Things to Consider in Getting Cash Loans

In the situation of worse finance, you need to go looking for the solution. The only one that you can go is having cash loans. It is a short term loan that can be the alternative way to have a way out of your financial condition. One thing that you should know is that since it is a short term loan, then it means that you need to pay it back in the following month. In order to have cash loan, you need to concern with several things to avoid another problem to come. It is good for you to have several considerations in getting cash loan.

The very basic thing that you need to know is about the lender. They are the ones that will grant your application. It becomes the more important part that you need to know about. Here you need to find the trusted one that really help your financially. It is suggested to look for it by the quotes since you are able to make a comparison one to another. Well, in looking for the lender, you need to know about the terms and conditions of the lender. It is known that every lender has different terms and condition sometimes.

A reliable lender will attach the information about the charge and fee, specifically the interest rates, and the annual percentage. If you find that the one does not attach such things, then you need to think that it would be worse to you. Make sure that you can have it right away since you need it out. It makes you turns down into worse financial condition than you have now. In addition, do not easily put your trust to the ones that offer low interest rates. It might be scams since it does not make sense for them to offer it.

Another thing that you should know is about the payment method. You can actually see and make sure yourself to find the best one that you can afford. If you find a lender give you time to pay it back in the following month. It is better for you to get another lender to help you. You can actually have such thing to make you feel comfortable to pay it back. When you have the best one, you can just apply it then. You can just fulfill the personal data that you have and some proofs to apply it.

The only thing that you should have is the status of employment that you have. In addition, let them know about how much your salary is. Do not worry to those who have poor credit background, since you can actually make it as the financial rescue. For the suggestion, you need to wise in using money from cash loan since it will be worse if you cannot manage it well. It will be good if you can save the paycheck a little as the emergency cash to help you in the future. You can get more information from http://www.loansforpeoplewithbadcreditranking.com/.

Is annual fee waived if I don’t use credit card?

I just received my first credit card. It has an annual fee that is waived the first year. If I pay back my initial purchases in full and don’t use the card anymore, will I still have to pay the fee after the one-year mark?
— Yulia

Woman using credit card online © iStock

Dear Yulia,
Sorry to break this to you, but annual fees have nothing to do with card use. You’re paying that fee essentially to have the account.

Usually there’s some sort of trade-off. Annual fees are common among rewards cards, which let you earn points, miles or cash back on purchases, or secured cards, which are reserved for risky customers who need to build (or rebuild) credit.

They typically get applied to your credit card statement around 12 months after you’ve opened the account. You could theoretically avoid the charge if you formally cancel the card before then — and you may want to do so, considering you don’t plan to use it.

Annual fees are only worthwhile if you’re reaping the benefits associated with the product. (If you’re not charging, for instance, you’re not earning any rewards.)

Still, there is something important to note before you cut the card: Formally closing an account eliminates the available credit line associated with it, which, in turn, could hurt your credit utilization rate — the amount of credit a lender has extended to you versus how much debt you’re carrying on your cards.

Credit utilization rates are a major component of credit scores. (For example, they account for about 30 percent of the popular FICO score.)

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A basic rule of thumb is to keep your debt-to-available-credit ratio collectively and on individual credit cards below 20 to 30 percent — the lower, the better.

Don’t know your credit utilization? Get it and a free credit report at myBankrate.

If closing out that new card is going to send you over that threshold (and, for instance, you’re getting ready to shop around for a mortgage), you may want to keep it open. If you don’t have a ton of outstanding debt and you’re afraid the card is going to get you into financial trouble, then you may want to get rid of the account.

If you’re on the fence, there is another option.

Call your issuer and ask if it has a no-fee product with a similar credit limit that you can switch to. (You’d be surprised at how happy issuers are to do this for responsible customers.) Downgrading will allow you to keep your credit utilization ratio intact — and you’ll avoid paying for a product you don’t really use.

Survey: Americans cool to credit card rewards

 

Smiling woman holding credit card and paperwork © iStock

Credit card holders are largely ambivalent about earning points, miles or cash back on their card purchases, according to a new Bankrate Money Pulse survey. The reward for making purchases with plastic, it seems, is convenience.

Indeed, more than half of credit card users — 51 percent — indicate they would continue to use a card in the same manner as before if their issuer eliminated rewards, Bankrate’s survey found.

Consumers also express little enthusiasm for accumulating extra rewards — particularly if those points or miles cost cardholders some privacy.

The survey’s tepid response around rewards shows people have a different, bigger motivation for using credit cards, says Nessa Feddis, senior vice president for consumer protection and payments at the American Bankers Association in Washington, D.C.

