29 Jun 2018 | Written by Daniel Dewitt
Signature installment loans are a powerful financial tool that more and more people are using to get fast cash when they need it. In fact, it is possible to be approved and get up to $3,000 in as little as 30 minutes. They also offer the flexibility of repaying over the course of several months, minimizing the impact on your monthly budget. Best of all, you don’t even need to have perfect credit to qualify.
And while these online installment loans are more popular than ever, many people have absolutely no idea where to get one or where to get answers to their questions. Unlike finding a personal loan or hiring a tax preparation service, the process of finding the right installment loan provider for you can be difficult, especially when there are so many to choose from. Here are five red flags to watch out for when searching for this type of loan.
The first step to not being taken advantage of by a signature installment loan company is to have as much information as they do. To that end, you should get a credit report to find out exactly where your credit score currently stands: the better your credit, the higher loan amount you could qualify for, and at a lower interest rate.
Never just go with the first signature installment loan company that you find without first checking out their competitors. Part of picking the right loan for you is to be a discerning customer, and to that end, you need to be aware of your options.
Here are the key points when comparing providers: the credit score they require, their interest rates, the income requirements, term lengths, and the total amount of the loans they offer. Just like you would with any other product, shop around and determine who can provide you with everything you are looking for in a lender.
So far we’ve talked about the information you should have to make the best choice when comparing signature installment loan companies. Now it’s time to make sure you don’t fall for a company that’s a complete scam. Luckily, they all tend to share certain traits and behaviors. And once you know what to look for, you’ll be able to spot them from a mile away.
This is by far the most common sign of a scam company. It’s against federal law for a company to ask you for money before providing you with a loan, but scammers will often veil their attempts to get money out of you by calling it an application or processing fee, or simply state that it’s collateral for the loan. Don’t be taken in. No legitimate loan company will ask you to provide money upfront.
This is another sign you’re dealing with a fraudulent operation. Any legitimate loan company will have no issue providing you with a physical address and business number so you can research them and learn more about them. If you’re uncertain if the company is legitimate or not, you can always contact the Better Business Bureau, Department of Banking or Financial Regulation, or your State Attorney General’s Office.