In these trying economic times with so many people in dire straits requests for loans from friends are an every day occurrence. It’s the phone call no one really wants to make but sometimes must. It can be embarrassing and debilitating. If someone calls you for a loan, feel fortunate that you’re receiving the call and not making the call – all the more reason to be as gracious and kind as you can be. Don’t make it any more difficult for the potential borrower than it already is. No one needs to hear as one of our friends did after asking someone for money, “Why don’t you ask your boyfriend?” The answer to the question is, ‘yes’ or ‘I wish I could help but I can’t right now.’ It’s not your place to direct the person to someone else whose money you’ve obviously been counting from afar.
If you can make the loan, leave out the lecture on how you think this person should or shouldn’t spend their money. Make sure the payback terms are clear and don’t hesitate to ask for an IOU especially for a large sum of money.
If you're the borrower, don’t feel compelled to pepper your request with a sob story and never lie. Why you need the money is your business. Be honest about when you can repay the loan and never box yourself into a corner with a specific date, you can say within a month, week, etc. If you can payback sooner, that’s always better and puts you in good standing with your lender friend. Repay your loan the way it came to you with a check or cash and the full sum unless you've negotiated otherwise.
Be sensitive to the person who lent the money to you. If she’s staying close to home for vacation, you can understand why she may not lend you money again when she receives your postcard from Monte Carlo. It's human nature. On the other hand, don’t feel as though you have to present yourself as poverty stricken every time you see her.
Whether you're bailing out a friend or being bailed out, mind your manners.