If you need a helping hand to pay for Christmas, remember you may be able to get an affordable, low-cost loan from a local credit union.
Credit unions are legitimate, not-for-profit organisations which offer flexible lending terms and savings accounts.
The local credit unions in Knowsley which can offer loans to new members are:
Be wary of illegal money lenders.
A small Christmas loan from a loan shark could leave you with massive repayments in the New Year.
Loan sharks are criminals who prey on vulnerable victims, often using intimidation and violence. They do not have a licence to lend money and so their loans are not legal.
The Illegal Money Lending Team offers the following tips of how to spot a loan shark this Christmas. The loan shark may:
- Offer little or no paperwork on a loan, such as a credit agreement or record of payments;
- Refuse to give you information, such as the interest rate of the loan or how much you owe;
- Take items of yours, such as your passport or bank card, as security against the loan;
- Increase the debt or add extra charges at any time;
- Refuse to allow you to settle your debt; or
- Get nasty. They may use intimidation, threats or violence to force you to pay.
If you have any information about a loan shark, you can report it anonymously on 0300 555 2222 or via the Stop Loan Sharks website.