Information and Tips to Enhance the Financial Wellbeing of Texans
The Texas Fair Lending Alliance sees reforming harmful charges and lending practices of payday and auto title loan operators as one piece of a broader effort to support the financial wellbeing of Texas families.
Some of our partner initiatives include:
Helping families in crisis;
Building college savings for children from low-income families;
Expanding financial coaching to work one-on-one with families to pay down debt, build credit and work towards future financial goals;
Supporting efforts of Texas families to build savings; and
Promoting fair market practices that set Texans up to succeed.
Call 211 to connect with available asset-building services in your area, or you can reach out in the Get Help section of this website.
If you need a short-term loan right now, here are some ideas that could help:
Family and friends
It can be difficult or embarrassing to ask family and friends for assistance when you are in a financial bind. However, by doing so, you can avoid the high fees and spiraling debt that come with payday and auto title loans. Many people ask family or friends for help after getting caught in a debt trap. Why not ask them first?
Advances from employers
Some employers grant paycheck advances to employees. Because this is a true advance and not a loan, there is no interest charged, making it far less costly than a payday or auto title loan.
Loans from a nonprofit, bank, or credit union
A growing number of banks and credit unions are offering low-cost small loans. For example, Bank of America recently launched the balance assist loan. Capital Good Fund is another option to consider instead of a payday or auto title loan. Make sure to check with your bank or credit union about low-cost loan options.
Some utility companies will work with customers to help pay their bills by setting up an affordable payment plan to ensure that you slowly work towards catching up on your balance while your utility services remain active. Call 211 to see if your city offers help with utility bills, including emergency assistance funds.
Payment arrangement with creditors
Try to work directly with your creditors. Some creditors will negotiate partial payments or smaller payments on outstanding bills, as well as move your payment due date to a date that is more suitable for you.
A cash advance on credit cards
Credit card cash advances, with Annual Percentage Rates (APR) around 30%, are substantially cheaper than payday loans, auto title loans, and high-cost installment loans, which have APRs ranging from 300% to 700%. Check with your credit card company to see if they are able to offer cash advances.
Build Emergency Savings
There are many tools to help you build up your emergency savings. You can visit www.americasaves.org to learn more about low or no-cost savings accounts in your community and to get helpful savings tips. Saving as little as $10 a month can help you build for the future.