Everyone has been in that situation where they need some extra funds in order to do repairs or renovations, pay for a wedding, pay for extra car expenses, or for anything else that doesn't turn out to be pocket cash. There are plenty of companies that are there to help by offering a you a personal loan; some will even work with you if you have bad credit. However, there are many so called companies that are only out there to scam you. Many people find that they can take advantage of people who are in need and are vulnerable. Don't become a victim of a personal loan scam; learn the signs of a scam and how to avoid them.
You should be wary of any unsolicited letters or emails. Some scammers may send out messages saying that you have been pre-approved for a loan and you need to send them your information to get your loan. These people have probably gotten your contact info somewhere along the line when you have applied for a credit card or a different kind of loan. If you get an email that says you are pre-approved or are guaranteed a loan, it is probably a scam. For emails that you aren't sure about, you can check with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) to find out if they are a legitimate company.
You know you are being scammed if they ask for money upfront or as a down payment to hold you loan. Same goes for if they ask for collateral, it's bound to be a scam. When you apply for an unsecured personal loan, the amount you get is based on your risk. If it seems like you will be more of a risk as far as paying them back, they will offer less money, or give you a higher interest rate. Majority of lenders do not require an upfront payment or collateral in order for you to get the loan that you want. Also, any lenders that approve you over the phone are probably scamming you, it is illegal in the United states for companies to approve loans over the phone. If a lender who you believe is trustworthy asks for a deposit or something, be sure to ask why. Also, ask a lawyer who you trust to take a look at any contracts or requests, especially any which seems fishy.
Check to make sure any links, including those in emails, or websites have been approved by Norton, the BBB, or Truste. If you happen to get an email saying you have been approved and to follow the link below, don't click on that link. Most of the time, that link will lead to a fake page where it will require you to input your personal information. Do not fill out these forms; do not click on these links. Some of these links aren't just a personal loan scam, but could contain a virus that will retrieve any personal information and passwords. Perhaps you get an email from your current lender saying there is a problem with your account or that you haven't paid. Lenders will not send you an email about this type of information; they will try to contact you over the phone or through the mail. If you are not sure, and the email seems legitimate, call the business or company that "sent" the email to double check.
When applying for a personal loan, be aware of these tactics that scammers use to get your personal information. Be wary of email solicitations, lenders who say you are guaranteed a loan, lenders who require pre-payment or a deposit, and any lenders who say they can approve you over the phone. There are many legitimate companies out there that do offer personal loans even to people with bad credit. Do your research to see what other people are saying about a particular company and see if they have been approved by the BBB. Before signing any contracts, talk to a trusted advisor or lawyer to be sure everything looks as it should.