The Best Personal Loan in Singapore 2015

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Truthfully, I don’t need to tell you where to get the best personal loans in Singapore. The answer is always family and friends. Borrow money from them and there’s usually no interest, no fixed schedule for repayment and nothing at stake if you don’t pay back on time. If you are planning to borrow thousands of dollars, though, or if the only family friend who’s willing to lend you money happens to be a… uh… “distributor” of red paint and pig heads, then perhaps this article is for you. Here are the best personal loans available in Singapore that hopefully won’t get you disowned or dismembered.

There’s no one way to rank these personal loans. So what we’ll do is take the case study of Ms. Lee, who earns $3,000 a month and wants to borrow $5,000 over 2 years. We find out how much each of these loans would cost her and rank them from cheapest to most expensive.

 

1. ANZ MoneyLine Term Loan

Who is it for: People who need money fast. If you apply before 10.45am on a business day, you can enjoy same day approval. ANZ MoneyLine is a credit line that allows you to take out a Term Loan.

How much can you get: Up to 4X your monthly salary (maximum amount of $100,000).

Are you eligible? If you’re a Singapore Citizen or PR, you have to be earning at least $30,000 to qualify. If you’re a foreigner, you need $60,000 to qualify. You also have to be between 21 and 65 years old.

How quickly can you get the money? Enjoy same day approval if you apply before 10.45am on a business day.

What else do you get? If your loan tenure is 3 years or more, and your loan amount is $12,000 or more, you will be eligible for a Philips 9000 Series Bluetooth Headset or a Philips 5000 Series 3D Blu-ray SmartTV 5.1 Home Theater depending on your loan amount.

How much will it cost you: Interest can go as low as 5.8% per year, but only if you’re an existing customer. New customers can only enjoy a 6.6% per year interest rate if your loan amount is $30,000 or more.

What annual fees are there: The MoneyLine account has an annual fee of $70, which is waived for the first two years. If you take out the term loan, there’s an additional one-time fee of $80.

What are the late payment charges: There is a late payment charge of $85. If your repayment is late on the term loan, you’ll also be charged interest of 17.88% per year on the overdue amount.

Are there any other fees? Any changes made to the loan tenure will be charged at $100 per change. Early settlement of the loan will incur a penalty of $150.

Case Study:

For a $5,000 loan over 2 years, assuming she’s a new customer, Ms. Lee would pay 7.2% interest per year. Include the one-time fee of $80, and assuming she doesn’t incur any further fees, she pays a total of $5800. That means, other than the first month when she pays the additional one-time fee, she will pay $238 each month.

Learn more about ANZ MoneyLine.

 

2. HSBC Personal Loan

Who is it for: People who need to borrow a large amount but cannot afford a big monthly repayment. HSBC prides itself on offering the longest loan tenure (7 years!) in Singapore.

How much can you get: Up to 4X your monthly salary (maximum amount of $100,000).

Are you eligible? If you’re a Singapore Citizen or PR, with a fixed salary, you have to be earning at least $30,000 to qualify. If your earning is commission-based or if you’re self-employed, or if you’re a foreigner, you need $40,000 to qualify. You also have to be between 21 and 65 years old.

How quickly can you get the money? If you apply online, HSBC gives you approval-in-principle within an hour. Upon submission of valid documents, you can receive the money by the next working day.

How much will it cost you: Currently, there is a MoneySmart.sg exclusive promotional interest rate of only 5.6% per year for all loan amounts and tenures, one of the lowest in Singapore right now. However, the promotion is only until 30th September.

What annual fees are there: None, the usual $88 processing fee will be waived if you apply before 6th September.

What are the late payment charges: If your repayment is late, you’ll be charged an additional 2.5% above your current interest rate on the overdue amount.

Are there any other fees? Any changes made to the loan tenure will be charged at $100 per change. Early settlement of the loan will incur a penalty of $150.

Case Study:

For a $5,000 loan over 2 years, Ms. Lee would pay back 5.6% interest per year. The one-time annual fee of $88 has been waived, and assuming she doesn’t incur any further fees, she pays back a total of $5560. That means she will pay about $232 each month.

Get more information about HSBC Personal Loan.

 

3. POSB Loan Assist

Who is it for: People whose salary is credited via GIRO into their DBS or POSB account for at least 3 consecutive months. You will be able to get your loan processed “instantly” without providing any further income documents.

How much can you get: Up to 4X your monthly salary, or up to 8X if your annual income is more than $120,000 (maximum amount of $200,000 for Citizens and PRs, or $60,000 for Foreigners)

Are you eligible? If you’re a Singapore Citizen or PR, with a fixed salary, you have to be earning at least $20,000 to qualify. If you’re a foreigner, you need $45,000 to qualify. You also have to be between 21 and 65 years old.

