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5 Best Payday Loan Alternatives That Offer Lower Rates

While payday loans can be very accessible especially during financial emergencies, the rates can get really overwhelming. Thus, we are going to share with you some of the best payday loan alternatives to help you get through with immediate financial needs.

best payday loan alternative

In a report published by the Economic Research of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, it says that there are as many as 12 million American people who use payday loan every year.

In the same report, it says that collectively, American borrowers spend as much as “$9 billion every year on payday loan fees“. Furthermore, it states that “On average, the fee for a payday loan is $55 for a two-week loan, and the typical $375 loan will incur $520 in fees because of repeat borrowing.

If you come to think about it, the numbers are huge! Well, it is huge! That is why it is important for borrowers to fully understand first what they are getting themselves into (in this case a payday loan) before getting into it.

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While payday loans can be very helpful especially when you badly need cash, the thing is, it hurts. Paying it off hurts.

So, with that in mind, we thought of providing several other options in lieu of a payday loan. These choices are definitely low in terms of rates and charges, which is ideal especially if it’s an emergency situation and you do not have enough resources to pay off a huge loan (huge because of charges and fees).

But, before we give you our list of some of the best payday loan alternative, we are going to share with you first a couple of important information about the payday loan so you get to fully understand why a payday loan can get a little dangerous rather scary.

In particular, we are going to give answers to the following commonly asked questions:

  • What is a payday loan?
  • How does a payday loan works?
  • How much does payday loan charges?

WHAT IS A PAYDAY LOAN?

We keep saying this every time we make reviews on banks, credit unions, and other lending companies. Borrowers, it is your responsibility to research and knows more about the products and services, as well as the companies that you are dealing with. This is to avoid regretting anything in the future.

As borrowers, we owe it to ourselves to research and know our options before we sign any loan documents. Make it a point to shop around and compare products and services, as well as the corresponding features to ensure you get to land on the best deal possible.

Now, at this point, we are going to talk about what a payday loan is all about.

According to Economic Research of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Loius, payday loans are defined as follows:

It is a type of alternative financial service that provides fast cash to cover emergency situations or help pay a borrower’s expenses from one paycheck to the next. These unsecured loans have a short repayment period and are appropriately called “payday loans” because the duration of a loan usually matches the borrower’s payday schedule. A balloon payment—full amount of the loan plus fees—is generally due on the borrower’s next payday after the loan is made.”

Furthermore, it says that normally, payday loans amount to $500 or less. Also, it usually comes due within two to four weeks after the borrower has received the loan.

It is also important to note that the loan terms vary depending on the borrower’s pay schedule or how many times he or she received his or her income, which means, the terms could be a week, two weeks, or in some cases in a month.

With the strong presence of technology and the internet, over the years lending companies have already offered payday loans online as well, which makes it even more accessible to borrowers anytime and anywhere they may be.

By the way, as mentioned, a payday loan is an unsecured loan (like most personal loans are), which means a borrower needs not any collateral to be able to borrow money from a lending company or a financial institution.

HOW DOES A PAYDAY LOAN WORKS?

So, now you already know what a payday loan is all about. This time, let’s talk about how it actually works.

Since payday loans are unsecured loans (needless to say, they are easily accessible kind of loan), which means lending companies do not require collateral, borrowers must expect high levels of interest.

Payday loans are considered as predatory loans because of having such a reputation for charging extremely high interest as well as added fees.

Generally, payday loan providers are small credit merchants. They usually come with physical locations where borrowers can apply and at the same time, get an approval of the loan. However, with the advent of technology, some payday loan services are already available online through online lenders.

To be able to apply for a payday loan, borrowers must be able to provide paystubs or pay slips coming from their employers, which shows their current levels of income.

Normally, payday lenders base the loan principal on a percentage of the borrower’s predicted short-term income. In some cases, though, lenders also look into the borrower’s credit score, as well as his or her credit history, which means a hard credit pull will be conducted during the loan application process that could affect the borrower’s credit score.

By the way, before you even look for a payday lender, make sure that your state allows it. In the United States, as of 2020, there are 12 states already as well as the District of Columbia that have banned payday loans. The 12 states are composed of Arkansas, Arizona, Connecticut, Georgia, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Vermont, and West Virginia.

HOW MUCH DOES PAYDAY LOAN CHARGES?

Borrowers, you better read this. Of all the details about payday loans, this probably is the most important of all.

We have already mentioned that payday loans charge high-interest rates or we better say extremely high-interest rates.

For your reference, payday lenders can charge up to 500% in annual percentage yield (APR). Although most states have usury laws that limit interest charges for up to approximately 35%, when it comes to payday lenders, they fall under exemptions. Thus, they get to charge more.

