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Property and holiday accommodation with wheelchair access

The word 'loan' has become a very dirty word in recent times. Blame for the credit crunch is placed almost entirely at the feet of American homeowners who took out loans on their houses that they could just not afford, and the banks that give out loans have been largely vilified in the press and the media for being too much of a temptation.

Thing is, loans can sometimes be incredibly useful. To give you an example, say you get paid next week. You've just found a holiday that costs £500 altogether, but are told that the price of the flights rises each day that you don't book. It makes much more sense to book now, right? Taking a loan out that you know you can pay back is not a crime, and in situations like this make plenty of sense

That said, there are plenty of reasons to stay wary. You will be tested quite rigorously by lenders these days to make sure you can pay, they have no qualms in offering you more than you have asked for or in establishing that you can actually afford to make the repayments. Statistics from the Citizens Advice Bureau say that people seeking advice owed on average nearly 14 times their monthly income. If you are one of these people you really shouldn't be getting further into debt.

One thing to really look out for when you are getting a loan however is when people offer to 'consolidate your debts.' On the surface this seems like the simple solution, but be careful it is not a viper's nest. In effect you are borrowing more money to get out of debt, and may end up paying more in the long term. It is absolutely essential to thoroughly check options, liabilities and small print before committing.

Your best bet is to try one of the respected high street banks, Santander for example, for your loans. It is quick (but not too quick), reliable and you know just where to find them if things go sour.