28 Best excuses to ask for money

What are the best excuses to ask for money?

The most common excuses to ask for money include:

  1. Needing money for school projects
  2. Your bills are past due
  3. You had an unexpected expense
  4. You want to take advantage of low interest rates
  5. Paying off your student loans
  6. Paying off your car
  7. Building an emergency fund
  8. You’re paying off consumer debt
  9. A debt collection agency is contacting you
  10. Loss of a job
  11. You’re throwing a surprise party
  12. Medical expenses are piling up
  13. You need a spending allowance
  14. You’re collecting donations or fundraising
  15. You’d like to take a self-improvement course
  16. Paying for an unexpected tax burden
  17. You need to take unplanned travel
  18. Your business is struggling
  19. You’re getting married
  20. You need professional help
  21. You’re short on rent
  22. You’ve lost your wallet
  23. You’re stranded and need gas money
  24. You need money until your next paycheck
  25. You need money to pay legal fees
  26. You’ve become unexpectedly pregnant
  27. You need money for gifts
  28. Paying for college expenses

The best people to ask for for financial support are a family member, close friend, and charitable organizations depending on your specific situation. These individuals are most likely to help you if all you need is a couple dollars or even with significant debt.

This article will help you find a good excuse to ask for enough money to improve your financial situation.

TFF22-115 - Best excuses to ask for money

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Good reasons to ask for money

The best reasons to ask for money include the following:

  1. Needing money for school projects
  2. Your bills are past due
  3. You had an unexpected expense
  4. You want to take advantage of low-interest rates
  5. Paying off your student loans
  6. Paying off your car
  7. Building an emergency fund
  8. You’re paying off consumer debt
  9. A debt collection agency is contacting you
  10. You lost your job
  11. You’re throwing a surprise party
  12. Medical expenses are piling up
  13. You need a spending allowance
  14. You’re collecting donations or fundraising
  15. You’d like to take a self-improvement course
  16. Paying for an unexpected tax burden
  17. You need to take unplanned travel
  18. Your business is struggling
  19. You’re getting married
  20. You need professional help
  21. You’re short on rent
  22. You’ve lost your wallet
  23. You’re stranded and need gas money
  24. You need money until your next paycheck
  25. You need money to pay legal fees
  26. You’ve become unexpectedly pregnant
  27. You need money for gifts
  28. Paying for college expenses

Let’s take a look at each excuse to ask for money in more detail.

#1 You need money for school projects

College students may need to ask for money for their latest group project. In particular, senior projects can be expensive, while most students are on a limited budget.

My senior project ended up costing between $2,000 and $3,000! Thankfully, we could secure funding and didn’t have to pay out of pocket.

Fortunately, you can ask the following for donations and sponsorships for your school project:

  • Your parents
  • Local companies within your industry
  • Charitable organizations

Your parents may be willing to support your educational efforts, but it’s only sometimes feasible. Often parents are already assisting with tuition, room and board, textbooks, and other supplies.

I would start with companies in your local area that do business in your field of study. Companies often have budgeted money to support the local community and are often willing to support students soon to be entering the industry. You can easily Google a list of companies and start cold calling or emailing the Human Resource department.

Charitable organizations like Rotary will also be heavily involved in the community. These organizations exist to support, help, and provide opportunities for needy individuals.

#2 Your bills are past the due date

Needing to pay your mortgage or utility bills is another good reason to ask for money. Do not lose your home or services over being afraid to ask for assistance with late payments.

Nearly 63% of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck. Therefore, most people can easily get behind on bills if any of the following happens:

  • Strict adherence to budgeting isn’t followed
  • Unexpected expenses occur
  • Job loss
  • Injury resulting in short-term or long-term disability or the inability to work

You can negotiate most bills or have payment plans adjusted. Some companies have programs that allow others to pay more on their bill to help less fortunate families.

For example, my PUD allows us to pay more during the winter months to reduce the energy bills of lower-income households.

#3 You had unexpected expenses

Life happens, and when life happens, it usually takes money.

Examples of unexpected expenses include:

  • Household appliances breaking
  • Car problems
  • Medical bills

Just this last week, my over oven microwave went out. Replacements ranged from $400 to $800.

