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The Difference Between Payday Loans and Cash Advances

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If you’re researching unsecured loans online, you might notice a lot of different terms being used interchangeably. This review site uses the term “online personal loans” to refer to online loans that are used for personal expenses (as opposed to business expenses). One type of personal loan is the payday loan, which is usually for a small amount ranging between $100 and $1500 that has to be paid back in full on your next payday. Personal loans can also be for larger amounts and the payments may be stretched out further, over a period of several months or even a few years.

If you are interested in obtaining a short term loan to help with your immediate expenses, check out our lineup of the best sites for online personal loans.

Payday Loans

Payday loans (also called “payday advances” and “online personal loans”) are unsecured loans, meaning that there is no collateral and usually no credit check required for approval. Payday loans are granted based on your income and are designed to be paid back on a specified date that corresponds to your pay dates. Sometimes they can be paid back in multiple payments, but usually you are required to pay back the entire amount plus interest in one payment.

An online payday loan additionally requires that you have a bank account in good standing because the money is transferred directly into your account and your repayment is deducted electronically on the due date. This is in contrast to a payday loan from a storefront, which generally requires that you provide a post-dated check that will be cashed or deposited on your next payday. Even online payday lenders may require you to provide a canceled check in order to enroll for electronic repayment.

The maximum payday loan you can obtain generally depends on your income. Many of the sites on our lineup for online personal loans require you to make a minimum monthly income of around $1000. People who have a much higher verifiable income may be able to borrow more money. Payday lenders usually do not perform credit checks, but there is a national database in the U.S. through which lenders can check whether you have other short-term loans. Some lenders will deny you a loan if you have any unpaid loans with other lenders. Even if your credit score is not considered, you will also typically be denied a payday loan if you are currently in bankruptcy and in some cases if you have ever filed for bankruptcy.

Two Types of Cash Advances

The term “cash advance” is sometimes used synonymously with “payday loan” to refer to an advance on your paycheck. This type of cash advance is structured the same way as a payday loan or online personal loan, in that the maximum amount you can borrow depends on your income. Cash advances are designed to be repaid on your next payday or within one month.

The other type of cash advance is based on a credit card or line of credit. This type of cash advance is based on your available credit limit on a credit card rather than your monthly income. A credit card cash advance is usually treated just like a purchase made with a credit card, so the repayment terms follow the policies of your credit card. A cash advance on a credit card may or may not offer you a better deal than a payday loan depending on your credit rating and the terms of your credit contract. Some credit card companies charge higher interest on cash advances than on standard purchases.

In general, unsecured loans of any type (including payday loans, online personal loans, payday advances and so forth) come with much higher interest rates than secured loans or cash advances on credit cards. This is because the lender for an unsecured loan assumes a much higher risk of not being repaid. Some of the sites on our lineup for online personal loans offer lower interest rates to repeat customers with a history of prompt repayment because they have demonstrated that they are a lower risk.

Before you apply for an online loan, take a look at our lineup of the best sites for online personal loans, which includes an in-depth look at the differences between many of the lenders. At TopTenREVIEWS We Do the Research So You Don’t Have To.™

Written by admin

December 3rd, 2013 at 11:14 pm

Posted in Credit Cards

It’s Not Everyone’s Time to Buy a Home

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My family and I are renters, and most of the time that feels fine. But last week I found myself in a state of temporary panic when I read this Twitter post from the financial journalist Felix Salmon: “John Paulson: if you rent, buy. If you own, buy a second home.”

When I read it, I immediately felt anxious. I recognized the feeling. It’s the feeling you get when you think you have to act on something right away or you’ll miss out. After all, if John Paulson, the guy who made “The Greatest Trade Ever,” was saying I should rush out and buy a house, I’d better get on it!

After allowing myself to get all worked up about this, I did what I’ve done several times before. I pulled out a piece of paper and a pencil and worked through the emotions and the numbers. In the end, I was reminded of something incredibly important.

John Paulson doesn’t know me or my situation.

There is absolutely no reason I should be making decisions based on something he said. The same is true for any other “expert” who decides to share his guess about what he thinks will happen next in the housing market.

The same holds true for the other three people who just happened to express similar concerns to me about buying right now. Two were convinced that if they didn’t buy a house now, they’d be priced out of the market, and maybe they will be. But I heard that argument a lot in 2005-6.