“If rewards went away today, you might see some reduction” in credit card spending, she says, but cardholders “(are) not going to give up a credit card. It’s simply too convenient” to pay with one.

Convenience is king

In fact, a majority of consumers (40 percent) cite convenience as the single biggest reason they use plastic. Another 19 percent indicate they primarily use credit cards to finance emergency expenses.

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Comparatively, 14 percent cite points and cash back as their major driver of card use. This represents a slight increase over the 10 percent in a 2008 Bankrate survey who indicated rewards were their primary motivation for using a credit card.

But the increase isn’t entirely unexpected when you consider issuers have been beefing up rewards programs the last few years, even as Americans continue to eye credit warily.

“We’re not back to the pre-recession use of credit cards,” says Ken Paterson, vice president of research operations at Mercator Advisory Group in Maynard, Massachusetts.

According to data from credit bureau TransUnion, the average credit card debt per borrower was $5,327 in the fourth quarter of 2014, compared with $6,276 in the fourth quarter of 2008.

In order to attract lucrative customers, “we have seen some of the rewards programs slowly getting richer,” Paterson says.

Previous survey
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The results of Bankrate’s Money Pulse survey on credit habits show a surprising shift in the number of consumers who are paying attention. Find out why.

People and credit score numbers © Michael D Brown/Shutterstock.com

Down with debt instruments

There are other signs in Bankrate’s survey that suggest Americans’ view of credit cards has changed since the Great Recession.

Only 52 percent of consumers, for instance, own a credit card from a major issuer, with the youngest demographic trailing all others. In keeping with other Bankrate research, a whopping 64 percent of those ages 18 to 29 don’t have a major credit card.

“Millennials are much more debt-averse than older generations,” says Kelley Long, a member of the National CPA Financial Literacy Commission under the American Institute of CPAs. “They saw their parents and older siblings kind of get caught by surprise by borrowing against future earnings.”

But, while their aversion to credit cards may be the strongest, young consumers aren’t the only ones to learn from the economic downturn. Only 8 percent of card users indicate they now primarily use a card to get by when they run out of cash compared with 14 percent in 2008.

“People are more educated of the pitfalls and are trying to save themselves from themselves by avoiding the temptation,” Long says.

Those who are prone to overspend or keep a balance, for instance, know they aren’t likely to benefit from points or miles, so for them, those perks aren’t — and shouldn’t — be a priority, Long says.

“Rewards are only earned when you spend, so if you are carrying a balance, the first thing you have to be worried about is interest rates,” Long says. “The people who are carrying balances are trading off rewards to get zero percent promo rates to pay off their debt.”

The problem with settling

Consumers who pay off their bills in full, however, should consider points, miles or cash back when determining which cards are in, or at the top of, their wallets.

“There is a rewards program out there for everybody depending on what your interests are,” Paterson says. If you travel a lot, for instance, a co-branded card with your airline of choice may be a good fit.

Sticking with a rewards card whose terms and conditions have changed can wind up costing you.

Annual fees, for instance, are particularly common among rewards cards. So, if the cost of your card suddenly outweighs its benefits, you may want to look for a better deal.

In fact, “at least once a year, if not twice a year … track your spending … to see if the benefits of those cards really fit with your lifestyle now,” says Jeff Sklar, a certified public accountant and managing partner at Sklar Heyman Hirshfield & Kantor LLP in Bellmore, New York. “If your credit is good and you’re comfortable, find a card that works for you.”

You also can call your issuer and ask if it has a more beneficial product to which you can switch.

Smart shopping

Just remember to choose new cards wisely. Each credit card application generates a hard inquiry on your credit report, which could ding your credit score. So, when you do apply, be sure the product is worthwhile.

“Look at the (annual percentage rate),” Sklar says. “Look at the annual fee. Look at the rewards.”

Also, before applying for a new credit card, check your credit for free at myBankrate.

Finally, you may want to keep the old card in your arsenal, even though you’re planning to use it less. Closing accounts can inadvertently skew your credit utilization rate — essentially how much debt you are carrying versus how much credit has been extended to you — and affect your creditworthiness as well.

To prevent this from happening, “you can just cut up your (old) credit card,” says Steve Repak, a Charlotte, North Carolina-based CFP professional. Or, simply “don’t charge on it.”

Prioritizing privacy

Bankrate’s poll found that a whopping 72 percent of credit card users are not at all likely to let their credit card company share information about them with third parties, such as merchants or marketers, in exchange for more rewards.