Median household income in 2020 was $67,521. A $400 expense can be crippling at these income levels and lower.

In a Bankrate study, 56% of Americans can’t cover a $1,000 expense. The remainder of Americans cover expenses by:

  • 20% pay with a credit card and pay over time
  • 15% cut other expenses to pay the bill
  • 10% borrow from family or friends
  • 4% take on a personal loan

Building an emergency fund is crucial for most families but hard to do. Once your expense is covered, take steps to build savings if you can.

Don’t be afraid to ask for money if you have an unexpected expense because 1 in 10 Americans use this strategy.

#4 You wish to take advantage of low-interest rates

You may want to ask for money anytime you can get a low-interest rate.

For example, you’ve wanted to purchase a house, and interest rates are low (e.g., 3.5%). Your lender requires a 20% down payment to avoid private mortgage insurance (PMI). For a $200k home, your down payment would need to be $40k.

Most people don’t have $40k lying around. However, you can borrow money from family or friends if you’re close to your downpayment goal.

#5 Paying off your student loans

You should consider asking for money to help pay off your student loans if you’re close to paying off the loan, struggling to make payments, or falling behind.

Paying off the loan means you’ll stop throwing away money in interest payments. You’ll be able to pay back your friends and family quicker.

Alternatively, you can always attempt to negotiate with your lender. A few negotiation tips include:

  1. Call your lender and see if they would be willing to lower your payments.
  2. Ask for an income-based repayment plan. Your loan payments would be adjusted to an amount that should be affordable depending on your income and the number of family members.
  3. Ask for a hardship defermentHardship deferments allow you to stop payment and may stop interest accrual on your student loans. The deferment period allows you to build savings or increase earnings if you are considered low-income.
  4. Apply for forbearance. Applying for forbearance allows you to reduce or stop making payments for up to 12 months. The main downside is loan interest will still accrue during the forbearance period.
  5. Consider refinancing your student loansRefinancing your student loans allows you to take advantage of lower interest rates. Therefore, it’s best to refinance earlier in your loan to maximize saving money.

#6 Paying your car payments

The average car payment is $667 per month for new cars and $515 for used ones. This means the average American spends more than 10% of their income on paying for their car.

At such a high percentage of your income, it can be difficult to stay current on payments.

Needing money for a one-time payment can easily be obtained from friends and family. However, continually being behind on payments is usually a sign of having too much car for your budget or a lack of budgeting.

Long-term ways to get more money for your car payment include:

  1. Refinancing your car paymentRefinancing your car loan can be a good option if you find a better interest rate or are struggling to make monthly payments. You can also adjust the length of the terms to lower your payment, such as a 24-month term to 84 months.
  2. Consider selling your car for something cheaper. If you’re struggling to make car payments, it may be a good idea to see if you can sell the car and get something more affordable. However, new cars tend to depreciate quickly, so you may end up underwater (owing more than the car is worth).

#7 You need a financial cushion

We’ve already discussed how more than half of Americans cannot cover a $1,000 emergency. Building an emergency fund is a good way to protect yourself from future emergencies.

Consider asking for donations or short-term loans from close contacts until you have at least $1,000 saved for emergency expenses. While it would be nice to have 3-6 months of expenses saved up, it’s best not to ask for more than you need. $1,000 should be adequate to help you survive most emergencies.

#8 Paying off consumer debt

Credit cards and personal loans are very expensive debts. According to WalletHub, credit card interest rates are 21.05% for new offers and 16.27% for existing accounts.

Owing 20% or more in interest payments is very damaging to your finances. For example, 21.05% of $1,000 is $210.50 in annual interest! It would be best if you prioritize paying off high-interest debt as quickly as possible.

Small debts can be paid off by asking close family and friends for a no-interest loan.

It would help if you also tried to negotiate your consumer debt. Some strategies include:

  1. Asking for a payment plan. Start by understanding your budget, debts, and how much money is left over each month. Contact your lender with this information and ask to set up a payment plan which fits your budget.
  2. Ask to settle your debt with a lump sum. Debt collection companies will often use debt settlements or pay what you can to settle the debt. You could try this strategy by asking your lender if they can lower the debt if you pay it off in one lump sum.
  3. Ask for a lower payment. Some lenders will be willing to lower your payment and interest rate, but you’ll have to ask what they can do for you. You can then use extra money every month to make additional principal payments to pay the debt off faster.

