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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.


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!


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.”

*The information found in this article comes from the lenders’ websites and NerdWallet reviews at the time of posting.

Budgeting in 4 Easy Steps


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 of lists, a calculator, and some goals. Below are the main points our post will go over to help you set up your budget:

Explore this Article

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 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.


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 doesn’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 leftover 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 different 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 of 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


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.


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.


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

How to Increase and Maintain Your Credit Score

credit score

If you have recently been denied a new credit card or you are not able to ascertain a loan, you may want to check your credit score.

Your credit score is a large determining factor when figuring out what you are eligible for financially. If your credit score is less than 760 than it’s going to be harder for you to get loans and accounts, and you’ll get higher interest rates. You want a credit score of 760 or higher in order to get the best interest rates and in order to be eligible for loans and lines of credit.

Increase Your Credit Score

increase credit score

The first step to increasing and maintaining a healthy credit score is to know your credit score and history. You need to know where your credit stands before you can start improving it. It’s also a smart idea to look over your credit report to make sure there aren’t any errors that are making your credit score worse than it actually is.

Make On-Time Payments

One of the main ways to boost a low credit score is to make sure you’re making on-time payments. This will have a big impact on improving your credit.

Try planning all your fixed monthly payments around your paychecks on a calendar. For instance, maybe you get paid every other week. Mark your pay dates on a calendar and next to each pay date list which bills you’re going to pay after receiving each paycheck that month.

You can also set reminders on your phone or on your calendar to help you remember to make important payments before their due dates.

Setting up automatic payments is a third great way to ensure you pay all your bills on time. You can even sometimes get discounts on interest rates for enrolling in automatic payments.

After a few months of making on-time payments, you can start to see an increase in your credit score.

Keep Your Total Debt Low

The second big key to increasing your credit score is to keep your total debt amounts low. Debt is a normal part of finances today. We use credit cards to make payments and reap special benefits and we use loans and credit to make major purchases like cars and homes. But having a high amount of total debts is one thing that will weigh down your credit score. So try and keep it to a minimum.

If you already have a large amount of debt weighing you down, then sit down and make a detailed plan to reduce the amount you owe. There are many things you can do to reduce your overall debt. Maybe through making some personal sacrifices you can pay off some loans or afford higher monthly payments. You could get rid of your subscriptions for a while so you can spend more on debt payments. You can sell your laptop or your second car to pay back a bigger chunk of a loan.

Maintain A Healthy Credit Score

maintain credit

After working hard to bring your credit score back to life, make sure you keep making payments on time and keeping your overall debts low. Take some time to look through your credit history and figure out what you struggle with. When you know your credit score weaknesses you’ll have an easier time not making those same mistakes again in the future.


Take the time to figure out what is going on with your credit score today. It may be overwhelming now, but once you have created your plan and once you know that you can stick with your plan, you will be one step closer to financial freedom.

8 Proven Tools to Help You Get Out of Debt

get out of debt

A mountain of debt is nothing to scoff at. It’s a huge financial burden to have a 30-year mortgage, car payments, and loans demanding your attention every month.

If there was ever anything that made you feel like you never see your paycheck, it’s paying off debts.
For that reason, many people are looking to dig themselves out of their mountain of debt so they can breathe again. The following are 7 proven tools you can use to get yourself out of debt and start a new debt-free life.

#1: Pay More Than the Minimum Payment Each Month

If you can afford it, pay more than the minimum payment each month on your debts. Every extra penny you put toward paying off your loans brings the end of your debt a little closer.
For a short-term loan, you can decrease the term of the loan by a month or two by making larger monthly payments. For a mortgage, you could reduce the term by a year or two.
Increasing your monthly payments can take considerable effort and budget planning, but if you work through the following tips, you could make it happen.

#2: Make More Money

Easier said than done right?
Digging out of a sticky situation is never easy though. It requires effort.
The best thing about this tip though is that increasing your monthly income will improve your overall financial situation for when you do dig yourself out.
You can make more money by seeking a raise, promotion, a second job, or starting your own business. There are lots of side job opportunities out there, like driving for Uber or Lyft. You could also take up freelance work, an evening delivery job, or find some contracted work you can do on the weekends.

#3: Spend Less Money

Figure out how to spend less in your day-to-day life.
Reduce your food expenses by cooking at home instead of eating out. Reduce your grocery bills by planning meals around coupons. Cut down on your vehicle maintenance payments with carpooling, public transportation, or selling your second car if you can manage to live without it. Sharing gas, using public vehicles, or getting rid of an extra car each come with significant financial gains to your budget. You spend more every month on driving yourself to work every day than you’d expect.

“The safest way to double your money is to fold it over and put it in your pocket.”

—Kin Hubbard

Almost every budget has categories that can be diminished to save more money and spend more on debt payments. Find those parts of your budget where you can save extra money, replace expensive parts of your budget for cheaper alternatives, or save all the money from that part of the budget by cutting something out completely. You’ll save a ton of money that you could put toward debt payments this way.

#4: Don’t Get Into More Debt

Avoid replacing your debt with more debt.
Taking out a second loan to pay off your first one just puts you in a deeper financial hole. More debt is not a long term solution for the debts you have, though this solution could be tempting to some. Deny the temptation and use other solutions instead, like selling something, or finding a weekend job.
Working 2 jobs might seem like an awful idea, but it would only be for a little while until you’re able to get your debts under control.

#5: Refinance Your Loans

When possible, you can try refinancing your loan.
After a long period of good behavior, you can approach your lender for some leniency. They can take a look at your loan again to reevaluate the situation. If you meet their requirements, you can get your interest rate reduced.
In terms of a mortgage, that could mean you’ll owe the bank several thousand dollars less. Every scoop your lender can dig off for you is a win. So seek a refinance when it’s possible.

#6: Build Your Savings Account

Even though you’re paying down debts, it’s still important to put a little away every month into a savings account.
Even $20 a month will go a long way in a year. Every little bit helps. Put away money as a buffer for upcoming payments and as a safeguard for you or your family.
For instance, if you lose your job, a savings account will allow you to continue making on-time payments for your debts while you work on getting your next job.
When you have lots of debt payments to make each month, it can also be difficult for your budget to have room for unexpected or emergency expenses. A savings account will provide the funds you need when monetary needs outside your budget come up.

#7: Make a Budget

If you have a budget already, reevaluate it.
Once you have a budget, don’t spend a penny more than what you have planned and outlined in your budget. Your budget should be a law that you live by.
If you do this, you can keep your spending to a predictable amount, allowing you to save more money to pay off your bills.

#8: Consolidate Multiple Debts

If you have multiple debts or loans, you can possibly consolidate them into one loan.
By putting all your debts into one loan, you can lower your interest rate and pay less extra money on the loan in the long run. Having just one single payment each month can also help simplify your budget to include fewer variables.


As you apply these seven principles, you’ll be able to chip away a bit more at your mountain of debt. Become proactive in your debt management. The sooner you do, the sooner you can declare yourself financially independent. Once you reach that point, you can finally reap the benefits of a healthy paycheck.

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