Why should we talk about our finances?
12.9m adults have no accessible savings to fall back on, but each year three quarters of households in the UK receive an unexpected bill*. This is bound to cause stress and unwelcome anxiety around how to pay said bill and where the money will come from. Getting people talking about money, educating people on how to save and prepare for the unexpected is the best way to enhance our financial wellbeing.
When was the last time you spoke to someone about money?
The ‘M’ word seems to be harder to say than sorry sometimes and we believe that this should change in order for people to understand more about their finances and the people’s finances that directly impact them and therefore be more comfortable with money. Here are some guides for speaking to different people in your life about money.
Talking to your partner about money
Discussing money with someone you love can be difficult as you may have very different views to money than your partner does. The key to communicating about finances with your significant other is to work out how you both see money and try to understand each other.
This includes spending, saving and preparing for the future. It’s important to know what your shared goals are for your relationship. Read our ‘How to manage money as a couple’ article for nine steps to help you on your way. Savers and spenders can live in harmony, they just need to communicate!
Talking to friends about money
If finances are sometimes an issue within your friendship group it’s best to talk about things before they escalate. Sitting down with your friend face to face or over the phone, to talk about money matters could be better than trying to chat about it over text, especially if you have a ‘group chat’ situation as it’s easier to understand someone’s tone when you’re talking, not texting.
If your problem is that you feel like what your friends want to do is currently too expensive for your disposable income, suggest some options for cheaper activities like staying in for dinner or using voucher codes when going to the cinema. Explain to them that you don’t want to spend beyond your means and that you still want to spend time together but sometimes you can’t go to some of the places that they’re suggesting.
Your friends aren’t your friends because of how much money you earn.
Check out our tips on how to save money fast and find out if you could save in other areas to help towards how much disposable income you’d like to have.
Alternatively, if you’re a higher earner in your spending group, try to make sure you’re not suggesting the most expensive bars to drink at for other members of your friendship group. The answer isn’t always to buy the drinks either as this can lead to other problems within the group!
If you find that money is a constant under-riding issue in your friendship group or relationship, try a bill splitting app like Acasa or Splitwise. These clever apps do the maths for you when you enter what you’ve bought and how you’d like to split the bill.
Talking to children about money
When children are very young it’s important to teach them how money works, what budgeting is and the value of money. Ask them to help you with the weekly shopping budget in the supermarket and teach them to save some of their birthday or Christmas money so that next time they see something that they really want, you can encourage them to use their savings so that they understand how it works.
As they get older, encouraging kids to earn their own money with a part time job, setting their own budgets and explaining your own money experiences and mistakes can help them get to grips with money as they grow up and move into adulthood. Read more about teaching children about money in our 9 financial lessons to teach your child now article.
We have lots of helpful content all about savings, mortgages and general money management over on our Hub. Alternatively, contact us on Facebook or Twitter with any questions about products from The Nottingham. Other guides are available from fincap.org.uk and the Financial Capability organisation.
If you're feeling overwhelmed, stressed or out of your depth with money worries then the Money Advice Service are there to offer free and impartial money advice. They have everything from free and confidential help about debt to simple to use budget planners and more.
*Source Talk Money Week Participation Pack
Last updated on: