Friday, August 8, 2008

The Friends and Money Debate

Sometimes friends can make you spend more money, and sometimes less. There is a debate on how peer pressure can be a negative influence on your spending, but then collaboration and shared expenses can be positive. 

The Negatives

1. Going out to dinner or drinks with friends can get expensive. If you're in a group, it's easier to end up ordering more food and keep filling up your glass. Friends can suggest splitting bottles of wine, or sticking around for desert. 

2. Going to see new movies fueled by the excitement of one or two people can lead to a $10+ expense for everyone else. 

3. Sometimes friends have completely different budgets, so if things are tight for you and not for others, they might not understand. If everyone has more money than you it's likely that the activities suggested will not be in line with your budget. 

The Positives

1. A Pizza split five ways and a movie rental at someone's house can make for a pretty frugal evening. 

2. Good friends can be added to a family plan on your phone to keep the phone bill down. Since lines tend to cost a small amount to add, you can then split the bill more ways.

3. Friends can share resources like books, games, DVD's and music. Friends can also give each other rides, look after each others pets, and help with other day to day things. 

So are friends more expensive to have or cheaper to have? Or does it just depend on the friends?

Some Tips for Managing Friends and Budgets

1. If you're on a budget, be honest with your friends and tell them that you might not be available to go to the Opera due to your lack of funds. 

2. Suggest pot luck events or host them at your house so that you can still hang out with the people you want to. 

3. When you sit down at a restaurant, immediately let the server know that you want separate checks and still to your budget.

1 comment:

Matthew said...

Hmm, I feel bad I didn't join your family plan now. Heh. Sorry.