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Self-employed personal loans

Rates and Fees verified correct on December 3rd, 2016

If you’re self-employed and looking for funds, you may be able to qualify for a personal loan in just 48 hours.

If you’re self-employed and you require a personal loan, you may feel a bit let down by some eligibility requirements, especially if you have difficulty proving your income or any assets you may own. However, there are options available from both traditional and non-traditional lenders offering personal loans to self-employed individuals.

In fact, some lenders may approve your application in under 48 hours, so there’s no reason to feel pessimistic. The more you know about your options, along with how the process works and what documents you’ll need, the better your chances of a lender approving your application.

Compare personal loans for self-employed borrowers

Rates last updated December 3rd, 2016
$
Interest Rate (p.a.) Comparison Rate (p.a.) Min Loan Amount Loan Term Application Fee Monthly Repayment
ANZ Variable Rate Personal Loan
A variable rate loan that lets you make and redraw additional repayments.
From 14.69% (variable) 15.55% $5,000 1 to 7 years $150 Go to site More
Bank of Melbourne Unsecured Variable Rate Personal Loan
This personal loan from Bank of Melbourne offers a low minimum borrowing amount.
From 12.99% (variable) 13.87% $3,000 1 to 7 years $195 ($0 for existing customers) Go to site More
BankSA Unsecured Personal Loan
BankSA allows you to borrow up to $40,000 with your choice of a fixed or variable rate.
From 12.99% (variable) 13.87% $3,000 1 to 7 years $195 ($0 for existing customers) Go to site More
bcu Unsecured Multipurpose Loan
A flexible unsecured or secured personal loan with a competitive rate.
From 7.14% (variable) 8.06% $4,000 1 to 5 years $200 Go to site More
Citibank Ready Credit 7.9%
A low-rate, flexible personal loan that makes it easy to achieve what really matters to you.
From 7.9% (fixed) $5,000 2 years $149 (One off establishment fee) Go to site More
Latitude Personal Loans (Unsecured)
An unsecured loan designed for multiple purposes – renovating, buying a car or travelling. Funds can be in your count in as little as 24 hours.
From 13.99% (fixed) 15.2% $3,000 2 to 7 years $250 (Loans under $4000 - $140) Go to site More
RACQ Unsecured Loan
An unsecured personal loan that lets you borrow funds for what you need. Repay the loan on terms up to seven years.
From 13.95% (fixed) 14.52% $5,000 1 to 7 years $378 Go to site More
RateSetter Personal Loan
Ratesetter allow you to get a personalised rate based on your credit score.
From 9.42% (fixed) 9.42% $2,001 0.5 to 5 years $0 (fees may be charged) Go to site More
St.George Unsecured Personal Loan - Variable Rate
The Variable Rate Unsecured Personal Loan St.George lets you borrow up to $40,000 for a period of up to 7 years.
From 12.99% (variable) 13.87% $3,000 1 to 7 years $195 ($0 for existing customers) Go to site More
St.George Secured Personal Loan - Variable Rate
A lower interest rate personal loan with flexible repayment options.
From 12.74% (variable) 13.62% $3,000 1 to 7 years $195 Go to site More
St.George Get Set Loan Personal Loan
A revolving line of credit that lets you access your funds as and when you need to.
From 17% (variable) $5,000 $150 Go to site More
Westpac Unsecured Personal Loan
Borrow up to $50,000 for a term of up to 7 years with the unsecured Loan from Westpac
From 12.99% (fixed) 14.01% $4,000 1 to 7 years $250 Go to site More

How can I get a personal loan if I’m self-employed?

If you are self-employed, you can get a personal loan in one of three ways. The first way is through a specialist lender who provides personal loans for self-employed people. You can also apply for any standard personal loan if you can meet the documentation requirements as an employed person. If you cannot meet the doc requirements, you can also apply for a low doc loan, which requires fewer documents, although this type of loan is usually more expensive than a traditional loan.

You can find personal loans that have terms ranging from six months to five years or more. You’ll also be making monthly principal and interest repayments on your loan amount. Depending on your lender, you may be required to put up collateral as security for your loan.

Do I need to apply for a low doc loan?

The only reason you should apply for a low doc loan is if you can’t meet the documentation requirements set out by a standard personal loan. Low doc loans normally have higher rates and fees than standard loans, so you don’t want to apply for one unless it’s your only option.

Keep in mind that for a standard personal loan, you’d usually need to provide at least two years of tax statements in order to qualify as a self-employed person.

What documentation do I need?

For self-employed applicants, lenders usually require any or all of the following documentation. Keep in mind that applying for a low doc loan may mean you won’t need some of these documents:

  • Tax returns. Be prepared to show the last two years of your full personal and/or company tax returns. These will help prove any income you declare on your application.
  • Financial statements. These may include any profit/loss statements to also support the income you declare.
  • Proof of rental income. If you have any income from rental properties, you can declare this with real estate statements or copies of your executed lease agreements.
  • Notice of Assessment. Make sure you have on hand your latest Notice of Assessment (NOA) given to you by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO). This shows tax information such as the amount of income tax you owe(d). Depending on the lender, you may need to provide your NOAs from the last two years.
  • Recent bank statements. This includes statements showing your savings and business transactions. It may also include statements showing any other outstanding loans or credit cards you have with other lenders.
  • Company-specific information. If you own your own business, be prepared to provide information such as your company’s ABN, address, etc.
  • Personal identification. Depending on the lender, this may be your Australian driver’s license, passport or proof of age card. You’ll either need to copy your ID and fax it over to the lender, or scan it and attach the digital file to your application.

