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Personal Loans

Choosing the Best Place to get a Personal Loan

If you are looking to get a personal loan then you may be wondering where the best place to get one from will be. This will be down to personal choice but it is worth thinking about what factors are important to you when you are comparing them all. Obviously the cost will be a really big part of the decision and for some people it will be the only thing that they consider. However, it is worth also thinking about the lender and how they might suit you as this could be important.

The importance of the lender can come if you struggle to pay back the loan. This can happen to all sorts of people, if they lose their job, get unwell or suddenly have big expenses and are unable to cover the repayments. This situation may feel rather farfetched, but if you have no partner that is contributing to your household income or that does not contribute enough to cover all of the bills, then you could struggle if you lose your job or cannot work. It is worth just checking to see how the lender you want to go with is likely to reach if this is the case. Some can be quite flexible and may give you extra time to be able to pay back the loan, they may give you repayment holidays or let you pay back less each month and extend the term. You will want a lender with a good customer service record, who are flexible and will be willing to help you out in times of need. To find out it is worth contacting their customer services, looking at reviews and asking people for their personal experiences of that lender.

You will also need to look at the range of loans that they have. Consider what your needs are and whether they have something that will suit you. You will want something that offers you the amount of money that you need at a competitive cost with a repayment term that you will be able to afford. If you borrow more than you need, then you will end up paying back more in interest payments than necessary. It is worth taking other costs into account as well, because there will be admin fees plus others costs if you miss payments and things like that and you need to make sure that you will not be paying really high fees for it.

Consider how much the repayments will be and if they will be affordable for you. You will need to commit to making those in full for the term of the loan and they could have a significant impact on what money you have left for other things. Different lenders may offer different repayment arrangements, perhaps some allowing payments over a longer time period and therefore smaller amounts or you may prefer one that has bigger repayments so that you can get the debt paid off more quickly.
Some people will prefer a lender which has a local branch so that they can go in and make their repayments perhaps or be able to chat to staff face to face, should they need to. These days, it is possible to do everything online or over the telephone, but there are still people that like the idea of having a local branch that they can deal with. Consider whether this is something that is important to you.

The reputation of the lender can be really important as well. Some people will have certain financial institutions that they trust really well and therefore will feel that they would like to borrow from them. Some may not have specific lender they prefer but they may rather go with one that they have heard of as opposed to ones that they have not. It can be wise to look at reviews or find out more about the different lenders so that you can make a more informed decision as to which you think will be the best for you. If there are some which seem to be offering a good deal but you know little about them then do some research. You may be rejecting a lender based on the fact that you do not know much about them, when they could be the best one for you.

Holidays

Should a Holiday ever be paid for on a Credit Card?

A holiday can be something that many people really look forward to; a chance to completely get away from all the stresses of home and work and to really enjoy themselves. It can be really healthy to get rid of that stress and also a great way to have lots of time with family and friends. However, they can be very expensive and so it can be difficult for some people to afford them. It can therefore be tempting to borrow money so that you can afford to go and a credit card can be an easy way to do that.

It is wise to consider first, whether it is a good idea to borrow money for a holiday. Although the holiday may be a great opportunity to destress, having those repayments to make and that debt hanging over you, meaning you have to work harder and go without things to pay for it, may reverse the effect of the holiday. Only you will know if you think that it will be worth it, but if you can, think about your previous experiences and consider what might be best.

It can also be good to see whether you can keep your holiday costs down. This means that if you do borrow money you will not have to borrow so much and your repayments as well as borrowing costs will be lower. Compare some different types of holidays and think about what might suit you and the family and whether you can get what you want at a lower price. It can be hard if you have children as term time holidays are cheaper, but the weather is better in the school summer holidays so you may feel that is worth the extra money and other expensive holidays are at times where there are bank holidays where you can have time off work without using up your annual leave, which also has its advantages. There are other ways of reducing costs as well, such as self-catering rather than staying in a hotel, not going abroad, camping or caravanning or just finding the cheapest accommodation in the type that you want.

