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Lending Tree Personal Loan

By using Lending Tree you can get a Personal Loan from $1,000 to $50,000. But since Lending Tree isn’t a direct lender, you’ll still have to research each loan option before picking an actual lender. For a more straightforward loan, check out the Check City Personal Loan and skip the go-between.

Does Lending Tree offer personal loans? No, Lending Tree does NOT offer personal loans. Instead, they offer services to connect customers to actual loan providers.

There are many loan providers out there that provide personal loans for all kinds of reasons. Each loan provider is different and has its own requirements, rates, and fees to consider. Lending Tree is an example of an indirect lender meaning they themselves don’t provide the loan, instead they connect you to loan providers after reviewing the information you give them so you can compare and choose a loan provider.

Lending Tree Personal Loans: A Quick Look

Lending Tree does not actually have personal loans. What they can do is connect loan customers to lenders that offer personal loans from $1,000 to $50,000. But this loan basic loan range is the most details Lending Tree can offer without more of your personal information to help them determine the kind of loan you could get. You also won’t know how much using Lending Trees services will cost you until after you give them enough personal information.

Maximum Personal Loan: $50,000

Minimum Personal Loan: $1,000

Rates: N/A

Fees: N/A

Terms: N/A

When: N/A

Basically, Lending Tree is a great place to go if you have no idea where to shop for a personal loan. They can give you a couple of loan options to go through and choose from. But it’s important to remember that Lending Tree isn’t an actual loan option, but an extra step in your search for a personal loan.

Who is Lending Tree Perfect For?

Lending Tree is a great place to go when you want some online research help in comparing loan providers. If you need a personal loan and are feeling especially lost in finding one, then Lending Tree can help you pick and choose between loans that could work for you.

Who Should NOT Use Lending Tree for a Personal Loan?

Since Lending Tree doesn’t have personal loans, it may not be the best option for those looking to get their loans quickly. If you need a personal loan fast, then Lending Tree might only make your loan process longer and more complicated. You’ll have to give them all kinds of information about yourself and your finances, then compare the loan options they provide, then go through the actual loan application process. That’s a long time to wait for the funds you need right now. If any of the items listed below sound like you, then you might want to consider skipping the Lending Tree route when searching for a loan.

  • If you need your personal loan money fast
  • If you only want to go through one application process
  • If you don’t want to give out your information to a third party
  • If you want to compare loans for free

An Alternative to Lending Tree

Instead of going through the added hassle of using Lending Tree to search for the perfect loan, take advantage of personal loan reviews like this one to sift out which loan is best for you. You can also skip the loan search entirely and take advantage of the easy to use Check City personal loan.

Reasons to Get a Check City Personal Loan:

personal  loan

  • Check City is a direct lender so you only have to deal with us.
  • Check City is a state licensed lender.
  • Our application process is quick and simple.
  • You can still apply, even if you have a low credit score.
  • We have no origination fees.
  • You can get your loan TODAY.
  • You can pay back your loan in as little as 6 months.
How to Apply for a Check City Personal Loan

Applying for a Check City personal loan is super easy to do. The process is quick and simple! All you have to do is go to our online Personal Loan Page and fill out the application form. It only takes a few minutes! You can also apply for a Check City personal loan over the phone or in the store. If you apply for your loan in the store, you can actually walk out with your money in that very same visit!

What You’ll Need to Apply:

  • A government ID
  • Proof of bank account
  • Proof of direct deposit
  • Proof of income
  • A valid phone number

Apply online.

Find a location near you and apply in the store.

Or call Check City’s Loans By Phone number: 800-404-0254

If this personal loan option sounds right for you, don’t hesitate to give us a call, visit our website, or visit our stores and get your funds now.

COMPARE SIMILAR LOAN OPTIONS

Check City Personal Loans Discover Personal Loans Wells Fargo Personal Loans

USAA Personal Loan Citibank Personal Loan
Amount $300 to $3,000 $2,500 to $35,000 $3,000 to $100,000 $2,500 to $50,000 $2,000 to $50,000
Rates lower APR than our payday loans 6.99% to 24.99% 5.49% to 22.99% 8.99% to 18.00% 7.99% to 23.99%
Fees no origination fees no origination fees, no closing costs no origination fees, no prepayment penalties no origination, application, or prepayment fees no origination fee
Terms 6 months 36 to 84 months 12 to 84 months 12 to 84 months 12 to 60 months
Min. Credit Score none 660 600 high credit score high credit score

 

Personal loans all come with their own requirements, but so do you! Everyone is looking for something different in a personal loan, like the ability to refinance the loan later, or the ability to get the loan right away. You can find all these key qualities with a Check City Personal Loan!

 

READ MORE
Learn more about the usefulness of loans, “The Usefulness of Loans from Large to Small.”

Budget like a boss by reading, “Budgeting in 4 Easy Steps.”

Citibank Personal Loan

Citibank offers large personal loans up to $50,000 with payments term options from 12 to 60 months. But Citibank loans also come with income and membership requirements. If you don’t meet these qualifications then check out the no nonsense Check City Personal Loan!

One of the best reasons to get a personal loan is to consolidate debts into one single monthly payment. Many times consolidating debt can even lead to lower interest rates that save you money in the long term. Personal loans can also be used to help with home improvements and other major expenses. All personal loans come with their own benefits and drawbacks, so it’s important to do your research on different loans in order to figure out which loan provider is the best fit for you and your needs.

Citibank Personal Loans: A Quick Look

A Citibank personal loan can be anywhere from $2,000 to $50,000 with an APR range between 7.99% and 23.99%. Citibank personal loans have no origination fees and offer fixed rates so customers can know for sure what they pay. They also offer flexible loan terms between 1 to 5 years. Citibank personal loans are most commonly used to consolidate debts, make home improvements, and pay other large expenses.

Maximum Personal Loan: $50,000

Minimum Personal Loan: $2,000

Rates: 7.99% to 23.99% APR

Fees: no origination fee

Terms: 12, 24, 36, 48, and 60 month terms (1 to 5 years)

When: receive a check in the mail in 5 business days

Basically, Citibank is a great loan provider for anyone who already has a bank account with Citibank. You also need to make at least $10,500 a year in order to qualify for their personal loans and there are some restrictions to keep in mind if you want to take out more than one loan from them. Their loans can be used for a number of larger, personal expenses.

Who are Citibank Personal Loans Perfect For?

A personal loan from Citibank is a great loan option for those with good to excellent credit since applicants with the best credit will get the best interest rates. They can be used for many personal reasons but are the most useful for anyone looking to consolidate high interest debts or finance home projects. If this is the kind of loan you’re looking for, and you match the qualities listed below, then a personal loan from Citibank may be perfect for you.

  • If you have a good or excellent credit score
  • If you need a large loan amount
  • If you already have an account with Citibank
  • If you can wait 5 business days for your funds
  • If you make at least $10,500 a year

Who Should NOT Get a Citibank Personal Loan?

If you have a poor credit score then a Citibank personal loan might not be the best loan option for you. Only applications with excellent credit are able to qualify for the best interest rates. So if you have a poor credit score then you may want to think about getting a personal loan with Check City instead. Below are some other reasons to consider a different loan provider.

