How to ask your friend to pay you back

You love your friend, which is why you lent her money in the first place. But now? Well, she keeps forgetting to pay you back and your relationship is feeling the strain. So, how's a girl to set things right? Keep reading to find out...

1. Kindly remind her
Your best friend may have truly forgotten about the money that you loaned her, so don't automatically assume the worst. Instead, be casual about it and politely ask her when she can pay you back. If you're unsure of how to approach the subject, you can say something along the lines of "Hey, when you get the chance, do you think that you could pay me back for 'X'?"

2. Offer an alternative
If you don't need the cash that bad, then offer an alternative. For example, tell your friend that she can buy you lunch or pay for your movie ticket the next time you two hangout.

Note: While this is a great alternative, you want to ensure that the alternative way that your friend is "paying you back" is roughly equal to the amount of money that you lent her. If you floated her for some concert tickets and she says she can buy you a coffee, that's not gonna work.

3. Tell your friend why you need the money 
If it's been a few weeks and your friend still hasn't paid you back, then bring it up again. Except this time, give her a reason for why you need your money. By giving your friend an explanation, she's inclined to be more sympathetic and understanding.

If you're unsure of how to ask, try this out: "Hey, I know I already asked you this, but could you pay me back for 'X'? I'm pretty tight on money for back-to-school shopping." Or mention that you need the money for your upcoming vacation or dues for a club or whatever. 

4. Be direct 
If all of the other approaches have failed, try being more firm. Your friend may have assumed that you weren't serious about the matter and that you didn't really care about when she had to pay you back—she may have thought that "whenever it's convenient for her" was also convenient for you. 

If you're struggling to figure out what to say, you can tell your friend, "So I know I've asked you a couple times already about paying me back, but I wouldn't keep asking unless it was important. So when you get the chance, can you please pay me back? By the end of next week would be great. Thanks!" 

This response is a good one, because it sets a deadline in place for your friend to pay you back without being rude. It still shows that you're a caring person who's giving your friend ample time to repay you. However, if your friend owes you a larger amount money, you may want to extend the time range than if she's just paying you back for lunch. 

5. Next steps
If it's been a while, like a few months, and your friend still hasn't payed you back, understand when to let go. If it's $5-10 dollars and you don't really need it, it's probably not worth ruining your friendship (remember that your friend's good qualities outweight the bad). However, this doesn't mean that you forget it. Instead, take this as a learning experience and refrain from lending money to your friends that take a long time to pay you back/never do. 

If your friend owes you a signifcant amount of money, it may be best to tell an adult, like a parent or guardian, who can then discuss the matter with your friend's parents. Same if they borrowed $10 or $20 a few different times, and never returned it. There might be something else going on, and a parent can help you figure out what to do next.

Have you ever been in a situation like this? Let us know down below! 


by Jamie Denton | 7/29/2019