Tips to get a Cheaper Loan.

0/ If you are not sure how your credit rating looks credit rating offers a free 30 day view of your experian credit rating to allow you to see what lenders see. If you want to see what the banks see about you further information here
1/  When a personal loan application is rejected the company that rejected you often sells your loan application to a 3rd party (so don't be suprised to receive unexpected phone calls). Beware they are unlikely to offer you the best rate.
2/ Always where possible get a fixed rate loan as there are examples all over the internet forums of people who have found their loan provider substantially increasing their interest rate during the loan term.
3/ Always where possible choose an unsecured not secured loan. Do you really want to put your house at risk? 
4/ Do not apply too often for credit. Loan companies will not give you the best rates if they see on your credit report that you have made lots of applications.
5/ Don't apply for a loan to pay other loans unless you are grouping a number of debts together to simplify your finances. If you are already struggling to pay your current debts you should be getting professional help. First stop maybe Citizens Advice.
6/ Beware of the loan company trying to push you PPI.if you want it make sure you read the small print carefully.(a recent survey by which suggested that a third of borrowers who have taken PPI with a loan would be unable to claim on the policy)
7/ Consider whether the lender allows early repayment with no penalties.
8/ When comparing loans look at the TOTAL amount you will pay over the term as APR's can be manipulated. 
9/ Consider alternatives like Zopa if you have a good credit record or are between 20-25 years old.
10/ If applying to zopa the funds available are usual highest early in the morning as that is when funds are credited to lenders accounts. The biggest influx of funds is one working day (late pm) after the 1st of the month. Cheapest loan rates tend to be am on the 2nd working day after the 1st of month.(so if 1st is Monday best rates will be had on the Wednesday morning)   
11/For short term loans consider stoozing!! rather than a payday loan. What is stoozing? Well it is used to describe the act of borrowing money at an interest rate of 0%, a rate typically offered by credit card firms as an incentive for new customers. Normally it is done for financial gain e.g to borrow the funds and then place them in a hight interest account but can be applied for short term loans too. An example would be the Virgin Credit Card as this currently offers 0% interest for 15 months with 2.98% handling fee. So you could borrow £5000 against the card for 12 months at 2.98%. Remember though that to stooze you must make sure you can repay the monthly amount and will be able to pay off full amount at end of 0% term or interest would typically be 15.9%. 
12/ Beware of flat rate deals. With an APR deal you are only paying interest on balance outstanding. e.g £5000 borrowed over 5 years in year 5 you only pay interest on the £1000 outstanding. On a flat deal you are still paying on the full £5000. So always when comparing loans ask what will be the total you will repay. 
13/ It’s a good idea to consider carefully what kind of repayment period suits you before going for a personal loan, particularly when considering special deals. A particular five-year deal might be great for consumers who specifically want a five-year repayment period, but if you initially wanted a three-year repayment period you might not be saving money by paying interest on your personal loan amount for an extra two years.

Generally speaking the shorter your loan repayment period the better off you’ll be. After all, the longer the repayment period the more APR charges you will incur. However be honest with yourself on how much you can afford to pay out each month, because a shorter loan repayment period will entail higher repayments to pay off the debt quicker.

As mentioned if you can afford it this will probably save you money and clear the financial commitment sooner but that’s only good if you can actually afford the higher repayments. Take a look at the monthly repayments for different repayment periods for your loan amount and assess what’s going to be best for your circumstances and how much leeway you wish to give yourself in the event of unforeseen outgoings.

14/ Feel free to download the home budget calculator and loan calculator at the bottom of this page to help you with your budgets.

15/It is very easy to get hold of your credit report for free. You can get your credit report  HERE

16/Before deciding to borrow money it's important to work out whether you'll be able to repay it in the future.If your spending exceeds or is close to your income already, you should think very carefully about whether you really can afford to borrow more through a personal loan. Again use the budget calculator to check the affordability.

17/If things are tough borrowing more might not be the best course of action and organisations like National Debtline, Shelter and Citizens Advice can offer you free advice.

18/This is probably the most important "loan tip" SHOP AROUND for a personal loan. A recent study by moneyfacts found on a £5000 loan the difference between cheapest and most expensive was £25.55 a month which over 3 years is an extra £918.80 you would be paying. It might be less hassle to take the finance from the car dealership or furniture store, television store etc but don't sign up until you have shopped around or you might end up with a more expensive loan ans with more restrictive terms and conditions. 

19/ Be careful about apply jointly for loans with others who have a bad credit rating. This will adversely affect your own chance of getting the loan and potentially cause you to be charges a higher rate of interest.

Does the interest included in the APR vary, or is the rate fixed for the duration of the loan? (If the rate is variable, your repayments could go up or go down. If the rate is fixed, your repayments will stay the same for the duration.)  Are there any charges that are not included in the APR? (This could include charges for services such as  payment protection insurance or loan set up fee. If so, make sure you understand.) 1/ What the charges are. 2/ Whether you really need them.  

3/ How much they are costing you on top of the loan.

  What are the conditions of the loan  and do they suit you?(For example, do you have a choice about how and where you make the repayments? If you suddenly have spare cash, can you pay the loan off early …… without penalties?)

With the financial climate getting more challenging and the credit crunch showing no sign of easing, i read that more and more people are trying to get debt consolidation loans so here are the benefits and negatives of debt consolidation loans as i see it.
1/ Replaces multiple loans and credit card payments with a single monthly payment.
2/ Can reduce your monthly payments without affecting your credit rating.
3/ If you are consolidating credit card debts into a fixed term loan you will know exactly when the debt will be repaid.
4/ Lot easier to manage one debt repayment than many
5/ Can often lead to a reduction in the interest rates you pay on your borrowings.
1/ If you are looking at a debt consolidation loan because you have hit your credit card limits you MUST change your spending habits or you could quickly end up with larger debts. Consider cutting up all your credit cards and having done a budget to confirm the loan is affordable stick to it.
2/ Many people in debt jump at the first loan they are offered as they are so relieved to be offered one, DON' around as you might well find a better offer around the corner and a lower interest rate means lower costs and an opportunity to get out of debt quicker.
3/ Don't turn an unsecured loan into a secured loan.
4/ Consolidating all loans, if the interest rate on some loans is less than the consolidation loan interest rate think carefully why you want it as part of the new loan as could be costing you more.

Zopa Loans (an alternative loan tip)
One of the newest and fast growing ways to fund a loan is through what is called social lending. In the UK zopa has lent out of 25 million to borrowers and this is funded through members of the public so the banks are not involved. If you have a reasonable credit rating (top 50% of UK population) you can apply with no obligation. There are two routes the first which is a straight application where the rate will depend on your credit rating and funds available in the marketplace or the other is what they call listings, What is a listing? In a nutshell, they work just like an online auction, except that the 'price' comes down instead of going up.Once a listing becomes 100% funded, you'll see that the overall interest rate will begin to fall as lenders compete with each other to be included in the loan. Don't worry if it doesn't look like much is happening on a listing. The real action usually happens just before the listing ends. Once a listing has finished, the borrower has up to 48 hours to decide if they want the loan at the final interest rate. There is no obligation to take the loan.
Got good credit history and want a decent APR on your loan?  While the high street banks may not be offering compelling rates, there is still a glimmer of hope in the shape of Zopa.It is a lending and borrowing exchange where real people sidestep the banks for a better deal and they've got excellent rates on offer to the most credit worthy borrowers right now.An added bonus is that the loan is flexible as you can make over payments or full early repayment with no penalty or fee.
A link to Zopa is shown below. Zopa UK is only available for UK residents but other P2P lenders are listed here P2P lenders

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