  • If you need a small loan
  • If you want to pay off the loan in a few months
  • If you have a low credit score
  • If you want your funds today
  • If you make less than $10,500 a year
  • If you don’t already have an account with Citibank
Citibank Personal Loans Pros and Cons List
Pros Cons
No origination fee Need excellent credit to qualify for lower rates
Get lower rates by using Auto Deduct The check takes 5 days to mail
Get points by using your Citibank checking account Need to be an existing bank account holder
You can only apply online for loans $30,000 and under

An Alternative to Citibank Personal Loans

The Citibank personal loan may not meet your requirements as a loan customer and that’s ok. Everyone has different financial needs when it comes to the terms of a personal loan. If your credit score doesn’t qualify you for a Citibank personal loan, or if you just want a smaller, quicker, short-term loan, then Check City has what you’re looking for.

Reasons to Get a Check City Personal Loan:

personal loan review

  • We’re a direct lender: Check city doesn’t direct you to lenders, we are the lender.
  • We’re a state licensed lender: Check City offers the safety, security, and trust of a state licensed lender.
  • Loan applications are quick and simple
  • Bad credit scores can still apply
  • No origination fees
  • Get your loan TODAY
  • You can pay back your loan in just 6 months
How to Apply for a Check City Personal Loan

Applying for a Check City personal loan is fast and easy. All you have to do to apply online is go to our Personal Loans Page and fill out the application form. It only takes a few minutes!

If you don’t want to apply online then there are two other application options you can choose from. You can visit your local Check City store and apply in person, or you can call a Check City representative with the Loans By Phone number listed below and apply over the phone.

What You’ll Need to Apply:

  • A government ID
  • Proof of bank account
  • Proof of direct deposit
  • Proof of income
  • A valid phone number

Apply Online.

Apply in the Store.

Or call Check City’s Loans By Phone number: 800-404-0254

Applying for a Check City Personal Loan online is fast and incredibly easy to do, but if you want your loan money even sooner, you can apply in person at a Check City store and walk out with your cash TODAY!

Check City personal loans are perfect for anyone who needs a fast, small loan that you can pay off in a few short months instead of years. It’s also a great loan option for anyone with bad credit who can’t afford the credit score hit of a traditional credit report. If the Check City personal loan sounds right for you, don’t hesitate to give us a call, visit our website, or visit our stores and GET CASH NOW.

COMPARE SIMILAR LOAN OPTIONS

Check City Personal Loans Discover Personal Loans Wells Fargo Personal Loans

USAA Personal Loan Citibank Personal Loan
Amount $300 to $3,000 $2,500 to $35,000 $3,000 to $100,000 $2,500 to $50,000 $2,000 to $50,000
Rates lower APR than our payday loans 6.99% to 24.99% 5.49% to 22.99% 8.99% to 18.00% 7.99% to 23.99%
Fees no origination fees no origination fees, no closing costs no origination fees, no prepayment penalties no origination, application, or prepayment fees no origination fee
Terms 6 months 36 to 84 months 12 to 84 months 12 to 84 months 12 to 60 months
Min. Credit Score none 660 600 high credit score high credit score

 

All loans come with a set of requirements in order for loan customers to qualify. But loan customers also have requirements for the perfect loan. Every customer needs something different in a personal loan, which is why loan review articles like this one are so helpful. You’ll need to do a little research about different loans if you want to find the best personal loan for you.

 
READ MORE
Learn more about the usefulness of loans, “The Usefulness of Loans from Large to Small.”

Budget like a boss by reading, “Budgeting in 4 Easy Steps.”

American Express Personal Loan

American Express offers Personal Loans up to $40,000, but are only available to existing members. If you want a more flexible and inclusive loan then you might want to try the Check City Personal Loan, where you don’t need a card membership to apply.

Shopping for a loan can be a hassle. There are so many pros and cons to consider, from the minimum required credit scores to APR ranges. We’re here to make your loan research a little easier as we go over personal loan options near you. That way you can weight the costs and benefits of different loans in one spot and find the personal loan that best suits your personal needs.

American Express Personal Loans: A Quick Look

With an American Express membership card you can take out a personal loan from $3,500 to $40,000 and get an APR anywhere between 6.90% and 19.98%. They also don’t have origination fees, but they do have late fees for when you’re late on payments. These loans come with a shorter loan term of 1 to 4 years and you can expect to receive your funds in 1 to 7 business days after your application gets approved.

Maximum Personal Loan: $40,000

Minimum Personal Loan: $3,500

Rates: 6.90% to 19.98% APR

Fees: no origination fee, there are late fees

Terms: 12 to 48 months (1 to 4 years)

When: 1 to 7 business days

Basically, the American Express personal loan is a large loan that you pay off in a few short years. They’re generally used for home improvement, weddings, the costs of moving, or traveling. You can also use their personal loans to consolidate debts with higher interest rates. The only catch is that you’ll need to be an American Express card holder in order to even apply, so if you aren’t already affiliated with American Express you may want to look elsewhere for your loan where a membership isn’t required.

Who are American Express Personal Loans Perfect For?

A personal loan from American Express is perfect for anyone in need of a large loan that they don’t want to be paying back for more than 4 years. The American Express personal loan is most perfect for loan customers who already have an American Express card. If you’re already an American Express customer and the below items also represent your needs, then the American Express personal loan may be the perfect loan for you.

  • If you have a good credit score
  • If you need a large loan amount
  • If you want to finish paying off the loan in 4 years
  • If you already have an American Express account

Who Should NOT Get an American Express Personal Loan?

If the items mentioned in the previous section don’t apply to you then don’t worry—there are other loan options out there. Maybe you’re looking for an even smaller personal loan that you can pay off in a matter of months instead of years. If you find yourself in this category of loan customer then you should consider Check City for your flexible personal loan provider.

  • If you want a small loan
  • If you want to pay back the loan in 6 months
  • If you don’t already have an American Express account
  • If you need a personal loan today
American Express Personal Loans Pros and Cons List
Pros Cons
You can get a decision on your application in seconds You must be a cardholder to apply
The application doesn’t affect your credit score You must be preapproved to apply
They have no origination fees They do charge late payment fees

An Alternative to American Express Personal Loans

If an American Express personal loan doesn’t meet your requirements as a loan customer then you need to take a look at the Check City personal loan! It might be exactly what you’re looking for.

Reasons to Get a Check City Personal Loan:

american express personal loan

  • The straightforward service of a direct lender
  • The safety of a state licensed lender
  • A fast and easy application process
  • You don’t need a high credit score to apply
  • There are no origination fees
  • You can get your loan TODAY
  • You can pay back your loan in as little as 6 months
How to Apply for a Check City Personal Loan

The Check City Personal Loan has a fast and simple application process. All you have to do is visit the Check City Personal Loan Page. From there you can finish your loan application in just a few minutes. You can also apply for a Check City personal loan inside any of our stores, or by calling a Check City representative to apply over the phone.

What You’ll Need to Apply:

  • A government ID
  • Proof of bank account
  • Proof of direct deposit
  • Proof of income
  • A valid phone number

Apply Online.

Apply in the Store.

Or call Check City’s Loans By Phone number: 800-404-0254

Applying for a personal loan from Check City is fast, easy, and anyone can apply. So you don’t need to already be a Check City customer and you don’t need to have a high credit score to apply. Check City also offers multiple ways to apply for your loan. You can apply online, over the phone, or at any Check City location. You only need a few things to apply and Check City personal loan applications only take a few minutes.