Payday loans are regulated and governed by individual states. However, some states outlaw payday loans of any kind, which means borrowers need to be very careful.

BEST PAYDAY LOAN ALTERNATIVES

Let’s face it. Sometimes we are caught in unexpected situations when we badly need cash but do not have enough. Thus, some of us resort to getting payday loans even if the interests are high just to be able to get through.

The thing is – there are actually a lot of other options around where you can borrow money and have the funds just when you need it.

Now, before we move on to our list of best payday loan alternatives, here’s a video of what MagnifyMoney suggests. We thought you should check this out.

Having said that, here are five best payday loan alternative borrowers must look into:

  • Credit Cards
  • Paycheck Advance
  • 401(k) Loan
  • Family and/or Friends
  • Fast Personal Loans

CREDIT CARDS

First on our list of best alternatives for a payday loan is a credit card. Compared to payday loans, credit cards have much lower interest rates and APR. Furthermore, credit cards have added flexibility, which can be very helpful among borrowers.

Usually, when you get a payday loan, if you have excess money, regardless if you still need it or not, you still have to pay for it. As with credit cards, you only pay the amount you borrow.

If in case you badly need cash, you can also avail a credit card cash advance. Although this option can be quite expensive, it definitely is much cheaper as compared to how much you are going to pay if you go for a payday loan.

In most cases, issuers charge a percentage of the advance as a fee, which is normally around 5%, with a minimum of $5 up to $10.

When opting for this option though, the key is to pay off the advance right away. Otherwise, the balance may just get out of control, which is something that you surely would not like, right?

Also, please take note that when you cash advance using your credit card, the interest would usually begin accruing right away, which is not the case when you use it for purchases or balance transfers.

PAYCHECK ADVANCE

Another possible option instead of getting a payday loan is an advance on your paycheck — that, of course, will depend on your company.

Unfortunately, not all companies offer these types of loans. While for those who do, the terms usually vary from one company to another.

To be sure, before you even think about getting a loan elsewhere, check your company first if they offer paycheck advance, and of course, make sure to check the terms as well.

As we always say, it is important to know the details to avoid any surprises. While surprises are usually exciting that is not the case when it comes to money matters, in this case, a loan.

401(K) LOAN

When everything else fails, you may also consider taking a 401(k) loan. Ideally, you should not take anything from your retirement account, but if worse comes to worst, then a 401(k) loan is a valid choice.

The thing about borrowing against your 401(k) is that it does not incur any taxes for as long as you follow all the rules. The rules include repaying the loan as scheduled or in full if you resign from your current employer.

Furthermore, 401(k) loans do not require any credit check. Also, when you pay for the loan, you pay interest back to your own account. Not bad, right?

The key when it comes to 401(k) loan is that you pay off the loan within the year. The sooner, the better so it would only have very minimal impact on your account.

The downside of this though is that your employer may not allow you to make new contributions until you are able to repay the loan, which can affect the progress of your retirement fund.

CREDIT UNIONS

Another best payday loan alternative is borrowing money from credit unions. Credit unions do usually offer lower interest rates among their members. Needless to say, they are open to both borrowers with unattractive and excellent credit scores.

However, to be able to borrow money from credit unions, you have to first and foremost, be a member of the union. Otherwise, you won’t be able to avail of any of the products and services it offers.

Now, how to qualify for a payday alternative loan?

In addition to the information we have already provided, as a borrower, you must also look into the qualifications for a payday loan alternative.

For your information, there are two types of payday alternative loans (PAL) a borrower can apply for. These are PAL I and Pal II.

To be able to qualify for PAL I, a borrower is required to join a qualified credit union. He or she must be a member of the union for at least a month before he or she can apply for a loan.

Meanwhile, for PAL II, there are no restrictions.

Now, to be sure what your credit unions offers, call or email them as soon as you can.

FAST PERSONAL LOANS

Last, but definitely not the least on our list is fast personal loans.

It is one of the best payday loan alternatives out there. It basically is much like that of a credit card. This type of loan does not require collateral, and can definitely be less expensive as compared to payday loans.

Most fast personal loan lenders have processes set up so disbursing of funds to borrowers can be done via depositing in the borrower’s account either on the same day of loan approval or the following business day.

As compared to payday loans, most fast personal loans give borrowers much longer repayment terms. Some would even last for months or years — depending on certain factors like the amount of money borrowed.

While some companies are stricter when it comes to requirements particularly credit scores, other lending companies are willing to work with borrowers that have unattractive credit.

