up spending anywhere from $80 to $150, on average. And those Valentine’s Day chocolates? “Valentine’s Days increase the sale of heart-shaped boxes of chocolate to more than 35 million.”Instead of doing what everyone else does, why not do something your partner will really appreciate? Make them dinner. Give them a massage. Create a bath-for-two with mood lighting and soft music. Write them a thank you note for all the amazing things they do for you. My partner still has a note I wrote to them years ago. It reminds them of why they love me.


Many people are in relationships hoping to one day be married. Some are already married. We know that about 50% of marriages end in divorce, but did you know that many of those relationships break up due to money issues? Want to save your romantic situation? Use your money wisely. Imagine what couples could do with that money if they chose to instead invest that money in their relationship instead of giving more money to companies.

Think About the Future

Let’s say that there is a heterosexual couple and each person in the couple spends the national average on gifts this year (see image below).  Visual Economics tells us that the age range that spends the most is between 25 and 34 years old, so let’s assume that the couple we’re talking about is 27 years old. The couple will spend about $254. If that couple instead had a night in, shared how they really feel about each other and enjoyed each other’s company (all free) instead of spending that money, they could choose to put that money in a money market account. Making that one decision not to spend money on Valentine’s Day could end up saving that couple $10,160 in principle alone over 40 years of marriage. Tack on about another $2,500 in interest (free money) and that couple could save about $12k by making one different decision on one day of the year. You know I like to say, “Find small opportunities that make a big difference” but I won’t say it this time! *wink*

Don’t forget, “There’s nothing your partner wants more than to be seen, acknowledged, loved, and appreciated on Valentine’s Day” says Colin Drake on Money Management Tips for Couples. Make the extra effort that will enhance your relationship and invest a few more dollars into your relationship coffer.

A few images from Visual Economics:


For a heterosexual couple, that’s a little more $250!


My hypothosis (are you ready for this?) is that the 25  to 34 category spends more because these are people that are in serious relationships (leading to marriage or married) and want to show their love with big, showy flower arrangements, expensive dinners and lavish gifts.

Invest in Yourself

Read Shay's new weekly personal finance column on Black Voice News.

Starting this week the most dynamic financial education speaker working today has a weekly column on personal finance at Black Voice News! You can read her pithy insights and personal views on all things money in the physical paper and online. Check out this excerpt from her first article “Invest in Yourself” and leave a comment on

Every day we make decisions about how we will spend our money. Most of the time we spend our money investing in things that will not increase the value of ourselves, our families, and our communities. In 2010 African-American buying power was valued at $836 Billion by the U.S. Census. How much of that money went into purchasing things that increases the net worth of African-American households?

There is an idea that you’ve had for a while now about generating more income. It could be starting a business. It could be furthering your education. It could be cutting unnecessary costs to create, or add to, your emergency account or retirement account.

What’s stopping you from investing in yourself? I bet you invest ….

Read the entire article here.