Want access to credit without overspending on rates and fees? Find out what cheap personal loans are available.
If you're in the market for a personal loan, one of the most important features to factor into your search is how competitive the loan is. In this guide we take you through what to look for when it comes to cheap personal loans, and what to consider before you apply
- Competitive interest rate
- Additional payments OK
- Borrow up to $50,000
100% confidential application
HSBC Personal Loan Offer
Apply for a HSBC Personal Loan and you'll get access to a competitive interest rate offer and a flexible range of repayment options.
- Interest rate from: 9.50% p.a.
- Comparison rate: 10.06% p.a.
- Interest rate type: Fixed
- Application fee: $150
- Minimum loan amount: $5,000
- Maximum loan amount: $50,000
Cheap personal loans comparison
Compare cheap loans
- Harmoney Unsecured Personal Loan: 7.69% p.a. comparison rate. Tailored rate based on credit score.
- SocietyOne Unsecured Personal Loan: 9.51% p.a. comparison rate. Lower interest rates for borrowers with good credit.
- HSBC Personal Loan: 10.06% p.a. comparison rate. HSBC offers personal loans with a tailored rate based on your credit history.
- NOW Finance Personal Loan: 9.42% p.a. comparison rate. A cheap personal loan that gives you your own dedicated account manager.
How cheap is a "cheap" personal loan?
This depends on the type of loan you are looking for. For example, a secured car loan will have lower rates than an unsecured personal loan. Here is a rate guide for each loan type:
- Secured car loans. Rates can go as low as 4% p.a. or as high as 14% p.a. If you are a high-risk borrower, if you have bad credit for example, the maximum a lender can charge is 48% p.a.
- Unsecured personal loans. Rates for unsecured personal loans vary between 8% p.a. to 17% p.a.
- Peer-to-peer loans. Interest rates on peer-to-peer (P2P) loans vary depending on your credit score. If you have a good credit score you can get rates as low as 3%, but if you have a low score your rate may be around the 12% p.a. mark.
How do you find out if a personal loan is competitive?
You need to compare more than the interest rate to make sure a loan is competitive. Look at:
- Upfront and ongoing fees. These fees will be added on to your principal loan amount, and will therefore affect your repayments and the interest you have to pay.
- The comparison rate. This rate incorporates fees as well as the interest rate to show the true cost of the loan.
What else should you consider besides the cost of the loan?
Besides the interest rate, comparison rates and fees, consider the following:
- Repayment flexibility. Check whether you will be able to make additional repayments, or pay off the entire loan amount early, without a penalty.
- Loan terms. Some lenders offer shorter loan terms up to 5 years, while others offer 7 to 10 years.
- Type of interest rate. Your loan can either be fixed or variable, and both rates come with different features.
- Loan amount. Check what the minimum and maximum borrowing amounts are and if these meet your needs.
Are you eligible for a personal loan?
Lenders have different criteria to determine a customer's eligibility for loans. Generally, to be eligible for a personal loan you need to be over the age of 18, be an Australian citizen or permanent resident and be earning a regular income. You then need to prove your ability to manage the loan by providing income, asset and employment information. If you want a secured personal loan, you will need to provide details of what you intend to use as security, and this secured asset will also have to meet certain eligibility criteria.
How to apply for a cheap personal loan
After you've found a cheap personal loan using one of the finder.com.au comparison tables, such as the ones on this page, you can follow the secure link to the lender's online application form. The specific information you will be required to submit will differ between lenders, but it will be similar to the following:
- Personal details, including your name, contact details and proof of identity.
- Details of your employment, including income and type of employment.
- Your employer's name and contact details.
- Financial details, including your assets and debts.