LOAN COMPARISON CHART

Check City Personal Loans Discover Personal Loans Wells Fargo Personal Loans

SoFi Personal Loans American Express Personal Loans
Amount $300 to $3,000 $2,500 to $35,000 $3,000 to $100,000 $5,000 to $100,000 $3,500 to $40,000
Rates lower APR than our payday loans 6.99% to 24.99% APR 5.49% to 22.99% APR 5.99% to 20.01% APR 6.90% to 19.98%
Fees no origination fees no origination fees, no closing costs no origination fees, no prepayment penalties no fees no origination fee, there are late fees
Terms 6 months 36 to 84 months (3 to 7 years) 12 to 84 months (1 to 7 years) 24 to 84 months 12 to 48 months (1 to 4 years)
Min. Credit Score Check City doesn’t pull a traditional credit check, and if you have a low credit score you can still apply for a Check City personal loan 660 600 680 660

 

Personal loans come with requirements and so do you! You need a personal loan that works best for you and your needs which is why you’re researching loan providers before making a choice. Everyone is looking for something different in a personal loan; like the ability to refinance the loan later, or the ability to get the loan right away. You can find all these key features with a Check City Personal Loan!

 

READ MORE
Learn more about the usefulness of loans, “The Usefulness of Loans from Large to Small.”

Budget like a boss by reading, “Budgeting in 4 Easy Steps.”

SoFi Personal Loan

SoFi offers Personal Loans up to $100,000, but only to those with a $45,000 annual income and 680 Credit Score. If you need a Smaller, more Flexible Personal Loan than the Check City Personal Loan might be right for you!

Loans comes with their own requirements and so do you as a loan customer! Every loan is going to come with different costs and benefits, so it’s important to do a bit of loan shopping and research before you make your final choice. That way you can get the loan that makes the most sense for your own personal needs.

SoFi Personal Loans: A Quick Look

A personal loan from SoFi can be anywhere from $5,000 to $100,000 with an APR range between 5.99% and 20.01%. SoFi personal loans don’t have any fees outside of their interest rates and you can pay back your loan in 2 to 7 years. SoFi even offers personal loans for students to refinance their college debts.

Maximum Personal Loan: $100,000

Minimum Personal Loan: $5,000

Rates: 5.99% to 20.01% APR

Fees: no origination fee, no prepayment fee, no late fees

Terms: 24 to 84 months (2 to 7 years)

When: 1 to 7 business days

Basically, the SoFi personal loan is a larger loan with a longer payment term. The Sofi personal loan is most commonly used to pay off credit cards, invest in home improvements, moving costs, medical bills, student loans, and other larger purchases. They also offer a fixed payment plan.

Who are SoFi Personal Loans Perfect For?

The SoFi personal loan is great if you need to consolidate large debts with high interest rates. It’s also a good loan if you need a larger loan for things like major home improvements or college tuition. If you need a much larger loan and you meet the below requirements, then this loan may be perfect for you.

  • If you have a credit score of 680 or higher
  • If you need a large loan amount
  • If you want a longer loan term
  • If you already have a SoFi account

Who Should NOT Get a SoFi Personal Loan?

If the items mentioned above don’t work for you, or you just need a quicker, smaller loan then the perfect loan option for you is still out there. If the items listed below better suit your loan wants and needs then you might want to consider coming to Check City as your personal loan provider.

  • If you need a smaller loan
  • If you want to finish paying back the loan in 6 months
  • If you don’t already have a SoFi account
  • If you need funds fast
  • If your credit score can’t afford a hard credit pull
SoFi Personal Loans Pros and Cons List
Pros Cons
Fixed rates and monthly payments Hard credit pull that will affect your credit score
You can get a larger loan up to $100,000 You need a 680 credit score or higher
They have zero fees for their loans Can take up to 7 business days to receive funds
Need an annual income of at least $45,000

An Alternative to SoFi Personal Loans

Check City offers a unique loan solution than other loan providers. SoFi personal loans may not meet your requirements as a loan customer and in that case you can check out the Check City personal loan! It might be exactly what you’re looking for.

Reasons to Get a Check City Personal Loan:

sofi personal loan

  • The straightforward service of a direct lender
  • The safety of a state licensed lender
  • A fast and easy application process
  • You don’t need a high credit score to apply
  • There are no origination fees
  • You don’t have to wait, you can get your loan TODAY
  • You can pay back your loan in as little as 6 months
How to Apply for a Check City Personal Loan

The Check City Personal Loan application is fast and easy to do. All you have to do is visit the Check City Personal Loan Page. From there you can quickly fill out the application on the side of that webpage. You can also find a nearby Check City store to apply or give us a call to apply over the phone if either of those options works better for you.

What You’ll Need to Apply:

  • A government ID
  • Proof of bank account
  • Proof of direct deposit
  • Proof of income
  • A valid phone number

Apply Online.

Apply in the Store.

Or call Check City’s Loans By Phone number: 800-404-0254

The online application for a Check City Personal Loan is incredibly easy to do, but if you want your funds even sooner, you can apply in the store and get your personal loan funds the SAME DAY! Our personal loans work well for anyone who needs a fast, small loan that you can finish paying off in just 6 months rather than years.

Check City Personal Loans are also a helpful option for anyone with a low credit score, or who can’t afford a hard pull on their credit score right now, because we don’t pull a traditional credit report when processing a loan application. If this personal loan option sounds right for you, don’t hesitate to give us a call, visit our website, or visit our stores and get your funds now.

LOAN COMPARISON CHART

Check City Personal Loans Discover Personal Loans Wells Fargo Personal Loans

Chase Auto Loans Bank of America Auto Loans Capital One Auto Loan SoFi Personal Loans
Amount $300 to $3,000 $2,500 to $35,000 $3,000 to $100,000 $4,000 to $600,000 min. $7,500 min. $4,000 $5,000 to $100,000
Rates lower APR than our payday loans 6.99% to 24.99% APR 5.49% to 22.99% APR depends min. 2.99% to 5.99% depends 5.99% to 20.01% APR
Fees no origination fees no origination fees, no closing costs no origination fees, no prepayment penalties depends no application fee depends no fees
Terms 6 months 36 to 84 months (3 to 7 years) 12 to 84 months (1 to 7 years) 12 to 84 months 60 months depending 24 to 84 months 24 to 84 months
Min. Credit Score Check City doesn’t pull a traditional credit check, and if you have a low credit score you can still apply for a Check City personal loan 660 600 high credit score subject to credit approval subject to credit approval 680

 

When you think of loans you often think about the requirements you need to meet in order for your application to get approved. But you have loan requirements too! Everyone is looking for something different in a personal loan, like the ability to refinance the loan later, or the ability to get the loan right away. You can find all these key qualities with a Check City Personal Loan!

Whatever your own personal loan requirements might be, you should always study up on what features each loan provides before making a choice.

 
READ MORE
Learn more about the usefulness of loans, “The Usefulness of Loans from Large to Small.”

Budget like a boss by reading, “Budgeting in 4 Easy Steps.”

Capital One Personal Loan

Capital One does not offer Personal Loans, but they do offer other useful services we’ll highlight below. But if you need the Flexibility of a Personal Loan you should definitely check out the Check City Personal Loan!

