One for All Alaska Blog

The Basics of a Loan

Posted by Credit Union 1 on May 3, 2016 10:24:22 AM

Loans help finance some of our biggest goals in life. They can provide access to possibilities that we can’t afford upfront—possibilities like going to school, buying a home or starting a business (to name just a few).

A loan is also one of the biggest financial commitments we make in our lifetime. Rushing into a loan without fully understanding how it will affect your budget can create a very stressful situation that can quickly spiral out of control.

The good news is that you can avoid this stress entirely by choosing the loan that’s right for you: a loan you can afford, from a reputable lender, with a payment schedule that makes sense.

Not sure where to start? Check out the infographic below!

(click to launch infographic)

Basics_Of_A_Loan_Infographic

Once you’ve done your research and you know your budget inside and out, then arrange to meet with a loan officer. And bring a ton of questions with you! Don’t be shy—ask about any wording you don’t understand. Ask for your lender’s opinion and ask if they’ve worked with someone in a similar situation as yours. To really put your loan in context, ask a variety of “What happens if…?” questions:

  • What happens if I miss a payment?
  • What happens if I default?
  • What happens if I want to pay off the loan faster than expected?
  • What happens if I pay weekly instead of monthly?

The most important thing to remember is that taking out and repaying a loan is not intended to be a stressful experience—it’s intended to make large purchases or investments affordable for you. It’s easy to get sucked into horror stories about things like foreclosures and student debt, but a little knowledge and preparation will make your own loan story a lot happier and a lot less dramatic. So study up, focus on your specific needs and ask around—your perfect loan is out there!

Topics: Financial Fitness, Infographic, It's A Money Thing, Credit, Loans