Don't Waste Your Money: BBB warns of online loan scams - News, Weather, Sports, Toledo, OH

Don't Waste Your Money: BBB warns of online loan scams

(Toledo News Now) -

Those who needed money, but didn't have the best credit, used to go to a payday loan office. Nowadays anyone can get a loan from the comfort of their own home. The only problem is, it's harder to know if what you're using is legitimate.

If you need money fast and don't have any stashed away, you might turn to payday lenders. The newest trend is online lenders. But as one woman learned, just looking into these lenders can cost you money. 

Website Offers Fast Cash 

When Kathy Youtsler needed cash, she went online and quickly found a website offering loans of up to $2,000. 

"I was looking to get a loan," Youtsler said, "and they were one of the websites I came to. It was called" 

So she applied online. 

An e-mail sent to her said she was preapproved, and that she just needed to provide her bank information. 

"They wanted my routing number, my checking number, which I gave to them. They said it was a private (secure) site. And that's the last I heard from them," Youtsler said. 

Youtsler says the loan never appeared, but within days, the company took $30 from her bank account. 

"I found an electronic check went through my checking account and they had deducted $30," she said. 

A week later, they took money again. 

"This past Friday I had another $30 come out from them," Youtsler said. 

The worst part is she had authorized it by giving the site her account number. 

BBB Tries To Reach Company 

The Better Business Bureau gives an "F" rating to Fast Loan 4 Me , and what it says are its sister sites, "Fast Loan Fast" and "Loan 4 U Today." All list the same phone number, which connects to an automated voice recording. 

The BBB has received more than 700 complaints about the three companies. 

The trio lists a post office box in Nevada as their address, but neither we nor the BBB were able to reach anyone there through calls or e-mails. Actually, our e-mail was bounced back, while the BBB says its snail mail letters were returned unopened. 

It turns out the fine print states it's not a lender, it simply puts you in touch with lenders for a $30 weekly fee. 

Youtsler, who's now changing her bank account number, wishes she had known that.

"It's Fast Loans 4 Me," she said, "but I think it's really fast loans for them!" 

Never Give Bank Account Or SSN Numbers 

The BBB cautions that unfamiliar websites are just about the worst place to get a loan. 
Never give bank account info to a lender you don't know, or who does not have a local storefront you can visit, so you don't waste your money.

Need to check a business' validity? Go online to the Better Business Bureau.

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