Does Capital One offer personal loans? No, Capital One does not currently offer personal loans.

It is actually not uncommon for banks to not offer personal loans, like Capital One. Instead Capital One offers other financial products that are worth looking into. They have bank accounts, credit cards, auto loans, and even financial services for your business. But Capital one does not have a personal loan option. There’s no need to worry though, because we’ll highlight where else you can find a personal loan later on in this article.

Capital One Credit Cards: A Quick Look

Pros Cons
Travel and cash rewards Lower credit scores receive the higher rates
Offer cards for businesses 13.74% to 26.99% APR range
Offer cards specifically for students Some cards have an eventual annual fee of $95

Capital One Auto Loans: A Quick Look

Pros Cons
You can finance or refinance a car

There is a minimum monthly income required from $1,500 to $1,800
You can get prequalified

You can’t already have any overdrafts or late payments with Capital One
Loan terms are from 24 to 84 months

Minimum loan amount is $4,000

Basically, Capital One is a great option for traditional banking services. You can use them to have a checking or savings account, get a credit card, or finance your auto loans. They’re also an option for financing your business. But if you need a small loan that you’re free to use for your own personal reasons then you’ll need to keep looking for your perfect loan.

Who are Capital One Loans and Credit Cards Perfect For?

Capital One is a perfect choice for more traditional financial services like credit cards and auto loans. Capital One offers a variety of credit card options that work great for students, business owners, and travelers. Likewise, their auto loans are a worthwhile option if you’re looking to purchase or refinance a car. So if you need a large auto loan or some solid credit card options, and you meet the requirements below, then Capital One bank might be the right choice for you.

  • If you need a large auto loan
  • If you have a lot of travel expenses for tickets, hotels, and dining
  • If you’re a student or business owner
  • If you already have a Capital One account

Who Should NOT Get a Capital One Loan or Credit Card?

If the items mentioned above don’t apply to you, or you just need a fast, small loan for a personal reason, then don’t give up on looking! The perfect loan option for you is out there. If you’re looking for any one of the items listed below then you might want to consider a personal loan provider.

  • If you need a small loan
  • If you want to be done paying back the loan in as little as 6 months
  • If you don’t already have a Capital One account
  • If you need funds fast
  • If your credit score can’t afford the hit from a traditional credit check
  • If you need the loan for any number of personal reasons

An Alternative to Capital One Personal Loans

Check City offers a different kind of personal loan from other loan providers. So if Capital One’s more traditional financial services don’t suit your particular needs then look into a Check City personal loan. It might be exactly what you’re looking for.

Reasons to Get a Check City Personal Loan:

personal loan near me

  • The straightforward service of a direct lender
  • The safety of a state licensed lender
  • A fast and easy application process
  • You don’t need a high credit score to apply
  • There are no origination fees
  • You don’t have to wait, you can get your loan TODAY
  • You can pay back your loan in as little as 6 months
How to Apply for a Check City Personal Loan

Applying for a Check City Personal Loans is a fast and easy process. All you have to do is visit the Check City Personal Loan Page. From there you can quickly fill out the application on the side of that page. You can also find a nearby Check City store to apply or give us a call to apply over the phone if either of those options works better for you.

What You’ll Need to Apply:

  • A government ID
  • Proof of bank account
  • Proof of direct deposit
  • Proof of income
  • A valid phone number

Apply Online.

Apply in the Store.

Or call Check City’s Loans By Phone number: 800-404-0254

The online application for a Check City Personal Loan is incredibly easy to do, but if you want your funds even sooner, you can apply in the store and get your personal loan funds the SAME DAY! Our personal loans work well for anyone who needs a fast, small loan that you can finish paying off in just 6 months rather than years. Check City Personal Loans are also a helpful option for anyone with a low credit score, or who can’t afford a hard pull on their credit score right now, because we don’t pull a traditional credit report when processing a loan application. If this personal loan option sounds right for you, don’t hesitate to give us a call, visit our website, or visit our stores and get your funds now.

LOAN COMPARISON CHART

Check City Personal Loans Discover Personal Loans Wells Fargo Personal Loans

Chase Auto Loans Bank of America Auto Loans Capital One Auto Loans
Amount $300 to $3,000 $2,500 to $35,000 $3,000 to $100,000 $4,000 to $600,000 min. $7,500 min. $4,000
Rates lower APR than our payday loans 6.99% to 24.99% APR 5.49% to 22.99% APR depends min. 2.99% to 5.99% depends
Fees no origination fees no origination fees, no closing costs no origination fees, no prepayment penalties depends no application fee depends
Terms 6 months 36 to 84 months (3 to 7 years) 12 to 84 months (1 to 7 years) 12 to 84 months 60 months depending 24 to 84 months
Min. Credit Score Check City doesn’t pull a traditional credit check, and if you have a low credit score you can still apply for a Check City personal loan 660 600 high credit score subject to credit approval subject to credit approval

 

When you think of loans you often think about the requirements you need to meet in order for your application to get approved. But you have loan requirements too! Everyone is looking for something different in a personal loan, like the ability to refinance the loan later, or the ability to get the loan right away. You can find all these key qualities with a Check City Personal Loan!

Whatever your own personal loan requirements might be, you should always study up on what features each loan provides before making a choice.

 
READ MORE
Learn more about the usefulness of loans, “The Usefulness of Loans from Large to Small.”

Budget like a boss by reading, “Budgeting in 4 Easy Steps.”

Bank of America Personal Loan

Bank of America offers a lot of services, but Personal Loans aren’t one of them. You can find auto loans, mortgages, credit cards with Bank of America but if you want the Flexibility of a Personal Loan you may have to look elsewhere for your loan.

Does Bank of America offer personal loans? The simple answer is NO, Bank of America does not currently offer personal loans.

Many banks don’t actually offer personal loans. Like many other banks, Bank of America also doesn’t offer personal loans. Instead Bank of America mainly offers saving and checking account services. The closest services to a personal loan they offer are credit cards, auto loans, and mortgages, but they don’t technically offer personal loans. But don’t worry because there are other personal loan options out there that we’ll hit on later.

Bank of America Credit Cards: A Quick Look

Pros Cons
they have credit cards specifically for students, low interest rates, to rebuild good credit, travel expenses, and to earn cash and point rewards balance transfers generally have a 3% fee
many of their cards have no annual fees some of their cards have an annual fee up to $95
many of their cards offer a 0% APR when you first get the card after the introductory period is over, APR rates can go from 14.74% up to 25.74%

Bank of America Auto Loans: A Quick Look

Pros Cons
their lowest APR rates are 2.99% to 5.99% the minimum loan amount is $7,500
they have no application fee they don’t finance certain vehicles
they’ll lock your rate for 30 days while you car shop you may need longer than 30 days to shop for a car
customers can get a discount of 0.25% to 0.50% you need to already be a Bank of America customer

Basically, Bank of America is a great place to go for your checking and saving account needs. They’re also a great service for a variety of credit card options auto loans. But if you are looking for a more flexible loan that you can use for a larger variety of personal reasons then you’ll need to look at other loan providers.

Who are Bank of America Auto Loans and Credit Cards Perfect For?

