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Thanks for visiting my site.  You are probably here because you are researching short term loans.  I hope this site can assist you in finding the information you need.

After years of research into various loan types myself and taking out quite a few loans I realised that there just wasn't enough coverage of loans from an independent perspective.  No-one tells you the truth, it seems there is always a hidden agenda to make sales.

This blog is set up to be the opposite of that, it is just a wealth of information about loans that I hope will answer lots of the questions you have.  The site is growing and I will add as much as I can on an ongoing basis.

Thursday, 29 January 2015

When You Should Not Take Out A Loan Against Your Car

The problem when you search online for information about a product or service is that you will invariably find a lot of sales information.

You will be bombarded with the reasons why you should take out a loan, all the benefits to you if you do and how cheap particular companies are. The problem with this is that you are hardly ever told the negative side of it, and even if you are it will be in the small text at the bottom of the page.

It is now compulsory to have representative examples on a website that tells potential customers how much it will cost to take out a loan. This is all good but lets be honest, most people will not even read that. When someone needs money fast and they find a company that will lend to them, they go straight to that company and take out the loan.

Buy now think later

There are a large number of people who will not worry that there is the possibility of their car being repossessed and they could be left without a vehicle, they will cross that bridge when they come to it. The same goes for the interest rate, to these people it doesn't matter that the interest rate in 500 percent, at least they can get a loan. Again, they will worry about it when they are paying off the loan and are having problems making the payments.

When are loans against your car useful?

Logbook loans are useful when you need a bit of quick cash and know you can pay it back quickly. Lenders will carry out affordability checks on you, but only you as the borrower know how stable your job is or if you will be able to pay the loan back in a few months time. Everyone who chooses to use a logbook loan needs to carefully think through the consequences of not being able to pay it back. It could set you back financially for years if you go into serious debt.

Affordability checks

Lenders should be open and honest with you about the loan. If they think you can't afford it, they won't give you the loan. In fact if they are allowed to trade under new rules, they will be bound by agreement not to lend to you. Sometimes people will slip through the net and manage to take out loans that they cannot pay off.

If you are in a situation like this, firstly speak to the lender, they may offer you a payment plan and allow you longer to pay back the loan. The next step would be to consult the Money Advice Service for help, and then possibly go to Citizens Advice or a debt charity. There is plenty of help out there from experts who will be able to guide you in the right direction.

The video below shows how people have used debt advice from Citizens Advice to get out of tricky financial situations.

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Why Logbook Loans Offer A Useful Alternative

Logbook loans or V5 loans as they’re sometimes known aren’t the most common form of short term finance because they haven’t had the publicity that other forms of loan have had, but they are a way of raising money that can be useful for some people.

It’s not that they are particularly cheap because I would be lying if I said they were, but they don’t need you to have an impeccable credit record and in most cases they won’t credit check applicants at all.

Of course the main pre-requisite is that you have a vehicle to use as security for the loan.  The loan is offered against the value of the car if it was sold at trade prices.  The lender will then lend up to 70% of that value.

Not all logbook lenders are the same

Each lender is different and they will lend at different percentages and importantly different interest rates.  It’s not the kind of market where lenders offer rates that are a few percentage points different from each other, there can be large differences.  

From searching the market, Varooma’s logbook loans are the cheapest, but check all lenders for deals and other costs that may be associated with the loan.  Just because one lender is cheap it might mean that the company are recouping it’s costs in other areas by charging additional fees.

 These loans offer a good alternative because they are quick, easy to set up, are available for people with bad credit and are a regulated market, which is far better than a loan shark.  They are even better than a payday loan that has very high interest rates.

Better than payday

Logbook loans can also be a better bet than payday loans if the loan is for a longer term.  These loans are designed for lending money over a short period.  The interest rates are too high for it to be lent over a long period.  Logbook loans can be taken out over 2 months, which gives borrowers the chance to spread their payments, although it does mean that interest on the total loan amount will be more, the longer the loan is taken out for.

No early settlement costs

The main logbook lenders generally won’t charge early settlement fees, which unlike many other short term loans means that borrowers can repay their debt early without having to pay a significant amount to come out of the agreement.  This is advantageous to people who know they will be able to pay the loan amount back quickly and think they might need an injection of cash quite often.

Taking everything into account, V5 loans aren’t a bad deal for borrowers with bad credit ratings who have been refused credit cards or other forms of finance.   The interest rates are high, but for people who desperately need cash fast and can pay it back fairly quickly, they are a good option.

