A loan can be an effective way of getting financial help when you need it, but only if you use it in the right way.
That means making sure you’re comfortable with the repayments you’ll need to make each month, alongside any other financial commitments you already have.
To find the right loan for you, choose how much you’d like to borrow, for how long and we’ll show you the best loan rates on offer based on your circumstances.
Comparing loans with us is easy. If you’re a bit unsure about what you need, read our guides to find out more.
Tell us how much you’re looking to borrow and for how long, as well as what you need the loan for, for example, debt consolidation, car finance, or home improvements
Your name, address, date of birth, plus info about your income
We’ll find your credit file, so we can show you loans you’re likely to be accepted for
There are plenty of loans available in the market and it’s easy to fall into the trap of applying for the first one you find. Work out which type is right for you, then compare to get the best deal.
If you need to borrow up to £25,000, a personal loan might be the right choice for you.
Personal loans aren’t secured against anything you own - your house, for example.
The interest rate you’re offered depends on how much you borrow and your personal financial circusmtances.
Car finance loans are usually offered at dealerships when you buy a car.
They aren’t your only option to cover costs though - personal loans and credit cards are alternatives and sometimes offer better rates.
It’s worth seeing if you can get a better deal elsewhere, even if it’s quicker or easier to run with the dealership’s option.
It can be hard to find lenders who’ll offer you a loan if you’ve got a bad credit score, but it’s not impossible.
Some lenders offer bad credit loans. Expect the interest rates to be a lot higher than average and sometimes you’ll need a guarantor.
A lot of people think their credit score is worse than it actually is, so do a soft search first to see what’s available and with what interest rate.
A guarantor loan is a type of unsecured loan where someone else agrees to be responsible for paying off the debt if you can’t.
If you have a bad credit score, some lenders will insist on a guarantor before they’ll lend to you.
Strictly speaking, any loan that doesn’t have a guarantor fits this bracket. But these are often marketed a bit like payday loans.
If you don’t have someone who can be a guarantor for you and you’ve struggled to find a non-guarantor loan in the past, these are an option.
A secured loan lets you borrow a larger sum of money, usually at lower rates. The debt is secured against your home, or another asset you have - it could be your car, for example.
Even though you can borrow more at better rates, tread lightly. If you can’t keep up with the payments you could lose your home.
Combining all your debt into one consolidation loan can reduce the overall rate of interest you’re paying, even if you end up repaying for longer.
Look out for any early exit fees for exisitng debts you want to consolidate though.
Getting accepted for a loan mainly depends on your credit score and whether the lender thinks you can afford the repayments.
When you compare loans, you’ll be asked questions about your finances and personal situation, like whether you own your home, are married, or if you have any dependents or children.
Some loans you’ll see advertised with a representative annual percentage rate (APR), but there’s no guarantee you’ll be offered that rate by a lender.
The rate you’re offered depends on your answers, credit score and financial history.
When you compare loans with us, there’s no impact on your credit file. That’s because we use a ‘soft search’ - it’s a search which matches you to your credit file, but isn’t recorded for other lenders to see.
If you then go on to apply for credit, that’ll show up on your credit file for other lenders to see.
That’s why making lots of applications, or being rejected for credit, can have an impact on your credit score.
To avoid it, only apply for loans or credit that you think you have a chance of being accepted for. Our smart search can help you avoid being rejected.
There are a few ways you can keep on top of any debts you have and make sure you’re paying as little interest as possible
A better credit score means you’re likely to be offered loans and credit cards with a lower interest rate
You might not get accepted for the lower APR loans, so use our eligibility calculator to see which you’re most likely to be accepted for
Pay off more expensive debts first - the ones with the highest interest rates - you’ll pay less overall in the long-run
Clearing your loan or credit card debt early will almost always save you money, so make overpayments if you can. Watch out for early repayment charges though
If you’re struggling with repayments, speak to your lender as a first port of call. The lender won’t want you to default on the debt and may find a way to help
While you should look at the APR, it’s not the only thing you need to check.
Focus on what your monthly repayment will be as well as the total amount payable. This will show you the fees and charges that may apply, the interest rate, APR, how much you’ll pay in total and how much you’ll pay each month.
Your bank will generally be happy to lend you money if you have a good credit history, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the right loan for you.
Shop around to find the right loan for you and be sure to read the terms and conditions before deciding.
Yes, you can repay your loan at any point, although check the small print as you may be charged depending on the terms of the agreement.
If you’re struggling with your repayments, speak to your lender first.
Alternatively, contact your local Citizens Advice Bureau, National Debtline or StepChange Debt Charity for free advice.
Loans for unemployed people are available, but they usually have high interest rates. You may be asked to use your home or car as security, or to find a guarantor.