Best Legal Licensed Money Lenders Singapore Guide 2022
In need of urgent cash to settle an unexpected expense? Sometimes, no matter how much we have saved, there may be instances where we need a little extra help.
There are so many options for Singaporeans out there to choose from – financial institutes such as banks and licensed money lenders – never loan sharks. This guide will tell you everything there is to know about licensed money lenders in Singapore.
- What are licensed money lenders? What types of loans can you borrow from them?
- Compare between money lenders and banks (e.g. rates, repayment plans)
- How to differentiate between licensed money lenders and loan sharks
- Pros and Cons of borrowing from a licensed money lender
And so much more! Are you ready? Scroll on to learn more!
What do I need to consider before taking up a loan with a legal money lender in Singapore?
First thing first, ask yourself if you need the loan. For example, you want to take up a loan to buy a brand new computer? Not enough savings? Can you perhaps wait a little longer to save up more without having to take a loan?
However, in the event of unforeseen circumstances, such as, if you or a family member got into an accident and you need to settle an urgent bill, taking up a loan would be more crucial here.
Next, ask yourself if you can afford to take up a loan. You’ll have to fully understand the terms of the loan – from interest rates to repayment schedules, processing fees, and late fees should you not be able to pay off your loans on time.
Work out your monthly budget and ensure you’ll have enough to pay off these loans on top of your necessities.
Remember, never borrow to pay off another debt. You’ll incur more debt, along with additional charges that may never seem to end if you can’t pay them on time.
This could potentially lead to a negative impact on your credit score. You’ll then have a more challenging time getting your loans approved in the future if your credit score isn’t good.
Before applying for any loan, do thorough research on the different money lenders with low interest rates to suit your needs. Some offer attractive interest rates with flexible repayment plans.
Goldstar Credit is a licensed money lender offering attractive interest rates and loan terms.
What are licensed money lenders, and is it safe to borrow from them?
Yes, borrowing from licensed money lenders is 100% safe. A licensed money lender is a legal financial institution authorised to lend money.
To be licensed in Singapore, all money lenders must be registered under the Ministry of Law – here’s the list of Licensed Moneylenders in Singapore. This list is updated regularly to ensure that borrowers get the most current information.
This means that these reliable money lenders would have to abide by all the rules and regulations set by the government of Singapore. This includes the maximum amount one can borrow depending on their income, the minimum age requirement, maximum interest rates, and additional fees, which are detailed below.
There are two types of loans that you can borrow from licensed money lenders: secured and unsecured.
A secured loan means your loan is backed by collateral (e.g. house, car, jewellery). Failure to repay your loans could result in your collateral being repossessed to settle the debt you owe the money lenders.
Unsecured loans are generally loans that are not backed by any collaterals.
These are the loans offered by GoldStar Credit below and their respective loan terms:
|Types of Loan||Loan Amount||Interest Rates||Repayment Term|
|Personal||Up to 6 times your monthly salary; $300 – $50,000|
|Flexible repayment of up to 12 months|
|Business||$10,000 – $300,000||Case-by-Case|
|Payday||Up to 1 month’s salary||Within 31 days from loan collection|
|Renovation||Up to $50,000 or 6 times your monthly salary|
Flexible repayment of up to 12 months
|Medical||Up to 6 times your monthly salary; $300 – $50,000|
|Bridging Loan||Up to 6 times your monthly salary|
Looking for a loan from a reliable legal money lender?
There are many advantages and disadvantages to borrowing from a licensed money lender. Below are some of the examples to help you make an informed choice when borrowing from a legal money lender in Singapore.
In Singapore, you can turn to financial institutions such as licensed money lenders and banks to help tide you through rainy days. Below are the key differences between licensed money lenders and banks.
|Licensed money lenders||Banks|
|Minimum age requirements||18 years and above||21 years and above|
|Interest Rates||1-4% per month||3.5-11% per annum|
|Flat or reducing interest rates?||Reducing Interest Rate||Flat Interest Rate|
|Repayment period||Short repayment period of up to 12 months, for typically smaller loan amount||Longer repayment period of up to 5 years, for bigger loan amount|
|Application Approval Time||Less than 30 minutes – Borrowers with bad credit scores are welcomed.||3-5 working days – Banks conduct more stringent risk assessment, borrowers with good credit scores preferred.|
Need a short-term loan with a less stringent application process?
Legal money lenders is an option you can turn to for instant loans, however there are cases where loan sharks are masquerading as money lenders.
Below are some of the things you need to look out for to avoid money lender scams.
|Licensed money lenders||Loan Sharks|
|Loan Amount||Maximum loan amount based on your annual salary (see: Eligibility Requirements section below)||Usually any amount you wish to borrow|
|Loan Fees and Interest rates|
|Loan Contract||Will always have you sign a full contract, detailing loan amount, tenure, monthly repayment, interest etc.||No contract, or incomplete contract|
|Mode of Operation||Registered business premises, a physical office||Unlikely to have a business address.|
Here’s more information on how you can tell if you are dealing with a licensed money lender.
