Sometimes you need more money than you have set aside. You can take out a loan to raise the extra cash. There are plenty of options, starting with personal loans. Some loans are a lot more expensive than others. however. Whatever lending source you choose, shop around to find the best rates and terms.
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Personal loan providers check your credit rating, so review your credit history before you apply. If you find mistakes, contact the credit bureaus and have the errors fixed. This improves the odds your loan request will be approved. You can see your credit report for free each year at AnnualCreditReport.com. which is the Federal Trade Commission's authorized source of free credit reports.
A personal loan is a cash loan you get from a private loan company, a credit union or a bank. You can use the money for any purpose. For instance, you might take out a personal loan to pay for a wedding or vacation. Personal loans may be secured. meaning you must put up an asset you own as collateral. They can also be unsecured. Unsecured personal loans typically have higher interest rates because there is no collateral to back them up. However, if you have a low credit score, you may be limited to a secured loan and have to pay more in interest; and you may not be able to borrow as much if your credit is spotty.
- Personal loan application. To take out a personal loan, you must fill out an application form. Depending on the lender, you may be able to do this online or by phone.
Identification. You need to present identification before being approved for a personal loan. A valid government-issued photo ID like a driver's license, military ID or passport is acceptable.
Some lenders will accept two alternative pieces of identification such as a current photo employee ID, credit card with your photograph, a current bank statement or utility bill and a permanent residents card.
earnings. A letter signed by your employer may be accepted as well. Retirees can use Social Security or pension award letters or current bank statements. If you are self-employed, bring your tax returns for the last two years.
"No Credit Check" Loans
When you don't have a strong enough credit history to take out a personal loan, there are alternatives that don't require a credit check. However, these types of loans are expensive. Finance charges can be equivalent to an annual interest rate of several hundred percent. The high cost may make these loans hard to pay off and you could end up renewing them and paying still more finance charges.
- Payday loans. Payday loans are usually offered by payday loan shops and check cashing stores. You must present proof of your identity and give the lender a signed check for the amount borrowed plus finance charges; or you may be required to give them signed permission to electronically debit your bank account. Payday loans are usually due in about two weeks.
More Cash Loan Alternatives
Given the high cost of car title and similar loans, the Federal Trade Commission suggests trying for a personal loan first or getting a cash advance from a credit card. You can also try applying for a low or zero interest credit card .