If you are under age 30, you might think payday loans were invented as a Web-based industry, a way to get quick cash when you can’t wait until your payday.
But 1-3 month payday loans (or an installment loans up to 12-24 months) are almost as old as the oldest profession. It was common in the 19th and early 20th centuries for employees to ask for a paycheck advance from their employer. On a good day, they might get it. Later, as fewer companies were able to offer this benefit to employees, independent payday loan stores functioned as mini-banks in communities all across the country. The advent of the online payday loan store came when financial transactions became secure on the Internet. Millions of working people use them today, not just in the U.S., but across the globe.
But there are differences between online payday loans and their retail strip mall counterparts. Here are the key points that answer the question as to whether retail and online payday loans are the same thing:
- Sometimes they are, with similar loan terms – The interest rates charged and payback terms do differ from lender to lender, but that is more often a function of which company is doing the lending than how they interface with customers.
- Not the same, because it’s a much faster process – Clearly, spending just 10 or 15 minutes with an online payday loan company beats a two-hour escapade with a retail store that might be out of the way, require you to stand in line, then discuss the loan with a clerk behind a plate-glass window.
- Not even close, because it’s the 21st century – The online payday loan process works best for the person who is accustomed to buying things and managing money from their personal computer. The retail approach is not the way of the future.
Whichever you choose is your decision. The important thing is to find the lender with whom you can work most efficiently on the schedule and in the place that fits your needs.