Welcome to our Advance America review in which we will investigate the website AdvanceAmerica.net.
On February 26, 2023 we received the following complaint for a person who claims being scammed for $4,000. He writes:
I was looking for a loan when I received an email saying that I was approved for a $5000 loan. I contacted the lender, but they informed me that my credit score was low. They advised me to take out a small loan, pay it off, and it would boost my credit score.
They even sent me the necessary paperwork for the loan from Cash America’s Advance. Unfortunately, my bank account has been frozen now.
So what is Cash America Advance and is it a legitimate company or a SCAM?
We are not sure to which site the complainer is referring, but we think he may be referring to AdvanceAmerica, and to the website currently found at advanceamerica.net.
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According to advanceamerica.net, Advance America offers various types of personal loans, including payday loans, installment loans, title loans, and lines of credit, with fast application and approval processes, and no requirement for good credit.
They have been in business for over 25 years and have helped millions of customers with their financial needs.
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The domain advanceamerica.net was registered on August 9, 1999 for 33 years through GoDaddy, although it was updated on September 11, 2022. It is hosted by Amazon.com, Inc..
They are popular website with a global rank of 66,077 with 11,961 in the United States. They are ranked the 331st most popular website in the category Finance > Banking Credit and Lending in the United States. According to SimilarWeb, they received almost 700K visitors in January 2023.
Their Semrush Authority Score is 52% with more than 244K backlinks from 4.2K referring domains, including some trustworthy domains, such as the New York Times.
Advance America promises transparency and safety and offers same-day funding for online applications processed before 10:30 AM ET (Monday-Friday).
They also have positive customer reviews on various platforms.
On TrustPilot, they are rated as Excellent with a 4.8/5 stars based on 77,003. However, they also have some negative reviews.
Some customers complained about the poor service provided by Advance America. Many of them mentioned that the website was down for days, and some claimed that there had been a data breach or hack. Customers also criticized the rude behavior of the customer service representatives and the company’s unprofessionalism. Some customers even decided to pay off their loans and stop doing business with the company.
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On ConsumerAffairs.com on the other hand, they are ranked 1.6/5 based on 242 ratings. The reviews describe a loan scam perpetrated by a company called Cash Advance America. The victims are asked to provide upfront fees, verify their identity with iTunes cards, purchase credit reports, and pay processing fees.
The scam company makes false promises, takes advantage of people in desperate situations, and provides no paperwork for the loans. Victims have lost thousands of dollars to this scam, and some are planning legal action against the company.
The logo from advanceamerica.net is displayed, but no website address is provided. Could people be accidentally reviewing a different company?
Because we think it’s obvious that Advance America is a legitimate business and probably not a scam.
So who is the scammer?
The Washington State Department of Financial Institutions has warned consumers on March 28, 2022 about potential payday loan scams and advises them to never provide personal information to individuals, websites, or companies without verifying their identity and license status.
The Department has received reports of scams by individuals claiming to represent Advance America, Cash America, Cash Advance America, Cash Advance USA, Speedy Cash, and Advance America Payday Loans.
The scammers offered loans in exchange for upfront fees and some consumers paid the upfront fees but did not receive the loan promised. Additionally, some consumers were harassed by people claiming to collect debts for Cash Advance America, Advance America, or Speedy Cash, but they never obtained a loan with any of these companies.
The Washington State Department of Financial Institutions recommends that consumers use the “Verify a License” feature on their website or check the license status with the Department of Licensing to ensure that a financial services company or individual is properly licensed to conduct business in the State of Washington.
Advance America even released a public notice stating that they are taking measures to address these scams and advise customers to be vigilant and protect themselves against fraud and identity theft.
They warn that unknown scammer groups have been targeting lenders, including Advance America, to offer consumers payday loans or cash advances by making telephone calls, sending emails or through the internet. The scammers can be very convincing and use the reputation of a legitimate business along with dire threats to obtain personal and financial information from victims.
Consumers should be cautious and recognize fraudulent loan offers that require prepaid debit cards or wire transfers as processing fees or good faith deposits, and should not give out personal or financial information to suspicious callers. It is recommended to report fraudulent activities to the authorities and maintain a record of all outstanding debts.
In conclusion, Advance America is a legitimate licensed lender that offers various personal loans with fast application and approval processes. While the company has received positive customer reviews, there have been reports of scams by individuals claiming to represent Advance America and other similar companies.
It is crucial to be vigilant and protect oneself against fraud and identity theft by verifying the license status of financial services companies and not providing personal or financial information to suspicious callers.
If you have been a victim of a scam or suspect fraudulent activities, it is recommended to report them to the authorities and maintain a record of outstanding debts. Contacting the Federal Trade Commission and being aware of the Debt Collection Practices Act can also help protect consumers from debt collectors and ensure fair debt collection practices.
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Overall, while short-term loans may help in financial emergencies, customers should seek credit counseling and avoid long-term reliance on such loans.
Update (March 31, 2023)
We received the following complaint by a person who claims being scammed for $16,804:
I tried to obtain a loan from Advance America, and they informed me that in order to process the loan, I needed to authorize them to use my account for verification purposes. They then contacted my creditors, filed a claim, and had the funds paid to them. I had to repay the loan and this caused a red flag on my account, leading to my bank restricting my accounts. As a result of this situation, I now owe my bank a significant amount of money.
We do not know exactly what happened here, but it seems that the individual tried to obtain a loan from Advance America. As part of the loan process, Advance America asked for access to the individual’s bank account to verify information. Advance America then contacted the individual’s creditors and had them pay the funds to Advance America directly.
The individual was responsible for repaying the loan to Advance America, and this process caused a “red flag” on their bank account, which led to their accounts being restricted. It’s unclear from the text what caused the individual to owe their bank money, but it could be related to fees or penalties associated with the account restrictions.
Without further information, it’s difficult to determine whether this is a scam or not. However, it’s important to note that legitimate lenders may require access to a borrower’s bank account for verification purposes or to set up automatic payments for the loan. It’s always a good idea to research the lender and read the loan agreement carefully before signing up for any loan.
Additional Complaints We Received
On November 19, 2023, we received the following complaint:
Mike Bush, claiming to be from Advance America, contacted me from the phone number 214-919-8008. He obtained my bank information, yet I never received any funds. He stated that he had deposited money into my account and that I would need to start making monthly payments beginning in December.
Scammers often pose as legitimate lenders and may ask for personal information or payment upfront, so be wary of any lender that seems too good to be true or asks for payment or personal information before providing the loan.
And if you have lost a significant amount of money to online scams, such as an AdvanceAmerica scam, do not lose hope. We can help you recover your funds!