Then there was the third conversation I had.

It’s time for this person to downsize to a different home. The children have all moved out and the house just takes too much work. But even though it’s the right decision to sell now (given her individual situation) and buy a smaller home, a decision has been made to wait because the news, the forecasts and even the guesses are implying that the house could be worth substantially more sometime in the next 12 months.

This is madness!

Buying a home is one of the biggest financial decisions that most of us will make in our lifetimes. And yet it’s often a decision in which the person with the most knowledge about what makes the most sense gets overlooked: You.

There’s a simple way to fix this problem. As I was reminded last week, all it takes is a piece of paper, a pencil and some time. So if you’re struggling with this decision to buy (or sell), take a minute to think through these questions and write down the answers, because I suspect you’ll need to refer back to them the next time somebody decides to share what he thinks will happen with housing market. This list is not meant to be prescriptive. It is meant to get you thinking about something other than forecasts and guesses.

■ Can you afford it, and do you have enough saved for a down payment? Make sure you include the cost for things like property taxes, homeowner association fees and utilities.

■ Can you qualify for a loan? If the answer right now is no, then you can stop torturing yourself, because it doesn’t matter if the market is about to take off. You can’t buy a house.

■ How long do you plan to live in the home? There’s some debate about the minimum time you should live in a home for it to be worthwhile, but if it’s less than five years, forget about it.

■ What guess are you making about housing prices? It is a painful reality that the one variable that makes a huge difference in this decision is unknowable. What is going to happen to housing prices in the short term is anyone’s guess. But for your own sanity, just assume that housing prices will continue to increase by about the long-term average of inflation, or 3 percent. You really can’t afford to buy a house if the decision depends solely on what the house might one day be worth.

The answers to all of these questions will depend on you and your individual situation. And that’s the point. Hopefully it’s clear now how ridiculous it is to buy a house based on some stranger’s advice.

Through this process, you may discover that buying and owning a house isn’t for you, and that’s O.K., too. But these questions can also help end your anxiety around what is probably the biggest financial decision you’ll make. Don’t you think that’s worth a piece of paper, a pencil and a little time?

Written by admin

October 11th, 2013 at 11:11 pm

Posted in Real Estate

10 practical tips to choose the right health insurance

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Raman was a young and enthusiastic 25-year-old. He had a new job and was on top of the world. His father suffered a heart attack and had to be rushed to the hospital. Raman din’t know what to do, and was left scrounging for money to pay the hefty hospital bills. He was not covered by any health insurance policy. Most people, like Raman, do not realize the importance of a good health insurance policy till they are in circumstances where they need it. Some of them who do have one, is thanks to the company group health insurance policy. Unfortunately, even these aren’t enough and most people don’t even know it.

Ok, you finally decide to get health insurance. But how do you decide which one to get? Here are 10 practical tips for you:

1. Choose your insurance company wisely:

Generally, companies that offer health insurance are either general insurance or life insurance companies. Experts say that it is better to pick a general insurance company over one that offers life insurance, because a company that provides life insurance is invested in policies that will reimburse the family members of the deceased, and will not be focused on health insurance. Another reason is that the policy usually costs more when taken from a life insurance company.

2. Plan for future needs:

You need to think of the needs that might arise in the future. If you have a family with ageing parents or are newly married and are planning to start a family in the near future, it is important to think of policies that will cover aged parents or possibly cover maternity costs.

3. Make an informed decision about the type of health insurance:

Read all that you can about the various options your health insurance company is providing you. Ask questions. Generally, if you have a family it is advisable to opt for a family floater plan. It is more economical and effective in the long run. Similarly choosing a cashless policy over a reimbursement type of policy may suit some but may not be beneficial to all.

4. Choose the right amount as ‘sum assured’:

‘Sum assured’ in simple terms is the maximum amount that a person who is insured can be reimbursed or covered for in one policy year. Basically, it is the base for all your future medical claims. Before you choose the sum assured, take into account the rising medical costs. At the same time, the amount shouldn’t be so high that it would be difficult for you to pay the premium.

