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small_print_loans

(This is the final guest blog post by Leah Gonzalez, a master’s degree student in social work at the University of Texas in Austin.)

Just like there are individuals behind each story of extraordinary debt caused by payday and auto title loan, individuals make up the industry, as well.  It wouldn’t be fair to disregard what members of the payday and auto title loan industry have said in defense of their business. Full Story »

car title loans

(This is a guest blog post by Leah Gonzalez, a master’s degree student in social work at the University of Texas in Austin and a graduate of Howard Payne University.)

Several states have banned payday and auto title lending. At the end of July 2010 Arizona joined these ranks – kind of. It’s true; in 2010 Arizona enforced “Operation Sunset,” which made it illegal to provide a payday loan. Part of this operation includes a limit of 36 percent interest on other consumer loans. Research from the Arizona Attorney General concluded that these protective measures would benefit Arizona consumers by outlawing these risky lending practices.  Full Story »

interest rates usury

(This is a guest blog post by Leah Gonzalez, a master’s degree student in social work at the University of Texas in Austin and a graduate of Howard Payne University.)

The term used to describe illegally high interest rates applied to loans is “usury.” Usury laws set caps for interest rates of consumer and commercial loans. Payday and auto title loans are considered consumer loans.  Full Story »

family lending

(This is a guest blog post by Leah Gonzalez, a master’s degree student in social work at the University of Texas in Austin and a graduate of Howard Payne University.)

It may not be difficult to imagine you’re in a place where your next paycheck is too far off with a bill looming over your head. Financial constraints are nothing new to many of us, but fortunately many of us also have reliable support or resources available to help. Full Story »

blueberry pie

(This is a guest blog post by Leah Gonzalez, a master’s degree student in social work at the University of Texas in Austin and a graduate of Howard Payne University.)

I’ve been doing a lot of talking about the issues surrounding payday and auto title loans. I’ve read articles, academic studies, and just about anything related to the lenders and the consumers affected. I’ve done this research because I’m not able to give you a first-hand account of what it is like to be entrapped by a payday or auto title loan. Full Story »

car loan title

(This is a guest blog post by Leah Gonzalez, a master’s degree student in social work at the University of Texas in Austin and a graduate of Howard Payne University.)

Auto title loans have the similar promised quick fix solutions of payday loans, and often the same potential to cause just as much financial instability. I may not have been very clear making distinctions between payday lending and auto title lending in my previous posts, so I want to give some fair time to this lending practice. Full Story »

predatory lending

(This is a guest blog post by Leah Gonzalez, a master’s degree student in social work at the University of Texas in Austin and a graduate of Howard Payne University.)

While researching predatory lending and its impact, I found a fairly consistent voice of opposition from religiously affiliated organizations. Truthfully, this took me by surprise. Full Story »