This sentiment was shared across all demographics, though millennials are a bit less guarded than others: Some 53 percent of consumers age 18 to 29 indicate they are not at all likely to agree to share.

ethodology: Bankrate’s poll was conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates International, which obtained the data via telephone interviews with a nationally representative sample of 1,000 adults living in the continental U.S. Telephone interviews were conducted by landline (500) and cellphone (500, including 301 without a landline phone) in English and Spanish from May 14 to 17, 2015.

Statistical results are weighted to correct known demographic discrepancies. The margin of sampling error for the complete set of weighted data is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.

“A lot of young people figure that everything is transparent anyhow,” says Paul Bland, executive director at Public Justice, a public interest law firm in Washington, D.C. “There are tons of young people who have already had the experience of an employer asking them about something they put on social media, for example.”

Regardless of the millennial outliers, the public’s general proclivity to limit data-sharing isn’t all that surprising.

“The number of consumers who are alarmed about privacy issues have gone up dramatically in recent years,” Bland says, given all the media coverage around big company data breaches and public spying by the National Security Administration.

Protecting your information

But if privacy is a major concern, carefully read a credit card’s terms and conditions.

Most banks don’t share data with outside parties, such as merchants or vendors, but there could be language in your agreement that lets them circulate your information among their affiliates — companies they either control or that have some type of control over them.

Plus, there’s always a chance the fine print allows more data-sharing than you are comfortable with.

Make sure you know who is — or isn’t — privy to your information. Also, check to see if there is anything you have to do to opt out of any potential data-sharing program.

“If people do feel strongly about this sort of thing, they have to pay attention, read things and protect themselves,” Bland says.

Credit card balance transfer: A good idea?

 

Man calling services over paperwork © iStock

The post-vacation blues have set in, along with hefty credit card debt. Your well-intentioned plans for a summer-within-your-means fell short, and now you’re faced with the prospect of paying off your recent spending — plus 15% interest — for the next six months or longer.

There might be a better way.

A credit card offer that features a low- or no-interest introductory period on debt transferred from another credit card can be an efficient way to vanquish a large credit card balance over time without shelling out any (or very little) interest.

“If you can really keep yourself on a budget … (a balance transfer credit card) can be a useful tool” for paying down debts, says Thomas Nitzsche, a certified credit counselor with ClearPoint Credit Counseling Solutions, a nonprofit organization in Atlanta.

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But if you’re simply transferring balances from card to card, the new one won’t eliminate your debt woes. In fact, you could wind up exacerbating them because balance transfers often involve fees and could carry high go-to interest rates once the introductory period is over.

“If you’ve noticed a pattern … you need to take additional steps” to get rid of your debts for good, Nitzsche says.

Do the math

Before jumping at an offer, read the fine print and calculate the costs. The key figures are the introductory interest rate, the length of the introductory period, the annual percentage rate (APR) after the intro rate, the balance transfer fee, and the minimum monthly payment, says Mary Ellen Nicol, also a counselor with ClearPoint.

Under federal law, the teaser rate must last at least 6 months. Many balance transfer credit cards will offer introductory rates for longer periods, anywhere from 9 to 18 months or sometimes even longer, says Nitzsche.

Be realistic in determining how long it will take to chip away at the balance. Will it take longer than the introductory period? If so, then the math gets a little more complicated. Now you need to consider what the interest rate will bump up to after the teaser period ends and how much you will pay in interest on the remaining balance.

Don’t forget to add in the cost of the balance transfer fee, which is typically around 3% of the balance. Also factor in what the new card’s minimum monthly payment will be; often, it’s a percentage of the balance transfer.

“If the fees are too high, the length of the low interest rate period too short or the minimum payment too high for your budget, then it becomes an unwise financial move,” says Nicol.

Can I qualify?

Even if all the numbers pan out in favor of a balance transfer, you still have to qualify. That means you should have a good idea of what your credit looks like before applying.

“Pull a copy of your credit report” about 6 months ahead of time, says Bruce McClary, vice president of public relations and external affairs with the National Foundation for Credit Counseling.

You can get a free credit report from myBankrate.

Those with stellar credit (750 or above) will likely qualify for the best teaser rates. If your credit score falls below that, you may get a higher teaser rate, but it still may be lower than what you’re paying now.

“You have to set your expectations within the realm of reality,” McClary says.

The other factor is the credit limit. There’s always a chance the new issuer won’t dole out a large enough credit line for you to transfer your entire balance, says Linda Sherry, director of national priorities at watchdog group Consumer Action.

