Loans


Loan stores are a particular kind of store set up for people who are vulnerable and tight on cash. Essentially, they lend people the money they need when they feel they have no other place to turn.

Never heard of them? They can be found in places such as strip malls or downtown lots. They are usually located in neighborhoods where the income level is low.

These stores offer a variety loans including title loans, payday loans, installment loans and check-cashing services. Don’t expect to borrow a whole lot. You can borrow anywhere between $100.00 and $500.00, which isn’t a whole lot of money.

Most of these companies make their money off of the origination fees and interest rates charged to customers. Before checking out one of these locations, please be aware they are expensive and their rates normally cost more than using a credit card.



If you’re in need of a small loan, you may be wondering if you should try your luck with a personal loan or go for a payday loan. Often times, payday loans are appealing because they’re easy to apply for and can be done online from the comfort of your own home if you want. Plus, the approval process is quick, so you’ll usually see cash in your account within 24 hours. Depending on your income, you can get anywhere between $200 and $1000. But…the interest rates are astronomical and the payback periods are strict. You may find yourself having to take out another loan just to cover the fees.

Personal loan lenders usually aren’t excited about approving small loans. Plus, the process isn’t as quick as a payday loan. You may have to wait three and four days before hearing an answer. Also, your credit score has to be more impressive in order to get a personal loan. When you’re in need of quick cash, you may feel pushed to make hasty decisions. Be sure to take the time and weigh your options wisely.



If you need to borrow less than $500 and are wondering whether you should apply for a payday loan or just pawn one of your valuables, you have to weigh your options. Pawn shops aren’t going to give you very much for your valuable items because they have to  make a profit. That means if you need $500 or less, you’ll need an item that’s at least $1200-$1500. In addition, you have to pay back interest fees and more. Also, the loan lasts anywhere from 30 to 90 days.

Payday loans carry extremely high interest rates. You may be in debt anywhere from 6 months to a year, so keep that in mind as well. If you’re unable to pay, they may take legal action against you by garnishing your check. Neither one is an ideal option, but it’s important that you’re aware of what you’re getting yourself into.



In Dead End Loans You’ve Got To Avoid: Part 1 and Part 2, you had a chance to see the bad side effects of pay day loans, car title loans, credit card cash advances, casino loans and pawn shop loans. In part 3 we are going to cover other kinds of loans that may end up leaving you worse than where you started.

  1. Overdraft Loan – If you have overdraft protection from your bank, you can basically overdraft as much as the bank allows for a hefty fee. The fee per transaction usually runs anywhere between $29 and $35 dollars per overdraft occurrence.
  2. Installment Loan – Installment loans are similar to payday loans. Borrowers are able to get anywhere from $200 to $1000 often in just 24 hours. The interest fees are astronomical, but unlike payday loans, payments usually stretch out over 6 to 12 months. If you default on these loans, the lender may take out a huge sum from your checking account. For many, this can be over half of their paycheck. Many times the payments seem to never put a dent on the loan balance.

Avoiding the loan types listed in this three part series is the most ideal way of protecting yourself from getting into a financial nightmare.



Financial binds can trap anyone, but before you go out looking for a loan there are some options you may never want to consider. In Dead End Loans You’ve Got To Avoid: Part 1, we covered payday loans, car title loans and tax preparer loans. Now in part 2 we are going to cover some other kinds of loans you may want to avoid.

  1. Pawn Shop Loan – Many pawn shops will take personal items such as jewelry and other valuable merchandise and use it as loan collateral. If the loan isn’t paid in time, you run the risk of losing the item all together. The interest rates can be very high and people sometimes end up paying more than the market value of the property.
  2. Credit Card Cash Advance – These loans can feel so easy because they are instant, but the interest rates and other fees are high.
  3. Casino Loan – Some casinos offer interest-free lines of credit that can only be used for gambling. If you lose more money than you can afford while gambling, they can place a lien on your property.

In Dead End Loans You’ve Got To Avoid: Part 3, you’ll see other financial instruments that you’d be better off staying away from.



A tight financial bind usually pushes people into making desperate financial decisions. Those decisions usually show up in the form of loans. While not every loan is bad, some loans should be avoided at all costs. In part one of Dead End Loans You’ve Got To Avoid, you will see three kinds of loans that could leave you in a worst off position than where you started.  