For example, an insurance company assumes that the cost of a hospital bed for one day is one percent of the sum assured. Therefore if your sum assured is one lakh, hospitalization should cost you thousand rupees per day. If you were hospitalized for seven days and the hospital charges more than a thousand rupees per day, you will be left paying the difference. Hence choosing the right amount is imperative.

5. Check the empanelled hospitals:

Every insurance company has empanelled hospitals, with whom they have a tie up. These hospitals are instructed on how to settle the claims of a patient who has a particular company’s cover. Therefore it is best to check which hospitals are under the insurance company. Checking for their specialty, reputation and distance from your home is important. This is because in case of an emergency you are most likely to visit a hospital closest to your home.

Another consideration is that there should be hospitals with varied specialites under the insurance company– it is better to have a choice when it comes to certain illnesses rather than going to the same hospital that may not provide you with appropriate care.

6. Understand the premium calculation process:

A premium is the sum you pay to the insurance company while buying an insurance policy. Although the formula to calculate one’s premium usually has a common formula, there are a few factors that may change while charging a premium. Some of the main factors are — the ‘sum assured’, the number of times you have used the policy and for how much. Talk to your insurance agent about the amount of premium you will have to pay per year and how the company will charge for various services.

7. Read the fine print:

A health insurance policy has a number of clauses – what could be called the ‘fine print’. Reading them well is very important. And if you do not understand them, do ask questions.

For example: Read clauses related to the renewability of an insurance policy. This means that the policy will no longer hold good after a person attains a particular age. This could mean that you may not have a health insurance at the age of 70 or 75, when you need it the most. Here, choosing a policy that will cover you for life rather than one that will expire when you need it the most is adviceable.

If you have a pre-existing disease (for eg: diabetes), policies can be used only after a stipulated time period decided by the company.

If you are planning to start a family, ask the company about their maternity clause. Many companies do not cover costs of delivery or of any complications arising from that.

8. Read reviews and compare policies:

In the case of a medical emergency it is important that you and our family have complete peace of mind when it comes to money matters. Therefore, talk to your friends who might have the same policy, or read reviews about the policy you are about to buy. Another good tool is to compare policies. Knowing that the company takes care of your finances seamlessly is important for a smooth stay at the hospital and a stress free recovery.

9. Check flexibility of the policy:

In the case of an illness, it important that the company allows the insured person to have some flexibility in paying the premium for the amount used. A premium is recalculated at the end of a policy year and is increased depending on the amount the policy has been used. Therefore it is important that the policy you choose allows you the leeway of paying older premium amount for some time, after which you can start paying the increased premium without interest or other charges levied on it.

10. Check if the company offers a no-claim bonus or discount:

If you haven’t claimed any insurance in the policy year, some companies offer either a bonus amount or a discount on the premium in the next year. This is called a ‘no-claim’ bonus or discount. This is a good feature and also an incentive to keep yourself fit and healthy.

Written by admin

September 20th, 2009 at 11:06 pm

Posted in Insurance

Tips for Paying Off Credit Card Debt

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Want to take charge of your financial life? Pay off your credit card debt.

High balances and high finance charges can put a real drain on your wallet and limit your financial options. And if you let those balances linger long enough, they could keep you from achieving other important goals and dreams, such as buying a home.

Whatever your financial goals and dreams, paying off high-interest credit card debt is the first important step in the right direction. These pay-down tips and strategies will show you how.

Get organized. Step 1 is getting organized. Gather up all your credit card information. Make note of the balance, interest rate, due date, and minimum payment for each card. How bad is it?

Do you have lots of balances spread out over lots of different cards? Do you have one big balance and several small ones? Have you consolidated your debt to one card but can’t seem to make any headway on your balance? Have you been playing the balance transfer game for months and months?

Next, add up the minimum payments on each of your credit cards. How much money must you pay each month just to stay current on your credit card bills? Can you afford to pay more than the minimum payment on one or more of your cards? If so, get ready to do it. Debt can pile up for all kinds of reasons. Paying it down is pretty straightforward. Pick a pay down strategy and stick with it until your balances are paid off in full.

Pay off the balance with the highest APR first

From a dollar and cents point of view, this strategy makes the most sense. With this strategy, you increase your payment on the credit card with the highest annual percentage rate while continuing to make the minimum payment on the rest of your credit cards. Once you pay off the balance on the card with the highest interest rate, you move on to the card with the second highest interest rate, and so on.

