Whether it’s auto loans, personal loans, or payday loans, instalment loans come in many different forms.
However, not all financing options are available for every borrower. One big consideration is the applicant’s credit score.
Let’s take a look at the different kinds of loans payable in monthly instalments available to you depending on your score.
What is a monthly instalment loan?
An instalment loan is simply a type of loan agreement where you borrow money all at once and repay in fixed monthly payments, or instalments, over a specific length of time.
There are different types of instalment loans, such as:
- Personal instalment loan. Personal loans are loans used for any kind of expense, for personal use.
- Payday loan. A short-term loan to be repaid on your next payday.
- Auto loan. A loan for making a vehicle purchase.
- Mortgage. A loan used for purchasing property.
These loans may also vary in terms. Long-term instalment loans like a car loan or mortgage may be payable over years.
Instalment loans may also come in the form of an unsecured loan like personal loans and payday loans, or a secured loan. These require collateral to ensure that you meet the required monthly payment terms.
Interest rate offers for instalment loans may also vary. A fixed-rate loan has a set rate for the entirety of the loan term, meaning you make fixed payments, or at variable rates.
Lastly, different loans are meant for different uses, be it for a car, house, or personal finance.
Understanding Credit Ratings
Credit Bureau Singapore (CBS) compiles different information to provide financial institutions with a borrowers’ total credit risk profile and credit usage history. Financial institutions use your credit report to determine whether they’ll lend you your desired loan amount.
Your credit score is calculated by calculating your account repayment history over 12 months. Therefore, getting a better credit score is possible.
Factors that determine your credit score
- Amount of credit used. Your score declines as debt piles up.
- Credit/Loan applications. Taking on more debt in a short period makes financial institutions suspect that you are overextending yourself. Your score could be affected as a result.
- The length of your credit history. Borrowers with a longer credit history are preferred over those with a shorter history or no history at all. To improve your credit score, you need a history of timely debt repayment.
- Available credit. This is the total amount of credit available to you. If you have multiple credit cards and lines of credit, your score will be lowered.
- Late loan payments. Also known as delinquencies. These are negative factors that will negatively affect your score.
- The number of credit applications and credit pulls. Too many applications within a short period signals that you intend to take on more debt which can affect your credit score.
How to get your credit score online?
The simplest way to obtain a credit report is to order it directly from Credit Bureau Singapore (CBS). You can pay by Visa, MasterCard, or eNETS for $6.42.
If you are applying for a new credit card or loan facility with any CBS member (most major providers are CBS members), you can get it for free.
Your application will be approved or rejected when you receive a notification from the provider.
Either way, CBS will include instructions in the letter on how to obtain a free credit report within 30 calendar days.
What does it mean to have bad credit?
Credit Bureau Singapore is responsible for scoring individuals in Singapore.
Based on your past loan repayment history, this score indicates the likelihood of you defaulting (i.e. not making monthly payments) your loan. You can get your credit history report from Credit Bureau Singapore Report if you have bad credit.
The cost of the report is $6.42 (including GST). On the scale, 2,000 is the highest score and 1,000 is the lowest.
As a result, a score between 1000 and 1,723 would be considered bad credit, and a risk grade of “HH” would be assigned. A few factors can affect your credit score, like missing your repayment terms, and will drastically affect your chances of loan approval.
Since the approval process varies per lender, depends on many factors, and isn’t always transparent, it’s hard to say which loans poor credit borrowers can get.
But don’t worry, no matter what your score is, there are loans for you, and we’ve options for you to check out.
Best Installment Loan Options in Singapore
For borrowers with high credit scores:
If you have a high credit score, most if not all types of instalment loans will be available for you.
Great scores deserve great loans, and while some in the below list may be available for individuals with low credit ratings, the following list includes some of the best personal loans in Singapore.
Individuals with great credit can get a better deal, whether it’s competitive interest rates, a higher loan amount, or better loan terms.
UOB Personal Loan
With this loan, you can get an amount as low as $1,000 up to 95% of your available credit limit, for 1 to a maximum of 5 years.
You have a flat rate of 3.4% with no processing fee and can get an instant approval for a loan application submitted between 8 am and 8 pm if you’re a new customer.
Existing credit card members have the benefit of not requiring documents, but it is not available for foreigners.
Citi Quick Cash Loan
Citibank offers a loan from $1,000 to up to 90% of your unused credit limit, for 1 to a loan term maximum of 7 years.
New customers can get 3.45% minimum interest, while existing customers get 4.55% with no origination fees, and amounts lower than $100,000 with an approval time of 1 to 5 days.
You must however have a Citibank Ready Credit or Citi Credit Card bank account to be offered a Citi Quick Cash loan.
HSBC Personal Loan
Also available to foreigners, this loan can get you up to 8X of your monthly salary or up to $200,000 for a maximum tenure of 7 years (4x or up to $100,000 for foreigners)
Applicants get a competitive rate of 3.4%, with no origination fee or processing fee, and you can be approved after a minute!
6 to 7 years tenures are only available to salaried applicants.
OCBC Extra Cash Loan
The Extra Cash loan lets you borrow up to 6x monthly salary for annual income S$120,000 and above, 4x monthly salary for annual income $30,000 to $119,999 and 2x monthly salary for an annual income of $20,000 to $29,000.
