What's a good place to borrow $3,500 from?
October 30, 2017 11:05 AM   Subscribe

My family of four might have to opportunity to move into a very decent place in the next month or so, but a few months ago I spent everything we had on moving to the unpleasant place we had to settle for. Where do you think a fellow could borrow $3,500 from for that huge chunk of money you need up-front for a new apartment.

I will be able to put together some money at least, and the difference will probably be a bit less than $3,500 for fees, movers, etc. I've got a steady job (10 years), and after moving, would be able to comfortably pay back a couple of hundred a month.

My personal e-bank does not do personal loans, and we have a car with a KBB value of over $3,000. My credit limit for a recently acquired card is $300. This is the Metro-Boston area.
posted by turkeybrain to Work & Money (13 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Hmm - I mean I think this all depends on your credit score / income level.

I got a pretty good rate a few years ago from Lending Club. There are other peer to peer services that I'm sure you could shop around a bit for a rate.
posted by durandal at 11:21 AM on October 30, 2017 [1 favorite]

Upstart might be an option. I would not call their interest rates objectively great, but they are much lower than what the credit card companies usually charge, especially if you don't have a long/robust credit history.
posted by schroedingersgirl at 11:25 AM on October 30, 2017

Best answer: CreditKarma will take you through a prequalification process for personal loans - I'm not sure what kinds of rates/products are available, but it's not a hard pull on your credit account, so it might be worth checking out (and once you're prequalified you can apply for real without being too worried about getting turned down).
posted by mskyle at 11:28 AM on October 30, 2017 [1 favorite]

I would be concerned that if you're only able to qualify for $300 on a credit card account, no one is going to give you a personal loan for ten times that amount. I have always found credit card limits to be ridiculously high for what I felt my personal ability to repay would be, and even at times when I had a pretty limited credit history. Is your wife's credit perhaps better? Or is it possible to recruit a bunch of friends to help you do the move and rent a UHaul, versus hiring movers?
posted by rainbowbrite at 11:33 AM on October 30, 2017 [4 favorites]

Response by poster: Why the $300 limit? - The bankruptcy almost eight years ago. Housing crash. Underwater mortgage. Locusts. And I haven't had a credit card since then, and then got one a couple of months ago from my e-bank to help with the occasional rental of cars. They're due to bump the limit up in a month or so after my good behavior. My credit number is, I think, not below 600.
posted by turkeybrain at 11:37 AM on October 30, 2017

I mean, I would say the most obvious answer, ask a wealthy friend or family member. I would lend a family member a few grand no problem, especially if they had a reliable income.

Um, that seems like a lot of money though. For what it's worth, it's a lot easier to ask a family member to gift you a housewarming present of a moving van, than to ask for a $1000 loan to rent a moving van.

People down on their luck that I know, typically move for as low of a cost as possible. I know you mentioned fees, but for movers and stuff, my family has always used pickup trucks and u-haul, loaded and unloaded ourselves, and saved around $2000.
posted by bbqturtle at 11:45 AM on October 30, 2017 [4 favorites]

Best answer: I'd check with your nearest credit union. But also suspect that they'll be skeptical. Do you have anything you can pawn?

(And I second moving more cheaply; I've never been able to afford movers in my life. I rent a truck and beg for help. If I didn't have anyone to beg for help from, I'd hire teenagers for a couple hours; my area has a youth employment service designed to match high school students with odd jobs.)
posted by metasarah at 12:21 PM on October 30, 2017 [2 favorites]

Response by poster: Thank you! I will be following up on the links above, and a credit union or two, and a loan secured with my car, and exploiting local youth. For lots of reasons, I don't have friends, and I've already tapped out my family moving here recently.

Also, pls note that when I say my place is unpleasant, I'm talking about drug addicts and bedbugs, not number of bathrooms. And when I say 'decent' I mean a place where I might be able to save a few dollars at then end of every two weeks.
posted by turkeybrain at 12:51 PM on October 30, 2017

Best answer: Have you contacted Mass Housing? You live in Massachusetts. Contact Mass Housing and/or Mass Housing Partnership. They have a gazillion different kinds of housing programs for all levels of income from mortgage loans to section 8 housing to some stuff in between.

You might be able to get something through them for something like this. I'm not sure. But it's where I'd start.
posted by zizzle at 1:17 PM on October 30, 2017

Some charities help with first months rent or living costs. Try Catholic charities. Sometimes it’s easier to get 200 from ten different places than 2000 from one.
posted by SyraCarol at 4:07 PM on October 30, 2017

If you lived locally (Silicon Valley) this is what I would suggest - you can google for equivalent resource in your area:
- You might check out your local Hebrew Free Loan Society. Free Loan means interest free - it is a nonprofit where donors give money so that it can be loaned out interest free to help people in need of a lump sum but are capable of paying it back over time if they don't have to deal with a ridiculous interest rate. I know that the one in San Francisco will lend to people who aren't Jewish. For that matter, just google "free loan society" and your city and see what turns up.
- You could also check out community services for your town - our local city offers family assistance to avoid homelessness - you might not be eligible but it would be worth a call.
- You could also call 211 (information directory for nonprofits) to see what turns up. A lot of it is housing assistance for people on the brink of homelessness but you never know.
posted by metahawk at 5:12 PM on October 30, 2017

Do you have a 401k through work? You may be able to borrow from that, check with them.
posted by fings at 7:43 PM on October 30, 2017

Best answer: Do you have a local bank/credit union?

I was able to secure a $10k "line of credit" from my (local, Canadian) credit union based on my graduate student stipend (about $30k/yr albeit, tax free) - it had let me avoid monthly late fees and penalties and stuff.

The interest rates were very competitive.

I've been back in the black for years now, but it's nice still having that cushion to fall back on, just in case.
posted by porpoise at 4:35 PM on October 31, 2017

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