- A good licensed money lender is also required to abide by the money lenders’ code of conduct, and they won’t use abusive language or threaten and harass you at all times.
- Taking up a loan with a licensed money lender in Singapore is legally binding – your loan officer must provide a complete contract detailing the terms and condition of the loan and will require you to sign it. The contract will include details like loan amount, loan tenure, processing fees, and licensed money lender late payment fees should you not be able to make timely payments. Unlicensed money lenders will usually not have a loan contract, or make you sign an incomplete one.
- After you have submitted your loan application and the loan officer calls you up to schedule an appointment with you to discuss your application, you must come down to the licensed money lender’s office for a face-to-face verification. They will not approve your loan or disburse funds to you unless you’re physically present. (Note: No loan approval via SMS, phone or email is permitted by law.)
Keen to find out more about Goldstar Credit and how we safeguard your interest?
When you borrow from licensed money lenders, you are protected by the Money Lenders Act.
This document explains in detail about:
- How licensed money lenders can advertise
- Maximum amount a money lender can charge you in total
- Maximum amount you can borrow from all legal and licensed money lenders (see: Eligibility Requirements below)
- How violent threatening or harassing behaviour is not allowed during debt collection
If you come across any money lender doing something out of the norm, like increasing interest rates after you’ve signed the contract or harassing you for payment, make your complaints against the money lender with the registry at 1800-2255-529 or via their website.
Any legal money lenders guilty of an offence may be fined not exceeding $20,000 or jailed up to 6 months, or both.
Remember, before you apply for a loan, always check out licensed money lenders in Singapore reviews to find the best online money lenders that work for you.
Suppose you’re unable to make a timely loan repayment and thinking of defaulting, DON’T. This will negatively affect your credit score, resulting in a harder time getting loan approval in the future.
As the loan contract you’ve signed with a licensed money lender is legally binding, they can take you to court and sue you. If you’ve taken a secured loan with a money lender, you might lose your collateral to make up for the debts you owe.
Are you running short on cash to pay off your loans this month? Don’t worry. Your licensed money lender strives to provide the utmost professional service, including offering services to help you in times like these.
How to settle licensed money lender debts:
- Reach out to your money lender and negotiate for an extension plan or refinancing plan for your debts
- Get help from Social Service agencies like Credit Counselling Singapore, if you have loans with both licensed money lenders and banks. For borrowers who have debts only to licensed money lenders, click here for a list of agencies you can seek help from.
- Apply for Debt Repayment Scheme (Note: If you are under the DRS scheme, you will not be able to take up another loan. Money lenders will reject your future loan applications.)
Keep calm; it’s not the end of the world if you realise you’ve accidentally borrowed money from a loan shark. Pay it off in full when you can.
However, if you encounter problems like a sudden increase in rates that makes it impossible for you to pay off or harassment, don’t make any additional payment as you are under no legal obligation to repay the debt if a money lender isn’t licensed under the Ministry of Law. They have no legal right to recover the debt.
Money lender threatening me? Contact the police or the X-Ah Long hotline at 1800-924-5664.
Below are the eligibility requirements to borrow from a licensed money lender in Singapore:
|Minimum Age Requirements|
|18 years and above|
|Annual Income of Borrowers||Singaporeans / PR||Foreigners|
|Less than $10,000||$3,000||$500|
|At least $10,000, less than $20,000||$3000|
|At least $20,000||6 times your monthly salary||6 times your monthly salary|
|Singaporeans and PR||Foreigners in Singapore|
|Payslips from the last three months|
For New Customers:
The process will take approximately 20-30 minutes, depending on your requirements.
For returning customers:
The process will take approximately 5-10 minutes if there are no changes in information or requirements.
For both new and returning customers:
You will need to either fill up a loan application form online or walk in to apply.
If you have applied online, once you’ve received a call from the money lender’s loan officer to schedule an appointment regarding your loan, make your way down to the money lender’s office with all the documents you used to apply for the loan (i.e. NRIC/passport, proof of address, payslips etc.)
During your time in the office, the loan officers will be enquiring about your requirements and needs, and explain to you the loan procedures and all chargeable fees. They will be conducting a thorough check and interview before your loan can be approved.
Tip: Keep your documents organised in a file and bring them to the money lender’s office.
You’re almost there! Once your loan is approved, now comes the important part – the signing of the loan contract.
Your loan officer will explain the terms and conditions of the loan to you in a language that you can understand. Make sure you ask questions if you’re not sure. They are very experienced and knowledgeable and are always open to answering your queries. Double-check the loan amount, the tenure, monthly repayments, and when you should make the payments.
Once everything is clear, you can sign the loan contract!
Once the contracts have been fully explained and signed, your money lender will be able to disburse your loan to you immediately in cash or via PayNow.
Remember to pay off your loans on time, and perhaps you’ll get to enjoy lower interest rates when applying for future loans.
We hope that this guide has given you a better understanding of how licensed money lenders work in Singapore. Personal loans can help tide you through financial difficulties; however, getting a loan from a licensed money lender is so easy and accessible that you might risk running into recurring debt if you keep on borrowing money to settle your loans.
So, plan your finances wisely before applying for a loan!