smart spending

How to stay friends when salaries differ

Be honest about your financial situation
Be honest about your financial situation © pio3/Shutterstock.com

The wealth divide can make close friendships awkward, but a lot of these thorny moments can be avoided with a frank conversation.

"When it comes to close friendships, money can either make the relationship or break it," says Kinney, who advises intimate friends to talk about their financial situations. "It can really help the relationship go deeper."

Dlugozima says talking it out allows friends to find ways they can cultivate their friendship without breaking the bank.

Close friends are typically "very receptive" to these conversations, says Kinney. "They respect and admire the person who does that."

However, Dlugozima says, "You may find that person says they only want to hang out spending oodles of money living it up on a Friday night." If that's the case, "Then you have to look in the mirror to see how much you want that person in your life."

When Huck told her colleague that lounge life was eating into her paycheck, they grabbed a cheap beer from the store across the street and brought it back to the frame shop where they enjoyed a nice conversation. Once Huck started avoiding these expensive lounges, "I ended up saving a lot of money. My checking account was growing!"

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