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

I have bought a vehicle with an outstanding loan balance, what do I do?

It is said that the second hand car market is the most complained about issue by consumers says the Office of Fair Trading (OFT).

If you are unfortunate to buy a second hand vehicle with an outstanding loan balance it is recommended to get in contact with whoever provided the finance straight away.  There is very little protection for people who buy a second hand vehicle with a logbook loan which is why there are campaigns to cancel these types of loans as they date back to the Victorian era and don't reflect how society has changed over the years.

HPI checks
Calculating a loan

It is up to the buyer to do their research, and pay for an HPI check (ones that are free have been known to be wrong) to make sure the vehicle has no loans against it.

Another hidden secret to look out for is that HPI checks will not tell you about financial data which could result to you buying a vehicle with an outstanding agreement.  It is said that one in three cars that are checked through HPI usually have some sort of hidden history.  HPI checks can also report stolen vehicles, it is said to recover on average 19 vehicles a day.

In order to stay safe from HPI when purchasing a second hand vehicle you should conducting an HPI check to confirm whether the vehicle has an outstanding balance against it.  If there was an outstanding balance it allows the vendor to pay this off before the purchase is complete.

Logbook loans are an industry that grows in hard times, with people looking for business from desperate borrowers offering an extremely high interest rate.  People have found it difficult to obtain loans in more traditional ways so they have turned to logbook loans in order to give them better options.  

Wednesday, 11 June 2014

The Loan that Could Cost your Vehicle

A logbook loan is a short term loan and unfortunately you put your vehicle at risk of being taken away, whether you took out a loan or you didn’t.  

For a very long time logbook loans have been using peoples cars as security, and the more popular short term loans have become the faster the profiles of logbook loans have risen.  
Logbook loan calculations

Like most short term loans they often come with a high interest rate and a financial penalty if you are unable to keep up with payments.

Some of us may have a lot of money tied up in our vehicles that look very attractive to logbook lenders and it is easy for you to use your asset in order to get a loan.

As soon as you sign up to a logbook loan your vehicle is no longer yours, it is owned by the lender because you have signed ownership over to them.  Citizens Advice are looking into this closely at the moment, as are some regulatory bodies.

Most people who sign up to a logbook loan are very aware that once you have one of these loans and fail to keep up with the terms and conditions, your vehicle is at risk of being repossessed without the lender needing permission.

You will find that most lenders have ways for you to repay money you owe, this could be by using continuous payment authorities to get into your bank account.  

Bill of sale

When you sign yourself up to a logbook loan you will need to sign a bill of sale which will then give the lender permission to repossess your vehicle without needing a court order.  They will not need to give you any sort of notice if you fail to keep up with the repayments. 

Debt collection

Once the vehicle is repossessed it is usually sold at an auction.  If there is still an outstanding balance on the vehicle once it has been sold, the lender will resume the debt collection process and chase the borrower.  So not only will you lose your vehicle you may be required to pay further money.

Do your homework

Even if you haven’t taken out a logbook loan you should be wary when purchasing a second hand vehicle as the law states that if you buy a second hand car and the car is unpaid for by the previous owner, the lender has permission to take the vehicle off you.  This is why it is very important to double check and pay for an outstanding finance check when you are purchasing a second hand vehicle. 

Wednesday, 4 June 2014

What are the advantages and disadvantages of credit cards?

Credit cards are one of the most commonly used forms of short term finance in the UK.  In this article I look at the pros and cons of using them.  Because they are relatively easy to obtain, their risks are quite large because the ability to pile on large amounts of debt is always there.
Credit card

In many cases, people with poor credit ratings aren't able to take out credit cards which honestly is a good thing for people who don't have a good track record of managing money well.

If you use your card correctly you could receive extra protection on your purchases with the chance of reward points or even cash back when you use your card.  But using your card irresponsibly could lead to you paying lots of interest and getting yourself into debt which you could struggle to pay off.

Pros of Credit Cards

The pros of credit cards are that they are quick to borrow money from, for example if you did want to purchase something and you didn’t have all the funds available, your credit card would be ideal in this situation. 

You wouldn’t need to have the full amount in your bank account ready to repay straight away; you would be able to repay the cost over a number of months with your credit card and you can also shop online and use your card all around the world safely and securely.

Another benefit of credit cards is the consumer protection which you will not receive with a debit card, cash or cheque.  For example if the company you purchase from goes into administration or the purchase doesn’t turn up, you are able to claim your money back through a credit card.