Once you have decided on the holiday then you will need to pay for it. Usually you have to pay a deposit and then pay the rest before you go. You will therefore have to think about where both of those chunks of money will come from. You may have managed to save up enough money to be able to pay for it without borrowing, but many people will have to borrow. A credit card can therefore be an easy option to choose. Most companies will accept them and if you already have one then it can be really easy to use it. There are good and bad reasons for using a credit card for purchases like this.

Some companies will charge you to use a credit card and so it is important to check this. You may find that you end up paying quite a fee for using it, perhaps a flat charge or a percentage and this will increase the cost of your holiday. However, you do get some protection when using a credit card as if for any reason, you don’t get what you paid for, they may be able to recoup the costs for you. This will depend on the credit card company and so it is best to check their terms before assuming that this will definitely be the case.

The cost of using a credit card can be a lot more than the fee for paying with it though. It all depends on whether you pay it all off at once or only pay back the minimum each month. If you pay off the full balance each month before any interest gets charged then you will just get interest free credit until the bill is paid. However, when you buy something big like a holiday, you may not be able to afford to do this and so choose to pay off less; perhaps even the minimum. If you do this, you will be charged monthly interest and this will happen every month until you are able to pay off all of the money that is owed. It is possible for a debt like this to take a very long time to be paid off. It could stretch across a lot of years and if you keep spending on the card it could just seem to be endless.

Cars

Is it Right to Borrow Money to buy a Car?

Some people feel quite strongly that it is either right or wrong to borrow money to buy a car. The reason that opinion is split probably has something to do with peoples personal opinions about borrowing or mainly because different people see the need for a car differently.

Borrowing money for anything is a decision that should not be taken lightly. When you borrow money you have to pay for the privilege and this means that it will be more expensive than just paying it outright (unless you get interest free credit). This means that you will end up paying more for the item than you would if you did not borrow the money to pay for it. This means that if you are buying luxuries then you should consider whether it really is worth paying that extra money for them. If you are buying more necessary items then you may feel it is worth it or else you may struggle otherwise. It is worth calculating how much extra you will have to pay for an item and deciding whether you think that it is worth it.

Some people would consider a car to be a luxury item and others a necessity and this is why there is a mixed opinion on whether a loan should be used to pay for one. It actually depends on what you use your car for to start with. If you use it to get to work and have no alternative way to get there then it is necessary to have one if you want to keep your job. Some people may be able to use public transport, some may be able to work from home but a lot of people find that they will have to drive to get to their job or they will need a car available when at work to drive between sites or visit customers. There may be other necessary uses for a car as well as work, perhaps taking children to school, going shopping, going to hospital appointments and things like that. Obviously the public transport options and how mobile you are as well as how isolated you are will also be a big factor in whether a car is right for you.
Of course, buying a second hand cheap and efficient car to drive to work each day is very different to buying a very expensive and brand new sports car, so there could still be an argument that borrowing money for an extravagant car might not be a good thing to do. You will need to decide whether you feel that it is worth it, considering the cost of it and whether you think it offers good value for money. Obviously this will very much depend on your taste in cars but also how much budget you have to spend on repayments.

It is well worth considering whether you will be able to afford the repayments on the loan. Obviously the more money you pay for the car; the more expensive the loan will be and that means that the repayments will be dearer as well. You will need to be able to manage these for the term of the loan as well as your other expenses. Only by looking at your current spending and income, will you be able to work out whether this is something that you will be able to afford to do. It is therefore worthwhile taking some time to calculate how much of your income is left after you have paid all of your essential costs and therefore how much you could afford in terms of a loan repayment. Do remember to leave some leeway for unexpected expenses as well for little extras such as gifts, days out, clothes, evening out and things like that. If you do think that you will have very little money left then consider what that will feel like and whether you are prepared to go through that for the term of the loan just so that you can have a car.

Lastly if you have the cash to buy a car then it is better, in most circumstances, to use that rather than getting a loan. It will be far cheaper and you will not be tied to all of those repayments. You will also find it will be easier to borrow money if you need in the short term, without having a loan to repay. The exception is if you can find interest free credit. This is sometimes offered and although it should not be something that sways you towards a particular dealer because they will put up their prices to cover the loan costs, it could be better to borrow rather than paying in cash. However, you will need to save the money you would have spent on the car ready to pay off the loan at the end of the lending period or to pay towards the monthly instalments.