Check the fine print to see if there is a cap on the balance transfer amount. Otherwise, you may not find out if your new account will be able to swallow your balance until after the account is opened, Sherry says. Then you’ll have 2 credit cards you need to pay off.

“Banks are not giving out high credit limits these days, so if you have a sizable balance, the chance you’ll be able to move it over in its entirety is pretty slim,” she says, “unless you’re an absolute stellar credit score.”

Still, moving only a portion of high-interest debt to a low- or no-interest account could make it easier to pay off the debt without incurring a lot of interest, Nicol points out.

Living with a transfer

You qualified for the balance transfer and moved your debt to a no-interest account. Now what?

Make sure the old card has been paid off by getting a statement from your old issuer. Sherry recommends keeping the old card open, charging very little each month (such as gas) and paying off the balance in full. That will help boost your credit score while you pay down your debt. If a balance still remains on the old card, continue to make payments on time.

Meanwhile, attack the balance transfer debt before the introductory period is up. And make sure every payment gets in on time. If you fall behind by 60 days, your low or no interest rate could disappear, says Nicol.

Last, realize that purchases on the new credit card may fall under a different APR than your balance transfer debt. If the rate is higher, avoid making purchases on the card because your payments will apply to the balance with the highest rate first.

People who don’t utilize these best practices risk digging a deeper hole for themselves.

“They’ve just doubled the amount of debt they are dealing with in a short amount of time and then the debt becomes unmanageable,” McClary says. “Hold your feet to the fire when it comes to paying down that balance so you don’t get burned later.”

Will paying my credit card bill early help my credit score?

Credit card payment © iStock

Dear Cameron,
It’s likely to help your credit score if you pay off purchases before your bill arrives.

You won’t get extra points for being an early bird. Credit-scoring models generally care about only whether you’ve made the minimum payment before your statement’s due date. But you will ensure that a big balance doesn’t inadvertently skew your credit utilization rate.

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Credit card issuers generally report to the 3 credit bureaus — Equifax, Experian and TransUnion — once a month. They’ll tell them whether your account is in good standing (have you made monthly payments on time?), and they’ll also report whatever balance is on the card.

The balance that gets reported is the one at your statement’s closing date. If you pay all your purchases down before that time comes and goes, your score should benefit.

Quick recap: Your credit utilization rate is determined essentially by how much debt you are carrying versus how much credit — generally and on each individual card — has been extended to you. It accounts for 30% of the popular FICO credit score. For best results, it’s generally recommended you keep your utilization below 30%. The lower, the better.

You should be able to find your closing date on a recent statement, but you can also call your issuer to confirm or ask when any balance is going to be reported.

Personally, I like to pay down my credit card purchases as I go via a linked debit card account. Popping in to pay down the balance every day, or at least once a week, ensures a big number never winds up on my credit report. (You can check the current status of your credit card debts by checking your credit report for free at myBankrate.)

Plus, it’s a great way to stay on budget because you’re monitoring how much money is in your bank account and you’ll be less inclined to spend more than what’s available.

You can negotiate a balance transfer fee

 

Credit cards fanned out © keren-seg/Shutterstock.com

Transferring your credit card balance to get a lower interest rate probably seems like a great idea — until you see the transfer fee.

With a typical fee of 3%, a $20,000 transfer will cost you $600.

But don’t get discouraged. You might be able to negotiate that fee down.

“It’s definitely possible,” says Scott Bilker, author of “Talk Your Way Out of Credit Card Debt.” “I’ve done it myself.”

“People know you have to bargain for car prices, but they don’t think you can negotiate everything with a credit card. Consumers can win because there is competition,” he says. “I would call and say, ‘I’d love to take advantage of the balance transfer offer, but the fee is just too much.'”

Call versus click

When you get an online balance transfer offer, you’re just starting the process. Always call to see if there’s something better.

Ask what other offers are available. Ask about the fees for each one, and take careful notes. Sometimes, a 2.9% offer will have an uncapped fee, and another at 3.9% will be capped at $75.

Don’t sound too enthused about any offer. Ask if they have anything better. A supervisor may indeed be able to offer you a better deal.

And there’s another thing to keep in mind: Next week, a 0% offer may be introduced. Make sure you find out when new transfer offers might be available.

Of course, before you pick up the phone, do some online research.

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“You can always do comparison shopping and read the fine print online,” says Jing Xiao, professor of family finance at the University of Rhode Island. “You have to be aware of the new trends.”

It pays to keep track of the latest traps and tricks, he says, even if it’s a card you’ve had for a long time.

What to say when negotiating

Once you know the offers, start trying to get rid of that balance transfer fee.

