pensioner-loans

Pensioner Loans

Just because you receive a pension doesn’t mean you can’t take out a loan.

If you receive Centrelink payments, including the pension, and are looking for a loan, you may find your options somewhat limited. Lenders have stricter criteria for those receiving disability support pension (DSP) carer's pension or the age pension.

It’s important to know that there are loan and financing options out there. It’s even more important to know how to compare these options so you find the right product for you. Read on to see what’s available, compare your options and find out how to apply.

Retired? Click here to see your loan options

Financial hardship

If you’re experiencing financial hardship and would like to speak to someone for free financial counselling, you can call the Financial Counsellors hotline on 1800 007 007. It is open from 9:30am to 4pm, Monday to Friday.

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Updated December 16th, 2018
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Some of the brands that consider pensioners for a loan

Brand Can pensioners apply? What conditions are there?
Cash Converters Yes Your loan repayments cannot exceed 25% of your income from the pension.
Cash First Yes You also need to be employed.
Cash Stop Yes You're able to apply.
ClearCash Yes You're able to apply, applications are handled on a case-by-case basis.
Credit24 Yes At least 50% of your income needs to come from outside of Centrelink payments.
DollarsDirect No You need to be currently employed.
Ferratum Loans Yes You need to earn 50% of your income from outside of Centrelink payments.
Good to Go Loans Yes You're able to apply, applications are handled on a case-by-case basis.
Max Finance Yes You're able to apply, applications are handled on a case-by-case basis.
Nimble No You need to be employed and your primary source of income can't be from Centrelink.
Rapid Finance Yes You're able to apply, applications are handled on a case-by-case basis.

Banks that may consider you for a loan

Brand Can pensioners apply? What conditions are there?
ANZ Yes You need to earn $15,000 p.a.
Aussie No You need to earn $24,000 p.a. You need to be in regular, paid employment
Centrelink is a valid form of supplementary income
Bank of Melbourne Yes Age pension and DSP are accepted
You'll need to provide a letter from Centrelink detailing your pension payments.
BankSA Yes You're able to apply, applications are handled on a case-by-case basis.
Bank Australia Yes You're able to apply, applications are handled on a case-by-case basis.
bankmecu Yes You're able to apply, applications are handled on a case-by-case basis.
Bankwest Yes DSP and parenting payments are accepted.
You'll need supplementary income to be able to apply.
Bendigo Bank No You need to be in regular, paid employment.
Centrelink payments are accepted with supplementary income.
Citibank Yes You need to earn $40,000 p.a.
Age pension is accepted. You can apply if your pension income is taxable.
Commonwealth Bank Yes You need to earn $14,000 p.a.
Parenting payments, DSP and carer's pension are accepted.
NAB Yes Some Centrelink income is considered.
You need to demonstrate you can afford the loan repayments.
St.George Yes Parenting payments and DSP are accepted.
Westpac Yes You need to earn $15,000 p.a. DSP is accepted.

What loan options do pensioners have?

The right loan will depend on your financial situation and also the type of pension you receive. Here are a few options that people on the pension can consider:

  • Your existing bank. If you've held an account with your bank or credit union and have a good history with them, this may be a good place to start. You can visit in-branch to discuss your options and find out what loans might be available.
  • Low doc loans. These loans are designed for self-employed applicants or for borrowers whose incomes are tied up in investments. If this describes your situation, it might be an option to consider. Keep in mind that these loans usually come with higher interest rates and will normally only let you borrow up to 80% of the property price.
  • Short-term loans. As these loans are smaller and repaid in the short term, they have more flexible lending criteria than what is set by banks and other lenders. You can usually borrow between $100 and $2,000 for a period of 16 days to one year. Many lenders understand the pension payment varies from each pensioner to the next. Your income and expenses will be verified before your loan is potentially funded.
  • Bank loans. Some banks, such as those listed in the table above, consider applicants receiving the disability pension or age pension. You will usually need to meet minimum income criteria to be approved.
  • Loans for retirees. If you receive the age pension, are a self-funded retiree or are a pensioner, there are loans specifically designed for you and lenders that will consider you. Follow the link below to find out more about retired loans.

Loans options for retirees

*The cost may change and this is dependent on any other fees and charges applied by the lender at the time of your loan repayment

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Government assistance schemes

The Government has established a few schemes and support options for people who are receiving the pension.