Depending on the card you apply for, some may offer a 0% period which means you can effectively benefit from an interest-free loan. When the interest rates are like this you will need to have paid the balance off in full before the offer ends or you will be charged interest.  The usual interest rate for most credit cards would be around 18% which can work out quite expensive, which is why you should pay off your debt before the interest kicks in.

Some may not need to extend the interest free period, providing you pay your credit card bill in full each month you are still eligible to borrow for ‘free’.  You will also get protection if your card details are used in a fraud transaction, your provider should repay the money following an investigation.

If you owe money on a store card or another credit card, taking out a new card could benefit you.  You will more than likely be paying a higher interest rate and could cut this to 0% (if your credit card is 0%) by transferring your store card balance over to your credit card. You will usually have to pay a transfer fee of around 3% but this will work out cheaper than having to pay your 18% for the run of the debt.

Cons of credit cards

When applying for a credit card you must remember that it still is a form of borrowing, even if it is 0%.  The buy now pay later mentality could potentially put borrowers at risk.  It is important to keep up with monthly payments as failing to do so could lead to your debts spiraling out of control, especially if you only pay the minimum monthly payment each month.  

If possible it is wise to pay back as much as you can monthly to try and clear your debt as quickly as you can and think of a credit card as a short term borrowing facility.

When applying for a credit card it is not only the interest rate you will be paying for, you will be charged if you are late with your payments or miss them completely.  It is recommended to always pay your bill on time and not to exceed your credit limit, as this could lead to you paying a penalty.  Your credit record will also be affected adversely if you pay late.

Avoid withdrawing cash from the ATM too as most firms will charge around 2% and you are likely to start being charged interest immediately, as there is no interest free period on cash withdrawals.

When choosing the best for card for you, you must evaluate what it is you need the card for.  If you have an expensive period coming up, whether you are planning a wedding or are moving properties you will need a 0% purchase card.  

If you have debt problems a 0% balance transfer offer is something that would be recommended. Use a comparison site to find the best deal, there are plenty out there.  

Unsecured and Secured Loans - What is the difference

In this article I urge you to think about the differences between secured and unsecured loans.  There are huge differences which could affect you financially.  Do you really want to choose a loan such as a logbook loan that puts you at risk of losing your car?  Do you need to put your property at risk?  These are the questions many people in the UK need to think about before they get sucked into the loan spiral.
Secure lock

What follows is an explanation of the loan types and what they are good for.

A loan which is secured against one of your assets, possibly be your property is usually known as a secured loan.  The interest rates for a secured loan tends to be cheaper than an unsecured personal loan as there can be more risk if you have nothing as security. It is very important to know the difference between the two.

A secured loan is usually used to borrow large sums of money, which would usually be anything over £10,000 but it may also be used to borrow anything under £3,000. The name is self-explanatory, secured refers to the fact of having something as security.  In case you were unable to keep up the payments on the loan the lender is able to repossess your property.

A secured loan is more risky for lenders, which is why they are usually cheaper than unsecured loans.  However they may work out riskier for the borrower as the loan provider can repossess your home if you fail to keep up with the payments.

Debt consolidation

A debt consolidation loan used against your property can either be a first or second charge. You would usually apply for a first charge mortgage to improve your property to which you would have an existing mortgage.  A second mortgage would involve setting up a new agreement with your existing mortgage lender or a different lender.

If you wanted an advance on your mortgage to borrow additional money against your property with your current lender then you could ask whoever your mortgage is with if this is possible with them.

By increasing your mortgage you will be able to pay a lower interest rate than an unsecured loan, as this would be secured against your property.  Providing you have a fixed interest rate you will be able to pay this on a monthly basis.

The cons

On the down side, if you don’t repay your loan you could end up losing your property. With some secured loans they have variable interest rates which means that the repayments could increase, so it is important to check if the interest rates are fixed or variable.  

Some loans may have expensive arrangement fees so you should work this all out before signing on the dotted line.

An unsecured loan is more straight-forward.  When you arrange to borrow the funds either from a different lender or a bank you will be asked to repay this in full.  As the loan has no security, the interest rate will be a higher.  If you did fail to keep up the payments, the lender can go to court and arrange for you to pay this back in full, this will severely damage your credit rating.

If you are looking to get the best secured loan, your first step should be to approach your mortgage lender to see if they have any offers.  Depending on the lender, some may offer a special deal to those borrowers who have a good record of repaying their mortgage.