So it's tax season and I've been doing some reading on Refund Anticipation Loans (RALs). These are those "rapid refund" deals that you see advertised on public transit. Heads-up: if it ain't advertised in your local Starbucks, it probably ain't a public service, or a good deal to the general public.
In short, when you elect to get these rapid refunds you are paying to have access to your money sooner. Sounds like a reasonable proposition, right? But, you're paying for money you've already earned, and it's at an interest rate hundreds of times greater than you'd pay if you simply had direct deposit with a bank or Individual Development Account (IDA).