Some of the best fast personal loan lenders are:

  • Lightstream – This lending company provides loans amounting to $5,000 up to $100,000. Thus, making it ideal for borrowers who need a large amount of money. This unsecured personal loan can be used for various reasons. However, please note that your purpose of the loan may affect the rate that the company may charge you.
  • OneMain Financial – OneMain Financial offers loans of up to $20,000. The lending company is ideal for borrowers who need same-day funding. While the company allows a larger amount of personal loans, it, however, requires collateral for that option. Generally, people who qualify for unsecured have much higher APR as compared to those with secured loans. Also, it is important to note that exact rates and limits vary depending on the borrower’s resident state, credit profile, as well as borrowing needs.
  • RISE Credit – RISE Credit is ideal for borrowers with bad credit and could hardly get a personal loan from other lenders. The downside though is that RISE charges quite high rates that span from 50% up to 299%. In addition, RISE Credit offers lower loan amounts as compared to the other options we provided. However, when it comes to repayment terms, the company offers repayment of the loan from 4 months up to 26 months (depending on the state you are in), which is desirable than those that offer repayments within just a couple of weeks.

ADDITIONAL OPTION: FAMILY AND/OR FRIENDS

If you want to avoid fees and charges, as well as huge interest rates (or if you want not to pay any interest at all), considering borrowing money from family or friends.

To be honest, your family and friends should be the first ones on your list during financial emergency situations. Why? Because most of the time, when you borrow from family or friends, they do not charge you for anything. All you need is to pay back the money in full (or depending on the terms you have agreed on).

If you looked around and found no one from among your family and friends to lend you money, then, that is the only time you check out the next possible option.

The thing about borrowing money from a family member or a friend though is that your relationship is at stake if you are unable to pay off the loan. So, unless you know in yourself that you will pay off or that you are capable of paying off the loan, then go ahead and consider this option. Otherwise, jump into the next option on your list.

FINAL THOUGHTS ON BEST PAYDAY LOAN ALTERNATIVE

Life is full of surprises, do you agree? Unfortunately, sometimes it involves money.

We are sometimes caught in situations when we badly need money to get through it, and it is during those times when we rely on lenders. We rely on companies or people who would let us borrow the money we need.

One of the popular go-to places of people in need of immediate funds is payday lenders. Yes, even if payday loans charge extremely high rates, some people would go for it thinking they have no other options left when in fact – there are other options available out there.

As mentioned above, people in need of cash as soon as possible can check out other means such as using credit cards, paycheck advance (if their company allows it), 401(k) loan, family and/or friends, and lastly, through fast personal loans.

Given the options we provided, have you already chosen a payday loan alternative where to borrow money from in case of financial emergencies?

Just keep in mind that while payday loans are tempting, you better check out other options – the best payday loan alternative to be exact.

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Investment Apps and Websites

Spotloan Review: The Best Short-Term Lender For You

This Spotloan review will give you a few reasons why this lender is one of the best options when it comes to short-term loans. Needless to say, one of the few ones that offer amazing deals.

Spotloan review What borrowers need to know

Ideally, short-term loans should be our last resort. However, there comes a time when unexpected circumstances happen and you’ll need extra cash. Thus, you are left with no choice but to borrow from lending companies (unless of course, you have family or friends who are willing to help).

Guess what? There is totally nothing wrong with that! In fact, a lot of people resort to payday loans or short-term loans in order to get by especially when finances are too tight.

Pay-day loans or short-term loans are not your usual loans. Meaning, unlike other types of loans, this one charges quite a high-interest rate. In fact, according to an article published by CNBC, it says that there are short-term loans that cost over 20 times more in interest as compared to an average credit card.

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However, no matter how high the interest may get, still, it has been found that every one in 10 American people get into short-term loans.

According to a report by Forbes online, there are as many as 12 million Americans who take a payday loan every year.

Furthermore, the report says that according to the Center for Financial Services Innovation, borrowers usually earn roughly $30,000 a year and that 58% of them are, unfortunately, having difficulty in meeting basic monthly expenses. Thus, they give into borrowing money from lending companies.

Now, there are a lot of lending companies out there. In fact, there are too many options in can get a little overwhelming sometimes.

But, as we always say, we highly recommend rather encourage borrowers to always shop around first, compare rates and terms, as well as fees and charges before you even seal a deal with a particular lender.

It pays off to shop around and compare. By doing so, you get to find the best deals possible.

Anyway, while there are a lot of options, one of, probably, the best choices out there is Spotloan. Based on feedback from borrowers, there is so much potential here. Needless to say, they’ve got really competitive rates when it comes to payday loans.

So, to learn more about this lending company, we are doing this Spotloan review. We are going to look into every detail that every borrower has to know especially when it comes to payday or short-term loans.

