Social Question

sunshine111's avatar

How to refuse a friend asking to borrow money?

Asked by sunshine111 (28points) June 5th, 2016

Do you know any tips how to do it politely?

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

22 Answers

jca's avatar

Say, “I can’t. I don’t have it. ”

stanleybmanly's avatar

The “polite” way is to refuse the request as tactfully as you can manage. Such obvious things as not discussing the matter in public or ragging your friend about asking you for money. Only you know the relationship you have with your friend. My rule of thumb is pretty much that the level of effort and thought in the refusal should roughly correspond to that expended on the request.

ibstubro's avatar

Too many unknowns here for us to be much help.

Tell them that your available cash is tied up/spoken for?

Jeruba's avatar

I would probably say, “I’m sorry, but I’m afraid it would hurt our friendship. I don’t want to be your creditor.”

However, if it were a really dear, close friend and I recognized the need, I would give it without a second thought. I would offer no more than I could afford to lose, consider it a gift in my own mind, and write it off.

If there were repeated requests, it would hurt our friendship. Probably end it.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

My response to someone, especially “friends” who keep mooching is usually: No, Fuck You. It’s not polite at all because it sends a message that says “don’t bother asking me again”
It depends greatly on circumstances though. I have let people borrow as much as five grand before but I knew I’d get it back and I did. I have also just given several hundred dollars to people who really needed it. If you don’t really need it the answer is again…fuck you.

Pachy's avatar

It’s tough but you have be direct and say something like “I’m really sorry but I have a personal rule not to lend money to friends or relatives.” Or what @Jeruba said, “I hope you understand, but I’m afraid it would hurt our friendship.” If the friend doesn’t understand, you might want to re-examine the friendship.

It’s tougher when it’s a very close friend, but as a very close friend, he/she probably should know your situation and not ask in the first place.

Relatives are the toughest. I learned the hard way “neither a lender nor a borrower be” to my brother. It hurt our relationship forever.

Seek's avatar

I have a rule:

Never lend books or money.

If I have the money to lose, I’ll just give it to you. If I give you a book, it is now your book. That way, there’s no expectation of a return, and no one leaves the arrangement disappointed.

So, if you don’t have the money to give, simply tell them as @Pachy and @Jeruba suggested.

marinelife's avatar

I think the best way to say no is never to explain (leads to argument). Just say, and repeat as necessary, “I’m sorry; that’s not possible.”

ucme's avatar

There are several people i’m fairly close with who I regularly lend cash, never a lot, between £60—£100 usually & it’s always paid back within a month or so.
I’ve never felt obliged or pressured, no one should, so i’d suggest you just tell them no

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

Since I never borrow, I never lend.

Since I often get, I often give.

Like @Seek, I’ll either give it to you, or I won’t. No payback expected.

Having it doesn’t automatically mean I’ll give it. I may have it because I’m saving it for something. That’s why I never have to borrow.

ibstubro's avatar

You’re asking the wrong person as I once lent someone I barely knew $10,000, which was about my life savings at the time.

She quit mentioning it after a while, was slow to repay, and I got nothing more than a “thanks” (the emphasis is hers) out of the deal.
And supposedly I was the only thing that stood between her and total financial ruin at a time when her husband was too sick to work.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

Just say no. As has been mentioned above, tell the person you don’t lend money unless you can afford to never have it returned and you aren’t in that position.

imrainmaker's avatar

If you know the person is really in need but you aren’t in a position to lend you can let him / her know that it’s not possible due to your situation. If you’re refusing to lend because you’re afraid of losing the money to that person then you can respond in the way others have mentioned. Depends on the situation and how well you know that person really.

filmfann's avatar

Neither a borrower nor a lender be.

Cruiser's avatar

Friends don’t beg for money from friends. If they are that point in their lives where they have to resort to hit you up for cash then I can guarantee you the money you give them and that shallow thanks of gratitude will be the last memory you have of your so called friendship.

Darth_Algar's avatar

I find “bitch, do I look like your loan shark?” works, but that’s just how me and my friends are.

Seriously though, I have a rule about lending money: I never do it. If I know a friend needs it in the short term (ie: it’s not a chronic thing with them), and I have it, then I’ll simply give them the money with no expectation of repayment (as owing/being owed money just puts a strain on the relationship). But it has to be an amount that I can afford to lose without thinking twice about it.

si3tech's avatar

@sunshine111 How does that old saying go? Neither borrower nor lender be….. Winds up with “out of friend you’ll be”. @Darth_Algar puts it clearly and it is concise.

Mimishu1995's avatar

Some of the answers here seem to aim at long-term financial support. If they only borrow some money temporarily, I will give them a go, as long as I’m sure they will pay me back. Speaking of paying back, it also depends on who is asking. I only lend money to very few people, and they are very close to me and I know their ins and outs well. I never do long-term financial support. I learned it the hard way from an ex-friend.

alcanzox's avatar

“I’m sorry, but I can’t help you.”
You don’t need to explain yourself further than that, imho.
They asked, and that person should respect that they may be denied.

AshlynM's avatar

Sorry, I can’t right now, no need to go into details why. If you say it enough times, eventually they’ll stop asking you.

si3tech's avatar

Something I learned long time ago is just say “That won’t work for me”. That is ALL the explanation that is ever needed. To ask why is RUDE.

ibstubro's avatar

“I ended what had been a really great friendship that way, once, and swore I’d never lend money to a friend again. Nothing personal.
The upside is you can count on me to never ask to borrow.”

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