Do you feel that you are being harassed or put under intense pressure by Quicken Loans UK about an outstanding loan debt? Are you unable to pay the loans you have outstanding? Are you on the receiving end of threats about court action, and not sure where to turn? Was the loan unaffordable, and should not have been given to you in the first place? If you are suffering at the hands of Quicken Loans UK, this article will give you a better understanding of what to do next. You may be given the chance to cancel your loan and you might even receive a refund.
It’s not your fault. Complaints to the Financial Ombudsman have risen this year from 830 to 2,006, so it’s safe to say that you’re not alone.
Deal with your debt today and feel better tomorrow.
Are loan companies making it too easy for customers to get access to loans?
It could be said that it has become too easy to borrow money through some lenders. You just need to have a quick look on the internet to find it bustling with companies that offer such temptations, as ‘loans in seconds’, ‘loans without credit checks’ or ‘get money in your account today.’ For those who are suffering financially, this can be too tempting to resist, and this is where the problems arise. There are even loan companies who are happy to lend to customers with a very bad credit score. After all, these are the customers who are going to end up paying a lot more interest, so it suits the loan companies.
What causes debt problems, and what is the government doing to deal with loan sharks?
When you consider that so many lenders are offering loans to customers who can’t realistically afford to pay them back, it is hardly surprising that so many people are finding themselves facing debt problems these days. Although the situation is still bad, it has improved a lot from where it was just a few years ago. Prior to the new regulations being put into place, the loan business was getting out of control, along with debt issues. The loan market once reached over £2 billon, and this was a combination of exceptionally high interest rates, together with lenders offering loans to people who couldn’t afford them. Irresponsible lending as it is known as.
The Financial Conduct Authority looked into the situation with lenders and ended up imposing some huge fines on some of the most well known loan companies, which came as quite a shock! Wonga were fined £220 million and The Money Shop and Quickquid also received large fines. If the lender was found to have lent money to people who should not have received the loan, the customers ended up with a refund. This was due to the ‘limited criteria’ which was used. The medicine did eventually work and after the regulations were imposed, the amount of loans being issued dropped from 10 million to only 1.8 million. Lenders also dropped to 60 from 240.
Are you due a refund? Read through the next section in which we look at these new rules in some detail. If Quicken Loans UK is in breach YOU MAY BE DUE A REFUND EVEN IF YOU HAVE PAID OFF THE LOAN.
Loan interest and other charges – what the government cap means
The Financial Conduct Authority decided to introduce a price cap, with the purpose of providing protect for borrowers who were at risk of being on the receiving end of excessive charges. These price caps included:
- A cost cap of 0.8% per day on the value of the loan borrowed – this includes a combination of both interest and all fees charged.
- A cap on default fees of £15 – once a default has been charged, interest may still be charged on the payments, but it cannot be more than the original rate of 0.8% per day.
- A complete cost cap of 100% – you should not be asked to repay more than 100% of the money you have borrowed.
The price caps apply to all credit agreements which have an interest rate of 100% or more per year and that will be due to be paid back.
There are also other addition al regulations which were brought into force in May 2017. According to these regulations, lenders have a responsibility to ensure they provide any relevant details of their products on a price comparison website, which has been authorised by the FCA. In addition, borrowers should also be provided with a summary of the cost of borrowing.
If Quicken Loans UK is in breach of these regulations and is attempting to charge you more than they should, your credit agreement with them is unenforceable and they will not be able to make you repay the loan.
Find your best debt solution (in 1 minute!)
Is all this information starting to feel overwhelming? Don’t panic! I’ve put together a 4 question debt calculator so you can quickly and easily find the best solution for you. If you’re eligible for the new government scheme, you could write off up to 85% of your debt! Answer the four questions now.
There are many companies who call themselves a ‘loan company’, when they are not actually authorised to do this. According to the law, only businesses who are authorised are allowed to make credit agreements. This means that if you find out Quicken Loans UK are not authorised, they will not be able to pay you repay the loan. This means you would be able to stop paying the debt, and they won’t be able to chase you any further, or do anything about it.
If you would like to find out whether Quicken Loans UK is authorised, you will be able to find out by entering the name of the company on this Interim Permission Consumer Credit Register search page. You will also be able to search the financial services register here. If you cannot find any valid up to date entry on either of these registers, you would be able to just stop paying them. As a consequence, they will not be able to enforce the payment.
There are some other indicators that Quicken Loans UK might not be operating legally, and these include if there is a little information on the company website, or information on the website is out of date or different from the information that is found on the directories. If you cannot see an APR on the website, this would be another strong indicator that all may not be as it seems.
Do you wish to make a complaint about Quicken Loans UK
If you are under the impression that Quicken Loans UK have failed to adhere to the regulations, and they have failed to treat you in an appropriate manner, you will be able to make a formal complaint against them. If they fail to respond to your complaint or they have not responded to the complaint within the maximum eight weeks, you will have the right to escalate the complaint to the Financial Ombudsman.
