Home Money What I’ve learned about money (and love) in 36 years of dating rich people

What I’ve learned about money (and love) in 36 years of dating rich people

0 comment
A game of love: Mia Farrow and Robert Redford star in the 1974 adaptation of The Great Gatsby

Karen Mooney launched Sara Eden, an exclusive dating agency, in 1988 and, as a result, has contacted thousands of wealthy clients and seen thousands of weddings (and children).

Here, Karen, 63, divorced and living in Surrey with her son Cameron, 26, tells us what she has learned about money and love during 36 years in the dating game.

Money is a very important part of every relationship and nowadays you have to be quite astute when it comes to love.

I may pursue relationships and romance for a living, but I deliberately keep my personal life private and very separate from my business.

Many of the rich people who join Sara Eden want to date other people who are financially secure. They want to make sure that each person brings something to the table and know that the person they are dating isn’t lying about themselves or their finances.

A game of love: Mia Farrow and Robert Redford star in the 1974 adaptation of The Great Gatsby

If you are rich and single, especially if you are a widower or widower, you are a target for a scammer. And if you’ve had a really happy marriage and your partner was wonderful, then you too may be a little naive and trusting. You may also feel alone and that can make you vulnerable.

We were called by a 60-year-old widow who said she wanted to join Sara Eden because she had had a horrible experience with an American man she met through an online agency.

The man had told her how wonderful she was and then, after gaining her trust, he started sending her a WhatsApp, so she had no protection from the agency. He told her that he lived abroad and that he wanted to meet her in the UK, but that he needed money to come here because he had a sick daughter. She sent him the money and never heard from him again. It turned out that her profile was fake. He had used someone else’s photograph and she lost all the money she had sent him. In total, it was about £20,000.

Another client, a self-made man, met his ex-wife when they were very young. He was very successful while she stayed at home and was a housewife. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with that.

But she started going to the gym and ended up having an affair that broke her heart. And then she lost a lot of money in the divorce. She then decided that she wanted to meet a woman who was financially compatible with him and that’s why she came to us.

We matched him with a beautiful lady who was very financially secure and now they are in a relationship and planning their future together.

Money can put a huge strain on relationships. Sometimes when a man has less money than his partner, he may feel financially threatened and behave accordingly. One of our partners had been married for a long time to a very proud man, whose business fell into trouble. Because he was so proud, she kept everything a secret and stuck her head in the sand.

He finally figured it out, because you can’t keep things like that a secret forever. She realized that he was losing his business and with it all his money.

They finally separated. He caused a lot of trauma to both of them and it was very sad because if he had trusted his wife, she could have helped him financially.

But he didn’t want to do that because he was too afraid of losing face.

I founded Sara Eden when I was 28 years old. At the time, she was working for Buckingham Palace as her head of civil staff. I hurt my shoulder, took some time off, and came up with the idea for the business, because my friends, who were busy, career-driven women, kept coming to me and telling me that they couldn’t meet the right kind of men. Sara means “royal princess” and Eden means “garden of love.”

I set up the business with very little money from my kitchen table. It was a big step for me to leave the palace, because I had a lovely job. My first clients were friends and I also went to wine bars and handed out business cards.

When I met one of my founding members recently, I asked him why he had given me £230, which was a lot of money in those days. I interviewed him in my own home and it was clear that my business had just been set up. And he said he did it because he believed in me. I now employ seven people and the business is very profitable and has a lot of room for growth.

We know that the type of person who comes to us is financially secure as we charge £6,500 a year including VAT, which works out to around £450 a month. That puts our clients at ease and they know that everyone they will be matched with has been able to pay that price, and also that everyone who joins our agency is committed to finding a relationship.

Face to face: Karen Mooney has a 95 percent success rate

Face to face: Karen Mooney has a 95 percent success rate

In exchange for your membership fee, we spend a lot of time and effort finding matches for our clients: interviewing them, vetting them (everyone must provide three forms of ID, usually their driver’s license, passport, and a utility bill).

We meet all clients several times a year face to face in our London or Windsor office and generally get to know them. We ask them a lot of probing questions, often about their life, their past relationships, and how they see themselves in the future.

This allows us to detect gold diggers. There are telltale signs, such as wanting possessions that are completely out of your financial reach, such as a holiday home abroad and lots of luxury holidays.

Each member we try to match is an individual we have met, not just a face on a profile.

If you want someone to find you personally, it costs £30,000 including VAT per year. I have a 95 percent success rate, but I don’t take on many clients. I want to make sure I have enough time to dedicate to each of them. I choose clients based on what I think I can work with.

They do not receive a guarantee, but all the clients I have worked with recently have been matched.

In 2018, we celebrated our 30th anniversary and invited some of the couples I’ve successfully matched with over the years to a party. One of these clients said that her adult son was struggling to meet the right woman. So we matched his son with a lovely lady.

They are now married and have a beautiful baby girl. That’s one of my favorite stories because it’s an intergenerational hit.

In my experience, class differences are less important than age differences.

Money has always been important to my clients, but love is the most important thing of all.

Finding someone you love, someone you are happy with, with whom you can sit in silence, laugh and cry: that is the most important thing for them and for us.

Some links in this article may be affiliate links. If you click on them, we may earn a small commission. That helps us fund This Is Money and keep it free to use. We do not write articles to promote products. We do not allow any commercial relationship to affect our editorial independence.

You may also like