What is Friendship Equity?

By Rachel Puryear

Following a recent post about Building Better Boundaries With Others Around Money, a reader asked me for more about a term I used in that post, which was “friendship equity”. I’m glad to discuss more about friendship equity here.

Several good friends sitting on a dock all looking out at the water together, each with their arms around each other’s backs.

Most of us are much more familiar with the term “equity” more in terms of real estate, or other assets. Where someone buys a house, and the house appreciates in value over time, that increase in the value is known as “equity”.

In terms of friendships and other personal relationships, there is also a sort of equity, although it is non-monetary. In a healthy friendship, over time, each person will invest in the relationship. They will invest time and effort, sometimes money and other resources, emotional closeness and support, and more. As each person does this over time, the level of friendship equity grows. The friendship equity is not owned by either person, but it is grown and shared jointly.

One of the greatest benefits to come from friendship and relationship equity is the growing mutual trust that it reflects between the people involved. Once there is friendship equity established, there is no need for anyone to keep a scorecard. No one needs to keep a mental tally of how many times each person paid for what, did who a favor, or was there for the other then.

Because at this point, you’ve each contributed a lot. You both have faith and trust in one another that everything will even out in the long run, even if there are times when one person necessarily needs a lot more than the other, or is unable to give back as much. When the friendship stays strong and each person is glad to be there for the other, forgive mistakes, and show each other love unabashedly, because they know that it will always come back to them; this is when you know you have lots of friendship equity, and a strong foundation of love and trust in your relationship.


Thank you, dear readers, for reading, following, and sharing. Here’s to putting in the time and effort, and establishing plenty of friendship equity and return for your mutual efforts. If you enjoyed this content and want to see more of it, please hit “like” and subscribe, if you do not do so already. xoxo

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