For reference, we are going to specifically tackle the following:

  • What is Spotloan?
  • Why choose Spotloan?
  • What do you need to know about Spotloan short-term loans?
  • Who qualifies for a Spotloan short-term loan?
  • How to apply for a short-term loan at Spotloan?
  • What are the pros and cons of Spotloan?

Before we proceed, here’s a video by eHowFinance about what short-term loans are and its pros and cons:

WHAT IS SPOTLOAN?

Launched in 2012, Spotloan portrays itself as a payday loan alternative (but in reality, they are a short-term loan provider). The company provides quick cash to borrowers, but unlike payday loans, it provides more manageable repayment terms.

Spotloan promises borrowers a savings of up to 50% as compared to traditional payday lenders out there.

Spotloan is a company owned by BlueChip Financial, which is an Indian Tribe-backed entity. Thus, it does not abide by state regulations contrary to other payday or short-term lenders. The company, instead, operates under local Tribe laws.

As a direct lender, though, borrowers only deals with Spotloan, which is why it does not match you with any third-party provider.

Since Spotloan is a short-term lender, similar to most short-term lenders, borrowers should expect to end up paying a high annual percentage rate. Although it is generally competitive when it comes to APR, the company does have a maximum APR of 490%. But this should not be a problem if you have good or excellent credit. Most likely, you will get better rates.

The thing we personally like about Spotloan is that it revolutionizes the emergency loan market by utilizing FinTech technology.

As mentioned, the company provides loans directly to borrowers through a desktop or mobile devices. Furthermore, the company does underwriting loans in just a couple of seconds without the need for applicants to fill out a lengthy application (which is usually the case when dealing with traditional lenders).

The company is proud to say that there are over half a million people who have used Spotloan already as of to date.

WHY CHOOSE SPOTLOAN?

Now that you already know what and who Spotloan is, this time around, we’ll look into why a borrower should choose Spotloan over other short-term loan lenders out there.

There are three major things that Spotloan takes pride of — perhaps what makes them stand out from the rest.

Spotloan provides you with…

  • Loans You Control
  • Payments You Can Manage
  • Savings

Based on their website, this is how each of the above-mentioned items where defined:

Loans You Control

Loans at Spotloans are tailor-made to fit every borrower’s needs. You get to pick your loan amount, as well as the duration of the loan.

Furthermore, you are free to choose either make regularly scheduled payments or pay the loan earlier than scheduled. Whatever you choose, Spotloan promises to work with you to ensure you are and your loan is on track.

Payments You Can Manage

Spotloan is an installment loan. Thus, every regularly scheduled payment definitely helps lower down the cost of your loan so you can kiss the payday loan balloon payment goodbye.

Savings

As mentioned earlier, Spotloan promises that you can save up to 50% as compared to a typical online payday loan.

Now, apart from the above-mentioned, Spotloan also promises borrowers to get the following perks:

  • A better rate on your next loan with us after completing your first loan with Spotloan
  • Highly trained customer service agents to help you every step of the way
  • The freedom to pay off your Spotloan at any time with absolutely no prepayment penalty
  • The flexibility to pause your payments (as long as your account is in good standing)

WHAT DO YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT SPOTLOAN SHORT-TERM LOANS?

At this point in our Spotloan review, we are going to talk about all the other essential information every borrower needs to know when it comes to applying for a Spotloan short-term loan.

If we are going to base our thoughts on the information we have shared with you above, we have to say that Spotloan does really have the potential of the best short-term loan provider. Its promises are on-point, and basically what every borrower wants to know.

But, before we even conclude anything, it is also important to be fully aware of the following:

  • Loan Amount
  • Interest Rate
  • Loan Terms
  • Funding
  • Fees
  • Payment Options
  • Customer Service

So, let’s look into each of these items now —

Loan Amount

One thing we noticed with Spotloan is that, unlike other short-term loan lenders, the company’s loan structure is very straightforward.

At Spotloan, they lend money at a minimum of $300 up to $800. While this may seem like a small amount compared to what other lenders offer, we thought it’s actually a good thing that the company is engaged in sensible lending.

If you need a larger amount, well, you can absolutely apply for a long-term loan instead. Makes sense now, right?

By borrowing a long-term loan, you get to borrow a large amount, at the same time, the interest rates will definitely be cheaper.

Interest Rate

One of the major factors to look into when getting a loan (whether it is short-term or long-term) is the interest rate or the annual percentage rate (APR).

To be upfront, Spotloan may have higher APR compared to other lenders out there.

Depending on the terms, your APR could be as high as 490%. We know what you are thinking, that’s quite high! But also look into it that the actual APR would still depend on your credit score, which means, if you have a high credit score, then you’d definitely have a better APR.

