Knowledge is power when it comes to getting a great deal on a personal loan. Take a look through our personal loan guides and articles to get up to speed before you apply.
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The opening up of the banking sector and the rise of the challenger banks means there is more choice than ever for consumers looking to borrow money.
However, finding the right personal loan for your individual circumstances isn't easy, so make sure you do your own research.
Good personal loans and bad personal loans?
More choice is great for competition and great for consumers, but it also means that borrowers need to take the time to educate themselves on the various options. You may read about 'good personal loan deals', but these may not always apply to your unique situation so it's vital to look for the best loan for you personally.
Do your research
It's never been easier to research your personal finance options and online tools help to make this information accessible and digestible. There are a few fundamental check-points to consider when you compare personal loan deals.
This list is a great place to start:
How long can you borrow for?
Different loan types and lenders will offer different repayment terms with regards to the length of the loan term. This can range from a number of days for a payday loan, to 10 years or more for a secured loan.
How much can you borrow?
Again, this varies dramatically, and don't forget to think about how much you actually need to borrow.
Is the loan secured or unsecured?
Make sure you're clear on whether or not your loan is secured against an asset, such as a vehicle or even your home, and what that security means should you default on repayments (hint - the lender can repossess your assets).
What is the interest rate?
Interest rates vary hugely and it's worth checking best buy tables for a quick-look guide to the lowest rates.
What is the APR?
APR stands for annual percentage rate and this is an important measure to help you find the right loan for your needs. It illustrates how much it costs to borrow of the course of one year and includes and fees, plus the interest charged.
Are there arrangement fees?
Some lenders charge arrangement fees, which can be an upfront cost or are often added to the repayments.
Information is power
Using the list above when considering which personal loan is right for you could help you to avoid applying for loans that you can't afford or that won't be approved.
Use our personal loan guides here to further expand your knowledge base yourself before you start making personal loan applications. These explain just about everything you need in a manageable and accessible way, putting the power firmly back into your hands when deciding between lenders.