The features of an unsecured personal loan
Compare from a variety of lenders in the personal finance space to find the most affordable low-rate option to suit your needs, as well as cheap fees.
Because your loan is unsecured, you don’t have to worry about putting up a valuable asset like your car or equity in your home as collateral.
You can apply for any amount from as little as $2,000 all the way up to $75,000, making it a suitable option for a wide range of needs.
The lack of security on your loan speeds up the already fast online process, with instant outcomes available in just 60 seconds prior to your formal application.
You can also decide how to pay your loan: select a term between one and seven years and either weekly, fortnightly or monthly payments.
Unlike some other types of loans, you have your pick of fixed and variable rate options for your unsecured personal loan, affording you more freedom of choice.
You can compare personal loans which come with free additional repayments and no fees associated with settling the amount early.
Types of personal loan
With an unsecured personal loan, you can potentially borrow as much as $75,000 without the need to attach any valuable assets, such as your car, as security. These loans are the most widely available and often the quickest, with same-day approval possible.
Secured personal loans, on the other hand, make use of collateral. This lowers your risk profile in the eyes of a lender, potentially lowering your interest rate and expanding your borrowing power beyond what you may be able to get through an unsecured loan.
Variable interest rates remain open to fluctuation during your term. This means you can benefit from decreasing rates and save on your loan if the market heads in that direction, although you’ll also pay more if rates start rising.
Fixed interest rates are locked at the beginning of your loan and remain constant throughout your repayments. This acts as a valuable protection against interest rate increases, as your loan will be unaffected, but you’ll miss out on potential drops as well.
If you’re paying off multiple debts at the moment, particularly those with high interest (such as credit card debts), consolidating them into one payment can not only make them more convenient to manage but also potentially save you money overall.
Looking to take off on a holiday with your family but want to pay it off at your own speed? Travelling can be expensive, so you can distribute the cost of your next trip over a period you’re more comfortable with by taking out a personal loan to pay for it.
There are so many costs that go into making your dream wedding a reality, from venue hire to catering to dresses and suits and so much more. By taking out a personal loan, you can start planning the big day you want, even if you can’t pay for it upfront.
Home improvements are desirable for a range of homeowners to help keep their living space fresh and interesting, not to mention increase its value. You can get past the financial hit of renovations with a personal loan paid in instalments.
Personal loans aren’t limited to PAYG employees, though. If you’re running your own business, you can still be approved for financing by submitting tax returns and other alternative documents instead of payslips and utilise your funds however you wish.
There’s a variety of expenses which come with being a student, ranging from the cost of your courses, textbooks and computer to your accommodation. Taking out a personal loan can make these costs more manageable by spacing them out.
Some lenders offer green personal loans, which are designed to be used for energy-efficient appliances and products such as solar panel and air conditioning installation in your home. You can qualify for lower interest rates and fees with this loan.
Why compare personal loans through Savvy?
Frequently asked unsecured personal loan questions
Unsecured personal loans explained further
What are unsecured personal loans and how do they work?
An unsecured personal loan, as the name suggests, is a type of personal finance product which enables you to borrow a lump sum without the need for any security. Once you apply and are approved for the amount you need, you’ll repay your loan over a pre-determined period in either weekly, fortnightly or monthly instalments with interest and any applicable fees.
In this respect, these loans aren’t dissimilar from any other type of finance, but they’re more flexible in terms of how they can be used. For instance, while home loans can only be used to purchase property and car loans are designed to be put towards a single vehicle, unsecured personal finance can be used for a wide variety of purposes.
What’s the difference between secured and unsecured personal loans?
Unsecured personal loans aren’t the only option borrowers have when it comes to seeking out financing, though, as you can also select a secured loan.
The main difference between unsecured and secured personal loans is that while unsecured finance doesn’t require collateral, secured loans do. This means that a valuable asset will be affixed to your loan throughout its duration to serve as added security in the unlikely event that you become unable to complete your loan repayments and further measures to recoup funds have been unsuccessful. In most cases, this asset will be your car, but some lenders will allow you to utilise other vehicles such as motorcycles or leisure craft like boats, as well as savings, as collateral.
There are a few advantages that security brings to your loan. Because of the additional safety blanket, interest rates and fees are usually noticeably lower than those of unsecured loans, while borrowing power can be expanded to upwards of $100,000, compared to unsecured loans capping out at $75,000. They take longer to process, though, and are often limited in terms of usage thanks to being secured by the purchase itself.
