Aug 10, 2010

Money Etiquette Issues for You (4)

7. Pulling out of a Financial Commitment

Trouble:You have already committed to join a weekend trip with friends, but the cost is over your budget.

Solution:Remember this. Anytime you're going to divide the cost of something with friends, be obvious about expectations from the beginning: "I can afford economy airline seats but not first class." Or "Can we agree to keep the room under $100 per person per night?"

If a friend makes luxurious reservations before you've discussed it, be honest. Say, "I misunderstood how much you were planning to spend. I can't afford a trip like that right now." If you agreed in the beginning and are backing out, you could offer to pay a portion of the cost, such as the room-cancellation fee.

That's cheaper than paying for a whole trip that you can't pay for. But what if she says she'll lend you the money and you can pay her later? It’s better to refuse it. That can be a way to end up with confronting each other. You don’t want this to happen, right?

8. Dealing with Friends Who Nag about Money
A friend complains that she has no money, and then spends excessively. How do you face this situation?

Is your friend really a cash-strapped shopaholic or just someone who habitually complains about money? It's time to force her into the open. Say something like: “Last week you said you didn't have any money, but then you bought those fancy designer shoes. I'm worried about you. Are you really having financial trouble?'"

If she is in trouble, help her find a financial counselor or look for a good advice book on budgets. But don't get too complicated in her problems, and don't loan her money.

If you anticipate your friend's bluff and tell her you're worried about her, she may become more aware of the money whining and stop doing it.

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