Meanwhile, if you have poor or no credit at all, you better look for another lender instead.

Loan Terms

Since this one’s a short-term loan, it’s quite reasonable that the repayment terms are not that long as well. With Spotloan, borrowers do have the option of paying off the loan in 3 to 8 months.

Do not worry about trying to figure out how long to pay off the loan as the platform helps you determine how long you should take the loan out for depending on how much you can afford to pay back.

By the way, keep in mind also that the longer you pay for the loan, the higher the interest rate would be. So, yeah, ideally, you pay it off early.

Funding

Since Spotloan processes loan application online, and as mentioned earlier, they can grant approval of a lot spot on, the successful loan application can get their loaned money within the same day of approval or up to two business days after approval of the loan.

Fees

So, here’s the good news — Spotloan does not charge any fees (such as origination fee, prepayment fee, annual fee, etc.) except for the APR.

We thought it’s a wise move for Spotloan as a lot of its competitors charge origination fees, which can cost up to 5% of the loan amount.

Payment Options

Spotloan offers a number of options when it comes to paying the loan back.

You may choose from any of the following choices:

  • Automatic Debit – This is the easiest way to repay the loan. You basically have to set up an automatic debit from your checking account, and then let Spotloan automatically debit your payments every two weeks until the loan is repaid in full.
  • Money Order – With money order, you have to ensure that the money is received by the lender before the scheduled repayment date.
  • Check – Another option to pay off the loan is by issuing a check. You just have to mail it to Spotloan, but make sure it does get into the company before the repayment date.

Customer Service

For any questions or clarifications, and to know more about what other products do Spotloan offer, you may contact them through the following channels:

Phone: (888) 681-6811

Email: help@spotloan.com

Mail: Spotloan, P.O. Box 720, Belcourt, ND 58316

The customer service team at Spotloan is only available to assist you during the following office hours (Central Time):

Monday-Friday: 07:00 – 20:00

Saturday-Sunday: 09:00 – 18:00

WHO QUALIFIES FOR A SPOTLOAN SHORT-TERM LOAN?

Next to our Spotloan review is knowing who qualifies for a short-term loan.

As a borrower, it is important to check this one out before you even apply for a loan. Apart from the fact that you can do a self-assessment whether or not you qualify for the loan, ultimately, you do get to save a lot of time and effort.

Now, with Spotloan, it is important to note that it only operates in selected states in the country. Spotloan is available in 38 states, as well as in the District of Columbia.

For your reference, below is where Spotloan operates:

Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming

Moving on, if you reside in the above-mentioned states or if you are from the District of Columbia, then you may now check the other requirements to qualify for a Spotloan short-term loan.

Generally speaking, Spotloan does have a minimum requirement as compared to other lenders. The company requires borrowers of short-term loan to:

  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Have a regular source of income
  • Have a checking or savings account
  • Have a phone number and email address

In addition, borrowers must also:

  • Be a US citizen or permanent US resident
  • Hold a valid social security number

Spotloan is considered a bad credit lender, which means they do not have a minimum credit score requirement. But again, having bad credit means you have to be ready to be charged for a high-interest rate.

HOW TO APPLY FOR A SPOTLOAN SHORT-TERM LOAN?

So you already know what the company requires when it comes to borrowers of short-term loans. This time around, we’ll share with you the process of the loan application.

To apply for a Spotloan short-term loan, all you have to do is go to their online platform — their website. Then, fill out the online application.

Again, make sure you are at least 18 years old, you have verifiable employment, as well as another source of income, a bank account, phone number, and an email address.

Furthermore, you will need the following information to be able to complete the loan application process:

  • Full name
  • Address
  • Date of birth
  • Social Security number
  • Length of time at residence
  • Phone number
  • Email address
  • Employer name/address
  • Proof of income
  • Bank account details

All approved loan applicants who agreed to the loan terms can receive their loaned money as soon as within the same day up to two business days after sending the loan application.

WHAT ARE THE PROS AND CONS OF SPOTLOAN?

This Spotloan review, just like the previous reviews we did, will not be complete without our list of pros and cons. These details will, hopefully, help you as you make an informed decision.

Here’s what we found —

PROS

  • The company has a sensible short-term loan offering of as low as $300 up to $800.
  • It is ideal for borrowers with poor or bad or no credit at all.
  • The company has a fast funding time — allowing borrowers to receive funds either on the same day of their application or up to two business days.
  • Your loan application will not have an impact on your credit report
  • The company provides multiple ways to repay the loan.
  • It does not charge any fee (including prepayment fees) except for the APR.
  • Spotloan is a trusted service provider with a high rating on Truspilot, and has earned many excellent five-star ratings.
  • It has few requirements to apply for a short-term loan.
  • Borrowers can choose their preferred repayment terms.
  • It allows borrowers to pause payments if for some reason they are unable to make a payment — provided the borrower’s account is in good standing.

