Asking for financial help isn’t something anyone wants to do. It can be tough and embarrassing, putting you in a very vulnerable and tricky position. But asking for financial help doesn’t reveal your weakness, it actually shows strength. It means you’re strong enough to put yourself out there, and shows you’re ready to make a change for the better. Refusing to ask for help won’t improve your situation, it’s likely to get worse.
So when is the right time to ask? Who’s the right person or persons? How exactly should you go about it?
Signs it’s time to ask for help..
You have no money leftover in your budget.
You’ve went through your expenses with a fine tooth comb, you’re saving everywhere and anywhere possible. You’ve cancelled monthly memberships, considered selling your car, subletting your place, and you’re still struggling to make ends meet. When you have no wiggle room left in your budget that you can no longer afford to pay more than the monthly minimums on debts, and have nothing left to save, it’s time to make a change.
You have nothing left in savings.
Having little to no savings means that minor emergencies could cause major long-term financial setbacks. By the time that happens, it may be too little too late for small favors, and you’re now in need of a major bailout. Stay ahead of deep trouble by recognizing your struggles early on and asking for help before it’s too late.
You’re far behind on debt repayments.
If you cringe every time the phone rings because your creditors are calling on a daily basis seeking payment, it’s time to ask for help. The longer you wait, and the worse it gets, the less aid options there will be. But no matter how bad it seems, you should never feel that you’re too far gone to ask for help.
Who should you ask for help?
When it comes down to needing financial help, it’s essential to remember that you’re far from alone. It’s easiest to talk to someone that’s been in a similar situation in the past. Depending on how far in the past their similar situation was, they may not be the best to actually get money from. If possible, it’s best to ask someone with a decent amount of disposable income. This way you know you’re not setting them back, especially if it’s going to be a while before you can start repayment. It’s also helpful if you ask someone you’re comfortable with, minimizing stress, awkwardness, and possible embarrassment. When it comes down to it, family members or close friends are always the easiest to ask. They care about you and they don’t want to see you struggle. If they can help, they most likely will.
How to ask:
Determine your needs.
You’ll feel more comfortable discussing your needs when you know exactly what they are. Figure out which debt carries the highest interest rate and make this the first destination for any help you receive. Whether it be student loan payments or credit card debt, having a clear picture of your number-one financial struggle makes the entire process easier.
Ease into in and fully explain the stakes.
Even if the person is already aware of your situation, it’s best to ease into the conversation by setting up background for your request. Remind them of what you’re going through, explain your struggles, whatever they may be. Once that is established, explain what will happen if you don’t receive financial help. If done tactfully, it shouldn’t seem like you’re giving an ultimatum, you’re just laying out all the information.
Have a plan.
Even before the friend or family member agrees to lend you funds, it’s beneficial to have a well thought out and tactful plan. Knowing exactly how and when you’re going to allocate their funds can help make you and the lender more comfortable. Everyone wants to know their money is going to good and legitimate causes.
Express your graciousness.
You may not get an immediate answer, and they may even say no. Whatever their answer, be gracious in your response and thank them for just listening. You don’t want the relationship going forward to be all about financial matters. Follow up the conversation with a phone call or visit with the topic being something normal, casual, or anything other than finances. Going about your relationship as normal may urge them to change their mind if they said no at first, or help them make their decision if they didn’t give an immediate answer.
More From TLC
Asking friends and family for financial help is never an easy task. At TLC our loans are specially designed to get people back on their feet. Our mission is to provide you with a solution that resolves or bridges your current troubles for an extended period of time and to provide you with a convenient and dependable source for additional cash whenever you need it. We let you pay your loan back over a longer period of time, making the payments more affordable.