How to Ask Mom and Dad for Money

College students are known for two things: being bogged down with homework and being broke. College teaches students how to live on very little and still survive, because between tuition costs, books and school supplies, students often have nothing left. This is partly the reason why so many students fall into the trap of taking out multiple student loans to supplement for the things they cannot afford. For some, it’s as serious as not having enough to eat, while others want money for the occasional luxury of going out to eat or buying clothes.
One thing students hate to do when it comes to money is ask mom and dad. When you leave home for college, it’s usually the first step of being out on your own, and many students don’t want to admit to their parents that they need help. But most parents would rather their child take a loan from them than have them take out student loans that charge interest and often give students more cash than they need.
For those struggling with the thought of asking their parents for money, here are a few pointers to help secure the cash you need.

  • Set out a budget and ask only for what you need: Your parents are much more likely to grant your request if you can show them the smart things you’re going to use the money for. They are even more likely to help you out if you can show them that you haven’t padded the amount you are asking from them.
  • Develop a payback plan: Asking for money can get old really fast if your parents feel like you’re taking advantage of them. If you can develop a plan for how you’re going to pay them back and when, they will see that you are being mature and adult about repaying your debt.
  • Treat it like a bill: If you agree to pay your parents back starting immediately and with installments, treat those like any other bill. Make sure you are on time with your repayments and pay back in the increments you said you would. This will build your credibility in case you have to ask them for money in the future and is also great practice for keeping your credit spotless when you have an actual loan or credit card to make payments on.
  • Be respectful: When you go to mom and dad for a loan, talk to them like adults. Don’t talk to them like they’re your parents and owe you something. Keep the big picture in mind. They have something that you need. If you went to a bank for a loan, you would address the lender with respect. Do the same when approaching your parents. Use the manners they taught you growing up.
  • Be honest: If you need money because you were irresponsible with money before, tell your parents that. Turn that situation into a learning experience and share with your parents how that experience made you better. If you just need the money to tide you over, tell them that, too. You want to make sure you’re being totally honest because if mom and dad find out later you weren’t, it could really hurt your relationship.