28 July 2015
- Six in ten find financial advice from friends helpful, while a third listen through gritted teeth
- Nearly a third of Brits have met five or fewer online friends face-to-face in the last 12 months
New research from Nationwide Building Society shows that more than six in ten people (62%) happily listen to their friends for money advice, while around a third (31%) are left irritated by anyone telling them how to budget better.
To give friends a helping hand with their finances, Nationwide is extending its offer for customers recommending their friends to Nationwide. The Society is offering existing current account customers1 the chance to earn up to £100 for each successful referral when a friend switches2, up to a maximum of ten each year, enabling them to potentially earn £1,000. The recommended friend also receives £100 for switching their account to Nationwide3.
The poll, which gauges the state of the nation’s friendships, shows that most people (70%) have a close circle of up to four lifelong friends, while a fifth (20%) claim to have no friends at all. Interestingly, the rise of social media has dramatically affected the way we interact with friends, with research showing seven in ten people (70%) confessed to having only seen 25 or fewer of their online buddies in the last year, while more than three in ten Brits (31%) have met five or fewer. A further seven per cent said they hadn’t spoken to any of their virtual friends offline in the past 12 months.
Despite the majority of people accepting financial advice from friends - even if they do find it annoying - eight per cent of respondents said they would tell them to mind their own business. Money can also cause rifts between friends, with nearly one in five (18%) saying they have fallen out over finances. The main reasons cited were friends taking too long to repay or not paying money back.
Phil Smith, Nationwide’s Head of Current Accounts, said: “Whether our friends are online, at work or down the pub, they are often our best sounding boards for valued, unbiased advice. However, talking about our money is clearly one of the most personal and sensitive topics for discussion, which is perhaps
why many find any unsolicited advice uncomfortable.
“Our £100 offer is a great opportunity to benefit from friendship, with both the customer and friend being rewarded. Our customers are our biggest advocates, which is why we choose to not only reward those that switch to Nationwide, but also our existing customers who recommend us.”