Posted by Fletcher Accounting and Tax Service Inc.

What Is A Cash Advance?

What Is A Cash Advance?

A cash advance may be seen as a short-term loan from a bank or other lender. The term also refers to services provided by many credit card issuers, which allows cardholders to withdraw a certain amount of money. Cash advances usually involve high-interest rates and fees, but they are attractive to borrowers because they also have quick approval and quick financing.

Types of Cash Advances

There are several cash advances, but the common denominators between them are all interest and rigid commissions.

Cash advances by Credit Card

The most common sort of cash advance is borrowing a line of credit with a credit card. The money can be withdrawn from an ATM or, depending on the credit card company, a check deposited or cashed in a bank. Cash advances on credit cards generally have a higher interest rate or even higher than the regular purchase rate: you will pay, on average, 24%, about 9% more than the average purchase. Also, interest begins to ripen immediately, as there is no grace period.

These cash advances usually include a commission, a fixed fee, or a percentage of the amount advanced. In addition, if you use an ATM to access money, you usually get small fees.

With separate interest, cash advances on credit cards have a different credit purchase balance, but the monthly payment can be applied to both balances. However, if you only pay the minimum amount due, federal law allows the card issuer to apply it to the balance at the lowest interest rate. Since this is invariably the acquisition rate, the balance of the cash advance can remain and bear interest at this high rate for months.

In most cases, credit card cash advances cannot qualify for no or low-interest rate introductory offers. On the positive side, they are easy and quick to obtain.

Key Points

  • A cash advance is a short-term loan.
  • Most cash advances include credit card loans.
  • There are other several types of cash advances, such as merchant cash advances and payday loans.

Payday loans

In consumer loans, the term "cash advance" can also refer to payday loans. Issued by creditors with special payments, these can range from $ 50 to $ 1,000 but are subject to a fee (about $ 15 for every $ 100 borrowed or even more in some cases) and higher interest rates 100%. Instead of taking into account the credit rating of the debtor, the creditor determines the value of the loan in accordance with local regulations and the amount of the applicant's remuneration. If the loan is approved, the lender gives money to the borrower; if the transaction is made online, the creditor will make an electronic deposit into the debtor's checking account or savings account.

Payday Loans have a concise term: they must be repaid the next day from the borrower unless the borrower wishes to extend the loan, in which case additional interest will be charged. Unfortunately, many do. Over 80% of all advance payday loans are transferred within 30 days of the previous loan, according to a 2016 study by the Office for Consumer Financial Protection (CFPB).

The process can be faster, but more complex, then securing a cash advance with a credit card. To get a daily loan, you need to make a dated check from the creditor for the amount you intend to borrow, including commissions. The creditor immediately issues the loan amount but expects to receive the check until the day of payment. 

The process can be faster, but more complex, then securing a cash advance with a credit card. To get a daily loan, you need to make a dated check from the creditor for the amount you intend to borrow, including commissions. The creditor immediately issues the loan amount but expects to receive the check until the day of payment. Some electronic lenders now have borrowers who sign a contract for automatic payment of their bank accounts. Usually, donors ask you to provide personal identification and proof of income when submitting your application.

Some employers offer payday loans or payday advances to their employees. Conditions differ, but there are often no fees or charges.

Merchant Cash Advance

Merchant Cash advances refer to loans made by companies or traders of alternative banks or credit institutions. Typically, companies whose credit is not perfect use cash advances to finance their activities, and, in some cases, these advances are paid with future credit card receipts or a portion of the funds that the business receives in sales from their online account. Instead of using a company's credit score, alternative lenders often analyze their creditworthiness by examining different data points, including the amount of money that the merchant receives through online accounts such as PayPal.

Do cash advances affect your credit score?

Withdrawing a cash advance does not directly affect your credit score, but it can affect you in several ways.

First, if you go further with a credit card, the balance owed will increase, which will increase the rate of use of credit, a measure used by rating models to calculate your score. If you need $ 500 on a $ 1,500 limit card, for example, your credit utilization rate is 30%. However, if you withdraw an advance of $ 300 on this card, the balance will increase to $ 800, which will give a credit of more than 53%. High utilization rates are an excellent indicator of credit risk; when your relationship exceeds 40%, it can affect your credit score.

As mentioned above, a cash advance usually has a high-interest rate. If this affects your ability to pay monthly fees immediately, your credit score may also be affected. And if the cash advance puts you above the credit card limit, your credit score could be reduced. Even after payment of the balance, your credit report will show you the highest balance declared, and other potential creditors will find that you have exceeded the limit by one point, which can compromise your ability to obtain new credit.

Advantages and disadvantages of cash advances

A credit card cash advance can be a reasonable option for those who need emergency cash and limited resources to get it, especially when that person has a clear and consistent plan for paying off short money terms. It is, for instance, a better option than a payday loan, because of the exorbitant three-digit interest rates that these loans generally have and the higher payment flexibility that accompanies debt accounting Credit.

However, cash advances would be a severe idea under these conditions:

  • Shortly before bankruptcy: the debt of the new credit card does not magically disappear in the event of bankruptcy. Your creditors and the judge will review your debts, including your dates and costs. Once you know or have a strong tendency to file for bankruptcy, using any type of credit card can be considered fraudulent. It is very likely that the card issuer will dispute a cash advance immediately before depositing, and this account can be excluded from canceled debts in the event of bankruptcy.
  • To pay a credit card bill: A cash advance is a costly way to pay bills, and the risk of getting revolving debt cannot be ignored. The possibility of paying several times the amount of the initial advance (in interest) is genuine. In addition to the higher interest rate, other commissions are not subject to daily credit card purchases.
  • Buy something you cannot afford: lending to satisfy a desire is not only financially dangerous; it is emotionally damaging. A person who depends on immediate gratification and a temporary emotional impulse for a large purchase will eventually regret (and may suffer from depression, anxiety, stress, and other debilitating emotions) facing debt: the more purchase is mandatory, the more pronounced it becomes.


Cash advances are not alarming if rarely used, but are, at best, short-term emergency management solutions. If you become a regular or think you need a steady cash advance to survive, drastic changes in budget and expenses are necessary.

Fletcher Accounting and Tax Service Inc.
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