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How to Figure Out if Someone is Worth Spending Money On
Money Management

How to Figure Out if Someone is Worth Spending Money On

How do you decide if someone deserves a taste of your money or not? As you grow older and make more money, more people will start depending on your success. Your family, friends, and community members will call you whenever they want financial help. When should you respond?

The truth is, no one is entitled to your money. The power to choose who to spend it on lies with you. But it is equally true that some people are more worthy of your money than others. For instance, there is nothing wrong with picking the tab when you are out with friends. But doing it every day to please them or show off might not be worth it.

To understand if someone is worthy of your money, you first need to ask yourself why you are spending money on them. Are you doing it out of goodwill, or do you hope for something in return? Are you spending money on them because it's your duty? How will it impact your finances? 

This article will explore six different types of people worthy of your money and how you can spend on them without hurting your finances.

Read Also: 6 Financial Steps to Take When Making a Big Life Change 

Person 1: Your Dependants

They're people who depend financially on you to provide for them. They can be your children, parents, siblings, or others you have taken under your wing. They're typically the ones who are worthy of your money the most. You will most likely spend on them because it is your duty or obligation.

But just because they're your dependents doesn't mean you should offer money to them any time they stretch their hands. Even when spending money on your children, you must ensure it's worth it. For instance, you will have to decide how much you should spend educating them and what type of childhood you give them. Spending all your income on spoiling them while saving nothing for the future can be considered money not well spent.

Money spent on other family members like parents, siblings, or in-laws is black tax. While you might not be obligated to support them, most people feel it's their duty. Saying no to them can also be complicated. While spending money on family isn't wrong, you should ensure it is worth it.

Before reaching for your pockets, ask what the money will be spent, ensure you can afford to give them money, and lastly, look for ways to help without offering money. Consider teaching them how to make money or offering them employment if possible.

Read Also: 5 Ways to Help Someone Through Financial Instability (without giving them money) 

Person 2: Someone Who Held Your Hand

Everyone experiences some financial difficulties at some point in life; when that happens, they fall on their network for support. 

Take the story of Cynthia and Karen, two friends who graduated together and stayed in touch after school. Karen lost her job during the pandemic and quickly ran out of her savings. When she was about to leave the city to go home and regroup, Cynthia offered to host her until she got on her feet.

Karen found a better job a few months later and moved into her apartment. But she promised herself one thing. Any day her friend Cynthia needs financial help, she'll be there. 

Spending money on those who helped you when you were financially unstable is worth it. It shows appreciation and strengthens your network. 

Sometimes you will also be required to show the gesture first. When that happens, you will need to know if a struggling friend is worth helping. Look at what caused the financial troubles, was it self-inflicted, and will you spending money on them make it worse? Helping a friend who lost their job to pay rent is different from sponsoring a lazy friend's addiction.

Read Also: Money and Me: Ups and Downs of Lending to my Family Members 

Person 3: They Helped you Make More Money 

Do you attribute your success to someone? Even self-made millionaires have a person who helped them move to the next level. In your financial journey, you meet a lot of people. And some of them can leave you with a debt you can never repay. 

Think about a friend who sent you a job application link, a colleague who helped you get promoted, someone who guaranteed your SACCO loan, or someone who believed in your business idea and helped you raise capital. Any of these people might have contributed something meaningful and helped you be where you are today.

Spending money on them to show gratitude is worth it. You can do this by buying gifts or looking for ways to reciprocate when they need your help. However, you should also be careful that they're not holding their acts of kindness over your head to extort you. Only spend money on them when it is appropriate. 

Read Also: 5 Things to Do When You Get a Salary Raise  

Person 4: Someone Who Runs a Charity 

Everyone has a cause they believe in, and spending money on this cause in the form of charity brings them joy. Whether you are sending contributions out of goodwill or religious obligations, if you give them to the right person or organisation, it can go a long way in helping the less fortunate. And this can be considered money well spent. 

Before opening your wallet, vet the charity you want to donate to by looking at their previous track record. There are a lot of shoddy NGOs who will misuse your funds. After giving, you should also follow up to ensure your money was put to good use.

Additionally, you can spend money directly on charities by joining groups that organise charity drives. You can visit an orphanage and donate directly to the children without any middlemen. This type of giving is the best way to support grassroot organisations that make the most difference in your community.

Read Also: 6 Family Events That Mess With Your Finances in a Big Way 

Person 5: Someone Who Will Spend it Wisely

Robert, 32, was approached by his neighbour Fidel, a 24-year-old who needed support to run his business. He had a thriving motorcycle workshop, and he needed to expand and start selling spare parts. But he was short on cash. He pitched his idea to Robert, who agreed to support his business.

Robert gave him an interest-free loan he was supposed to repay in six months. While he didn’t give him free money, he took the risk of spending money to support Fidel's business. Fidel was a jua kali trader who didn't have collateral or credit history of borrowing from credit institutions. 

Before taking a risky bet like Robert, you need to be confident that the person you are spending on will use it wisely. Run a background check to examine what they spend the money on. Ideally, they should also have a strategy to repay you.

You can tell someone is not going to spend your money wisely if

  1. They have an addiction that's preventing them from advancing financially 
  2. They are financially unstable, struggling to pay their bills or save for their future 
  3. They're unreliable- these are friends and family you have tried helping in the past, but they let you down
  4. They are stuck in a debt cycle and might be planning to use your money to pay debts 

Read Also: Break the Cycle: 7 Simple Ways to Dig Your Way Out of Debt

Person 6: Yourself, When You've Earned to

There are two types of people: those who spend on themselves without care for tomorrow and those who get guilty when they buy themselves a t-shirt. Whatever group you fall in, there is a time when spending money on yourself is worth it and when it isn't. 

It's worth it when you have accomplished a financial milestone or have something worthy to celebrate, e.g., a job promotion. Rewarding yourself can help you stay motivated to achieve more goals, creating a win-win scenario. But this doesn't mean you should go all out when spoiling yourself. Instead, do it in moderation. Let them be equal to the reward. Going on a spending spree to reward yourself is a mistake you might regret later.

Some ways to reward yourself include:

  1. Spending with intentions- buy yourself something you need, not want
  2. Invest in yourself- pay to learn a new skill or take a short course online that could be helpful in the future
  3. Donate to a charity 
  4. Spend money to create new memorable experiences for yourself and your loved ones

Read Also: Money and Me: How Speaking Up For Myself Saved Me Money


Spending money on people who deserve it can be fulfilling. It can motivate you to increase your income so that you can support yourself and secure your future, and help those around you. But you need to be picky with who you spend it on; they should be people who need it and will use the money for good.

When deciding who is worth spending money on, you should also be careful. Some people might be out to exploit your generosity. These are primarily people who don't need your money or people who will misuse it if you offer them. 

Additionally, you should also question your intentions of spending on others. It is possible that you could be doing it out of good heart, and sometimes you expect something in return. Be honest with yourself and be prepared to deal with unexpected outcomes. That happens when you spend money but don't get what you want.

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Farah Nurow is an experienced Content Writer who enjoys writing creative and educative articles meant to provoke readers' thoughts. He loves sunny weather and thick books. You can connect with him on LinkedIn.

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