The Bank of America auto loan is great if you need to buy a new car or refinance your existing car payments. Likewise, Bank of America credit cards are great if you travel a lot and want to accumulate benefits for all the money you spend on traveling expenses. They also have some unique credit card options for students and those looking to boost their low credit scores. So if you meet the below requirements, then Bank of America may be perfect for you.

  • If you need a large auto loan
  • If you have a lot of travel expenses for tickets, hotels, and dining
  • If you’re a student in need of a credit card with benefits
  • If you already have a Bank of America account

Who Should NOT Get a Bank of America Auto Loan or Credit Card?

If you don’t meet the above requirements, or you’re just looking for a quicker, smaller loan that you can use for something besides a car, then you may want to keep shopping for your perfect loan. If any of the listed items below represent you, then you should consider a different personal loan provider.

  • If you need a smaller loan
  • If you want to pay back the loan in less than a year
  • If you don’t already have a Bank of America account
  • If you need your loan quickly, or that same day
  • If you have a low credit score
  • If you can’t afford a hard credit pull application on your credit score
  • If you have personal reasons beyond cars for needing a loan

An Alternative to a Bank of America Personal Loan

If an auto loan or credit card isn’t what you’re looking for then you can check out the Check City personal loan. Check City offers a different kind of personal loan from other lenders, allowing you to get funds quickly. So if you don’t meet the requirements present in Bank of America’s loan and credit services don’t worry! A Check City personal loan might be your answer.

Reasons to Get a Check City Personal Loan:

personal loan

  • Check City is a direct lender
  • Check City is also a state licensed lender
  • The application process is quick and simple
  • You don’t need a high credit score to apply
  • There are no origination fees
  • You can get your loan TODAY
How to Apply for a Check City Personal Loan

Check City personal loans are incredibly easy to use. All you have to do is visit the Check City Personal Loan Page and fill out the quick online application. You can also stop by a nearby Check City store, or even talk to someone over the phone to fill out your personal loan application!

All you need to apply for the loan is:

  • A government ID
  • Proof of bank account
  • Proof of direct deposit
  • Proof of income
  • A valid phone number

Apply for a Check City Personal Loan Online.

Visit a conveniently located Check City Store.

Talk to a representative by calling Check City’s Loans By Phone number: 800-404-0254

Taking out a personal loan at Check City is incredibly fast and easy to do. If you visit a Check City store in order to apply for your loan, you can actually walk away with your cash today! Check City personal loans are great for loan customers that need a quick, easy to use, smaller personal loan that they can pay back in a matter of months instead of years. They’re also a great loan option for customers with lower credit scores since Check City doesn’t pull a traditional credit report when processing your application.

LOAN COMPARISON CHART

Check City Personal Loans Discover Personal Loans Wells Fargo Personal Loans

Chase Auto Loans Bank of America Auto Loans
Amount $300 to $3,000 $2,500 to $35,000 $3,000 to $100,000 $4,000 to $600,000 min. $7,500
Rates lower APR than our payday loans 6.99% to 24.99% APR 5.49% to 22.99% APR depends min. 2.99% to 5.99%
Fees no origination fees no origination fees, no closing costs no origination fees, no prepayment penalties depends no application fee
Terms 6 months 36 to 84 months (3 to 7 years) 12 to 84 months (1 to 7 years) 12 to 84 months 60 months depending
Min. Credit Score Check City doesn’t pull a traditional credit check, and if you have a low credit score you can still apply for a Check City personal loan 660 600 high credit score subject to credit approval

 

Loans often come with requirements for whoever is applying for the loan. But loan borrowers have their own requirements as well. Some people want a loan that is easy to refinance, while others are looking for a loan they can get today. Whatever your loan requirements, it’s always wise to do a bit of reading whenever your shopping for a loan, so you can get the best loan for you.

 
READ MORE
Learn more about the usefulness of loans, “The Usefulness of Loans from Large to Small.”

Budget like a boss by reading, “Budgeting in 4 Easy Steps.”

Chase Personal Loan

Chase offers a lot of services, but Personal Loans aren’t one of them. You can find auto loans and mortgages with Chase but if you want the Flexibility of a Personal Loan you may have to look elsewhere for your loan.

Does Chase offer personal loans? The simple answer is NO, Chase does not currently offer personal loans.

Many banks don’t actually offer personal loans. Like most banks Chase also doesn’t offer personal loans. Instead Chase mainly offers saving and checking account services. The closest services to a personal loan they offer are credit cards, auto loans, and mortgages, but they don’t technically offer personal loans. But don’t worry because there are other personal loan options out there that we’ll touch on later in this article.

Chase Credit Cards: A Quick Look

Pros Cons
some of their cards offer cash back and bonus points some of their cards only let you earn back on certain things like dining and travel
some of their cards let you earn back 1.5% to 6 times on purchases some of their cards have fees up to $95
some cards have no annual fees

Chase Auto Loans: A Quick Look

Pros Cons
you can refinance the loan you need to be a Chase customer with a checking account for refinancing options
loan terms are 12 to 84 months you might want to pay back the loan in less than a year
loan amounts are $4,000 to $600,000 you might need an even smaller loan
great for buying a new car or refinancing existing car loan not great for other personal reasons

Basically, Chase is a great place to go if you’re looking for auto loans in order to buy a new car, or if you’re looking for different credit cards that offer an array of benefits. But if you are looking for a more flexible loan that you can use for a larger variety of personal reasons then you’ll need to look at other loan providers.

Who are Chase Loans and Credit Cards Perfect For?

The Chase auto loan is great if you need to purchase a new car or refinance your car payments. Likewise, Chase credit cards are great if you travel a lot and want to accumulate benefits for all the money you spend on traveling expenses. If you need a large auto loan or credit cards great for travelers, and you meet the below requirements, then Chase may be perfect for you.

  • If you have a high credit score
  • If you need a large auto loan
  • If you have a lot of travel expenses for tickets, hotels, and dining
  • If you already have a Chase account

Who Should NOT Get a Chase Loan or Credit Card?

If you don’t meet the above requirements, or you’re just looking for a quicker, smaller loan that you can use for something besides a car, then you may want to keep shopping for your perfect loan. If any of the listed items below represent you, then you should consider a different personal loan provider.

  • If you need a smaller loan
  • If you want to pay back the loan in less than a year
  • If you don’t already have a Chase account
  • If you need your loan quickly, or that same day
  • If you have a low credit score
  • If you can’t afford a hard credit pull application on your credit score
  • If you have personal reason beyond cars for needing a loan

An Alternative to a Chase Personal Loan

Check City offers a different kind of personal loan. So if the features and requirements present in Chase’s loan and credit services don’t work for you, a Check City personal loan might be your answer.

Reasons to Get a Check City Personal Loan:

personal loan for you

  • Check City is a direct lender
  • Check City is also a state licensed lender
  • The application process is quick and simple
  • You don’t need a high credit score to apply
  • There are no origination fees
  • You can get your loan TODAY
How to Apply for a Check City Personal Loan

Check City personal loans are incredibly easy to use. Just visit the Check City Personal Loan Page and you can quickly apply for your loan online, at a nearby Check City store, or even over the phone!

All you need to apply for the loan is:

  • A government ID
  • Proof of bank account
  • Proof of direct deposit
  • Proof of income
  • A valid phone number

Apply for a Check City Loan Online by clicking HERE.

Find a conveniently located Check City Store by clicking HERE.

