Sometimes, the hardest thing to do is to ask for help when we need it. Many of us simply don’t want to be a burden, and so instead of asking for help, we choose to suffer in silence. This is especially true of people who need help financially. But the truth is that there’s no shame in asking for help.
Asking friends and family for money can be a challenging and uncomfortable thing to do. The good news is that there are ways to approach the conversation with your loved ones that can make it easier, whether you're facing a financial emergency or just need a little bit of help to make ends meet.
Five Tips for Asking Friends and Family for Money
Here are ways to ask family and friends for money, along with tips and strategies for a stress-free conversation.
Be Honest and Direct
It might be tempting to beat around the bush or make excuses for why you need the money, but being upfront and transparent is truly the best approach. Don’t be embarrassed about your situation and try to remember that everyone has likely experienced financial difficulties at some point, and the person you’re asking may know exactly what you’re going through.
By being honest and straightforward about the reason you need money, it demonstrates that you trust the person enough to be vulnerable with them, and also helps ensure that you get the help you need without any misunderstandings or miscommunications.
Create a Concrete Repayment Plan
Whether you’re asking for a bit of cash or a significant amount of money, you should approach the friend or family member with a clear, laid-out plan for how you intend to repay them. For example, "I'm asking for $2,000 to cover this specific expense I’m dealing with. I'll pay you back in monthly installments over the next year, starting next month."
This approach shows you're serious about being responsible with the money and not taking advantage of your loved ones' generosity. And this should go without saying, but absolutely stick to the intended repayment plan with this person. If something comes up and you cannot pay the person back on the agreed-upon time, explain exactly why this is the case.
Explain the Urgency
Is your situation time-sensitive? Then make sure your friend or family member understands the urgency of your request. For example, "My car broke down and I need it fixed right away, otherwise I can’t get to work." This approach helps them understand why you're asking for money now and encourages them to prioritize your request.
Explain Why You’re Asking Them Specifically
If you know of a family member or friend that you can turn to for help, chances are there’s a reason you decided to do so. Whatever that reason is - tell them! This not only shows that you value their support and trust their judgment, but it can also help make the conversation feel more personal and less transactional.
For example, if you have a friend who works in finance (or is simply good at managing their money), you could say something like, "I know you've always been really good with finances and I could really use your advice. I'm in a tough spot right now and I was hoping you could help me figure out the best way to handle it." They’ll appreciate that you’re asking them for advice, and it’ll also feel like a more natural conversation and problem-solving session than a straightforward request for money.
Be Genuinely Gracious and Appreciative
Never take the help you’re getting for granted. You may have turned to someone who is financially well-off, but even then, it's still a big ask and it's important to acknowledge their kindness and generosity.
Doing simple things like calling them to thank them instead of just sending them a text or an email is already one way to do it. Another way to show gratitude is to keep them updated on your progress and tell them how much their help means to you.
For example, you might send them a quick email or text (in this case, doing so would be appropriate) a few weeks after they've lent you the money to let them know that you've made progress on your financial situation and that their help has made a real difference.
However you decide to be gracious and appreciative, the purpose of this is to help you maintain positive relationships with your friends and family even as you navigate a difficult financial situation.
Bonus Tip: Try an Instant Loan from iCash
While asking friends and family for money can be a helpful option in certain situations, you may be in a position where it simply is not possible or desirable. In this case, why not consider an instant loan from iCash? We provide fast, secure, and easy-to-use loans to help Canadians bridge the gap between paydays and deal with any financial emergencies that may come your way. Apply today and get your loan via e-Transfer in just minutes!