The term signature loan is often interchanged with personal loan. Some people also call it loan of good faith as lender banks on your good faith to pay the loan and nothing more. Regardless, a signature loan is an unsecured loan that typically has so few qualification requirements that all you need to qualify is your signature and the promise that you’ll repay the loan. A signature loan allows you to borrow a larger amount of money than a payday loan and you can pay it back over a longer loan term. You can then use the loan for any purpose such as celebrating your anniversary, going on vacation, funding education or consolidating your debt.
Payday loans have a bad reputation, and in fact many people refer to these loans as “predatory lending.” Twelve states have even banned payday loans altogether. Caution should be taken when considering obtaining these types of loans, which often “rollover” or are extended when they can’t be repaid in time and result in additional extension fees and an overall larger repayment amount. Because of the risk, payday loans should only be used in emergency situations when you know you can pay the loan back in full on time. If you do not borrow, you could end up in more debt.
The likelihood that a family will use a payday loan increases if they are unbanked or underbanked, or lack access to a traditional deposit bank account. In an American context the families who will use a payday loan are disproportionately either of black or Hispanic descent, recent immigrants, and/or under-educated. These individuals are least able to secure normal, lower-interest-rate forms of credit. Since payday lending operations charge higher interest-rates than traditional banks, they have the effect of depleting the assets of low-income communities. The Insight Center, a consumer advocacy group, reported in 2013 that payday lending cost U.S communities $774 million a year.
Payday lending is legal in 27 states, with 9 others allowing some form of short term storefront lending with restrictions. The remaining 14 and the District of Columbia forbid the practice. Federal regulation against payday loans is primarily due to several reasons: (a) significantly higher rates of bankruptcy amongst those who use loans (due to interest rates as high as 1000%); (b) unfair and illegal debt collection practices; and (c) loans with automatic rollovers which further increase debt owed to lenders.
APR Disclosure. Some states have laws limiting the APR that a lender can charge you. APRs range from widely and can be from 200% to 1386%. Loans from a state that has no limiting laws or loans from a bank not governed by state laws may have an even higher APR. The Annual Percentage Rate is the rate at which your loan accrues interest and is based upon the amount, cost and term of your loan, repayment amounts and timing of payments. Lenders are legally required to show you the APR and other terms of your loan before you execute a loan agreement.
Payday loans are very short term loans that are based on your paycheck so you can’t borrow more than you make during a pay period. This is why you usually can’t borrow more than $2,000 from a payday lender. On the other hand, you can be approved for up to $30,000 on a signature loan depending on the lender and your financial standing. Nearly 15 times the amount you would get from a cash advance and at a lower interest rate and they’re just as easy to qualify for.