NEW YORK ( MainStreet) — Ellen Hartman thought she'd struck gold when a very handsome single man named Bob contacted her on an online dating site. "He was everything I ever wanted on paper," the 33-year-old Manhattan resident said.

While the gentleman caller was a successful entrepreneur, he was not a New York resident.

"He lived in Washington, D.C., which is at least a three-hour drive away every weekend we'd have to travel," Hartman told MainStreet.

Needless to say, Hartman is still looking for love...more locally.

About 43% of singles said they would not date someone who lived more than 30 minutes from them, according to a new study.

"The biggest hurdle is getting past the lack of time people can spend together and eventually making that big decision to move for love or call it quits," said Niccole Schreck, a rental insights expert with Rent.com.

For those willing to make the commute, there are ways to keep love afloat.

"Compromise is essential," Schreck told Mainstreet. "Someone has to make the trip to see the other but hopefully you can work out a system that fits for both peoples' schedules."

While 30 minutes may not seem like a great distance, the price to commute can add up over time.

"With the price of gasoline in the U.S. averaging around $3.38 per gallon and rising, your wallet can take a huge blow from hours of commuting back and forth," said Schreck.

 

Other factors to consider are tolls, vehicle maintenance costs and public transportation fees.

"The added distance can also add strain to your relationship if your partner is not easily accessible during the week," Schreck said.

When visiting their date's apartment for the first time, 82% of renters pay the closest attention to cleanliness. About 45% of renters said a dirty bathroom was their biggest turn off while 19% cited empty beer bottles lying around and 14% mentioned a stack of dirty dishes in the sink. Aside from cleanliness, women said family photos around the apartment was their biggest turn on, but men favored a nice collection of classic books or magazines. Although stylish or cheap furniture and pets did not make a significant impact either way, 11% of men were much more turned on by a king sized bed than women.

The Rent.com survey further found that being too close for comfort can be a deal breaker.

About 82% of singles had never dated someone who lived in their apartment building with 37% saying they wouldn't be willing to do so. Of the 18% who had tried a no-distance romance, one in three said they never would again.

"Living within close distance to a new partner could mean you end up spending too much time together and allow the relationship to advance prematurely," Schreck said. "After the honeymoon phase has ended, you may want some of your personal space and time back."