Short-term loans are meant to help people manage their expenses. Short-term loans are also known as:
- Payday advances
- Cash advances
- Small installment loans
- Small mortgage loans
- Stretch pay
A payday advance is a financial instrument that provides consumers with a small-dollar, short-term loan. With an application process that is transparent, convenient, and easy to understand, customers have access to a financial option intended to cover small, often unexpected, expenses. Borrowers may also choose to use our product to avoid costly bounced checks, overdraft protection fees, late bill payment penalties, or other less desirable short-term credit options.
- The typical loan is for around $200 to $300 and usually costs $10 per $100 borrowed. 
In most situations, a short-term payday advance is used responsibly and for the purpose for which it was intended: solving temporary cash-flow problems by bridging the gap between paydays. A payday advance is designed to provide short-term financial assistance, not as a long-term solution. Some states have no-cost extended payment plans for customers who are unable to repay an advance. In all other states, companies may provide an “Extended Payment Plan” for customers who are unable to repay an advance when due, at no additional cost to the borrower.
These short-term lending companies also do not have the capacity to garnish wages, collateralize or otherwise secure their business risk; in this regard, short-term loans are unsecured, personal obligations. The industry also does not require an application fee or prepayment fees, which can occur in other forms of credit. These simplifications have been part of the reason behind the growth of short-term, payday loans. With this growth has come the industry’s share of critics. 
 Elliehausen and Lawrence,p.1; Thomas Lehman, In Defense of Payday Lending, The Free Market, The Mises Institute monthly, Vol.23, No.9, Sept. 2003
 Referenced from Community Financial Services Association of America, www.cfsaa.com.