While it may comparatively have very high-interest rates of 5.43% and tenure of up to only 5 years, users can get the height of convenience.
Payments can be made through online banking, mobile banking, or cash deposit machines. You may also manage your account online and via mobile banking.
DBS Personal Loan
This loan lets you get up to 4x your monthly salary or 10x if your income is $120,000 and up, with a tenure range of 1 to 5 years.
The interest rate is at a considerably good 3.88% with a one time 1% origination fee and can be approved instantly and the loan proceeds can be disbursed quickly for DBS ibanking customers
For borrowers with low or no scores:
Low or no scores make it comparatively difficult to get a loan, but it is not impossible!
This might mean that you’re locked into higher rates, fees, and secured loans to ensure that you’ll repay, but some options are much friendlier.
Here are some of the best instalment loan choices for people with poor credit.
Standard Chartered Cash One
Standard Chartered’s CashOne loan charges interest rates of 9.8% to 10.8% and no processing fee for personal loans to borrowers that earn S$20,000 to S$30,000 per year, much lower than their competitors.
This rate is attractive to individuals with lower incomes, however, the bank will only lend these individuals up to S$5,000 or 2x their monthly salary, whichever is lower.
Debt Consolidation Plans
If you’re struggling to pay all your bills, you might decide to combine—or consolidate—all your debt into one loan payment so you can concentrate on one payment.
Debt consolidation loans are meant especially for paying off all your existing debt directly by combining them into a single loan, which is likely ideal for someone with bad credit.
It is important to keep in mind that debt consolidation loans do not eliminate your debt, and in some cases, you may end up paying more.
Personal loans issued by licensed moneylenders do not always require a hard credit pull, nor even an existing score!
Naturally, this means that your loan terms may vary depending on the lender, but loan approval will be heavily based on other factors outside of your score.
How to Apply:
- At least 18 years old
- Minimum monthly income of S$2,000 for citizens and permanent residents; S$3,000 for foreigners
For citizens and permanent residents:
- Proof of income and employment
- Proof of residence
- SingPass to log in to CPF, IRAS, and HDB websites
- Work permit
- Proof of residence
- Proof of employment
- Proof of income
Steps to Apply
Whether you have a good or bad rating, the application process pretty much stays the same. You simply have to choose your lender and follow their assigned steps.
However, bad credit borrowers need to be extra careful. Here are some steps to take when applying with bad credit:
- Ensure qualification. Eligibility varies from lender to lender, including a minimum income requirement.
- Shop around. The varied nature of each lender means it’s wise to check all of your options. It’s also best to ensure that your chosen lender does not make a hard credit check, which may damage your score.
- Apply one-by-one. Results may vary depending on the provider. You may be quoted a higher interest rate if you have a low income or a bad credit score. It is best to avoid applying for several loans at once because this might signal to the credit bureaus that you are “credit-hungry” and negatively impact your credit score.
Considerations When Choosing an Installment Loan
- Interest Rates. The first thing to look at is the interest rate offered by the loan.
- Accumulated Costs. Calculate the total cost of the loan by adding the additional fees. Account for prepayment fees, charges for paying off your loan early, the origination fee, and other fees that may come into play, not just interest payments.
- Loan Amount. Calculate the exact amount you need. If you get a loan, you should only borrow what you can pay back each month.
- Terms and Repayment. Identify any circumstances that may affect your repayment ability, and negotiate your circumstances for more flexibility in the contract.
- Its Effect on Your Credit. Loans will affect your credit score. Be mindful of your credit health.
Tips to Improve Your Credit Score
- Credit counselling. Contact Credit Counselling Singapore to work through your debt issues and to arrange debt negotiation meetings with banks to resolve your loans.
- Debt consolidation. Most individuals with bad credit have existing debt. You can break down high-interest debt, such as credit card bills, into manageable, lower-interest loans by using a Debt Consolidation Plan.
- Making on-time payments. Simply sticking to the required monthly payment scheme can improve your score. Besides clearing your outstanding debt, your payments also demonstrate that you are a responsible borrower.
1. Why did my application get rejected?
Different lenders mean different risk appetites, meaning, depending on your credit usage history, lenders may prefer not to risk you not making your monthly payments.
2. Are installment loans considered personal loans?
Not all instalment loans are personal loans, but a personal loan does count among the list of instalment loans.
3. Can I get an installment loan with bad credit?
Yes, there are options available for individuals with bad credit, as listed above.
4. Where can I get a fast installment loan?
Moneylenders especially have a reputation for easy and fast application and quick disbursal of loan proceeds.
The best instalment loans will vary depending on your eligibility, and a big factor will be your credit score. Even if you have a low score, it doesn’t mean you are locked out of borrowing. We hope this list helps you get the financing you need.
Keep in mind the following:
- While banks do not list their credit score requirements, it’s best to inquire firsthand by speaking with lenders you consider.
- Installment loans have different uses, and the best option will be the one that suits your needs perfectly.
- Be mindful of your credit health, as more debt can mean a lower rating.
If you’re looking for a loan, consider applying for one with Raffles Credit. It is a licensed moneylender in Singapore which provides great options for you no matter what your score!