“I’d start with a request to waive the whole fee,” says Bilker. “Chances are, in today’s climate, it will be difficult to do that,” but it’s still worth a try.

Mention points like your many years of loyalty to the company and your record of on-time payments.

If you’re a heavy charger, bring up how much business you were worth last year, as the company gets a percentage of every purchase.

If you haven’t used a card in a while, that may work in your favor, too, because the bank will want to lure you back.

And remember that you always have something to offer: If the bank makes 4.99% off you, that’s still better than nothing, which is what they’re getting if you don’t switch your debt.

One way to save if you have several balances to transfer would be to negotiate for a single flat fee.

Next, if the fee-waiver request is denied, try to get the fee capped at something you think is reasonable — say, $50 or even $100, which is a lot better than 3% of a huge balance.

“I was able to get a $20 fee reduced to $10,” says Bilker.

If you get nowhere with a representative, ask for a supervisor. Be patient, and remember that everything with credit cards is negotiable, no matter what the rep says at first. You might get other sweeteners if they can’t help on the fee, such as improved travel rewards or a lower purchase rate. It pays to ask if there is anything else the company can do. Quite often, there is.

New cards and old cards

Issuers love fresh meat, and sometimes new customers get great offers.

“Initially, with a new credit card, they’ll waive some fees to get you in,” says Bilker.

You may see no-fee balance transfers if you’re a new customer. You also might get a really enticing deal, like a fixed-rate low-interest deal. But you don’t have to open a new card to save.

“Keep your eyes on your current credit cards,” says Bilker. “When they send you an offer, keep it, date it and file it.”

Those offers are your bargaining chips, making you an informed negotiator.

“You have to comparison shop,” Bilker says. “If you have credit cards with no balances, call and say, ‘You miss me?’ so they can make you some offers.”

Multiple balance transfers

Don’t despair if you have balances on several cards and think you will get slammed for multiple fees. Quantity can be a bargaining chip.

One way to save if you have several balances to transfer — say, $3,000 on one, $4,500 on a second and $800 on a third — would be to negotiate for a single flat fee.

Sometimes the representatives will say yes. Other times, they will suggest a direct deposit, which generally translates into 1 fee.

Inform yourself

With fees, those who know pay less.

“Knowledge is power,” says Tahira Hira, professor of personal finance and consumer economics at Iowa State University. “When you have a credit card, you enter into a contract, and people don’t think of it that way.

“Of course you should negotiate, and of course you should think about getting a lower interest rate,” she says.

Just be careful that you really are getting a better deal, Hira warns.

“You also need to understand the spread between the 2 interest rates, and what the other conditions are,” she says. “There are so many variables.”

The fine print really matters. Watch for grace periods, late-fee policies and whether universal default is in place before you move your debt to a new company.

You should carefully calculate whether you really will be saving after the fee, Hira says, and how many months it will take you to pay it off. A lot depends on how fast you can pay.

“You need to know why you’re doing it and how it benefits you, and at what level you are willing to make that transaction,” she says.

Ignorance is not bliss

Hira says she has done studies on people who borrow too much and who are always in financial trouble.

“The first item is ignorance,” she explains.

Remember that the credit card company is going to look for ways to make the maximum amount of money off you.

“Both parties have to be getting something out of it,” Hira says. “So don’t think the new offer to you will be a bad deal for them.”

Above all, don’t fool yourself into thinking your loan has disappeared. At best, you’ve snared yourself some better terms.

When they won’t budge

When you still want the transfer but the issuer won’t lower the fee, there is still hope.

You can play hardball and try to change other terms in exchange for a fee waiver.

“What you might do is offer to make the interest rate a little higher, but waive the balance transfer fee,” Bilker says. “Just do the math to make sure you come out ahead.”

This makes sense if you know you can pay off the balance shortly.

Another strategy to consider is writing a check — funded by the new bank — to move the balance. Sometimes, issuers will offer this method of financing as a free way to transfer the balance in lieu of a traditional card-to-card transfer. Either way, it pays to ask what terms are associated with each option.

If you don’t see that kind of offer, Bilker suggests yet another option to avoid a fee while lowering your interest rate, though it requires extreme care.

Transfer cash from one card to another credit card where you have no balance if there are no fees for transferring directly to another credit card, he suggests.

This maneuver will force the receiving bank to write you a check for the credit balance.

“I had a $1,000 credit balance,” he recalls, “and they had to send it to me, so I avoided the fee completely.”

As always, ask plenty of questions and keep good records. With credit cards, those who pay attention to details — and are willing to fight over them — will come out ahead.