  1. Pay Day Loan – This lending model may present itself as a logical, quick and fair solution that will hold you over until your next paycheck. But, what many borrowers soon realize is that it’s nearly impossible to satisfy the payments without falling behind on other important bills. Before you know it, you’re taking out another loan to satisfy the one you had before it.  
  2. Car Title Loan – Unless you don’t mind risking your ride, car title loans are bad news. The interest rates are extremely high and the loan is usually due in 30 days. Many people have forfeited their vehicles because they just couldn’t pay anymore.
  3. Tax Preparer Loan – Tax preparer loans usually promise to give you the money the IRS owes you weeks in advance in exchange for a huge cut of the pie. Though regulations have cracked down on this practice some companies are getting creative by offering personal lines of credit with double digit interest rates.

Check out part two where you’ll get to see three other dead end loan types you should avoid.



So, you’ve applied for a loan and found out you were DENIED.  You probably feel bummed, but you may also be wondering what to do next. Before you get up in arms about the situation, see this as a great opportunity. Now you have a chance to investigate any issues that are likely lurking on your credit report. Here are the next steps you should probably take:

  • First, find out why you were denied. The lender will send you a letter letting you know what the issue was.
  • Next, check your credit report. See if there are any late payments or accounts in collections that brought your score down.
  • If you see anything on there that looks fishy, make sure you aren’t a victim of identity theft.
  • After you’ve checked the problem and know why you were denied, you may want to consider a new lender.

Keep in mind that every time you apply for a loan, it pulls down your credit score a few points. It’s considered a hard inquiry. You’d do best not to keep applying for loans you know you won’t get approved for until you fix the issues on your credit report.



Before you go knocking on a title loan lender’s door, consider other options for your short cash needs. Even if you think you’ve exhausted all conventional lending resources, there still may be other options you haven’t tapped into yet.  Try to think back many years ago before title loans became an option. What could you do? Besides family and friends, you could:

  • Go to religious institutions: Often times, these places can offer help and will do so if you ask. They don’t usually publicize this help. It’s something that you’ll have to go and ask for.
  • Try local community groups: Just like religious institutions, community groups sometimes have emergency funds for people in need. Try asking both the large ones and small ones.
  • Ask your employer for a paycheck advance: With the way payroll is set up nowadays, this may be a stretch, but still worth trying.
  • Go to a credit union: Credit unions may be able to offer a small amount for a much better rate than a title loan company would.


When you’re in a bind, it can be really tempting to take out a payday loan. But, before you sign your name on the dotted line, take a moment to ask yourself if you’ve explored all your options yet. Studies show that nearly 80% of borrowers had other means of covering their shortage of cash. Some of the alternative options include:

  • Borrowing from family: This is probably a lot easier said than done, but asking family members or friends to help you out with the shortage of cash may be a better option.
  • Pawning items: Do you have anything of value that you can pawn? If so, pawn it.
  • Cutting back on expenses: Go through your expenses with a fine tooth comb to see what you could do without. Can you cut back on meals for a month? What about cutting back on how much electricity you use? You’ll find that cutting back on expenses is a good alternative to freeing up cash.

Although these are some great options, they may feel too “extreme” or “uncomfortable”. But because pay day loans are hard to get out of, many borrowers will end up turning to one of these options anyway.



When you’re in a bind, it can be really tempting to take out a payday loan. But, before you sign your name on the dotted line, take a moment to ask yourself if you’ve explored all your options yet. Studies show that nearly 80% of borrowers had other means of covering their shortage of cash. Some of the alternative options include:

  • Borrowing from family: This is probably a lot easier said than done, but asking family members or friends to help you out with the shortage of cash may be a better option.
  • Pawning items: Do you have anything of value that you can pawn? If so, pawn it.
  • Cutting back on expenses: Go through your expenses with a fine tooth comb to see what you could do without. Can you cut back on meals for a month? What about cutting back on how much electricity you use? You’ll find that cutting back on expenses is a good alternative to freeing up cash.

Although these are some great options, they may feel too “extreme” or “uncomfortable”.  But because pay day loans are hard to get out of, many borrowers will end up turning to one of these options  anyway.