The recent Hurricane Sandy has left a lot of destruction and property damage, but where does that lead people with loans?
If you happen to live in the northeastern portion of the United States, you do not need to be informed of the devastation that your state or town has endured due to the recent superstorm, Sandy. Hurricanes can inflict plenty of damage all by themselves, but to have one actually join forces with a nor’easter and evolve into the perfect storm, well, let’s just say that is something that would be nice to avoid. Unfortunately, this time, the perfect storm did happen.
Thousands of Americans were – or still are – without electricity. That meant – or means – no heat. No way to warm their home – that is, if they still have a home. The damaging winds and rain have decimated countless homes and businesses, and claimed the lives of over one hundred people.
In an attempt to aid the people affected by the storm, many financial institutions, including:
- American Express
- Bank of America
- Wells Fargo
Have been trying to help out their customers during their time of need. Many of these large banks are eliminating tons of hidden fees for their customers so that they will be able to hang on to some of their hard earned money. With all of the cleaning up that lies before them, these banking customers are going to need to be able to keep every bit of their own money as they possibly can in order to rebuild and get through the days ahead.
These banks have been sending out emails to their customers notifying them of these offers. Each bank is offering its own set of special offers, and all of the information is available for customers as well as the general public on their websites.
Bank of America, Chase, and Citibank, have offered to increase the line of credit for their customers who have less-than-desired credit ratings in an effort to help ease their strain. The banks will be evaluating each account holder’s situation, case by case. While these changes will remain permanent for Bank of America and Citibank, the line of credit extension being offered to Chase customers will only be temporary.
Wells Fargo, meanwhile, is offering short-term loans to help their customers get their lives back together. Customers are also able to get a direct deposit advance which will cost customers $7.50 for every $100.00 borrowed.
Short-term loans, however, pose a threat of their own. These loans are often riddled with fees that quickly end up costing more than the loan itself. Many professionals say that customers would be better off getting a limit increase on their prepaid cards – like a Harvard University Credit Card.
If you have lost your home, or have seen some damage from Sandy, be on your guard. Right now, all you want is for things to go back to normal. You might be tempted to opt for a “payday loan” or another financial “tool” of the kind. Use your common sense and your gut – don’t sign up for something that seems to be too good to be true.
Natural disasters take many forms and the chaos that they create can be unbearable at times. Try to keep a level head and pull yourself together – if you cannot maintain your composure, not only may you be a victim of a natural disaster, you may become the victim of a scam as well.