  • Pension Loans Scheme
    This loan is for people who are of pension age but are ineligible for the Age Pension due to assets or income. Using this scheme you can access capital tied up in your assets to provide extra income. You are able to receive up to the maximum amount of the Age Pension, with payments made each fortnight.
  • No Interest Loans Scheme (NILS)
    This scheme offers loans of up to $1,200 to people on low incomes to buy essential household items, health items or to pay for car repairs in some cases. To be eligible you must hold a pension card and be willing to repay the loan within 12 or 18 months.
  • Centrelink Cash Advance
    If you regularly receive pension payments you may be eligible to receive one of your payments in advance. Whether you are eligible depends on the type of payment you receive, how long you’ve been receiving it and the amount you receive.

Sharon and Greg

Title

As a couple, Sharon and Greg receive $1,154.80 through the disability support pension after Greg had an accident at work. This is their only source of income. They are renting an apartment and their budget is stretched tight, not leaving any room to purchase any large items. Their fridge breaks down and they need $800 for a new one.

They are not eligible for a personal loan from most of the larger banks because their income is not sufficient. They consider their payday loan options, which will allow them to borrow the money and make repayments to coincide with their Centrelink payments, but they find out that they would have to pay back the loan within 60 days and this will not be manageable on their budget.

What they decide to do: They then take a look at the StepUP program and realise they will be able to borrow $800, or more should they need it, because they are using it to finance an essential household item. They can choose to pay the loan back over two or three years and their payments can be as low as $20.15 a fortnight. They decide that this level of repayment is manageable on to their budget. The loan also comes with a low fixed rate of 5.99% p.a. and is more affordable than some of the other loans they were considering.

All rates, fees and repayments correct at the time of writing

Community financial assistance programs

  • AddsUP.
    If you have successfully repaid a NILS or StepUP loan then you are eligible for a matched savings plan. Once you have $300 saved the bank will put in a dollar for every dollar saved, up to a limit of $500.
  • Saver Plus.
    This program helps families and low-income earners to improve their finances by developing savings plans and building assets. As you save you will be matched dollar for dollar up to a limit of $500.
  • Good Money.
    Operating out of Victoria, this community finance hub helps people access no- or low-interest personal loans, such as NILS, to purchase household goods. They also help people to better manage their money and improve their finances.
  • NAB StepUP program.
    This program offers low-rate personal loans for amounts between $800 and $3,000 to buy essential household items. There are no fees and charges and the interest rate is fixed.

All rates, fees and repayments correct at the time of writing

How can pensioners apply for loans?

The table above will give you a good starting point to find a pensioner loan. You can click through to the page to find out more about the personal loan options available, and you can click "Go to Site" to submit your application. If you have questions regarding your eligibility it would be best to contact the brand directly.

Every loan application you make will be listed on your credit file and too many applications within a short space of time will not look good to a prospective lender. If you would like to see if your bank would approve a loan for you, have a chat to them over the phone, online or in a branch to see what they say before you apply.

To apply, you will need to provide personal information including your name and contact details, as well as financial information regarding your pension payments, assets, debts and open credit accounts.

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302 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    BonnieDecember 8, 2018

    I need extra money for car repair and Xmas. Online my dsp says clearly that I’m eligible for a advance loan but the operator would not allow it.

    • finder Customer Care
      JohnDecember 12, 2018Staff

      Hi Bonnie,

      Thank you for reaching out to finder.

      You are on the right page when it comes to pensioner loans. You may want to check the conditions provided per lender to see your qualifications prior to opening an application. You may also contact their customer support department to know more about the qualifications to take out a loan. Hope this helps!

      Cheers,
      Reggie

  2. Default Gravatar
    BruceDecember 5, 2018

    How do I qualify for a small loan?

    • finder Customer Care
      JhezelynDecember 11, 2018Staff

      Hello Bruce,

      Thank you for your comment.

      If you’re referring to the qualification for a pensioner loan, basically, you just need to meet the lending requirements. As long as they can see that you have a stable income and you’re capable to repay the loan, then you may be eligible.

      You can see the lenders listed above that consider pensioners. Please make sure that you’ve read the relevant T&Cs or PDS of the loan products before making a decision and consider whether the product is right for you.

      Should you wish to have real-time answers to your questions, try our chat box on the lower right corner of our page.

      Regards,
      Jhezelyn

  3. Default Gravatar
    November 8, 2018

    Im disability pensioner & ex bankrupt for many yrs I will have saved $2,500 + by may 2018 i am wondering if any financial services will lend me $6,000 long term repayments over 5 yrs plus i want to use the money above mentioned as a deposit in bank so when required gor copy of 90 days past to present bank statement 2018 to 2019 yrs it will show that i have a good track record of saving & direct-debts no defaults etc can you please give me any constructive advise i thank you for your time and appreciation regarding my online email enquire

    • finder Customer Care
      JoshuaNovember 21, 2018Staff

      Hi Geoff,

      Thanks for getting in touch with finder. I hope all is well with you. :)

      I can’t provide a personalised advice since I’m not completely familiar with your situation, but generally, what the banks would want to know is that you have a stable source of income and you have the ability to make repayments. If you have that, then your chance of getting approved would increase.