Or call Check City’s Loans By Phone number: 800-404-0254

Check City personal loans have a fast and easy process, and if you go into a Check City store to apply, you can actually walk out with your personal loan funds that very same day! Check City personal loans are great for loan customers that need a quick, easy to use, smaller personal loan that they can pay back in a matter of months instead of years. They’re also a great loan option for customers with lower credit scores since Check City doesn’t pull a traditional credit report when processing your application.

LOAN COMPARISON CHART

Check City Personal Loans Discover Personal Loans Wells Fargo Personal Loans

Chase Auto Loans
Amount $300 to $3,000 $2,500 to $35,000 $3,000 to $100,000 $4,000 to $600,000
Rates lower APR than our payday loans 6.99% to 24.99% APR 5.49% to 22.99% APR depends
Fees no origination fees no origination fees, no closing costs no origination fees, no prepayment penalties depends
Terms 6 months 36 to 84 months (3 to 7 years) 12 to 84 months (1 to 7 years) 12 to 84 months
Min. Credit Score Check City doesn’t pull a traditional credit check, and if you have a low credit score you can still apply for a Check City personal loan 660 600 high credit score

 

When you think of loans you often think about the requirements you need to meet in order for you application to get approved. But you have loan requirements too! Everyone is looking for something different in a personal loan, like the ability to refinance the loan later, or the ability to get the loan right away. You can find all these key qualities with a Check City Personal Loan!

Whatever your own personal loan requirements might be, you should always study up on what features each loan provides before making a choice.

 
READ MORE
Learn more about the usefulness of loans, “The Usefulness of Loans from Large to Small.”

Budget like a boss by reading, “Budgeting in 4 Easy Steps.”

Book Review: The Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey

book review

Dave Ramsey is a best selling author of many popular self-help books about getting your finances together. He’s inspired many with his simple, no-hassle philosophies on how to manage money. He also has a radio talk show called the Dave Ramsey Show, that you can listen to anywhere you listen to podcasts. He even started his own company built on his financial philosophies called Financial Peace University. Dave Ramsey and his colleagues have loads of resources you can find helpful in your own personal money management journey. Whether you are managing a household or a small business, Dave Ramsey has the financial advice you need to be successful and smart with your funds.

Today we’re going to take a focused look into one of Dave Ramsey’s most prolific publications, The Total Money Makeover: A Proven Plan for Financial Fitness. You’ve heard of fitness journeys and makeovers that change your style into something fresh and new, but Dave Ramsey takes all that and puts a financial spin onto it. With Dave Ramsey’s baby step plan you can exercise your financial abilities in ways you never thought possible and finally get into shape where your wallet is concerned.

What Kind of Book is The Total Money Makeover?

book cover

The Total Money Makeover is written as a self-help book. It’s even been compared to popular self-help books like, Your Best Life Now and 7 Habits of Highly Effective People because of the reader-friendly way it is written. It’s an engaging book with lots of real-world examples and stories from real people who have actually gone through Dave Ramsey’s baby steps and seen results. These short anecdotal stories throughout the book help all of Dave Ramsey’s concepts make clear common sense.

The book also includes a lot of motivational help along with the tips and advice. One of the biggest factors that holds people back from taking full control over their finances is the proper motivation and encouragement to make necessary changes to their lifestyle. Dave Ramsey helps with that too, giving you the fresh outlook you need to understand your goal and the rewards you can gain.

Dave Ramsey is also a Christian, so his books often have a religious undertone. So you may find him referencing Bible verses every so often in this book, and tackling religious views and practices with regard to money as well.

What’s in the Book?

The Total Money Makeover is essentially a step-by-step guide for how to go about your own personal money makeover journey. These steps are based on Dave Ramsey’s key money philosophies. Dave Ramsey has strict beliefs about not ever using debt, loans, or credit cards. He believes that our society today is too dependent on credit and that true financial freedom only comes when you live a completely debt free life. So the first steps in his plan are all about helping you get out of debt, and then setting you up to never get into debt again.

Simple and straightforward advice.

Dave Ramsey’s book became so popular probably because of how easy it is to follow his clearly set plan. Each step is specific enough to leave no doubts about what exactly you need to do, making his plan one that anyone can follow and find success. It also helps that he is never vague about his advice, but rather he is extremely straightforward, open, and honest.

Dave Ramsey has no get-rich-quick schemes. He’s more about using honest work, responsibility, and common sense to reach your goals. So you won’t find any crazy secrets to financial stability and success in his book, you’ll just finally learn to implement the basics in a way that really works.

A change in perspective.

Another reason people enjoy Dave Ramsey’s teachings is because he doesn’t pretend that money is what brings happiness. He’s realistic and believes that money is a tool to create stability and contentment in our lives, not the secret solution to all our problems.

He eloquently tackles many mental barriers and misconceptions many of us have about money, and works to not only change your behavior with money, but your perspective about money as well. One thing he talks about a lot is getting over the need to “keep up with the Joneses.” Often in life we compare ourselves to others in unhealthy ways, and sometimes those comparisons can lead us to make poor financial decisions for superficial reasons. So, when you read the Total Money Makeover be prepared to gain a whole new outlook on the purpose of money, and break free from comparing yourself to others.

The Money Makeover Baby Steps:

The main event of this self-help read are the baby steps the reader can take to reach financial peace and freedom. You can read a more detailed article about each of the 7 baby steps that Dave Ramsey will go through in this book, but we’ll go over a quick outline of those steps here too.

Emergency Fund

The first step in Dave Ramsey’s 7 step plan is to basically get your financial life in order. The road to stability starts by setting up your finance in a certain way. This begins with setting up an emergency fund. You can start with at least $1,000 in your emergency fund but eventually you’ll want to work your way toward having at least 6 months’ worth of expenses in your emergency fund at all times.

Debts

Once you start getting your emergency fund in place, it’s time to focus all other monetary efforts toward annihilating all your debts. He goes into more detail about this in the book. For example, he suggests you start with your smallest debts first and work your way up to your larger ones. He also recommends you save paying off your mortgage for last. But eventually the idea is to throw everything you can at your debts until they are all completely wiped out.

Build Wealth

Now it’s time to build wealth and continue saving. Since Dave Ramsey argues you should pay for everything in cash, continually building up your financial stores is an important aspect of the Dave Ramsey lifestyle. You have to have enough in savings to cover all your costs completely with cash.

In the book Dave Ramsey goes into more detail about what savings you should prioritize. He advises that you first complete your 6 months’ worth emergency fund if you haven’t gotten there already. Then he suggests you work toward saving for retirement and (if you have kids or plan on having kids) your children’s college funds.

Things You Can Do Differently:

Dave Ramsey’s primary goal in all of this is to help people get out of crippling debt and stay out of it. But there are modifications you can make to his more rigorous financial plan.

You can choose how much you want in your emergency fund.

If you’re a college student then putting aside even $1,000 may be more difficult for you. But that’s ok! Just put aside what you can. Even just adding $5 to $10 a month into an emergency fund is better than having no emergency fund at all.

Likewise, if you’re more settled in life it might be easier for you to put even more than $1,000 aside into an emergency fund. It really doesn’t matter how you do it, what matters most is that you start accumulating that safety fund in order to be more prepared for surprise expenses in the future.

