Predatory lending at its finest! OneMain Financial
Yesterday, we went to the OneMain Financial office in Lilburn, GA to apply for a $6500.00 loan.After spending 2 hours with a loan officer, we were approved for a $10,000.00 loan.
We told her we didn't need that much and decided on borrowing $7500.00 to pay off our car and a few other small bills and ultimately reduce our monthly expenses. The interest rate was a bit high (21.70%) along with the payment amount we were quoted ($347) which was more than our already $325 monthly car payment. At this point I was a little leary but willing to negotiate even though we had explained we wanted to keep our payment between $200 - $250. We discussed changing the term of the loan from 48 months to 60 months to lower the payment to $285, a more reasonable amount.
Since we mentioned paying off our car as one of the reasons for applying for the loan, our loan officer immediately contacted the Auto Finance company telling them that OneMain would be paying off the loan. She also contacted our insurance company to request they be named as the payee and asking for verification to be faxed to her. This before we had signed even the first document. At this point we had nothing in writing showing us their offer and nothing was explained before beginning the process of changing over our existing car loan.
After our loan officer verified all of our information, we returned to the branch this afternoon to sign the paperwork and finalize the loan. As soon as we walked in the door, our agent asked the manager to begin taking pictures of our car (since it would be collateral). WE STILL HAVEN'T SIGNED ANYTHING OR SEEN ANYTHING IN WRITING!!! We stopped them so that we could ask questions and begin to verify the information we had been given the day before (we had been taking notes) and that's when things begin to change.
We verified our interest rate and that's when I was given the actual APR percentage of 23.99%. She had made no mention of it before. We discussed their 14-day return guarantee and we told that we could bring back the check we were given without it being deposited and it would be like the loan had never happened. The manager was brought into the conversation since our agent couldn't answer when we asked what would happen to the amount that was paid to our original auto finance company and to our car title.
The manager said he didn't know since it hadn't happened before but he imagined the car company wouldn't give a refund. Our loan officer now hands us the first thing she wants signed, authorization to claim the title of our car. We asked her when she was going to print our loan papers so that we could look at everything in writing and make sure we agreed to all the terms and the payment before we began signing. She told us that she wouldn't print the paperwork until she got to that step in the process.
Again verifying the payment she quoted, we were told our total monthly payment would be $245. We were very happy. This payment would ensure that we were well able to meet the obligation. At this point, we are ready to start signing.
We were happy with the terms even though the rate was a little high and they would have the car as collateral. We were then offered loan insurance and after listening to our agent's pitch, we declined the insurance. Now the manager steps in and begins to try to sell us on the loan insurance. We explained that we felt we were well enough protected through other means (Worker's Comp, Full Coverage Car Insurance, Homeowner's Insurance, etc.).
The manager then says that 48 months is too long of a term and we make him nervous (because we were not spending $30-$50 extra per month in unnecessary insurance). He them told us that he would have to decrease our term to 36 months, increasing our monthly payment to $297. We stepped outside to discuss it privately. When we came back in to explain that we weren't going to take the loan, the tone changed.
Our loan officer was told to take care of us since our home mortgage is held by the same parent company. We sat back down and again began the process of signing the paperwork since he had now agreed to $245 for 48 months. Our agent asks us for a voided check to set up AutoPay which she had never mentioned to this point. I asked about the payment due date and was told it was due on the 3rd of every month.
We inquired about a due date near the 28th and was told by the manager that the date was not flexible and MUST be 30 days from the date of the loan signing, he went on to say that he didn't have a due date around the 28th. The website clearly states that you can choose a "convenient" due date. That's when the manager again stated we were making him really nervous. At that point, we declined the loan and left the branch.
WE feel like the manager was trying to force us into a monthly payment we couldn't afford or weren't comfortable with.
The purpose of the loan was to consolidate a few bills and end up with a lower monthly payment.We were happy with the terms of the loan before we were offered the insurance and the terms were changed when we declined.
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