Beware post holiday loan scams

- The credit card hangover is beginning. Now it's time to pay off those purchases. It's when you get the credit card bill that you realize, oops, you bought more than you thought you did. And scammers know that. 

Consumer groups like the Better Business Bureau see a spike this time of year in advanced fee loan scams. What they do is offer you a great loan deal with little effort from your end other than to send money upfront. The offer can come to you in the mail, online or an old-fashioned phone call.

The F-T-C says there are 6 SIGNS of an advanced fee loan scam. 

1. They don't care about your credit history. If a legit lender has money to give, they absolutely, 100 percent want to know your credit history.

2. Fees aren't disclosed up front.

3. It's a red flag when your loan offer is by phone and nothing is mailed or emailed to you.

4. The company's name is very similar but not quite the same as a well-known company.

5.The lender isn't registered in your state.

6. Your lender wants fees wired to them. And it's often to a person, not the company name.

So how do you pay off debt? Write down a payment plan. Cut out something out - like your entertain budget until it's paid off. If it's bad, borrow from friends and family before trying an advanced fee loan - scam or otherwise. 

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