Personal loans and lines of credit

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Updated: 3/27/2003 1:09 pm
Money can be obtained from lenders in two forms: loans and lines of credit. When you take out a loan, you'll usually begin paying interest on the principal from the moment the loan is approved. On the other hand, if you secure a line of credit, you will probably pay an immediate appraisal or loan-fee, but interest will generally not be charged until you actually borrow the money. In some cases, lines of credit will have interest-free grace periods if the money is repaid within a designated time period. You may get loans and lines of credit from banks, credit unions, or other financial institutions. It is recommended that you begin looking for a lender as early as possible. This will give you time to find the best terms by comparing figures between institutions. Read the terms of your agreement carefully. Make sure you understand how any interest rate is calculated against your loan or credit balance. In addition, find out what charges may be associated with the agreement, and if your payments will fluctuate during the repayment period. For more information about loans and lines of credit, contact your bank or financial advisor.

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