You can still use credit cards and loans.

Dave Ramsey may believe in using only cash to pay for things but there are advantages to using credit cards and installment loans. When used responsibly using credit can help boost your credit score and get you the things you need to have a comfortable life. Credit cards can also provide lots of perks outside of boosting credit scores. Some credit cards come with special points that can go toward paying for things like groceries and traveling. So long as you understand your limits and include loans and credit payments in your carefully calculated budget and financial plans, you’ll be just fine.

Should I Read This Book?

You may now be wondering whether you should give this book a read or not. You should definitely read this book if . . .

  • you are in debt
  • you have trouble managing your money or realizing where your money goes
  • you have trouble making a budget

If you are looking for a book with more specific details about financial topics (like investing, or small businesses) then you should check out Dave Ramsey’s other books that go more in depth on complex financial topics. The Total Money Makeover doesn’t expound upon these topics too much since it was written more as a beginners guide to Dave Ramsey’s financial baby steps.

 

READ MORE

Check out some other helpful reviews about Dave Ramsey’s book, the Total Money Makeover:

Review: The Total Money Makeover

The Total Money Makeover Review

Goodreads


Dave Ramsey’s 7 Baby Steps

Explore this Article

Step 1: Start an Emergency Fund
Step 2: Focus on Debts
Step 3: Complete Your Emergency Fund
Step 4: Save for Retirement
Step 5: Start a College Fund
Step 6: Pay Off Your House
Step 7: Build Wealth

dave ramsey baby steps

Are you trying to get out of debt? Do you want more financial stability and freedom? Are your finances one of the bigger stresses in your life right now?

If any of these sentiments apply to you then Dave Ramsey’s 7 baby steps might be just what you need to cure your money blues.

Dave Ramsey is a guy who, through personal experience, was able to get out of debt and find financial peace of mind. He is now a financial expert with courses and books to help the everyday person get in control of their finances.

The best place to start when trying to regain control over your finances and achieve a full “money makeover” is to start with his 7 step plan. This plan has 7 baby steps that you follow to reach more financial stability and get to the point where you can start building wealth.

Step 1: Start an Emergency Fund

car maintenance

The first step in Dave Ramsey’s 7 step plan is, “Save $1,000 for Your Starter Emergency Fund.”

One of the main reasons people struggle with money is because necessary emergency expenses (like medical bills, car bills, or home repairs) come out of nowhere and drag you deeper and deeper into debt. But if you are preemptively prepared for these surprise expenses then they won’t take you off guard again.

So the very first thing you should do when getting your money in line is to get an emergency fund started. Save up an emergency fund in a separate bank account, until you have at least $1,000 in the account. This will be the start of the emergency fund that will keep sudden necessary expenses from plunging you into deep debts because you weren’t prepared.

Step 2: Focus on Debts

debts

The second step in Dave Ramsey’s plan is to “Pay Off All Debt (Except the House) Using the Debt Snowball.”

The snowball method that Dave Ramsey refers to here means that you start by paying off small debts first, and work your way up to the bigger debts. Debts can include paying off your car, credit card debts, and student loans.

First, make a giant list of all your debts, every single one, except for your mortgage if you have a house. Then, put your list of debts in order from the smallest debt amount to the largest. Then you go through knocking out each debt by eliminating the smallest debts first and working your way up to the largest debt last.

Step 3: Complete Your Emergency Fund

medical bills

The third step is to “Save 3 to 6 Months of Expenses in a Fully Funded Emergency Fund.”

Now that you’ve gotten all your debts out of the way, it’s time to finish your emergency fund. You can use the same money you were using to pay off debts each month and put it toward your emergency fund until it has enough to cover 3 to 6 months’ worth of expenses and bills. Then you’ll really be prepared for anything.

Reasons to Have an Emergency Fund

  1. If you lose your job.
  2. You won’t have to worry because you’ll have enough to last you 6 months. This will give you the time you’ll need to find a new job.

  3. If your car breaks down.
  4. You’ll be able to pay for the necessary repairs, the tow truck, or even for a new car in some cases.

  5. Medical bills.
  6. Don’t let your health and necessary medical bills keep you from staying afloat financially.

  7. Home repairs.
  8. If something happens to your home you’ll be able to fix the problem rather than living with it.

Having an emergency fund is THE key to keeping you out of debt in the future. After getting yourself out of debt, an emergency fund is what will keep you from getting back into debt in the future.

Step 4: Save for Retirement

retirement

The fourth step in the Dave Ramsey plan is to, “Invest 15% of Your Household Income in Retirement.”

After your debts are gone and your emergency fund is taken care of, it’s time to start seeing to other important savings like a 401K. Dave Ramsey recommends you take 15% of your gross monthly income and put it toward a retirement fund each month. To figure out how much you should be putting into your retirement fund each month, take your monthly income and multiply that number by 0.15.

Step 5: Start a College Fund

college funds

The fifth step to Dave Ramsey’s plan is to, “Save for Your Children’s College Fund.”

Avoiding student loan debts can be one of the biggest factors in staying out debt as a young adult. If you can pay for your kids college tuition then you’ll ensure their financial security in the future, as they’ll better be able to stay out debt. Dave Ramsey recommends using either a 529 college savings plans, or an education savings accounts (ESA). Talk to your bank or credit union about setting up these accounts for these specific purposes.

Step 6: Pay Off Your House

mortgage

The next to last step in this 7 step plan is to, “Pay Off Your Home Early.”

Put all the extra monthly income you have into your mortgage so you can finish paying it off early. After this step you will officially have no debts whatsoever! All of your earnings will go to you instead of getting drained away in large debts and payments.

Step 7: Build Wealth

wealth and legacy

Finally, it is time to, “Build Wealth and Give.”

Congratulations! Once you’ve reached the 7th step in Dave Ramsey’s Baby Steps, you can start focusing on building your wealth and leaving a legacy. Don’t forget to keep and maintain those financial safety nets like a healthy emergency fund, retirement account, savings account, and college funds.

Now you are officially in charge of your money rather than it being in charge of you.

Financial freedom is possible for you! Everyone can do it and Dave Ramsey’s 7 baby steps can help you get there. Dave Ramsey also has other resources that can help you implement this plan. You can participate in Dave Ramsey’s program, books, and podcasts.

You can take the actual course with Financial Peace University.

Dave Ramsey also has a free customized plan and assessment that you can do right now, in just 3 minutes!

Listen to the Dave Ramsey Show anywhere you listen to podcasts or radio.

 
Dave Ramsey’s 7 baby steps to financial freedom can help you with so many aspects of your life. They can help you decide when to buy a house or help you get situated for saving for a house. It’s a checklist program that can help you get rid of loans and debt (like student loans), or even help you get to where you can budget for a wedding.

Another way you can get some needed financial help is to take out an Installment Loan at Check City! Installment loans can help you stay on top of your bill payments and avoid late fees, which can really hurt your long-term financial goals.
 

READ MORE

Browse Dave Ramsey’s online store for more great financial resources to help you on your financial journey.

Read more helpful articles on the Dave Ramsey Blog

Learn more about the debt snowball, “How the Debt Snowball Method Works.”

Read Dave Ramsey’s full article on his 7 baby steps, “What Are the Baby Steps?

Stay out of debt through college by using these tips, “How to Stay Debt Free through Grad School.”