      Basically, the lenders who might approve your loan application are the lenders listed above. The maximum amount of money you would be approved for would depend on the lender. Please review the tables found above especially the ones with the check marks. They are more likely to be able to help you in your situation. Please discuss with them your eligibility and options.

      I hope this helps. Should you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to reach us out again.

      Have a wonderful day!

      Cheers,
      Joshua

  4. Default Gravatar
    October 24, 2018

    How can I apply for a $110, 000 loan, please ??

    • Default Gravatar
      JoelOctober 24, 2018

      Hi Tracy,

      Thanks for leaving a question on finder.

      There are a few considerations that come into play when determining how much you can borrow with a personal loan, including how much you can afford to repay and your loan purpose. But in terms of how much you can apply to borrow, it comes down to the type of loan you apply for. Unsecured personal loans usually offer loan amounts of between $1,000 and $50,000 while secured personal loans and car loans usually offer loan amounts of between $3,000 and $80,000.

      Assuming you are a pensioner looking to have a loan of this amount, it would be difficult to get approved because most lenders will only lend up to 2000$ in this page and getting approved for a huge amount of money as a personal loan will have stricter eligibility criteria such as your credit score, employment and residency.

      If you need real time answers to your questions, you can send us a message via chat on the bottom right next time. :)

      Cheers,
      Joel

  5. Default Gravatar
    October 4, 2018

    Hello. I am an age pensioner, I am separated from my wife, we are putting our house on the market, half being my share, I would like to get a loan of $5000.00 that would help to improve the house before selling. How would I being separated affect my chances, and what institution would give me a loan, My share of the house would be approx $250.000.00. Thank you.

    • finder Customer Care
      JhezelynOctober 5, 2018Staff

      Hello Michaerl,

      Thank you for your comment.

      I’d refer you to this page which will guide you about loans for home improvement or renovations. The page does not specifically state that a pensioner can be considered for this kind of loan however you may be considered when you disclose your financial assets.

      We also have a page about home loans for pensioners which will guide you on how to go about getting a loan when you’re on a pension. Please compare the loan products listed on the page and click either Enquire Now or Go to Site button to inquire or apply.

      Please note that lenders consider your income and financial position in getting a home loan for your house renovation. A pension is lower than the normal income of other applicants who are applying and the income level required. If you have assets and believe you can meet lending requirements, it might be a good idea to discuss your options with the financial provider or mortgage broker, as applying online may be difficult if you can’t demonstrate your capacity to repay the loan.

      Should you wish to have real-time answers to your questions, try our chat box on the lower right corner of our page.

      Regards,
      Jhezelyn

  6. Default Gravatar
    TyroneSeptember 24, 2018

    I’m on DSP and I owe money $830. I would like to borrow $3000 + $830 (I have a good credit rating) who will give me a loan?

    • finder Customer Care
      JhezelynSeptember 24, 2018Staff

      Hello Tyrone,

      Thank you for your comment.

      Some lenders and institutions do consider Centrelink payments as income, so you may be eligible for a loan. It generally depends on how much you earn, what kind of financial situation you’re in and what kind of payments you receive. To find out if you are eligible, read our comprehensive guide to getting a loan on Centrelink payments.

      The page does show the lenders that accept Centrelink benefits as an income, which means that they may consider you for a loan. Please read the guide and compare the lenders, once decided, please click the Go to Site button. It is important to ensure your eligibility before submitting an application for the loan.

      Please make sure that you’ve read the relevant T&Cs or PDS of the loan products before making a decision and consider whether the product is right for you.

      Should you wish to have real-time answers to your questions, try our chat box on the lower right corner of our page.

      Regards,
      Jhezelyn

  7. Default Gravatar
    LomekinaAugust 24, 2018

    I need $5500 for a hair transplant , who should i approach,what should i do.But the problem is I’m on DSP.

    • finder Customer Care
      JohnAugust 25, 2018Staff

      Hi Lomekina,

      Thank you for leaving a question.

      For this, you may need to consult a lender directly who offers pension loans just like the ones on this page and check your eligibility as well as requirements necessary to take out a loan. Just ensure that you meet these requirements first prior to taking out the loan. You may also speak to the lender’s representative to check on your qualifications. Hope this helps!

