Tag Archives: installment loans



When to Consolidate Credit Card Debt

Posted: January 12, 2018 by Ashley Dull

In the early days of the internet, getting an email was an event. The friendly little voice informed you that, “You’ve got mail!” and we hurried to click the icon and explore our digital deliveries. These days, the novelty of electronic mail has long since worn off, and checking your email tends to be about as exciting as opening the mailbox to a stack of bills — mostly because those bills have wormed their way into our email inboxes.

Indeed, depending on your situation, that digital stack of bills can be just as overwhelming as their paper-printed ancestors. And when you have a series of debts that bring in a few too many bills — or just a single, larger bill with a few too many digits — your inbox can be a daily reminder that something needs to be done.

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How to Determine the Cost of a Loan

Posted: November 30, 2017 by Ashley Dull

In a perfect world, everyone would have the cash necessary to self-finance important purchases, and debt would be a thing of the past. Unfortunately, we live in the real world, where borrowing is often a necessary part of everyday financial life.

With that being the case, it’s important to understand as much about the borrowing process as possible, not only to avoid the inevitable credit damage from bad financial decisions, but to also avoid paying far more for financial products than you really should. This is especially important for borrowers with poor credit who are already looking at higher-than-average financing costs.

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What to Look For in a Loan

Posted: October 12, 2017 by Ashley Dull

If there’s one thing to be said about the modern world of consumer credit, it’s that the product options are abundant. While this is great for consumers looking for the best deal, sometimes there is such a thing as too many options (a dilemma quite familiar to anyone who has had the pleasure of waiting 15 minutes for the person ahead of them in line to order coffee).

Even something as seemingly simple as taking out a loan can turn into a series of decisions that require not only a bit of thought, but a bit of knowledge, as well. For instance, each type of loan, be it a mortgage, auto, student, or personal loan, has its own variations. Do you want a conventional mortgage or an FHA-backed loan? Should you get federally financed student loans, or private ones?

Beyond the peculiarities inherent in each type of loan, the majority of installment loans operate in the same general fashion, and each will be influenced by the same basic factors. Namely, your loan terms will primarily consist of your principal (how much you’re borrowing), the interest rate, often given as an annual percentage rate (APR), the loan length — how many months you’ll make payments — and the resulting monthly payment.

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At Stake in the Show Me State: The Availability of Installment Loans?Proposed Missouri Small-Loan Lending Law Could Impact Individuals’ Access to Needed Assistance

At Stake in the Show Me State: The Availability of Installment Loans?

Posted: August 2, 2012 by

Earlier this week, the Missouri Supreme Court issued a ruling paving the way for Missouri residents to be able to make a decision with their vote this coming November regarding the long-running issue of small consumer loans and the interest that can be charged on them in the state. This ruling came in response to a petition drive by a consumer finance activist group, which collected enough citizen signatures to qualify their initiative to be placed on the ballot for the fall election.

If voters go ahead and approve the initiative a few months from now, the result will be that the limit on the amount of interest that can be charged on small consumer loans such as cash advances and traditional installment loans will be capped at a fairly modest level. While this may not sound like a problem to the average consumer, the fact is, however, that it could lead to some decidedly negative consequences for Missourians looking for fast emergency financial assistance from a time-honored source.

Despite claims to the contrary by its proponents, it seems apparent that the initiative effectively targets all small-loan lenders, including traditional installment lenders. After all, it asks Missouri voters to limit rates on all types of small-dollar loans, making no distinction between the various forms of monetary help that fall under this category. Installment lenders, who have provided safe, affordable and exceedingly accessible loans throughout this country for over a century, would most likely be impacted more adversely than other lenders by the passage of the initiative, and a realistic scenario is that such an event could lead to the disappearance of traditional installment loans from Missouri altogether.

These already highly regulated loans are quite popular in the state — it is estimated that almost 200,000 Missourians regularly access them. Like other types of small-money loans such as cash advances, installment loans are utilized by people mainly to cover unexpected emergency expenses and urgent bills, but they offer their own unique benefit in that consumers can repay them gradually, in parts over a manageable period of time.

In the end, of course, the voters will have the ultimate say on whether or not the lending ballot measure should be given a thumbs-up. Hopefully, their final decision will not end up being a classic case of “throwing out the baby with the bathwater,” which if the election were held today and the initiative in its present form were approved, it would seemingly be, based on the details of the initiative that have been made available.

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