by Mizah Salik
As Singapore is one of the topmost expensive cities to live in, it is no surprise that it can get challenging to pay off steep monthly overheads with little to no financial assistance. The rising cost of living in the city means that there is a perceptible need for many to rely on loans for a quick financial solution. Most would lean on banks for loans, but various licensed money lenders in Singapore can cater to your financial needs with much more flexibility. Here are top three factors to consider when selecting a licensed money lender in Singapore:
- Check your eligibility for loan
The maximum amount that you can borrow from a legal money lender depends on your annual income:
- If your annual income is below S$10,000, and you’re a Singapore citizen or Permanent resident (PR), then you can only borrow up till S$3,000. If you’re a foreigner, S$500.
- If your annual income is between S$10,000 to S$20,000, the maximum amount you can borrow are S$3,000 for Singapore citizen/PR and S$500 for foreigners residing in Singapore.
- If your annual income is over S$20,000, then you can borrow up to 6 times your monthly income for both Singapore citizen/PR and foreigner residing in Singapore.
Keep the above in mind when you’re checking to see what amount you’re likely to be approved for.
- Know how to differentiate between illegal and licensed money lendersHow can you tell if a business is legally allowed to lend money online? The Ministry of Law has compiled a list of licensed money lenders in Singapore for you to verify whether or not a money lender is indeed licensed. Look through this list to find the best money lender in Singapore that is suitable for your financial needs.
It is imperative to note that money lenders are not allowed to solicit loans via Whatsapp messages or phone calls, so if you are contacted to obtain loans in these ways, the money lender may likely be unlicensed.
Information on a licensed money lender in Singapore should only be advertised on:
- Business or consumer directories in print and online media;
- Internet websites belonging to the licensee; and
- Advertisements placed within, or on the exterior (e.g. side of the wall, door shutter, gate or window) of the approved place of business.
- Check your documents to prepare and receive
While it is important to prepare the documents for the lender’s evaluation, you should also ensure the money lender has issued you a proper loan contract that includes the borrowing arrangement and execution. Make it a point to go through every term and condition in the loan contract with the lender, including clear explanation on the vital details before you sign the contract.
Documents to prepare:
- Proof of income and employment
- Current credit score and past CPF statements
- Proof of residence
- Tenancy agreement
- Employment letter
- Employment pass, and bank statements (if you’re a foreigner)
Ensure all these personal documents are returned to you – don’t let the lenders hold on to them for prolonged periods.
Documents you should receive from money lender:
- Interest rate
- Loan tenure
- Repayment terms (when to start repayment, monthly instalment amount, etc)
- Late payment fees
- Administrative or processing fees charged
- Early repayment clause, if applicable
Read more here on the various approved interest rates of licensed money lenders in Singapore.
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