Save credit score questions for after the first date

Word credit score over shredded paper

Credit scores are important, but this is getting ridiculous.

According to a recent story in The New York Times, asking about your date's credit score is a hot trend among mingling singles.

These aren't questions being posed on dinner dates between couples in relationships or couples about to be married.

No, some people are inquiring about a certain three-digit number before appetizers — on the first date.

Assuming this story is more than anecdotal, the obsession with where you rank in the eyes of a rating agency has gotten way out of hand.

From the story:

" 'Credit scores are like the dating equivalent of a sexually transmitted disease test,' said Manisha Thakor, the founder and chief executive of MoneyZen Wealth Management, a financial advisory firm. 'It’s a shorthand way to get a sense of someone’s financial past the same way an S.T.D. test gives some information about a person’s sexual past.' "

What's in Your Score?

Factor Percentage
Payment history 35%
Credit utilization 30%
Length of credit history 15%
New credit opened 10%
Types of credit used 10%

Are healthy credit scores important? Sure. If you're buying a home, a car, or applying for a mortgage, this number is crucial.

But how often do we do these things, really?

Even if you lease a new car every three years, that's every three years.

Unless you are actively trying to raise a low score, you don't need to keep constant tabs, despite what companies trying to sell you scores, credit monitoring and credit protection services tell you.

And you don't need to decide whom to date based on theirs.

Sure, heavy debts and bad credit could be an issue down the line if you're going to get married (see: student loan debt), or if you want to apply for credit together (see: buy a house).

And it's very important to be honest with each other about your financial situations and money goals.

But people make mistakes.

If you've made one, or your partner has, talking about it, and about how to tackle that mistake, will strengthen your relationship and financial future.

But those things are a lot further down the dating line from dinner No. 1.

So let's cool it, America.

Focus instead on not sweating through your dress shirt or spilling a glass of wine on that first date.

Save the heavy talk for later.