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TIPS YOU SHOULD KNOW BEFORE GETTING A PERSONAL LOAN
You might need to take a personal loan for any number of reasons. It can range from a family or medical emergency or just to satisfy some of your personal needs. But the whole process can be pretty confusing. Especially with all the horror stories we keep hearing about people’s experiences with banks. On top of that a lot of people think about getting a loan as a lengthy and tiring process. Well, don’t worry! I am going to take you through the dos and don’ts of getting a personal loan which will hopefully make the process a lot easier.
UNDERSTAND THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN NEED AND WANT
Before you check what terms, you might be getting on that loan it is important to sit back and analyze why you are thinking about getting a loan in the first place. Sometimes the reason can be unavoidable like a medical emergency. But sometimes the reason can be for a personal luxury like a house or a car.
It is very imperative to keep in mind your ability to repay the amount within a stipulated time period. A lot banks will offer you deals which might look great from a distance but all they do is make you borrow more money than what you need. For example, if you have been thinking about buying a certain car don’t let a bank or a financial institution convince you to get a better model.
This is why it is important to realize the difference between needs and wants.
CHECK IF YOU ARE ELIGIBLE OR NOT
Before you go ahead and start shortlisting the banks which are offering the best deals you need to keep in mind the criteria of loans you will be eligible for. This includes taking a note of your income along with your credit score.
You might come across a deal with the best interest rates only to find out that these rates won’t apply to you because of your credit score. And this brings me to the next point.
MAINTAIN YOUR CREDIT SCORE
It is very important to have a good credit score as it makes the entire borrowing process easier and cheaper for you. Now, if you have to take a loan for an emergency you won’t have any time to improve your existing score but that’s not the case with other types of loans.
If you can put a hold on getting a loan for a year or even a few months, there are ways through which you can improve your credit score. Even bump up by a few numbers can potentially give you better interest rates.
RESEARCH YOUR OPTIONS
Don’t go for the first option you come across. There are a lot websites where you can compare the terms being offered by different banks. A lot of banks have flashy advertising with bold claims but most of the time there is a hidden catch. Remember, if a deal sounds too good to be true, chances are there is some hidden cost to it.
In this process, try to go for the lowest interest rates being offered. But also keep in mind the other fees attached to the deal.
PREPAYMENT CHARGES AND LOAN TENURE
Low EMIs over a long time sounds very appealing. Especially when the banks advertise them in a pretty way. But when you think about it the interest rates being applied to such deals makes the overall amount you end up paying a lot more than the original amount.
You should also check if the bank is offering any prepayment deal on the loan. Prepayment means you settling the loan amount before the due date. Very few banks actually offer an option of prepayment and even if they do you might have to pay some extra amount along with it. Banks want that you keep paying installments over a long time. This makes you pay a lot more than what you originally borrowed through added interest.
And finally make sure you are paying the loan installments according to the stipulated time. failure to do so will reflect in your credit score and on top of that you might have to pay some extra money as late fees.