Spotloan has an interesting name and philosophy. They are not interested in getting the normal information that most loan companies are obsessed with, such as work history, credit score, how long you've lived at your current address, and the other personal information grabs that are so common with online lenders.
Instead, the company wants a very basic level of information, including your name and address, a contact phone number at your work and a cellphone number. After that, the rest is going to be done over the telephone, plan on allotting about 10 minutes to talk on the phone to a customer care specialist at Spotloan.
I recently took out a $700 installment loan with Spotloan just to see how everything went, and I was actually surprised. And by the way, this isn't one of those "these are great" lender write-ups, I truly did take out a loan on Tuesday, September 4th 2012. My point of contact is going to replace just calling-up blind to the customer care center, he is in charge of my loan. If I need to get an extension, make a payment that is more than scheduled, or if I have any problems I just call that same specialist. Spotloan gives each of these specialists (let's be honest and call them reps) their own email address and phone extension, so you can work directly with them.
One of the most interesting things about Spotloan is when you are providing your information during the application process and after you have been provided with your loan, at no point in this entire format do you receive an account number. This is stunning! How often do you work with a financial company that in the end, even after you have received money and have an obligation to re-pay, do you not receive an account number.
At first I thought this had to be a mistake and I asked my loan specialist how to log-in to the Spotloan website so I could see my information and access my account online. He said this isn't how Spotloan works. Rather than an account if you need information or to make a change, you simply email or call the customer care rep you were initially assigned, or you can talk to anyone in customer service. So, they definitely have some way of creating an internal account for their customers but there are no assigned accounts to the customers themselves. This is really strange and at first I was skeptical about the whole situation. But once the deal was done, the loan was transferred over to my checking account, and I received the loan information into my personal email address, I thought this is actually nice.
Our society is so built on working off of accounts, and logging onto the internet to see pre-populated information, it's just a very different situation to be in where the customer has to work directly with a contact person. Seems like the return of the 1980's before the internet and before pre-recorded information was kicked out by dialing 800 info numbers.
Now having said all of these nice things about Spotloan let's review the high cost of getting a $700 loan from this company. The interest rate for a six month turn time on an installment loan (for a new customer) was approximately 115% in total financing fees if the loan is held for the duration of the contract. This is in the same realm as other tribal lenders, however it seemed a little high when compared to Plain Green Loans, which would charge a little more interest than Spotloan, but the loan time frame was for one year.
So a customer going shopping for ease of procuring a loan will want to go to Spotloan. But a customer who is looking for a short-term loan from a tribal lender that wants a superior interest rate will most likely stick with Plain Green Loans, or even Great Plains Lending.
Spotloan wins the award for easy access to money, a very good turn time of less than 48 hours from the original phone call, and a friendly (non-digital) format with a personal contact to handle your account. The cost for the simplicity is a high interest rate. If Spotloan is smart they will keep their fantastic format for lending intact and incorporate the lower interest rates that some other competing tribal lenders have been able to provide.
** Here's an important update to the Spotloan story.
I have been in favor of using this lender for over two years, and since this piece was first written over one year ago the company has been growing steadily. It's not too uncommon to spot the Spotloan advertisements on your screen these days. And I don't mind.
I'm not currently in a situation where I need to get a tribal loan but for those who are they need to realize just what a better option Spotloan is when compared to so many other Native American loan companies.
There are a number of more popular tribal lenders, with companies like 500 Fast Cash and Ameriloan garnering a lot of attention. I simply do not understand why these lending outfits are getting a better reception than Spotloan, it does not make any sense.
Spotloan is a lending firm that will customize your loan timeframe, they tend to be highly negotiable when it comes to the first repayment date and the company is flexible if you need to change your repayment timeline altogether. I just had to update this page to try to convey my inability to understand why low quality tribal payday lenders like American Web Loan, United Cash Loans and others are still getting so much business when Spotloan is a perfectly good lender that beats the competition's offered loans any day of the week.
Can you tell I'm perplexed? It's true, I am. So if you are reading this and considering tribal lenders like Advantage Cash Services or Kashia Lending, or any other super short-term lending provider then it would be in your best interest (that's figuratively and literally, as you will be paying much less in interest charges) to travel over to Spotloan.com and see what they are offering.
I'm not getting any funding or endorsement to pitch Spotloan, I am simply tired of watching the tribal payday lenders continue to grow and flourish (and multiply) while the tribal installment lenders are perfectly available to these same borrowers. **