Payday loans are a very expensive way to solve a problem when you are short on cash. If you are stuck in a payday loan, here are ways to pay off the balance and get out ASAP.
- There are free Financial Empowerment Centers in Lansing, Oakland County, Taylor and Grand Haven. They will help you find a way to pay off the payday loan. They can also show you how to meet other goals, such as purchasing a home, improving your credit score, or paying off debts. Call below to make an appointment to meet in person with a financial counselor for free.
- If you are not in one of the above areas, dial 2-1-1 and ask about getting help to pay off a payday loan or pay off debt.
- If you have an account at a bank or credit union, talk to them to find out if there is a way to get a loan through them to pay off the payday loan. It might surprise you, but sometimes even if you have bad credit or no credit, they will work with you! A loan through your bank or credit union is hundreds of dollars cheaper than a payday loan, and your payments will be smaller.
- See Get A Better Loan below for loans you might be able to get to pay off the payday loan.
Beware of False “Alternatives” To Payday Lenders
If the lender is not a bank, credit union or nonprofit, you should be suspicious. Some websites claim to be an “alternative” to payday lending. In reality they are charging you the same or more money than a payday lender would (200-400% interest or a $65+ fee for every $500 you borrow).
Beware of online payday lenders in general. They use the fact they are virtual to avoid laws and make you pay extra.
Read Get A Better Loan below for legitimate alternatives.
Report Illegal Payday Lenders
A payday lender in Michigan can’t lend you more than $600 at a time. They also can’t charge you more than $76 in fees for each loan. If you miss a payment, they can charge you more fees and interest. If you believe your payday lender broke the law, use the information at the bottom of this page on the Michigan Attorney General’s website to mail a complaint, or use the online form here.
Please also submit your complaint to the U.S. Consumers Financial Protection Bureau. Your voice is really important to show that predatory lending is hurting people.
If the payday lender is taking more money than you authorized them to take, or if the lender is taking money even though you paid the loan in full (we’ve seen payday lenders claim that because they didn’t process your payment, it is late, so you owe more money), read about how to stop unauthorized withdrawals from your account.
Get A Better Loan – Safe Payday Lending Alternatives
If you need a small loan, below is a list of banks, credit unions and nonprofits in Michigan that offer small loans that are specifically designed to replace payday loans. These loans are much less expensive than payday loans and in most cases paying back these loans will improve your credit score. If you know of a place that isn’t on this list, please send it so we can add it.
Typical Payday Loan (Compare this with products below!)
$600 | 14 days to repay | 300% interest | $76 application fee
CASE Credit Union – Mid Michigan
“CASE Cash” | $200 – $600 | 60 days to repay | 18% interest | $30 application fee
You must be a member for at least 90 days to apply for this loan. It’s easy to become a member, but you do need to live, work, study or be retired in the Mid Michigan area. Some other people can be members too, so see if you qualify here. Apply for a CASE Cash loan.
Communicating Arts Credit Union – Southeast Michigan
“MyPay Today” | $500 | 60 days to repay | 18% interest | $70 application fee
You must be a member for at least 90 days to apply for this loan. Membership is easy to get, but you need to live, work or worship in Detroit, Highland Park, or Hamtramck. A few other people can be members, so see if you qualify here.
Community Promise Federal Credit Union – Kalamazoo
“Short Term Loan” | $0 – $1,000 | 6 months to repay | 6-18% interest | ? application fee
You must be a member to apply for this loan. Membership is open to anyone who lives, works, volunteers or worships in the City of Kalamazoo.
Your Employer – Lower Peninsula
Some employers in Michigan are part of an “Employee Resource Network” (ERN), and they have a success coach on site you can talk to. Your success coach will help you get a loan from a bank or credit union even if your credit is bad. There are ERNs in Ludington, Flint, Saginaw, Battle Creek, Kalamazoo County, Kent County, Calhoun County, Ottawa County and Muskegon County. In the future there will be an ERN in Pontiac and Detroit.
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