Consider Alternatives

There are many different names used by lenders in regards to cash loans. They are most commonly referred to as installment loans, cash advance loans, check advance loans, or deferred deposit loans. Regardless of their name, they all share a few common characteristics; small amount, short-term, very expensive.

Alternatives to Cash Advance or Installment Loans

Before you decide to take out an installment loan, you should consider some alternatives.

  • Check with a local credit union or bank. Some of these institutions offer short-term loans for small amounts at competitive rates.
  • Consider using a credit card for a cash advance. This may also be at a high interest rate, but often will be less expensive than an installment loan.
  • If you intend to use the cash loan to pay off creditors, try reaching out to them and working out alternative payment arrangements first. Often times, they will work with you if you are experiencing financial difficulties.
  • Contact your local consumer credit counseling service if you need a debt repayment plan with your creditors, or help creating a budget. There are non-profit groups in every state for no or low cost.
  • Make a realistic budget, including your monthly and daily expenses, and stick to it. Review your budget regularly, and abide by it, and you may find that you don't need to barrow money.
  • Check to see if your current banking institution, or other local bank, offers overdraft protection. Some banks offer "bounce protection" which may cover overdraft fees. Typically, these services come at a cost. Know what that cost is, and how it compares to other alternatives.
  • Many of these alternatives can be less expensive than an installment or cash advance loan. If an installment or cash advance loan does turn out to be your best option, try to borrow only as much as you can afford to pay with your next paycheck, and still have enough to cover the rest of your expenses until your next installment.



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