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We need to talk about money

Talk Money Week will boost our wallets… and could even help our kids

The Covid pandemic has made it more important than ever that we can talk about money and raise any issues that are worrying us.

But the truth is that none of us talks about our money enough – and it could be costing us dear.

It’s been shown that people who talk about money make better financial choices, feel less stressed and more in control, and also help their children form good money habits.

That’s why Talk Money Week (November 8-12) was launched. It’s run by the Money & Pensions Service (MaPS), which works to help people improve their finances.

How do we start talking about money?

So we know it’s a good idea – but starting a conversation when it’s not something we’re comfortable with is a bit trickier.

Money matters can be emotional and can even bring back difficult memories, so MaPS have some tips to make sure we know where to begin.

First of all, we should remember that everyone has money worries – so we’re not alone.

If someone we know has similar concerns about money, they might be a good person to start with.

We can use the things around us, like bills or furniture we’re paying off, to get the chat going. Or maybe there’s a storyline on a soap that could kick things off.

Sometimes, though, it’s urgent and we just have to be more direct. MaPS suggests lines like “I need your help – do you have a few minutes to talk?” to get things going. If we know what our first sentence will be it’ll make us more confident about bringing it up.

Partners in cash

A partner, if we have one, is an important person to include as we’ll likely be sharing expenses and earnings with them. But that doesn’t mean we share attitudes and habits around cash. 

If our partner is reluctant, MaPs advises making it easier for them by starting with basic budgeting before chatting about how we’ll spend the rest of our money.

Keeping ‘treat’ spending as cash so that we can’t overspend, and avoiding the blame game, are also important.

Covid and money

Whether it’s in our homes, workplaces or with our friends, it’s important we have these conversations. We could also use advice and tips we’ve picked up from Quids in! as a starting point.

There’s still a lot of work to be done to get rid of the taboo of talking about money but Covid has meant our financial wellbeing is even more crucial.

We have nothing to lose – but plenty to gain.

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