CONS

  • It is only available in selected states in the country.
  • The interest rate could go as high as 490%, way higher as compared to other lending companies.

FINAL THOUGHTS ON SPOTLOAN REVIEW

Technically, short-term or payday loans should be any borrower’s last resort. As much as possible, if you can find a family or a friend who can lend you the amount you need, do look for one.

Short-term or payday loans are both known to charge high-interest rates — now you know why it should be the last option in mind.

But, if all else fails, and you are left with no other choice but to get a short-term loan, there are a lot of options out there. Just manage your expectation as most of them do have high-interest rates including Spotloan.

While Spotloan does have a high-interest rate compared to other short-term lenders, it makes up when it comes to perks and features.

So, if you are going to ask us if we are to recommend getting a short-term loan at Spotloan, we got to say that based on the information we provided in this Spotloan review plus the many other consumers reviews, it is a yes.

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Investment Apps and Websites

Plain Green Loans Review: Everything You Need To Know

If you are looking at taking out a payday loan from Plain Green Loans anytime soon, then, this one’s for you. This Plain Green Loans review will not just provide you with our thoughts about the lending company, but also essential information every borrower must know.

Plain Green Loans Review

In a report by Forbes online, it says that there are as many as 12 million American people who take a payday loan every year.

Furthermore, according to a study conducted by Pew Charitable Trusts, which was also published at Forbes, payday loan borrowers usually earn an average of $30,000 per year, and that 58% of them have difficulty meeting basic monthly expenses like rent and utility bills.

In addition, it was also mentioned in the report that according to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, normally, a two-week payday loan carries a fee of $10 to $30 for every $100 borrowed (the rates may vary depending on state regulations).

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While it has a relatively low fee, unfortunately, borrowers usually are not able to repay the loan after two weeks. For states that allow it, payday loans are usually rolled over with a new charge to go with it.

Now, a payday loan is inevitable especially when a person is stuck in an emergency situation, and he or she is financially incapable or the funds are just not enough to cover the unexpected cost.

By the way, just to refresh your memory, payday loans refer to a type of small, short-term unsecured loan that usually comes with high-interest rates. Normally, a payday’s loan principal is a portion of a borrower’s next paycheck. Payday loans are also known as cash advance loans or check advance loans.

There are a lot of lenders out there that offer payday loans. One of them is Plain Green, which is the primary focus of this review.

As mentioned, we are going to look into what Plain Green is all about, what it offers, and then, provide you with our thoughts and recommendations whether it is worth getting a payday loan from or now.

For your reference, we are going to specifically talk about the following:

  • Who is Plain Green?
  • What are the different loan options available at Plain Green?
  • What do you need to know about Plain Green loans?
  • Who qualifies for a loan at Plain Green?
  • How to apply for a loan at Plain Green?
  • What are the pros and cons of Plain Green Loans?

WHO IS PLAIN GREEN?

Quality, stability, and integrity — these are the core values that Plain Green, LLC live by on their day-to-day operations.

Founded in 2011, the lending company has already funded more than $1 billion in loans, helping more than 1 million customers across the United States.

Plain Green, LLC refers to “a premier online resource that helps people meet their emergency and cash-flow needs quickly and easily online with bi-weekly and monthly installment loans.”

Moreover, the company focuses on its mission to “provide consumers with a simple, safe solution when they need cash the most. Our customers appreciate the easy, flexible access to loans.”

Plain Green is a subsidiary of Atoske Holding Company, and is wholly owned by the Chippewa Cree Tribe of the Rocky Boy’s Indian Reservation, Montana, which is “a federally recognized sovereign nation located within the United States of America.”

Plain Green offers a variety of loan options particularly to those with poor credit who need funds quickly.

Although not a traditional payday lender, Plain Green operates like one and charges borrowers with interest rates that could go as high as 300%. They provide first-time borrowers with loans of up to $1,000, while repeat customers can borrow as much as $3,000.

Unfortunately, borrowers cannot choose the term length. The longest available loan term provides by Plain Green is two years. As we go along in this Plain Green loans review, we are going to talk more about the loan details.

Before moving on, we thought you might want to check the testimonial video below from a customer of Plain Green Loans. Here she shares about how it is dealing with the company.

WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENT LOAN OPTIONS AVAILABLE AT PLAIN GREEN?