If you do wish to make a complaint, you should compile all your evidence to support the complaint, including phone calls you have received, letters, emails or text messages. If you have received an excessive amount of calls, this would be enough reason to make a formal complaint and you should have your call log available as evidence. It is important to have as much detail as possible, and you can write to Quicken Loans UK, stating that it is a complaint at the top of the letter.
In cases were you do not receive a conclusion you are happy with from Quicken Loans UK, you may wish to escalate it further to the Financial Ombudsman. You can reach them by calling 0800 023 4567 or 0300 123 9123.
If Quicken Loans UK has failed to treat you fairly, there is a chance that you may be entitled to receive a refund, even if the loan has been completely paid off within the last six years. If this is the case, you can expect to receive a refund all the interest you have paid on the loan, together with any additional charges. You should also be able to receive 8% interest on these payments.
If the loan is considered to have been unaffordable at the time you received it, you would be able to insist that it they get it removed from your credit record. The outstanding balance may also be cancelled in this case.
The first step is to write to your lender stating your case and asking for compensation.
If you do not end up with satisfactory response within 8 weeks, you would be able to follow it up by speaking to the Financial Ombudsman via phone on 0800 023 4567 or 0300 123 9123.
New rules relating to Continuous Payment Authority
In most cases, loan companies will ask you to repay the debt via a Continuous Payment Authority (also known as a CPA.) With a CPA, the company would be able to take money from your account, whenever they wish, and to any value to clear the debt. They should always give you notice about their plans to debt your bank account, but unfortunately, this is a step that many miss out, which can obviously cause problems if you are not expecting the money to be debited. You may not even notice the money has been taken, until you are unable to make your payments, due the money being debited from your account.
If you are already finding it difficult to make your important payments, including your mortgage, rent etc, and you find that money have been unexpectedly debited by Quicken Loans UK, you may find that you end up in serious financial trouble, which may put your home at risk.
There have been new regulations brought into place, regarding the CPA, which give debtors more control over their account. The new regulations state that if the CPA fails to be paid twice, the loan company would not be able to make any further requests to your bank account.
There have also been new rules put into place regarding the amount of money they will be able to take from your account using a CPA. They cannot take partial payments anymore, if they full amount is not in your account, they cannot take anything at all. The only way they will be able to take a partial payment is if you agree to this in advance.
If you find that they have made two or more requests for payment, or they have taken a partial payment, when you have not give them permission to do so, they would be in breach of the regulations. As a result, you would be able to report them to the Financial Ombudsman on 0800 023 4567 or 0300 123 9123.
Can’t afford to pay the loan? Here’s what you can do
If Quicken Loans UK has operating in a legitimate way, but you are not able to afford to repay the loan, there are ways you can deal with the situation.
If you have already set up a CPA, standing order or direct debit, you should speak to the bank and get these cancelled. If you do this, Quicken Loans UK will not be in a position to be able to collect payments automatically from your bank account, and you will take back control of your bank account. It is normal practice for your bank to advise you to speak to Quicken Loans and advise them of your plans to cancel these payments, but there is no legal requirement to do so, although it does help to keep good relations. If you cancel the payments, they will not be able to take any money from your account, unless you give them permission to do this.
Cancelling the payments doesn’t mean the debt will disappear and you won’t need to make any further payments. You will still owe the money, and it is imperative that you deal with this situation. You should contact Quicken Loans UK in the first instance, and have a discussion about your financial situation. They should always treat you fairly, and should be willing to reach an agreement with you to repay the loan.
According to the law, lenders must:
- Provide you with information on where you can obtain free independent debt advice
- Hold off debt recovery for a suitable period of time, while you get a repayment plan in place
- Provide you with enough time to devise a repayment plan, without charging you any more.
Don’t be tempted to roll the loan over
Quicken Loans UK may suggest that you roll over the loan, but this would definitely not be a good idea. If you do roll the loan over, you will end up being charged even more interest and additional charges, which will plunge you even further into debt. This obviously benefits the lender, but it is not beneficial to you. According to the law, you must not roll your loan over on more than two occasions.
Getting help with your debt
These are some of the organisations who will be able to provide you with free help and advice with your debt, and your finances in general.
Can you trust loan companies?
We hear nothing but bad press about loan companies, and in some cases, this is understandable. However, it could also be said that they can provide an essential and extremely valuable service to those who need it most. This is because they offer a credit line to those who would not be able to get access to credit in other ways, such as from a bank or credit card. The problem arises when these companies put their profits before everything else that they start to exploit their customers, and this is where real damage is caused. There are still many loan sharks out there, but the new regulations have improved the situation somewhat. Debt problems are, unfortunately, still a major issue.
If Quicken Loans UK are found to be in breach of the regulations, then you will be able to ignore the calls for payment, and they wouldn’t be able to do anything about it. If you are just unable to afford the payment, then you should contact one of the organisations we have listed above, and they will be able to offer you guidance and help in dealing with your debt.
If you can’t pay back your loan do check out my other article here.