Most American families have under 10,000 dollars available to them in savings. Therein lies one of the biggest reasons why when economic hardship strikes communities, millions struggle to weather the storm.
Fortunately, loan products are available through banks and other entities which can help those that are struggling financially build a bridge to a better tomorrow.
But who should you trust when taking out personal loans? While there’s no one-size-fits-all answer to finding the perfect lender, below, our team shares a handful of safe places to start when seeking borrowing options.
- Brick-and-Mortar Banks in Your Community
When you ask somebody where you can get a personal loan, the most common answer you’ll receive is “From a bank.”
Banks have long upheld the reputation of being a community member’s go-to resource for their borrowing needs. While some banks have abused their responsibilities to members in favor of profits, for the most part, you can trust that a bank that offers brick-and-motor locations in your community will be transparent about the loans they offer.
If you need to borrow money, see a teller and have them walk you through their options. Be prepared with questions to ensure you get the full picture of what you’re getting into before filling out an application.
- Credit Unions
We love credit unions because they operate almost exactly like banks except they’re not profit-motivated. That usually means lower interest rates on personal loans and other products.
Credit unions do require you to meet certain criteria to be a member. That criteria might be needing to live or worship within their city limits, among other things.
- Friends and Family
Not everybody has friends or family members that are willing to lend them money. If you do, consider making the ask.
Friends and family members are the only lenders that’ll consider giving you money without requiring any form of interest. They may be more lenient about repayments as well.
Just be cautious when borrowing from loved ones as missed payments can cost you relationships.
- Extensively Reviewed Miscellaneous Lenders
Some of you may be considering getting loans from online car title loans purveyors or payday loan lenders. We advise you to do this with caution.
There is an extensive pool of predatory lenders that operate online and create conditions where it’s extremely hard to pay off their lending products.
If you are going to borrow from an online lender or a lender that’s located in a different state, do extensive research on them to ensure they’re well-reviewed. If their reputation checks out, you can inquire more about services.
Personal Loans Sometimes Hurt More Than They Help
Personal loans are a fantastic means to the end of getting through tough economic times. Understand though that variable personal loan rates, fees and more can create conditions where the money you borrow finds more problems for you than solutions.
Read the terms surrounding your loan carefully before signing anything. If you’re having trouble interpreting a loan or need additional guidance, browse more of the content on our blog surrounding the topic.