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Frequently Asked Questions

Whether you’re looking to buy new furniture, fund your wedding or honeymoon, or even consolidate debts, a personal loan may be the answer to your short-term cash needs. A personal loan is great for those who need immediate cash, whether it is for a big ticket purchase or to get through short-term financial difficulties.

What Is A Personal Loan?

It is basically a short-term loan with a shorter repayment period as opposed to a mortgage. Unlike a mortgage, which usually has a repayment period of 20, 30 or even 35 years, the repayment period of a personal loan is only up to ten years.

Unlike home loan, personal loan is usually unsecured, which means you can borrow money without providing the lender (the bank) any form of security or asset, such as your home or your car. Even though you’re not providing any security, you’re still obligated to make your regular repayments on time. Missing a payment may attract penalties and fees, and even negatively impact your credit score.

How Does It Work In Malaysia?

Personal loans are typically available from as low as RM1,000 to RM150,000 or more. The loan amount depends on your individual circumstances (e.g. your ability to repay), as well as the terms offered by the lender. If the loan amount sought is higher than offered, a secured loan may be a better option.

When you take up a loan with a bank, a loan agreement will be executed to outline the amount borrowed, the interest rate and the monthly repayment amount. It will also specify in detail your loan repayment terms – your monthly payment along with the term of the loan, in years and months. As a rule of thumb, the longer the repayment term is, the higher the total amount repayable will be.

There are two types of loans – secured and unsecured loans. In Malaysia, personal loans taken by the general public tend to be unsecured.

Using a loan calculator to find the best personal loan

Just like any other loans, personal loans come in various packages with rates and conditions that differ from lender to lender. To get one with the best rate, you should consider comparing all the available packages in the market. This can be easily done using iMoney’s online calculator at the top of the page.

To get started, simply indicate your preferred loan amount and loan period in the fields specified; and the online calculator will instantly generate a list of all personal loan packages fitting your requirements, starting with the best rates at the top. To sign up for a personal loan online, click on the “Apply Now” button. Our online application service is FREE and available to all members of the public.

Secured Vs Unsecured Loans

Secured:
A secured loan is essentially a loan where borrowers offer their assets, like a car or a home as a form of security or collateral for the loan. As such, the cost of borrowing is usually much lower than that of an unsecured loan. However, borrowers should be wary of their financial capabilities in repaying the loan as they run a risk of getting their security assets repossessed should they fail to pay back the loan.
Unsecured:

An unsecured loan on the other hand, is usually a bit more difficult to obtain as borrowers do not need to offer any form of assets as security. Hence, they would need to convince their lenders of their financial strength or credit worthiness. This is to ensure that the borrowers are able to pay back their loan.

With unsecured personal loans, cost of borrowing is higher as the lenders are taking on a higher risk in providing the loan. Although borrowers do not provide any form of assets to their lenders for their loan, lenders could still take the borrower to court in order to sell his or her assets in order to recover any losses if the borrower defaults on the loan.

Interest Rates

The interest charged is often the key determinant of a good loan deal. The lower the interest rate, the less you may have to pay on top of the original amount borrowed. In Malaysia, the interest rates are typically quoted on a flat interest rate basis. Flat interest rate is a type of interest rate where interest is charged on the original loan amount, regardless of what has been paid off.

Possible Fees & Penalties

Early Settlement Penalty:
Some banks will charge a penalty if you fully repay the loan early (as they will not be earning the interest they expected). This fee can vary, and can be as much as total interest charged over three months.
Other Fees:
Check the terms and conditions throughout your loan agreement for other fees, such as processing fees, stamp duties and other one-time charges (e.g. brokerage fees).
Eligibility Criteria:
Many lenders have strict eligibility terms, such as age and income requirements. In some cases, you may also have to provide proof of asset ownerships and details of other debt liabilities.

Common personal loan terms

Collateral:
This is an asset that a borrower pledges to the lender in order to secure a loan; and if the loan is not repaid, the borrower risks losing the asset to the lender. In Malaysia, most Islamic Personal Loans do not require collaterals.
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This is a fee a borrower has to pay if he or she decides to repay the full amount of the loan before the end of the agreed repayment period. This fee is usually charged as a percentage of the initial loan amount.
Guarantor:
A guarantor is a person who agrees to pay off a loan on a borrower’s behalf if the latter defaults on the said loan. In Malaysia, most Islamic personal loans do not require a guarantor.
Late Payment Charges:
A fee charged by the bank if you do not pay your loan instalment on time. This is a fee a borrower is obliged to pay if he or she fails to service a loan instalment on time. Generally, banks charge 1% p.a., but some banks may differ.
Loan/Financing tenure:
This refers to the loan period. If a loan has a tenure of 10 years, it means the borrower can take up to 10 years to fully pay off the loan.

Islamic Vs Conventional Loans

While a conventional personal loan and an Islamic personal loan work via different banking principles, with the latter being Shariah-compliant, the end-results are similar. From a layman’s perspective, both types of personal loans are similar in that the borrower is given access to a fixed amount of money, and in return agrees to pay a monthly repayment amount until the borrowed amount plus any interest amounts are repaid in full. Check out our page dedicated to Islamic Personal Loans.

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