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How Can You Finance Emergency Car Repairs?

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If your vehicle has recently broken down and left you stranded, you may be facing a hefty repair bill. If your cash flow is a bit shaky and you don't have alternative transportation to work, this could leave you in a financial catch-22 -- you're unable to earn the money you need to pay your auto repair bill without a vehicle to take you to work, but also unable to procure a working vehicle without paying the necessary repair costs up-front. What are some quick ways to access the cash or credit you'll need to pay for emergency auto repairs? Read on to learn more about three options.

Credit card cash advance

If you use your credit card for charging regular expenses, you may pay attention only to your credit limit -- not your cash advance limit. However, most credit cards also permit the user to withdraw a certain amount in cash, rather than using credit. Because these cash advances operate independently from the credit portion of a credit card, they may be available even if your credit card balance is at or near the maximum limit. 

In most cases, it's simple to access this money -- you'll need only to apply online (and have the funds wired or transferred to your main bank account) or visit an ATM that handles these transactions on behalf of your credit card provider. 

Auto equity loan

If your vehicle is paid off, you may be able to tap some of this equity by applying for an auto equity or title loan. These loans can provide you with a portion of your vehicle's value in cash in exchange for the right to the title of your vehicle. Once you've repaid the loan, the lender will return your title to you, and you'll own your vehicle free and clear again. If you fail to repay the loan, the vehicle will be repossessed and sold at sale.

While vehicles that are facing hefty repair bills may not be valued as high as working vehicles of the same year, make, and model, you should still be able to obtain a reasonable percentage of your vehicle's value through a title loan. If you're having trouble coming up with the repair costs in this manner, it's possible that repairing your vehicle will be less cost-effective than purchasing a new one. Check out sites like for more information.

Payday advance

A final option is the payday advance, which is a short-term loan based on your weekly or biweekly income. When taking out a cash advance, you'll provide the lender with some personal information, including your pay rate and bank account information. The lender will provide you with a certain amount of cash in exchange for your agreement to allow the lender to automatically withdraw this amount -- plus interest -- after the loan term has ended. If you're unable to repay the loan at this time, you may be given the option to renew it.