6 Ways to ask your Friend or Relative to Pay you back

Asking a friend or a family member to pay back the money they borrowed from you is really an awkward situation to be in.

And unfortunately, there’s no other way to get your money back but ask them to repay it, unless they initiate to pay it back before you ask them to.

However, if it’s the first time you lend them money and they did not pay because of financial problem, it may be okay since they are your relative or friend.

The real problem here is if they do it repeatedly. This could put your relationship or friendship at risk.


So how do you deal with this situation?

Sometimes, it feels like spending your day alone with your in-laws when asking a friend to settle their debts from you.

But you know what? You can actually do this nicely if only you have the guts to do it.

Based on personal experience, the best way to prevent this day from coming is not to lend money to your relatives or friends.

However, if it’s already been done and there’s nothing you can do to reverse it, be brave to face the consequences.

In the first place, it’s not you who should be ashamed of discussing the issue.




Here are some ways on how to ask your friend or relative to pay you back:

1. Talk to them in person – Do not call, email, or text your friend or relative. Ask them if they can see you personally and that’s when you tell them about the situation. Sometimes, talking to a person via phone call causes misunderstanding and you don’t want to aggravate the situation like that.

2. Consider your relationship with them – Before anything else, think of the relationship that has been put to risk. If the person doesn’t speak about the loan, it’s better to start the conversation if you really need the money. If not, you can say goodbye to your cash and decide not to lend them money ever again to at least save the relationship.

3. Reminding them how you helped them when they were in need – Your opening gambit can be like this, “I was really happy that I’ve helped you get money for your emergency need. That’s what real friends and family do.” And the strategy goes like gently reminding the person about the debt. Perhaps, your friend or relative would feel bad if they will not pay you back.

4. Urgency can be a good factor – Let them feel that you really need the money because you also have other important obligations. Make yourself look pity so maybe the added drama will touch their heart.

5. Deadlines and flexibility – Smart lenders make sure to provide a due date or if it’s more convenient, they offer flexibility in paying back. If it’s really hard for them to repay the money, you can break the repayment into small chunks so they are sure to return the favor.

6. Ask them directly to pay you back – We, Filipinos, are known to be cautious when it comes to asking someone to pay you back, especially if it’s a friend or a relative who has loaned you some money. We don’t want to be misunderstood. While it’s not wrong to be nice and calm, it might also help if you ask them directly to pay you back. Say it. Ask for it. Be straight to the point.

You may say, “When do you think will you be able to pay back the money that you borrowed?” or “You promised to return my money today. Can I have it now?”


What if your friend or relative still doesn’t pay you back?

No matter what strategy you choose, try to stay cool and calm when you ask your friend or relative to pay you back.

Say it nicely and calmly. Getting angry is more likely to result in the borrower pushing back than if you stay calm.

If you’ve tried all these strategies and you still don’t get your money back after several attempts, then just consider it “lost” or “gone”.

Move on. If you can, forget about it and forgive that person.

Just think of it as a way of helping that friend or relative out. Be grateful that you’re not in the situation where you have to borrow money and that you have the resources to lend money to those who are borrowing money from you.


But you should know your limits next time.

Only lend the money that you can afford to lose; not the money that you will use to buy your next meal or payment for your utility bills. Or you will end up getting hungry or without electricity or water supply.

If loaning money to that friend or relative caused you trouble, learn from it. You’ll be better at handling these situations next time.

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