In its most understandable form, a personal loan is a flexible sum of money you can use however you see fit. It is repayable over a predetermined period in a series of monthly installments. Financial institutions and private lenders typically approve personal loans more rapidly than larger-quantity mortgages. That means you can access the funds within a few days after approval and acceptance.

Singaporean personal loans work under a straightforward principle: pay back on time to avoid paying interest. So, organizing a wedding? Home remodeling? Are you trying to acquire a new car? You can accomplish all of that by obtaining a personal loan in Singapore. However, consider the following before borrowing.

How much can you borrow?

When did you last review your credit score? Your credit score will likely impact whether or not you are approved for a loan because lenders are becoming more stringent than ever. Like other loans, every person has a borrowing capacity lenders apply.

Even though personal loans are often less than home or business loans, the maximum loan amount is still based on several factors, including your income and credit score. On a more immediate level, review your obligations before asking for a personal loan. Examine your income and expenses to determine the maximum amount you can borrow.

Low percentages do not necessarily indicate low-interest rates

First, keep in mind that many loans include front-ended payments. Simple rules govern how regular loan rates operate; you incur a fixed interest charge when you borrow money. There will be no interest added when you reimburse it.

On the contrary, front-ended refers to the application of interest to the entire loan sum, and then the lender calculates it for the course of the loan. They add the resulting amount to your loan, which becomes your total amount. Therefore, although you are lowering the loan balance, you are essentially paying interest on money that has already been paid back.

That is where the Effective Interest Rate (EIR) comes into play. Particularly relevant here are Term Loans and BTs. For instance, the banks charge just $500 in processing fees for a $10,000 FT. However, because the loan is front-ended, the EIR is much greater. This means you should thoroughly read the offer, terms, and considerations before you apply for a personal loan with the lowest interest rate.

Establish a repayment strategy.

The general misconception is that personal loans are bad. The truth is, taking a personal loan is not entirely bad. The purpose of loans is both practical and occasionally rewarding. Here is a scenario: suppose your money is trapped in a stock, and it would be a loss to sell it at the going rate. In that case, borrow a personal loan, pay interest on it, then pay it back when the value of your stock increases. If the stock’s profits exceed the interest you paid, you still come out with profits.

The main issue with personal loans is that many borrowers don’t have a reliable repayment strategy in place. The typical approach is to borrow money with the expectation that we will repay it eventually, which is why one loan inevitably results in another and eventually develops into a vicious circle. Therefore, only take out personal loans when necessary, and ensure you have a strategy for how and when you will pay them back.

Banks employ risk-based pricing to modify interest rates.

Banks evaluate your credit history before approving your loan and the associated interest rate. According to conventional wisdom, a person’s credit history is “risky” if they need a loan or have previously sought one. Customers who do not require a loan or have never requested one have “good” credit profiles. Therefore, financial institutions offer different interest rates to each customer based on their credit score and history.

Avoid submitting multiple Balance Transfer applications.

If you can’t repay a $10,000 balance transfer in six months, the conventional thinking is to pay off the remaining balance during the promotional time and apply for another balance transfer. By doing so, you can gradually pay off the debt by applying for smaller loans going forward. But remember that the lender might not accept your second or third application. This may result from various aspects, such as reviewing your permitted Total Debt Servicing Ratio, but banks won’t disclose the explanation. So, don’t take out a loan (from a bank or another entity at a higher interest rate), assuming your balance transfer will always be approved.

Completely repay the loan before the promotional interest rate expires

Take advantage of the numerous promotional offers from the banks by all means. But keep in mind that it’s still a loan, and with loans in general, you should always pay back the entire amount before the promotion period expires to avoid paying a lot of interest.

Remember, every loan impacts your total debt-to-service ratio

Every loan or charge in your name, whether for six or sixty months, affects your total debt-to-service ratio. Ensure you thoroughly consider all your loans so that a $5,000 FT or Term loan won’t interfere with a $500,000 mortgage or a sizable auto loan.

Choose the best lender for your Singapore personal loan.

It might be challenging to know where to begin when so many financial institutions offer personal loans in Singapore. It can also be tricky to tell which one you should be applying for without the right questions to pose. Please note that each lender, bank, or financial institution has a unique selection of products, varying interest rates, and periods. Therefore you should take effort and time to compare your options before obtaining a personal loan in Singapore.

Final thoughts

A personal loan might be a reasonable option to increase your finances when you need money the most. Before picking a loan, compare rates and terms from various available lenders. Finally, make sure to make your loan installments on schedule to avoid penalties and late fees and boost your credit score.