Budgeting in 4 Easy Steps

budget
No matter your financial situation in life, everyone needs a budget. With a budget you can plan for needed expenses and prepare for the things you want. In fact, the most simple budget only needs a couple lists, a calculator, and some goals. Below are the the main points our post will go over to help you set up your budget:
 

 
Budgets are an important tool in anyone’s financial arsenal. Budgets can help you organize your needed expenses, like rent and bills, prepare for emergencies and get ready for whatever your future might hold. By knowing how to budget you can learn to stop living paycheck to paycheck and start building up your savings. it can help you save up for big expenses or future life events like a wedding, starting a family, buying a car or a house or moving to a new state.

Budgeting can also help you save for retirement, something else that even younger people just starting out on their own sometimes forget to think about but should. But most of all a it can grant you financial power and freedom and help you provide for your wants and needs. But for those just starting out on their own especially, it can be hard to know where to begin.

There are several key elements you’ll need to include in your budget. You need to think about all your necessary expenses and plan them out accordingly so you are aware of how much of your monthly income you need to spend each month no matter what. Then you’ll have to think about unnecessary expenses. This is where you have the most freedom to plan out the numbers and make adjustments.
budget-template

How to Budget

There are many ways to budget and there is a lot of advice out there in the financial spheres about how to do it. You can also choose to plan for certain events by making a specific wedding budget, or for major purchases like car payments. But if you’re making a simple budget for yourself, then the main thing you’ll want to decide first is whether you want to make a monthly or yearly budget. Most people like to create a yearly one to get a general big picture view of their financial goals and future plans. But, a monthly one is more helpful for everyday use. We’re going to try and condense all that down to the bare bones minimum of what every smart budget needs.

#1: List your monthly income

List out all your forms of income. This would include the paychecks from your job, but also any extra money you make from any of your side hustles. Here is also where you can decide whether you want to organize your finances for gross income or net income.

Gross income is simpler and easier to calculate. You just need to know how much you get paid and use that money for your calculations.

Net income isn’t as simple to figure out but there are advantages to using it. You figure out your net income by looking up what the income tax is in your state, and taking out that percentage from your gross income. Using net income instead of gross income is perhaps better because it more realistically reflects what you will actually receive from your paycheck.

#2: List your fixed expenses

After you have all your sources of income written down you’ll want to form another list for all your fixed expenses. Fixed expenses are the expenses you have each month that don’t fluctuate in amount. Everyone’s list is going to look different depending on what expenses do and don’t apply to you, but here is an example list of some fixed expenses:

  • Rent or Mortgage: A calculation you’ll want to do when looking at your housing expenses is to check that your total housing expenses aren’t over 28% of your monthly gross income.
  • Insurance
  • Debts: A calculation you’ll want to do when looking at your debts is to check that your total debts aren’t over 36% of your monthly gross income.
  • Loans
  • Student loans
  • Credit card payments
  • Streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, and Spotify
  • Phone bill
  • Medication you pay for each month
  • Child support
  • Education

After you’ve listed all your fixed expenses total the amount, subtract it from your monthly income, and that’s what you have left to spend on varied expenses . . .

#3: Set up your savings

Before we go into varied expenses though, let’s take a moment to think about your savings and retirement. Get a savings account if you don’t have one already, and set aside a portion of what’s left over after fixed expenses. Any amount you can afford to put away into a savings account each month will set you up for success in the long term, even if it’s only 5 to 10 dollars a month.

Aside from general savings and saving for retirement, you also want to set money aside in an emergency fund. It’s recommended that you have at least 3 months worth of your fixed expenses put away into an emergency fund at all times.

Digit is a great app you can use to help you plan and organize all your savings.

#4: List and portion out your varied expenses

Everyone’s list of varied expenses is going to look differently depending on what expenses do and don’t apply to you. Varied expenses are any expenses that are going to fluctuate in amount each month, or are considered more like luxury expenses than needed ones.

Varied expenses are a big reason to do a budget in the first place so that your varied expenses each month don’t overtake your more important fixed expenses and your savings. Here are some examples of varied expenses you might need to consider:

  • Groceries
  • Eating out
  • Entertainment
  • Gas and transportation
  • Recreation
  • Clothes
  • College textbooks

Another way to figure out the reality of what you’re spending on varied expenses is to look at your transaction history for the month and see 1) How much in total you were spending on varied expenses that month, and 2) What those varied expenses were on. Do this for a couple months back to get a more realistic idea of what you are spending on varied expenses each month.

Organizing your varied expenses is where you have the most control over your budget. Whatever is left over after your fixed expenses and your monthly payments to your savings account is what you have to spend on all your other spending for the month.

Here is where you will list out what all those varied expenses might be and portion what you have left in the budget into them. Remember that you don’t necessarily want to portion out 100% of what’s left into these categories so that you can accumulate a comfortable cushion in not just your savings account but your checking account as well.

Budgeting Tips

Invest

Making investments is a great way to beef up your financial portfolio. There are probably a trillion ways to invest, but the idea behind investments is that you put money into something that will give you more money in return later. This is called compounding interest.
interest-rate
A helpful tip to remember when going into any investment is the rule of 72. This rule means that if you take 72 divided by the interest rate you’ll figure out the estimated number of years it will take for your interest to double your initial investment.

Personal Capital and Acorns are some of the most helpful investing apps you can use to step up your investment game.

Where should I put my budget?

Figuring out where to even put your budget can get complicated. You can use excel or make your own table in Word or Google Docs or any note taking program of your choice. There are also many free budget templates online that you can print out and use. Budget tools are all around if you take the time to look and decide on which ones best suit your needs.

Click here for a free budget worksheet from the Federal Trade Commission.

You can also use budgeting apps to keep track of all your bills, expenses, plans, and goals. Some of these apps even allow you to connect your budget to your financial accounts.

Control your spending

Sometimes it can be difficult to control your varied expenses throughout the month and track your spending. You can make controlling how much you spend each month easier by using a prepaid debit card. With a prepaid debit card you put money on it like a gift card to yourself almost. You can also use a similar method of spending control by just taking money out and only using that cash for your varied expenses each week.

PocketGuard is an app that can help you track your purchases.

Get a Side Gig

Getting an extra source of income can really come in handy. There are a million different kinds of side hustles any ambitious person these days can get into. You can babysit, drive for uber, or sell your own products. The possibilities are endless and it never hurts to have a little extra money each month.

Plan to Decrease Debts

Debt can be a real financial weight on your shoulders, but it can also be a necessary evil in order to get a house, get a car, get through college, and much more. Decreasing the amount of debts you owe can still help alleviate some of that weight and provide more financial comfort and peace of mind.

So it’s important to budget with paying down your debts in mind. You can pay down debts quicker by planning to spend more on that fixed/necessary expenses each month, by spending less on varied expenses, or by getting another job to provide more income to put into your debts each month.
 
Budgeting doesn’t have to be hard. All you really need is 4 lists and a calculator! Everyone should practice using a budget now so that you can control your finances instead of your finances controlling you.


READ MORE
Check out some of other Check City articles on budgeting:
Budgeting for Dummies
 
What is a Budget?
 
Budgeting Tips You May Not Have Thought of Before
 
3 Simple Tips to Building a Budget
 
Ways to Keep Track of Your Spending

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