In this lesson, you will discover essential vocabulary to talk about money. You will learn common nouns, verbs, and verb phrases to discuss spending, payments, savings, and more. Look at the pictures and read the definitions and the example sentences in the two sections below.
Verbs and verb phrases used to talk about money
To 1 spend money on something means to use money to pay for it, and to 2 waste money is to spend money on things that you don’t need.
- I spent $20 on petrol yesterday.
- John wasted all his money on that sports car.
Lend and borrow are two words that are easily confused, but there is a big difference between them. 3 Borrow means to ask for and take someone else’s money with the intention of returning it, while 4 lend means to give money to someone on the condition that they return it.
- I borrowed $200 from my sister. I’ll pay her back when I get paid.
- My sister lent me $200. I’ll pay her back when I get paid.
To 5 pay for something means to give money to a seller in exchange for products or services, while to 6 pay back means to return money that you have borrowed.
- Tom paid for the taxi.
- I need to pay Joe back the money I borrowed from him last week.
If something 7 costs a particular amount of money, you can buy it for that amount. So when something costs €20, it means you need to pay €20 to buy that item.
- The ring costs €299.
If you 8 charge someone (for something), it means that you ask this person for money in exchange for goods or services, so if someone charges you €40 for something, that is the amount you need to pay for it.
- The mechanic charged me €50 for fixing my car.
If we 9 save money, we don’t use or waste it. Also, when we save (money), it means that we gradually collect money by spending less than what we earn so that we can use it on a future occasion. Your savings are the money you have saved.
- I saved a lot of money by booking my tickets online.
- I am trying to save some money for our holiday.
If you 10 can afford to do or buy something, it means that you have enough money to pay for it. If you can’t afford something, you are unable to do or buy it because you don’t have enough money.
- I can afford to buy a new phone because I just got paid.
- Sam can’t afford to go on holiday this year.
If an item 11 is worth a particular amount, that is the amount that it is valued at, so if a car is valued at $20,000, it is worth $20,000.
- The ring is worth over $3,000.
If you 12 withdraw (or take out) money, you take money out of an account, either by using a cash machine or going to your bank.
- I withdrew money from the cash machine.
Nouns used to talk about money
1 Cash is a word that we use to refer to money in the form of coins or notes. 2 Coins are flat round pieces of metal that are used as money, and 3 notes (known as bills in the US) are pieces of paper of different values also used as money. We say pay in cash.
- I paid for the book in cash.
- I paid for the book with a €5 note and some coins.
A 4 bank account is an arrangement with a bank where the bank looks after a customer’s money to keep it safe. So, when a customer has a bank account, they can deposit money into it and withdraw money from it. A 5 deposit is money that you put into your bank account. We say make a deposit.
- I withdrew €50 from my bank account.
- To open an account, you need to make a minimum deposit of $500.
A 6 wallet is a small case that is used for holding notes and coins. Most people carry their money around in a wallet. They can also hold 7 credit cards, which are small, personalised plastic cards that can be used to pay for things. We say pay by credit card.
- Although there isn’t any cash in my wallet, there are a few credit cards.
An 8 cash machine or ATM is a machine fixed into a wall where you can insert your credit card to withdraw money from your bank account.
- I withdrew €40 from the ATM.
A 9 cheque is a piece of paper from the bank. You write an amount of money on it and the name of the person who will get the money. We say pay by cheque.
- I paid for the delivery by cheque.
A 10 loan is when a bank lends you money. You promise to give it back, plus extra called interest, over time. A 11 mortgage is a special loan for buying a house or property.
- I took out a loan to buy a new car.
- We wanted to buy a flat, so we took out a mortgage.
A 12 salary is a fixed amount of money given by an employer regularly, and 13 income is the total money a person earns in a specific time.
- Fred’s salary is just under €20,000 a year.
- Sally’s total annual income is just over €45,000.
An 14 expense is the money that you need to spend in order to do or pay for something. And your 15 budget is the amount of money that you have available to spend on something.
- Our holiday budget is €2000; this should cover meals and other expenses.
A 16 bill is a communication informing you of how much money you need to pay for goods or services.
- We spend a lot of money on electric bills.