As mentioned, Plain Green offers a variety of loan options to customers. This includes the following:

Installment Loans

Through this type of loan, you are enabled to borrow the amount of money you need, and then make repayments over a specified time. What makes it different from other types of loans is that the payment is the same all throughout the term. More so, the payment schedule is set based on the borrower’s salary and payday.

Next-Day Online Loans

If you are caught in emergency situations like you need to pay medical expenses or your car broke and you badly need to have it repaired but you do not have the funds, you may consider applying for Plain Green’s next-day online loan.

This provides customers cash as soon as the following business day. The funds are deposited into the borrower’s bank account.

Consumer Loans

Also known as unsecured loans, consumer loans offer an alternative to secured loans, which requires assets for collateral. The money lent under this loan type can be used for various reasons like family, personal, or household needs.

Personal Loans without Fees

Plain Green offers personal loans, which a borrower can use for a number of reasons like debt consolidation as well as in emergency situations. Unlike other lenders, Plain Green does not charge fees like origination or prepayment for this type of loan.

Cash Loans

By availing a cash loan, you get to pay your bills on time, as well as cover any emergency expense, or provide your loved ones with necessities without having to wait for the next payday. Cash loans also help you keep from missing out payments for regular bills such as utilities.

Line of Credit

As you probably know, a line of credit provides borrowers with a reoccurring source of money. You can use it anytime the need arises. It basically is like a credit card with a lower interest rate. You can use a line of credit over and over (provided you pay on time) unless you decide to close the account.

As we have said earlier, Plain Green is not your usual payday lender. However, the company does act like one. A borrower’s schedule of payment is based on his or her payday. But, that does not mean you have to pay the entire amount. Plain Green will be the one to determine the specific term length.

WHAT DO YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT PLAIN GREEN LOANS?

There are a lot more details a borrower must know before you even decide to apply for a loan. Thus, in this Plain Green loans review, we are also going to provide you the following essential information regarding the loan:

  • Rates
  • Terms
  • Fees
  • Loan Amounts
  • Funding

Rates

Probably one of the most important details that you need to know before getting a loan is the interest rate that comes with it.

Plain Green offers an annual percentage rate that ranges from 210% up to 438%. Although this particular information is not explicitly stated on the company website, the information is made available by using the calculator, which can be found on the How It Works page on the site.

Furthermore, the company has no specific information on how the interest rate is calculated. But based on observation, larger loans have lower rates and longer repayment periods.

Plain Green allows early payment of the loan if you want to avoid paying more loan interest.

Terms

As mentioned, unlike other lenders out there, you cannot decide on the term length of your loan.

Unfortunately, there is no detail pertaining to how the term length is decided. Plain Green, however, provides short-term loans that range from 6 to 26 months.

Fees

While most lenders would charge an administrative fee, Plain Green does not, which means whatever amount you are approved for, it gets deposited wholly into your bank account.

Similar to other lenders though, Plain Green charges late fees for late payments. Plain Green website does not indicate how much it cost. In case of insufficient funds, Plain Green may charge you a returned payment fee. The exact amount is not indicated on the website, too.

Meanwhile, in case you decide to pay off the loan earlier than scheduled, you may do so without having to worry about getting charged for early payment fees.

Loan Amounts

As compared to other lenders, how much you can borrow from Plain Green is quite small. The minimum amount that Plain Green lends to borrowers is $500, while the maximum is up to $1,000 only for first-time borrowers, while up to $3,000 for returning customers.

Having said that, if you are looking at borrowing a larger amount of money, you may consider other lenders instead.

Funding

The process of providing you with funds is quite quick. If your application is approved and verified by 5:45 PM EST, your funds may be available as soon as the following business day.

You may either opt to have the amount deposited into your bank account, or have a check mailed to you (this option may take 7 to 10 days though after approval of the loan).

WHO QUALIFIES FOR A LOAN AT PLAIN GREEN?

Another important thing that a borrower must look into when eyeing for a lender is the qualification for the loan. This Plain Green loans review will definitely provide you with this information.

By knowing the requirements to get a loan, you get to assess immediately if you are eligible or not. This helps save a lot of time and effort – if we may say.

Anyway, generally speaking, Plain Green markets to borrowers who need money immediately, but, have poor or have no credit scores at all.

Setting the credit score aside, here are the other requirements to qualify for Plain Green loans:

  • You must be at least 18 years old (or at least 19 if you live in Alabama, Nebraska, or Virginia).
  • You must have a stable source of income.
  • You must have an active checking account.
  • You must reside in a state where Plain Green does business.
  • You must be willing to provide your personal information

HOW TO APPLY FOR A LOAN AT PLAIN GREEN?

