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Payday Loans Should Only Be Emergency Alternatives

By Charles Hopkins Published 11/27/2007 | Loans
Payday loans should only be used as an emergency cash alternative. If you find yourself in a situation that leaves you considering a payday loan, ask yourself if there is any other possible way to make it through to your next payday.

There are cash advance businesses set up all across America. Heres how they work. Youll take your most recent check stub (or stubs, depending upon the business requirement) to the business as proof of income. Youll be asked to fill out some paperwork, including the amount of money you need and when is the date of your next payday. On that next payday, you will return to the business to repay the amount of money plus interest and fees on the sum. If that payment is not made on time, late charges will begin accruing. While most loans are for periods of 14 days or less, the interest rate can break down to more than 400 percent given the time frame.

The reason payday loans are recommended as a last resort, is that if you are running short of money one payday, it is likely that the setback of repayment will leave you in the hole again. This can easily leave you with the temptation to get yet another payday loan, thus beginning a cycle that is not easy to break. This kind of rollover is not a good situation to be in and may even be illegal in your state as a protection to you, the consumer.

What if you have no other option? Ask yourself if youve tried hard enough to think of other alternative possibilities. Can you call your creditor and ask for more time to pay your bill? Most will work with you when you explain your circumstances to them. Is there a friend or family member from whom you could borrow the money? Maybe you could ask your employer for a payroll advance.

The bottom line is: try to avoid a payday loan. If you really do feel like its your only option, educate yourself on your states laws and legal opinions about the cash advance businesses. Make sure you have a plan to guarantee you wont get caught in the viscious loan cycle. Most of all, try to get some financial counseling to help you develop a budget for managing your income and your expenses.