Whichever method you choose, ensure you get the details in writing from the lender.

#9 You’re being contacted by a debt collection agency

Paying your debts to a debt collection agency is a good way to get them to leave you alone. If a debt collector is contacting you, follow these steps:

  1. Read this article by the Federal Trade Commission to understand what debt collectors can and cannot do.
  2. Lookup the statute of limitations for debt collection in your state. Make sure the debt falls within the statute of limitations or inform the debt collection agency of any debt outside the limitations.
  3. Ask friends and family to help you pool together money.
  4. Negotiate a smaller amount to pay with the debt collector. Read this guide on how to negotiate with debt collectors. Ensure details are sent to you in writing.
  5. Alternatively, set up a payment plan.

#10 You lost your job

Losing your job is a perfectly reasonable excuse to ask for money. Donations from friends and family may help you pay for living expenses until you find your next job.

Social media is a great way to reach out to your friends. An easy way to ask for money includes:

  1. Set up a payment site, such as PayPal, Venmo, or Apple Pay
  2. Share your story on social networking sites like Facebook. Ensure you include a link to your payment site.

Start looking for work immediately to avoid asking for more money in a couple of months.

#11 Everyone is chipping in for a surprise party

It’s easy to ask for money if you’re throwing a surprise party. Most people are willing to chip in a few bucks, especially if they don’t have to plan the party.

When asking for money for a surprise party, follow these steps:

  • Set a budget. Knowing how much money you’ll need to ask for is important to avoid getting too much or too little.
  • Plan party supplies. Identify what supply you will need and how much each cost. Which items are must-haves, and which can be left behind if your funding goals still need to be met?
  • Ask your mutual friends for money. People who know you and the person the party is for are the most likely to contribute.
  • Make sure donors are invited. It’s always polite to invite someone who donates.

#12 Medical expenses are piling up

Asking for money for medical expenses such as doctor’s visits and charges not covered by health insurance can be difficult.

To ask someone for help with your medical bills, consider the following:

  1. Make a list of people you trust. When you ask for help with medical issues, you must ask people you trust. Think of family, friends, colleagues, and other organizations who may be sympathetic.
  2. Have an idea of what you’ll say. Asking for help doesn’t have to be complicated or long-winded. Instead, give a brief reason for your need and an idea of how much you hope to collect.
  3. Find a good time and place to meet. Contact your friends and schedule a time to meet. For important conversations, it’s best to meet in a distraction-free environment.
  4. Directly ask for money. Dancing around the topic is the easiest way not to get what you need. Stick with direct statements, like “I need $100 to cover a medical expense. Would you be willing and able to help?”
  5. Be prepared to answer questions. Let’s face it, people are nosy. Chances are they’re going to ask about your situation.
  6. Thank them for their time or money. It’s always polite to thank someone for hearing you out or giving money to your cause.

#13 You need a spending allowance

If you depend on someone else for living expenses, it is usually acceptable to ask for spending money. Examples of people you can ask include:

  • Parents
  • Legal guardian
  • Spouse
  • Significant other

Not all people will be willing to help you out with an allowance. You’re more likely to succeed if you have a good reason, such as:

  • To cover recurring expenses like gas.
  • Discretionary spending
  • Learning financial responsibility

#14 You’re collecting donations or fundraising

Collecting donations or having a fundraiser is another good way to ask for money. People love to support a good cause, so it’s important to have a good reason before asking for money.

Different ways you can start raising money include:

  • Using a crowdfunding platform or website. Websites like Kickstarter or Indiegogo allow you to collect donations or fundraise through their website. You can also offer different perks and incentives for people to donate to your cause.
  • You can also utilize events for fundraising. For example, my school used to do a fun run where students raised money and then had a day of running around a track. Alternatively, you can do a bake sale or offer to sell something homemade.

#15 You’d like to take a self-improvement course

Continuing education is always something worth pursuing. You can get others to fund self-improvement courses or training if you know who to ask.

For example, you may be able to get your work to pay for an online seminar if it directly relates to your job. Your company is more likely to pay for something if it improves your output and overall value to the company.