      Cheers,
      Reggie

  8. Default Gravatar
    RussellAugust 7, 2018

    I need a loan of $15000 to buy a car and house hold items. I am on the DSP , who can I approach for this. how do i go about it.
    Thank you
    Russell Hatton

    • Default Gravatar
      JoelAugust 7, 2018

      Hi Russell,

      Thanks for leaving a question on finder.

      You don’t have to be working to get a car loan, as long as you still have some kind of income, such as Centrelink payments, a disability pension, age pension, or another kind of pension.

      However, your range of options will still be more limited than someone who is still in full time employment. To save time and avoid application fees, you’ll want to make each enquiry count. To see our comparison on Pensioner car loans, please click HERE.

      Most personal loan providers will not lend $15,000 to someone who is on a pension. You can instead apply for a car loan as a pensioner and apply again for a short term personal loan from a different provider who accepts applications from pensioners. The comparison above will help you weigh your options. If you need anything further, send us a message anytime.

      Cheers,
      Joel

  9. Default Gravatar
    GraemeMay 16, 2018

    I have to do some major repairs to my car namely the gearbox about $3000.00 to rebuild. I do not want to buy another car and would like to know how much I can borrow on that amount to get it fixed please or if I can borrow that amount and also repayments to suit my pension. Thank you graeme

    • finder Customer Care
      NikkiMay 16, 2018Staff

      Hi Graeme,

      Thanks for your message and for visiting finder – the leading comparison website & general information service built to give you advice in your buying decision needs. How are you doing today?

      We understand that you’d need a reasonable amount of money to do major repairs on your car.

      Please note that we’re a product comparison website and we do not represent any company we feature on our site. We provide general information on products to assist you in your buying decision process hence we cannot provide a quote or an estimated amount you need to be approved of a loan nor recommend product / service that is rightfully fit for you.

      Here are loan options that you can review:

      Your existing bank. If you’ve held an account with your bank or credit union and have a good history with them, this may be a good place to start. You can visit in-branch to discuss your options and find out what loans might be available.

      Low doc loans. These loans are designed for self-employed applicants or for borrowers whose incomes are tied up in investments. If this describes your situation, it might be an option to consider. Keep in mind that these loans usually come with higher interest rates and will normally only let you borrow up to 80% of the property price.

      Short-term loans. As these loans are smaller and repaid in the short term, they have more flexible lending criteria than what is set by banks and other lenders. You can usually borrow between $100 and $2,000 for a period of 16 days to one year. Many lenders understand the pension payment varies from each pensioner to the next. Your income and expenses will be verified before your loan is potentially funded.

      Bank loans. Some banks, such as those listed in the table above, consider applicants receiving the disability pension or age pension. You will usually need to meet minimum income criteria to be approved.

      Loans for retirees. If you receive the age pension, are a self-funded retiree or are a pensioner, there are loans specifically designed for you and lenders that will consider you. Follow the link below to find out more about retired loans.

      The information above shows a number of lenders you can choose from. Hope this was helpful. Don’t hesitate to message us back if you have more questions.

      Cheers,
      Nikki

    • Default Gravatar
      BiancaJuly 24, 2018

      Can someone tell me what option I have I need a drive plus I must pay my step dad’s funreal I don’t know what I should do I have bad credit and I care for my mum

    • finder Customer Care
      NikkiJuly 24, 2018Staff

      Hi Bianca!

      Thanks for leaving a question on our page. Sorry to hear about your stepdads funeral.

      I understand your worry. When applying for a loan with bad credit, always remember these tips:

      Check the eligibility criteria before applying.
      Order a copy of your credit file.
      Compare your bad credit loan options before you apply.

      There are ways to get a personal loan regardless of your situation. You may go to this page to find out.
      Feel free to read through the page and come back to us (through live chat if you have further questions.

      Hope this helps!

      Nikki

  10. Default Gravatar
    WallyMay 12, 2018

    All paragraphs talk about “Loans”. I want a portion of my home cash which will be repaid upon my death. Are you talking about the same thing?

    • finder Customer Care
      JoshuaMay 13, 2018Staff

      Hi Wally,

      Thanks for getting in touch with finder. I hope all is well for you. :)

      If you are referring to using your home cash as a security for your loan, this can be an option. However, it would depend on the lender you want to work with. To know whether they offer this type of arrangement, you may want to directly get in touch with your chosen lender.

      Loans on our page refer to the loans available for people who receive Centrelink payments, including pensions.

      I hope this helps. Should you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to reach us out again.

      Have a wonderful day!

      Cheers,
      Joshua

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