Changes may soon come to payday lending

Changes may soon come to payday lending

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Changes may soon come to an industry with four times as many locations in Alabama as there are McDonald's restaurants.

Payday lending faces some changes as the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced possible new policies last week.

Reforms from the state level have failed in recent years, despite claims that the business hurts those who can least afford it.

Ollie Parham started out as a customer but is now fighting for regulations after she says a loan grew into a trap.

"You know I needed a loan, a desperate situation. I needed a way out, so I decided to go to the payday industry," Parham said.

It was emergency cash for a one-time need. However, that loan was just the beginning for Parham. "I didn't have to do anything but say "yes I want to borrow more"."

Another yes, meant up to another $500, but with it meant growing fees.

"Really the cycle just began from there and I just got caught up in it over and over again," Parham explained. "I guess I must have taken it out, I tell you. It may
have been it a year and not even realized it."

According to the Pew Charitable Trusts, the average borrower takes out eight such payday loans each year. To change it, Parham says regulations are needed. But so is a change from the borrowers.

"First of all, stop being in denial. Seriously, because sometimes while we are still in denial we make excuses why we need to do it," Parham warned.

The CFPB has proposed regulation, but for Parham there is still work to do.

"It's a start, but it will be enough when we see that things have changed. "

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