However, before you run to your boss’s office to ask for a seminar, ensure you clearly understand the price. For example, does the seminar require you to travel, book a hotel, and potentially miss work?

#16 You have an unexpected tax burden

Seeking help and asking for money is okay if you receive an unexpected tax burden.

An unexpected tax burden can happen for many reasons, including failing to report your income correctly or not making proper estimated tax payments. Unexpected tax burdens can be costly, negatively impacting you or your small business.

In what ways can you ask for money if you have an unexpected tax burden?

  1. The first step is to contact the IRS to discuss options. The IRS may be able to set up a payment plan, so you don’t have to pay the full amount immediately. You can also contact a tax professional if you need specific advice.
  2. You can apply for the Offer in Compromise, an IRS program to settle your tax debt for less than you owe. Assuming you meet the criteria to be accepted into the offer and compromise program, you’ll be required to make a lump sum payment or start a payment plan to settle your debt.
  3. You can always consult with a tax relief company. A tax relief company can negotiate with the IRS on your behalf. You do not need a tax relief company, but they can help make things go smoother. Remember, tax relief companies are generally expensive, and there is no guarantee of results.

#17 Unplanned travel

Family and friends are usually willing to help if you have unplanned travel for a valid reason. A good reason to ask friends and family for travel expenses may include the following:

  • Sudden death in the family or illness
  • You’ve received a job offer in another state and need funds to travel or move.

As an alternative, if you can’t get family and friends to help you pay for your unplanned travel, consider:

  • Using your savings or emergency fund. Emergency funds should only be used in the event of an emergency in which unplanned travel may qualify.
  • Using a credit card. Try to avoid racking up a bunch of debt if you’re going to travel. You should only use a credit card if you can pay it off immediately. Credit cards have extremely high-interest rates, so use them as a last resort.

#18 Your business has financial struggles

The best businesses are the ones that make money. However, most businesses will have down years, and staying afloat can be challenging. There is no shame in asking for money to ensure your business continues to thrive.

The most common reasons why businesses may be in need of financial help include:

  • Cash flow problems
  • A bad business relationship ended
  • A severe problem with equipment or operations of the business

Different ways to fund your struggling business and ask for money include:

  1. Securing a loan. Consider talking to a loan officer at your bank to go for your options. You are still responsible for paying back the loan, so be cautious about taking on more debt with a struggling business. Alternatively, you can look into Small Business Administration (SBA) loans.
  2. Find an investor. If you find the right investor, your business could see a tremendous amount of money to get you through a hard time. The main downside is that you are giving up equity in your business.
  3. Look for government programs. Different government programs exist to help struggling businesses, such as the coronavirus relief and paycheck protection programs. Depending on the industry, there may be a government program which your business qualifies for.

#19 You’re getting married

Getting married is not something that usually comes cheap. You should always look to ask for money or deals on services to help relieve the burden of a costly event. However, with a proper budget, you should also try to keep the cost down as much as possible.

Here are some tips to help finance your wedding:

  1. Ask your parents or friends if they can contribute financially. Traditionally speaking, parents will often help with wedding expenses. Any amount your parents can contribute will help soften the blow to your finances. The key is to keep it reasonable and understand what they may be willing and able to help with.
  2. Ask relatives and friends to contribute time. Some people cannot contribute financially, but they may be able to contribute with their time. Your best friend may be an excellent wedding planner, which means you wouldn’t have to hire a wedding planner yourself.
  3. Ask for discounts. Just because the wedding cake venue tells you the wedding cake will be $500 doesn’t mean you can’t ask for a discount. Simply asking if they can lower the price can help you save money.

#20 You’re seeking professional help

Seeking professional help, such as therapy or addiction, can be very costly. Therapy alone can cost anywhere from $65 to $250 per hour or more.

Tips to reduce the cost of seeking professional help or asking for money include:

  1. Check your insurance to see what health services are covered and your responsibilities for out-of-pocket costs. You should also ensure that any provider you see is in network to avoid unexpected medical bills.
  2. Look for free or low-cost Professional Health Services. Many government assisted facilities are available to you for a low or free cost. Many of them have great service providers (e.g., therapists), just like you would find at an expensive therapist’s office.
  3. Ask for pro bono or reduced-fee services. Many professionals offer pro bono or reduced-fee services. Contact your desired professional to see if they can help you at a reduced cost.