Which lenders will let you apply?

LenderCan self-employed borrowers apply?What documents are needed?Learn more
act.No-More
ANZyes
  • Most recent personal tax return
  • Corresponding ATO Notice of Assessment
  • Both need to be less than 18 months old
More
Bankwestyes
  • Financial statements and tax returns for the last two years
More
Bank of Melbourneyes
  • Recent tax information
More
BankSAyes
  • Recent tax information
More
bcuyes
  • Name of the business
  • Accountant's name and address
More
Bendigo BankNo-More
Citibankyes
  • Accountant's name and contact number
  • Name of their accounting firm
More
Commonwealth Bankyes
  • Two years of tax returns or financial statements
  • Most recent ATO Notice of Assessment
More
CUANo-More
Gateway CUyes
  • Details regarding your income
More
IMByes
  • Two years of fully lodged tax returns
  • ATO Notice of Assessment
More
Latitude Financialyes
  • Tax return
More
Loans.com.auNo-More
ME Bankyes
  • Two years of tax returns
  • ATO Notice of Assessment
More
MoneyMeyes
  • Industry
  • Company name
  • Work phone number
More
NAByes
  • Most recent personal income tax return
  • Most recent ATO Notice of Assessment
More
NRMANo-More
RACQyes
  • Proof of income
More
RACVyes
  • Proof of income
More
RateSetteryes
  • Proof of your income for the last two years
More
SocietyOneyes
  • Proof of income
More
St.Georgeyes
  • Recent tax information
More
Westpacyes
  • Proof of a regular permanent income
More

Are self-employed loans more expensive that standard personal loans?

As mentioned earlier, low doc loans are usually more expensive than standard personal loans. This means that you should try to qualify for a standard personal loan before you look for a low doc loan.

Low doc loans require less documentation than traditional loans, which means a quicker and easier application process. However, low doc loans have higher rates and fees than standard personal loans, especially if you’re dealing with a specialist lender. They also usually have fewer features and less flexibility than traditional loans.

Keep in mind that many banks and alternative lenders may offer loans that aren’t more expensive than standard loans to self-employed individuals. Make sure you’re comparing all options and that you’re aware of exactly what’s out there before making a decision to apply with any particular lender.

How can I compare my options?

Keep in mind the following factors when comparing the loans offered by different lenders:

  • Interest rate. Make sure you know the difference between a fixed and variable interest rate. If you’re going with a variable interest rate, check that you will be able to make monthly repayments if the rate happens to spike upwards at any time.
  • Turnaround time. Depending on why you’re applying for the loan, you may need your money disbursed within a certain timeframe. Make sure that any lender you choose is able to provide your money within the time period you need.
  • Eligibility. Before applying for any loan, check what the eligibility requirements are. Also, avoid applying for too many loans within a short period of time, as lenders will often consider you an irresponsible high-risk borrower if you make frequent applications.
  • Application process. When comparing different lenders, be aware of the application process specific to each lender and what kinds of challenges or difficulties you may face when applying.
  • Loan cost. Make sure you’re aware of all fees associated with each loan. This includes any one-off or ongoing fees.
  • Secured vs unsecured. Always check to see if the loan you’re considering is secured or unsecured. In other words, check whether the lender requires you to put up any collateral as security for the loan. Security could include assets such as your home or business equity.

Frequently asked questions

How much can I apply for?

This depends on several factors such as your particular lender, your requested loan amount and how well you meet eligibility requirements. You can always find out the minimum and maximum loan amounts offered by a lender by clicking through to the particular lender’s review page using the table on this page.

What pitfalls should I avoid when applying?

Make sure you understand exactly what you need the loan for and avoid getting mired into too much debt. This means that you should avoid applying for loans if you don’t actually need them. Also, make sure you never apply for more money than you actually need.

What are some extra tips to help me qualify as a self-employed applicant?

First, always check you that meet all eligibility and documentation requirements before applying for a loan. Secondly, consider having a guarantor sign off on your loan, which would help alleviate any hesitation on the part of the lender. Finally, you can file a joint application with another person, where you and the second party would be equally responsible for the requested loan.

Image: Shutterstock

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HSBC Personal Loan

A competitive fixed interest rate loan with the option to make extra repayments. Min. income $30,000

Latitude Personal Loan (Secured)

Can be used for whatever purpose: renovating, buying a car, booking a holiday. Funds can be in your account in as little as 24 hours.

CUA Variable Rate Personal Loan

Enjoy a competitive interest rate, flexible repayment options and no monthly fees.

SocietyOne Unsecured Personal Loan

Interest rates range from 7.9% p.a. to 24.25% p.a. Comp rate from 9.58% p.a. to 27.99% p.a. depending on your credit score

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