20 Common Idioms About Money

Money talks in more ways than one, especially through the colorful idioms that pepper our daily language. Here, we dive into 20 common idioms about money, exploring their meanings and illustrating their use with short example sentences.

Idioms About Money

  1. Ballpark figure – An approximate financial estimate.
    Example: “Can you give me a ballpark figure for the renovation costs?”
  2. Break the bank – To cost a lot of money.
    Example: “Buying this car won’t break the bank.”
  3. Bring home the bacon – To earn money for a family.
    Example: “He works hard to bring home the bacon.”
  4. Burning a hole in one’s pocket – Money one is tempted to spend quickly.
    Example: “This bonus is burning a hole in my pocket.”
  5. Cash cow – A consistent source of income.
    Example: “Their new product became a cash cow.”
  6. Dime a dozen – Something very common and of little value.
    Example: “Ideas are a dime a dozen, execution is what matters.”
  7. Down to the wire – Something decided at the last moment, often involving money.
    Example: “The budget negotiations went down to the wire.”
  8. Foot the bill – To pay for something.
    Example: “Who’s going to foot the bill for dinner?”
  9. Go Dutch – To split the cost equally.
    Example: “Let’s go Dutch on the meal.”
  10. In the black – To be profitable or financially solvent.
    Example: “After years of struggle, we’re finally in the black.”
  11. In the red – To be losing money or in debt.
    Example: “Our accounts are in the red this quarter.”
  12. Make ends meet – To have just enough money to cover expenses.
    Example: “We’re barely making ends meet with these salaries.”
  13. Money doesn’t grow on trees – Money is not easily acquired.
    Example: “Be careful with spending; money doesn’t grow on trees.”
  14. Nest egg – Savings set aside for the future.
    Example: “They’ve built up a nice nest egg for retirement.”
  15. On a shoestring – With very limited financial resources.
    Example: “They started their business on a shoestring budget.”
  16. Pay through the nose – To pay an excessive price.
    Example: “We paid through the nose for these concert tickets.”
  17. Penny pinching – Being very frugal or economical with money.
    Example: “Penny pinching now can lead to big savings later.”
  18. Penny-wise and pound-foolish – Being careful with small amounts of money but wasteful with larger amounts.
    Example: “Skipping maintenance to save money is penny-wise and pound-foolish.”
  19. Put your money where your mouth is – To back up one’s words with action or money.
    Example: “If you believe in this cause, put your money where your mouth is.”
  20. Rake in the dough – To make a lot of money.
    Example: “Their new app is raking in the dough.”

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