24 Million People Will Need Loans in 2016
As 2016 picks up steam and rolls into February and then March, it can no longer really be called a new year. Still, it’s early in the year, and there are surely many surprises lurking on the horizon. One thing seems certain, though: plenty of people will be looking to take out loans this year.
A recent survey predicted that 24 million Americans will take out a personal loan in 2016, and some experts say the number will be even higher. “A lot of people don’t plan for a personal loan until their roof leaks or their car breaks down,” said Todd Albery, CEO of Quizzle.com. “Since three in 10 Americans have no emergency savings whatsoever, they’re just one unplanned expense away from needing cash in a hurry.”
Personal loans are just one option for folks who need some wiggle room in their budget, or cash to cover an unexpected expense. Another option is to apply for a low-interest credit card. Credit cards with a low APR are a good way to bridge the gap when budgets and reality collide. If people pay them off quickly, they don’t end up paying much more in interest. The average credit card rate for someone with average or good credit is 15.7%.
Consolidating credit card debt saves on interest
If folks do apply for a personal loan, the interest rate can be as low as 5.5% for someone with excellent credit. The average rate is closer to 11%, which is still lower than the average credit card rate.
Another option for consolidating credit card debt is to get a balance transfer credit card with a zero-percent APR promotional period. These offers can last up to a year, and are often the best way to pay off credit card debt quickly.
Other loan options
Home equity loans and lines of credit are another option for people looking to borrow money, as long as they own their own home. These loans charge less interest but require folks to put their homes up as collateral if they default on the loan. That can be too risky a proposition for some.
Peer-to-peer lending is also big right now, with new online loan options popping up all the time. The low unemployment rate and the Federal Reserve’s low interest rate are contributing to people’s willingness to loan money, and making it easier for those who need loans to get them.
Latest Low APR Credit Card News
On March 25, Apple Announced their new Apple Card credit card. “Apple Card is designed to help customers lead a healthier financial life, which starts with a better understanding of their spending so they can make smarter choices with their money,” said Jennifer Bailey, Apple’s vice president of Apple Pay.
A new credit card made especially for small business owners gives Amazon Prime members extra cash back on purchases, as well as the ability to choose flexible payment terms in lieu of rewards.
When folks have multiple types of debt they’re trying to pay off, it can be difficult to know which check to write first. But for the many people struggling under student loan debt, it’s important to pay off other loans first, financial experts advise.
Online retailer Zulily is now offering customers a co-branded credit card that allows them to pay for purchases in three monthly payments. The card, issued in conjunction with Synchrony Financial, offers Smart-pay, which gives cardholders flexible payment options.
A new survey indicates that Americans are getting more comfortable with the idea of instant financing when they’re shopping online. Seventy-five percent of folks said they would choose to buy from an online merchant offering instant financing, rather than one that did not, if given the option. And 28% said they would switch stores if they could use instant financing to fund their purchase.