Doubling or tripling your minimum payment on the card with the highest interest rate is a good way to start. Whatever payment boost you can afford, do it and stick with it. If you start by paying $150 on a credit card, keep on paying at least $150 each and every month until the card is paid off.

Be sure to stick with your boosted payment amount even as your balance and minimum payments slip lower and lower. Remember: the aim is to get your balance to zero. Easing up on your payments as your balance creeps lower will slow your progress.

Pay off the card with the lowest balance first

This strategy is a great way to build up a little momentum. With this strategy, you increase your payment on the credit card with the lowest balance, while continuing to make the minimum payment on the rest of your credit cards. Once you pay off the card with the lowest balance, you move on to the card with the next lowest balance, and so on.

It’s quicker and easier to pay a $500 balance down to zero than a $2,500 balance. And it feels good to pay a credit card bill in full, no matter what size balance you begin with. Plus, every low balance card that you pay in full is one less minimum payment that you have to pay each month. By knocking out one or two smaller balance cards, you’ll have more money to focus on larger balances.

Consolidate your debt to a single card or loan

Like things simple? This pay-down strategy might be for you. By consolidating your credit card debt to a single card or debt consolidation loan, you have a single payment to make each month rather than four or five. One payment to pay each month – that’s it. You can even automate payments so you never have to worry about paying late. Just be sure to choose a payment amount much more than the minimum each and every month so you can make some real progress on paying off your debt.

This payment strategy makes things easy, but it also makes it easy to let things slide. So pick a payment amount, double or triple your minimum payment (or whatever you can afford), and be sure to stick with it.

Written by admin

February 13th, 2009 at 11:03 pm

Posted in Credit Cards

Filing bankruptcy without a lawyer – not necessarily DIY

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I guess most of you reading this blog, have run into debts and have nightmares with creditors, banks, lawyers, money. Or perhaps, you have a very large amount of credit card debt, or a huge mortgage of your flat. Or you have lost a lot of investments at the financial market. In one word, you must be close to or have already reached the stage of personal bankruptcy. Whatever the reasons for the financial crisis in global terms, you have to cope with it on your own be it with the aid of experts or really on your own. Terrible! But not desperate!

Probably you have already browsed the Internet and you’ve read heaps of posts advising you on filing bankruptcy. One way you can deal with this is representing yourself in court and file bankruptcy without a lawyer. Lawyers naturally charge a lot of money and their work is worth it, but what if you have already run out of money and opportunities? And if you are claiming bankruptcy you are most probably in this situation.

That’s why online assistance might come in very handy. Some web sites can help you get in touch with leading debt management and debt consolidation services online. Indeed, this might be a swift relief from debt, without having to rob Peter to pay Paul, but be careful and do your homework research in advance.

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December 15th, 2008 at 9:29 pm

Health Insurance

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Life is wonderful and there is nothing you cannot overcome as long as you have friends and someone loves you. Indeed, there are moments in our lives when someone else has to take care of us, or we simply need more money in order to handle a situation where we are in trouble. Health is what we treasure most and should take care of in time. Health insurance is just one way to do so. The more experience a company has in the health insurance business, and the wider range of health insurance quotes it offers, the easier it is to trust it.

One such company is Blue Cross and Blue Shield, which has more than 75 years of experience in the sphere of insurance. Its branch companies work from coast to coast and its Blue Cross Health Insurance is a reliable way to risk protect your health.

Of course, when you are looking to contract a health insurance policy, you want to find the most profitable offer – the offer that covers most health risks, the most flexible payment plan, and of course, the most reliable. There is nothing wrong with doing some research in advance and comparing various health insurance quotes. At the same time, you need to find a company that introduces innovative tendencies in its policy. Many websites offer free quote comparison and help you find the most suitable insurance plan.

Written by admin

December 15th, 2008 at 11:34 am

Posted in Insurance

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Is Bad Credit The End Of The World?

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It is the end of 2008, the computer mouse celebrates its 40th anniversary and online services have long been established on the market. Perhaps you are already used to doing many things on the Internet, such as sending Christmas cards, shopping, looking for information, ordering photo printing, and what not. But have you ever thought of online banking? Even braver: online loans for bad credit. If you have a bad credit history, few lenders would like to give you unsecured loans just like that. Then, how do you like an online application and approval of bad credit personal loans, on reasonable terms, in no time at all?

