Virginia Becomes Hub for Risky Car Title Loans

Friday, August 24th, 2012

By Frederick Kunkle, The Washington Post

When Brenda Ann Covington needed money a few months ago, she had only one big item left to pawn: her Chevy truck.

Covington used the 2005 Silverado pickup as collateral to borrow money from one of the growing number of Virginia businesses that lend cash against a person’s car.

It’s a decision Covington now regrets. With an interest rate of around 240 percent, Covington will pay nearly $4,100 to have borrowed $1,500. Worst of all, if she defaults, the lender can seize her truck, which was paid for before she took out the new loan.

“I can’t blame anyone but myself,” Covington, 61, of Manassas, said. “But it’s highway robbery.”

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Published: August 23, 2012

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