I run a blog and have a friend who is a graphic designer.  I wanted her to do some work for me for my blog, but her rates are very high in my opinion.  I emailed her asking for her rates (because I didn't know them) and had fully intended on paying whatever her rates are.  

Once she told me her rates, though, I knew I couldn't afford the work with my budget.  She ended up offering me a discount, I believe because we are friends.

If you had a friend who wanted to contract a service from you, would you provide the service to him or her?  Would you charge full price or give a discount?  

I think this can be such a tricky situation because it can be hard to separate a business relationship from a personal one sometimes.

What are your thoughts on this?


In the UK, when you work for a friend, and offer them a slightly cheaper rate, we sometimes call this "mate's rates". I do think though, that working for friends can be difficult. If you work for a friend at a cheaper rate, you can end up feeling a bit resentful, especially if it turns out they have enough money to pay you a proper rate of pay. If this happens, you can then feel that they were using the friendship in order to get work done on the cheap.


My business partner and I both avoid working with friends and family.  I've found that they take up an extraordinary amount of time and are difficult to please.  I've had some friends balk at my rates in the past, but it feels unethical to give them a deal when I've got loyal clients who are paying full price.  



I have done children's tuition for people I knew at a cheap rate. They were not really close friends, but people I knew, so they seemed to expect a cheaper rate. In the end I found that the "friendship" ended when the work ended, and later on there was no effort on their part to return the favour I had done for them. For this reason I do not like working for people if they expect it to be cheaper because they know me.


Business dealings can destroy a family, how much more a friend? It is not easy to do business with a friend as it might affect the relationship when the business didn't end up well. If this happens to me, I will charge my friend with the same rate as with my other clients and then buy him/her a drink after the business is done.