If you cannot obtain financial support anywhere, but you need instant cash, you can well use a loan guide that can advise you on determining the best loan in view of your financial situation. All you need to have is an email and a telephone. The system needs no collaterals, no additional guarantee, and no stable incomes. Unfavorable credit status should not stop you from getting some money that you might get to double with time if you invest it properly. Even if you have poor credit rating, be sure to look for credit specialists – yes, there are people, who would be willing to give you a personal loan. And it’s all done on the Internet, promptly and securely.

So, don’t despair and make the best of your money.

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December 10th, 2008 at 9:50 pm

Risk Protect Your Life

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My insurance agent called me offering to hold an interview with me in order to determine where I belong in terms of life insurance risk. So, we met last week and she started promoting the so-called term life insurance. I had not heard about such type of insurance before and in fact never thought of risk protecting my life.

The presentation sounded pretty interesting and I got really interested in the possibility to have my life insured, especially with my weekly oversees trips and with a minor surgery that I had undergone a couple of months ago, despite my 30 years. Why not make my inheritors my beneficiaries in return for a couple of dollars per year, I thought?

As the insurance agent explained, the good thing about term life insurance is exactly the concept of term, which means that such insurance is contracted only for a finite period of time. It is also a good investment for people like me: young people, who travel a lot, work under great stress, or whose financial status might change. Another key fact is that should you consider that the insurance contract conditions are not lucrative, or decide to change the insurance procedure, payments, term, etc., you can always drop the insurance policy. Besides, term life insurance is the least expensive insurance compared to all other the types of life insurance.

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December 10th, 2008 at 9:31 pm

How To Save Advertising Money Over Christmas?

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In the face of a severe financial crisis, banks going bankrupt left and right, people who find it more and more difficult to pay their credits, financial instability and volatile markets, it is extremely important to get the best of your marketing dollars. You must have already arrived at the conclusion that marketing money spent wisely is absolutely worth it – it doubles and triples with wise decisions taken on time.

As a real estate agency you need to spend your advertisement money smartly and expect the highest quality in return. So, if you are looking for high-quality real estate printing services, such as printing of business cards, envelopes, flyers, holiday postcards, etc., make sure to pay a visit to PSPrint Printing. Projects are conveniently discussed online, saving your time and heaps of paperwork, taking your personal taste and preferences into account. Also, they can deliver it anywhere in the US, or even send it directly to your customers.

It is Christmas time, so you probably would like to express special gratitude to loyal customers, or remind your partners of your successful collaboration, then maybe custom solutions are a good way to do it. Save money and get the special Christmas discounts that are offered online.

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December 7th, 2008 at 12:03 pm

Tips for Credit Card Use

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Many credit card holders are experiencing problems with credit card debt.  They are unable to pay off their credit card balance each month and more than that the interest rates continue to increase.  During the holiday spending on credit cards is usually going to increase because families decide to get gifts with their cards rather than the money they have.  Despite being a convenient payment system for consumers, credit cards can very easily turn into a negative option.

Spending habits of consumers is the most dangerous part of the credit card.  Consumers see credit cards as a way to get what they want when they want it.  This mentality has to change if the credit crunch is going to right itself.  Consumers can no longer depend on their credit cards and their old spending habits. 

Financial trouble is growing in the UK due to the debt and lack of income.  Loss of jobs is increasing.  Mortgage companies are no longer willing to lend money, especially equity type loans.  Credit card use is just one of the many areas UK consumers need to look at for how they are spending and what can be done.

It is not the time to go to an ATM and do a cash withdrawal from your credit card.  You should also avoid using your credit cards if you can’t pay the balance off.  For many, credit cards and shopping is imperative because you get more protection with the use of a credit card for gifts.  However, when the consumer cannot pay the amount they place on the card the debt just continues to increase.  Fraudsters are another concern of credit card use.  The best thing to do is avoid credit cards for daily use and watch where you use your card.  Don’t use your card in an online shop you are not familiar with.  Protect yourself and spend wisely.

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December 5th, 2008 at 12:02 pm

Posted in Credit Cards

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