Sometimes, bad things happen to good people. Your tire blows on the highway, your furnace craps out right before the deep freeze, and you trip on the stairs and need to rush to the ER with a broken wrist.

To make matters worse, these unexpected emergency bills arrive when you have zero savings, your credit cards are maxed out, and payday is another week away.

Direct payday loans are a convenient and simple way to get the cash you need on a tight timeline, but they have a bit of a lousy reputation. Will you take that chance?

What Are Direct Payday Loans?

They’re short term loans that grant a small amount of money in an emergency.

They get their name for how quickly you have to pay them back. Most direct payday lenders require you to repay what you owe, plus fees and interest, by your next payday — whether that’s a week, two weeks, or even a month after you receive your funds.

Like any borrowing option, payday loans only make sense when you can pay what you owe before or on the due date provided. A lot of people run into issues when they take out a payday loan when their finances are already stretched thin. They may not be able to pay everything back in one lump sum.

If you’re late, overdue fines and interest accrue, meaning you’ll owe even more when it comes time to pay off your loan.

That’s why it’s crucial you only ever contact direct payday lenders when you can handle their short terms, no matter what.

Are There Alternatives?

If you can’t handle a quick repayment term, you may want to research installment loans online as an alternative. These are another kind of personal loan designed to help you handle unexpected emergency expenses, however they come with longer terms.

Although they may be available anywhere you get the Internet, they may not be available in your state. It depends on whether a lender is licensed in the state you call home. So, for instance, if you live in Mississippi, you need to focus on searching for installment loans in Mississippi.

Mississippi installment loans are a part of the installment loan family because you pay them back in installments rather than one lump sum. This means you may have weeks, months, or even years to repay, during which time you make multiple payments against your loan.

The length of time you have to pay back what you owe, plus the frequency of your payments, are determined by your lender. You’ll find those details, as well as rates, terms, and conditions, in your contract before you receive your funds.

Another alternative includes arranging a financing plan with the people or companies you owe. If they’re willing to receive only a partial payment upfront, you may negotiate to repay the remainder at another time, breaking it down over multiple payments.

In this way, a financing plan is similar to borrowing an installment loan, but not every business will agree to these terms.

Now that you know the situation, it’s time to go back to the original question. Does it ever make sense to use a direct payday loan?

There’s no one-size-fits-all answer. It depends on your unique financial situation and whether you can afford to repay what you owe in one lump sum. Remember this as you search for emergency loans when an unexpected expense comes your way. Only ever borrow something with rates and terms you can afford.