Payday loans have helped thousands of people get back on track financially. In the short term they can be extremely useful. With the huge amount of lenders available, it can be difficult choosing the right payday loan to fit your needs. Before you set off on your search, it helps to know a little more about what a payday loan actually involves.
The basics of a payday loan
Payday loans are designed to give you small cash amounts until your next payday. The loan, along with any interest, is typically paid back within one month. There are some companies who will let you pay the money back over a two-three month period.
The amount that you can borrow varies depending upon the lender. Most will offer anything from £50 to £1000. Reliable lenders will check whether or not you can pay the money back on time. This doesn’t always include a credit check, but you will have to state how much you earn in a month.
The most trustworthy and reliable lenders (we recommend using established brands like Wonga), will carry out a credit check. However, if you have bad credit, don’t let that put you off. Many lenders will still give you the money you need even with bad credit.
Understanding the APR
The one thing that puts many people off payday loans is the ridiculously high APR rates. It’s not uncommon to find APR of at least 2500% up to 5000%. When you compare that to bank loans and other forms of credit that typically charge up to 29% APR, it can seem like a startling figure.
However, the APR rates are worked out annually. As you only take the payday loan out for up to two months maximum, the APR won’t usually affect you. Most lenders charge around £20 interest on every £100 borrowed. It’s only if you miss a repayment that the high interest rates will affect you.
One of the most important things to keep in mind is to never borrow more than you can comfortably afford to pay back. Payday loans are only helpful if you borrow responsibly. The Citizen’s Advice Bureau has published excellent advice to those thinking of taking out a payday loan. If you’re struggling with long term debt, payday loans might not be the best option. They are purely offered for short term cash flow problems only.
Choosing a reliable lender
It is very important you choose a lender you can trust. There are many loan sharks out there who can help to get you into even further financial difficulties than what you’re already in. BBC News has recently reported the dangers of rogue payday loan lenders.
In order to check you’re borrowing from a reliable company, check their feedback. Do a little research online and see whether consumers recommend the lender. The internet is a very useful research tool and it will show you which lenders are rated the highest by borrowers.
Payday loans can help you out of temporary financial difficulties. You will need a bank account in order to apply and in some cases you can get the money into your account within an hour of being accepted.