#21 You’re short on rent

More than 50% of individuals are struggling to pay rent. You should make paying your rent a top priority, so you don’t lose your living space.

Different ways to ask for money when you’re struggling for rent include:

  1. Take advantage of assistant programs. The Salvation Army and United Way have assistance programs for those struggling with housing costs. These programs may assist with rent, mortgage, and utility payments.
  2. Asking your Landlord for a modified payment schedule. Your Landlord may be able to change your payment schedule, reduce rent, or provide an alternate rental agreement. Make sure to get your agreement in writing.

#22 You’ve lost your wallet

It’s okay to ask for money if you’ve lost your wallet or forgotten it back at the office. This last week someone asked if I could spot them lunch money because they left their purse somewhere. You can always Venmo or PayPal them the money you owe, or they may just let you keep the cash.

#23 You’re stranded and need gas money

A lot of people travel without having a lot of money. Unfortunately, sometimes we run out of gas before we can reach our final destination. Gas stations are one of the most common places you’ll find Travelers asking for money.

However, many people are skeptical about offering panhandlers money at gas stations. Therefore, you would have more success if you asked for someone to pay for your gas directly instead of handing you cash.

#24 You need money until your next paycheck

As previously discussed, the majority of Americans are living paycheck-to-paycheck. Therefore, any major expense can significantly impact your finances and your ability to make it to your next paycheck.

You should feel comfortable asking for money to help you get to your next paycheck. In addition, you should tighten up your budget and forego any unnecessary expenses.

Avoid cash advance stores because they often charge high-interest rates, pushing you further into debt. The last thing you want to do when you live paycheck-to-paycheck is to take on more debt.

#25 Paying legal fees

Legal fees can be very costly. For example, the cost of a lawyer may range from $100 to $400 per hour. The average American cannot afford such high legal fees, which may cause them to take loans and go into debt.

You can minimize your legal fees by working with an attorney offering pro bono or reduced rates.

#26 You’re unexpectedly pregnant

An unexpected pregnancy can be very stressful, primarily due to the financial burden. Most unexpected pregnancies are often by those not established with a career, such as college students.

Regardless of the route you go with your pregnancy, money is going to be involved at some point. Therefore, it is important to start collecting money as soon as possible.

You should also consider reading this guide by Americanpregnancy.org.The guide discusses different financial options for pregnant women. Examples of discussed programs include Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), Affordable Housing, and more.

#27 You need money for gifts

Paying for presents can be very difficult for families, especially around the holidays. Some parents try to work extra hours to afford gifts, but this is only sometimes practical. Therefore, asking for help and money when you need assistance to provide gifts for your family is important.

One of the best places to find the money for gifts and often food during the holidays is through your local church. Churches often do toy drives, angel trees, coats for kids, and holiday grocery deliveries.

Even if the church isn’t doing any of these items, they can often point you in the direction of an organization that is supporting families during the holidays.

#28 Paying for college expenses

Paying for college is often one of the most expensive decisions of your life. You have to pay for tuition, room and board, food, and various other lifestyle choices. Asking for money is often how many people make it through college.

Tips for getting and stretching money for college include:

  1. Creating a budget you can live on.
  2. Asking friends and family for tuition assistance.
  3. Staying at home and choosing a local community college.
  4. Apply for student aid.
  5. Discuss your options with the financial aid office.
  6. Look for scholarship opportunities.

Is it okay to ask for money?

Asking for money is perfectly acceptable as long as you’re doing it legally and have an actual need for money. Typically, it is not okay to ask for money if you are creating fake excuses just to get more money.

Is it legal to ask for money?

Yes, it is legal to ask for money. That being said, cities will have their ordinances to regulate panhandling as it is becoming a significant problem faced by most cities. Typically, it is okay to ask your family and friends for assistance.

John is the founder of TightFist Finance and an expert in the field of personal finance. John has studied personal finance for over 10 years and has used his knowledge to pay down debt, grow his investment portfolio, and launch a financial based business. He is committed to sharing content related to personal finance based on his experience in his career, investing, and path towards reaching financial independence.