3 Reasons You Should Openly Talk Money with Friends (No, Really)

How To Talk About Money with Friends
by Avery Johnson
Photos Joe Kathrina | January 05, 2017
You know the rule about never discussing finances? It's dead. As allies in the working world, friends can support you as you pinch your pennies and speak your truth.
Good friends share nearly everything: entrées at dinner, the latest date night saga, a bottle of wine during happy hour, and all the dreams, hopes, and fears in between. So why not talk about money?

Money talk is often seen as a taboo in our society, the one dinner table topic we leave carefully tucked away in our wallets or buried as deep as a pile of student loans. It can be awkward and discouraging to see where your yearly salary falls in the range of what your friends make or to pull back from doing things you love together because you just can’t afford it.

Rather than suffer in silence, speaking up about our budgeting and money woes with our trusted pals can be immensely beneficial to our own bottom line. There are plenty of great benefits that come with chatting about money with your closest pals. So grab your inner circle and a table at your favorite happy hour spot—it’s time to talk dollars and cents.

reason 1: Being open about your budget will help you save

If your tribe dines at swankier establishments, is quick to swipe their credit cards at department stores, and plans weekend getaways to Vegas without batting an eye, you may feel pressure to overspend rather than tuck funds away for savings or put towards paying off student loans.

If you’ve established a budget for yourself and can’t afford to keep up with the spending habits of others, don’t be afraid to speak up. In fact, you'll probably find that some of your other friends were feeling undue pressure as well.

Remember that budgeting isn’t all saving and no fun! Swap in other cool, yet inexpensive, plans instead. Take charge of your social calendar by hosting a game night, spending your weekend camping in the great outdoors or going on a long hike, or suggesting you cook dinner together instead of going out.

Let your tribe know that while you still want to hang out, budgeting is still a priority. Being honest with your friends about your goals invites respect and understanding so you don’t just have to say “no” to every social offer that comes your way. 
Speaking up about our budgeting and money woes with our trusted pals can be immensely beneficial to our own bottom line.

reason 2: studies show your friends influence your money habits more than you realize

Whether you’re saving for a trip to Europe, a new car, or just trying to make ends meet month-to-month, saving-savvy friends can help you on your way to budgeting success—or ruin.

An Ad Council survey reported up to 78% of millennials model their financial habits after their peers. This means we are more likely to pick up not just healthy money practices from our pals, but adopt the not-so-savory ones as well.

Talking openly about spending and saving habits together helps us examine our own behavior in relation to our friends. Pledge to work together to stay money smart, as developing healthy money relationships as a team may be more beneficial for our bank accounts in the long run.

reason 3: you seek insight from them on everything else so why not money?

Whether you’re negotiating your salary at a new job, asking for a raise, or deciphering the correct rate for freelance services, seeking advice from a friend with more experience can point you in the right direction and ensure you are paid properly.

While asking for more money from your supervisor or a client is never an easy conversation, practicing it with a trusted friend can boost your confidence and prepare you for your meeting.

Pals can also help you with budgeting advice. Ask for their tips and tricks, and see if they can point you in the right direction of a helpful financial advisor. Establishing good money saving practices now is key to a happy wallet later. Let your friends support you along the way.

Just don't forget to talk about things respectfully

As with any personal conversation, remember to respect your besties when discussing money. Avoid digging too deep with paycheck amounts and criticizing any poor financial decisions of your peers. Remove judgment from your conversation and always remember to listen, rather than jump in with advice unless it’s requested. Work together to empower one another in your financial goals and watch your savings accounts grow.

What's your opinion on discussing money publicly?