How quickly can you get the money? As we said above, you can get instant cash at any branch if your salary is credited by GIRO into your DBS/POSB account for at least 3 consecutive months.

What else do you get? Absolutely nothing. Technically speaking, they do have the lowest interest rates in town, though it’s their “hidden fees” that might end up being problematic. We’ll explain later.

How much will it cost you: Interest can go as low as 5.18% per year, for loan amounts of $25,000 and above, if your annual income is $30,000 and above.

What annual fees are there: One-time annual fee of 1% of loan amount, if loan amount is $25,000 and above and tenure is 3 years or more. Otherwise the fee is 3% of the loan amount.

What are the late payment charges: There is a late payment charge of $80.

Are there any other fees? 1% of the loan amount will be deducted as an “insurance fee”. This is to ensure that if you die or suffer total and permanent disability, the outstanding amount of the loan will not be a burden to your loved ones. Unless, you die because of suicide, pre-existing conditions, HIV, acts of terrorism, etc.

Case Study:

For a $5,000 loan over 2 years, Ms. Lee would pay 6.18% interest per year. Include the “hidden fees”: the one-time fee of 3% or $150, the insurance fee of 1% or $50, and assuming she doesn’t incur any further fees, she pays back a total of $5618. That means she will repay about $235 each month.

But wait, the fees are deducted upfront, which means Ms. Lee only gets $4,800 in cash instead of $5,000. So if she needs the full $5,000 in cash, then she’ll need to loan $5,210, which means she will pay back about $5,854 altogether!

Want to know more about POSB Loan Assist?

 

4. Dash Advance Personal Loan

Who is it for: People who don’t like interacting with human beings. Dash is a mobile money service between Standard Chartered and Singtel that allows you to bank entirely using an app on your smartphone. You can sign up for the Dash Advance Personal Loan simply by submitting your personal documents and income information by taking photos via the app.

How much can you get: Up to 4X your monthly salary (maximum amount of $200,000) depending on your income.

Are you eligible? If you’re a Singapore Citizen or PR, you have to be earning at least $20,000 to qualify for a loan of up to 2X your monthly salary, and at least $30,000 to qualify for a loan of up to 4X your monthly salary (maximum amount of $200,000). You also have to be between 21 and 65 years old. Foreigners must have a minimum income of $60,000.

How quickly can you get the money? Dash claims that it can give you an approval-in-principle in just 60 seconds after application. This is just an indicator that you’ll be getting the money, though. They don’t promise how long it’ll take before you actually receive the loan amount.

What else do you get? Currently you get a $100 Isetan voucher, regardless of your loan amount. Depending on how big your loan is, you could also get a Canon EOS, a Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 or an American Tourister DC Superlite II.

How much will it cost you: Interest can go as low as 4.98% per year, for loan amounts of $75,000 and above. Currently there is a promotion for a flat interest rate of 6% per year for loan amounts between $1,000 and $15,000.

What annual fees are there: One-time annual fee of $199. Subsequent annual fee is $50, which will be waived if your monthly payments are on time and paid in full.

What are the late payment charges: Late payment charge is $60.

Are there any other fees? Any changes made to the loan tenure will be charged at $50 per change. Early settlement of the loan will incur a penalty of $250 or 3% of the outstanding amount, whichever is higher.

Case Study:

For a $5,000 loan over 2 years, Ms. Lee would pay 8.58% interest per year. Include the one-time fee of $199, and assuming she doesn’t incur any further fees, she pays back a total of $5858. That means she will repay about $244 each month.

If she increased her loan tenure to 3 years or more, she would have enjoyed a promotional interest rate of 6%.

But wait, the fees are deducted upfront, which means Ms. Lee only gets $4,801 in cash instead of $5,000. So if she needs the full $5,000 in cash, then she’ll need to loan $5,199, which means she will pay back about $6,091 altogether! But hey, at least she got a $100 Isetan voucher and an American Tourister DC Superlite II worth $120! That’s not such a bad deal, right? Right?

All you need to know about Dash Advance Personal Loan.

 

Do you have any other suggestions for the best Personal Loan in Singapore? Share your thoughts with us.

Peter Lin

I am the poster boy for reinventing one's self. I've been a broadcast journalist, a technical writer, a banking customer service officer and a Catholic friar. My life experiences have made me the most cynical idealist you'll ever meet, which is why I'm also the co-founder of a local pop culture website. I believe ignorance is not bliss, and that money is the root of all evil only if you allow it to be.

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