Prior to the application proper, a borrower may opt to go through a pre-application process first to find out his or her eligibility for a loan.

Pre-Application

Unlike other lenders, Plain Green offers a pre-application process. It’s very simple and easy. Needless to say, it is an efficient way of knowing whether you qualify for a loan through Plain Green or not.

For the pre-application process, all you need to do is follow these simple steps:

STEP 1: Select the amount you want to borrow, and how you would like to receive the loan.

STEP 2: Provide some personal information, which includes the following:

  • Your name
  • Your birthdate
  • Your address
  • Your driver’s license information
  • Your social security number
  • Information regarding your residence (if rented or owned and how long you’ve lived there)

Please take note that you will then be prompted to create an account. Then, you will be asked about your military status, as well as your contact preference.

Just so you know, Plain Green provides loan options for borrowers residing in 26 states.

STEP 3: Provide your employment information.

You basically need to fill in the detail regarding your current employment.

Once you have already submitted a pre-application, Plain Green will then make a decision if you are eligible for a loan or not. In some cases though, the company may reach out to the borrower to ask further information before a decision is made.

Formal Application

Similar to the pre-application process, to formally apply for a loan, you will need to provide your personal identification information. This includes your name, Social Security number, as well as your address. You will also have to indicate your desired amount, as well as the preferred funding method.

Most of the time, Plain Green provides a decision on a loan application in just a matter of minutes. If the decision is not in favor of you though, the company is kind enough to provide you an explanation.

Anyway, if you receive an approval of the loan you will then be asked to choose the amount of money you want to borrow. Final approval is reliant on the verification of the borrower’s application information.

Unfortunately, it is unclear if Plain Green conducts a hard pull of the borrower’s credit history. Once the final application is approved by the lender, the funds borrowed will be made available immediately. Depending on your preference, it could be disbursed in the form of a check or through bank deposit.

WHAT ARE THE PROS AND CONS OF PLAIN GREEN LOANS?

This Plain Green loans review will not be complete without our list of what we like and what we do not like (pros and cons).

Like any other lender out there, Plain Green does have its share of good and bad, which is totally normal. After all, there is no such thing as a perfect company or perfect lender, right?

By providing you the pros and cons of Plain Green, may this help you decide whether it is worth dealing with the company for your financial needs or not?

Anyway, so here are the pros and cons we found:

PROS

  • It provides a quick application process. As stated on the company website, Plain Green provides a decision in just a matter of minutes, which makes it an ideal choice for borrowers who badly need funds immediately.
  • Funding for the loan is possible within one business day. In relation to the above, as soon as approval is made, the company will provide you with the money you owe them within one business day. The funds could either be deposited to your bank account, or you may opt for a check to be mailed (this may take a while though).
  • It does not charge prepayment fees. If you wish to get rid of interest rates and opt to pay the loan as soon as possible, that is totally fine. Plain Green lets you pay off your loan soonest without having to worry about getting charged for a prepayment fee.
  • The company provides repayment terms. Although you cannot choose the loan terms, rest assured that the company does have flexible repayment terms. You may discuss it with them upon loan approval.
  • Does not require a good credit score to apply for a loan. Plain Green is an ideal choice for people who have poor or do not have a credit score at all. Unlike other lenders, they do not look into the borrower’s credit score to make a decision if you are going to be approved of a loan or not.
  • You may choose a payment schedule. The company allows you to choose whether to make payments on a biweekly or monthly basis. It’s a good thing as you can choose based on what fits your budget.
  • Payments are reported to major credit bureaus. Borrowing money from Plain Green is one way to help you build up a good credit score as the company reports every payment you make on the loan.

CONS

  • The interest rates can go as high as over 400%. This is not surprising though given the fact that they are not credited score-conscious. The high-interest rates serve as the company’s security blanket should a borrower does default.
  • They provide limited loan amount options. Unlike other lenders, Plain Green only lends money amounting to at least $500 up to $1,000 for first-time borrowers, while $3,000 for returning customers.
  • It is limited to a few states only. Unfortunately, Plain Green is only available in 26 states at the moment. But, we never know, maybe in soon they might just open a branch in other states where they lack the presence.

FINAL THOUGHTS ON PLAIN GREEN LOANS REVIEW

Generally, we thought Plain Green offers very reasonable products and services. Although the interest rate being charged to borrowers is quite high compared to other lenders, it is reasoned by the fact that they provide loan services even to those who have poor or no credit history at all.

What do you think about Plain Green given the information we provided? Do you find it a good option for your emergency funding needs?

Anyway, we hope that this Plain Green loans review has indeed provided you with all the necessary information you need in making an informed decision.