Borrowing Bombshell: Getting Money From Parents

How to turn a situation tense

Jul 9, 2012 | WRITTEN BY CHRIS RUSSELL

The old saying is "Brother, can you spare a dime? Now it's "Father, can you spare a dollar ... actually, lots of them?"

A recent study from Ameriprise Financial, a financial planning firm in Minnesota, finds that dads are more likely to respond to a loan request from a grown child by going straight for his wallet. Moms, on the other hand, want to have a conversation about money and won't fork over any dough until said discussion happens.

And that's not all. From the study, dads are more likely to:

  • • Help with a car purchase (58% of dads to 48% of moms)
  • • Co-sign on a lease or loan (42% to 32%)
  • • Pay their child's car insurance (51% to 43%)
  • • Make a car payment for the kid (37% to 29%)

If it sounds like we're dogging daddies here, we're not. No matter which parent makes the loan, it is toxic to mix money and relationships. Even with a talk beforehand, it can still be dangerous. It's like warning a 5-year-old child about the dangers of running into the street and then sending them across the road to get that ball they lost.

If the money changing hands from parent to adult child is in the form of a loan, it changes the relationship. Many people say that won't happen to them, but there's no getting around the awkwardness of "Son, when are you going to pay back that money?" and "Dad or Mom, I'll get to it."

If the money is a gift, that's a little better, but not necessarily good. If a grown child runs short of money and then goes to their parents for help rather than getting an extra job or selling something to take care of it themselves, they run the risk of making it a habit. Pretty soon they are just expecting handouts, which can lead to bitterness on the parents' end.

It's best to stay away from asking Mom or Dad for money. And while you're at it, make sure to stay away from a lifestyle that tempts you to ask in the first place.

Source: MSN Money

Reader Comments (2)

I tell my Dad that's it's funny that his brothers and sister always ask him for money but his own kid doesn't.
Member at 7:07 AM, July 10 2012
My mom is the quick one to hand over a twenty when she hears us talking about new shoes or smaller items, but dad is always the financer behind large purchases, aka my sister and brother in laws new house. I have no loans or gifts from my parents and I feel like they take me more seriously sometimes than my two older siblings who seem to need my parents money to survive.
Member at 11:11 AM, July 12 2012

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