The main benefit which unsecured loans bring is that they’re more widely accessible and obtainable. There are more lenders operating in the market who offer unsecured finance compared to those who only secured loans. Additionally, the requirements for security are often stringent, meaning even if you own a car in reasonable condition, it may not be able to be used as collateral.
How else should I compare unsecured personal loans?
There are a variety of ways to compare different personal loans to help you pick out the best ones for your needs. Fortunately, you can do just that right here with Savvy. We’re partnered with a range of lenders from around Australia to help deliver you decide which offer is the best for your needs. Some of the key areas to consider include:
One of the most crucial (and simplest) areas to compare is in the interest rate department. The higher your rate, the more you’ll end up paying for your loan, so comparing to ensure you’re able to take out an affordable loan which suits your needs is highly important. Even a small difference of 0.5% p.a. to 1% p.a. in the context of a $20,000 loan over three years could be several hundred dollars (depending on what your rate is).
What’s also worth thinking about, though, is the type of rate which is charged on your loan. Fixed interest is the most common with personal loans and works by locking your rate at a set point at the beginning of the loan. It remains at that figure throughout your agreement, protecting you from potential rate rises and providing you with a more consistent set of repayments which enable more accurate budgeting. Variable interest doesn’t lock in your rate, instead leaving it open across the loan. This is ideal for when rates fall during your term, potentially saving you money across your term, but they could end up costing you more in equal measure if they increase.
There are several fees which can be charged on your personal loan, including:
- Establishment fees: these can vary in cost widely depending on the applicant and their preferred loan. Some lenders will offer no application fees, while you could incur a charge up to $595.
- Ongoing service fees: these won’t set you back as much, though. Some of our lending partners offer no ongoing fees, but you may be charged as much as $10 per month with others.
- Early repayment fees: these are commonly excluded from personal loans. You can compare lenders who charge no early repayment fees with Savvy.
- Late repayment fees: these will apply should you submit an instalment five or more days late, with charges ranging from $15 to $35.
You should always make sure your loan can be repaid over a term which suits your preferences. For instance, if you need the full seven years to pay back your debt, you’ll need to pick a lender who offers loans up to that term length and cancel out any who cap their terms at five years. Similarly, if the amount you need is only small and you want to pay it back quickly, choose a lender who allows for short, one-year loans instead of those who enforce two- or three-year minimums.
Of course, you’ll also have to make sure the lenders you’re considering can actually approve you for the amount you need. Not all lenders offer the same borrowing range in a similar way to varying term lengths. It’s common for financiers to offer loans up to a maximum of $50,000 instead of $75,000 and from a minimum of $5,000 instead of $2,000, so if you fall on the higher or lower end of the scale it’s worth contrasting loans and lenders in this area.
Loans can also come with several important added features which may enhance the repayment experience for you. One such example is a redraw facility, which grants you access to any extra payments made during your loan term and enables you to withdraw them should you need the funds for any reason. This flexibility allows you to access money without having to apply for another loan, which many borrowers prefer. Also, having the ability to make extra repayments and pay off your loan early without having to worry about being charged a fee for doing so is a luxury which can help you save a significant amount.
It’s also important to know ahead of time whether you meet the eligibility criteria set by our lenders to qualify for a personal loan. The boxes you’ll generally have to tick off include:
- You must be at least 18 years of age
- You must hold Australian citizenship or permanent residency
- You must be earning a total of at least $20,000 annually from stable employment income (Centrelink income can be included)
- You must have a credit file clear of defaults and bankruptcies at the time of applying
How will I be able to use my unsecured personal loan?
There are many potential uses for an unsecured personal loan. Because of their lack of attached collateral and the flexibility of personal finance in itself, you can essentially use your loan for whatever purpose you like. This is within reason, of course, with some lenders providing a list of suitable uses for funds under their loan agreements. Some of the most common reasons people take out a loan include:
- To consolidate outstanding debts (particularly those with high interest rates) and turn them into one manageable payment each month
- To fund renovations or other improvements around your home, ranging from low-key landscaping to redoing your kitchen
- To cover the cost of sudden medical expenses if you find yourself short on the funds you need to pay them upfront
- To allow you to organise your dream wedding rather than settle for something you’re not as happy with
- To pay for your family’s next holiday and treat them to an enjoyable travel experience
- To purchase a car which you may not be able to buy with a standard car loan (typically due to its age or condition)
- To help you buy expensive jewellery, such as the right engagement ring for your partner
- To ease the financial burden of ongoing bills, school fees and any other regular expenses around the home which put a strain on your finances
What is the unsecured personal loan application process?
The process of applying for your personal loan won’t be the same between each lender, but it’s important to note that they’re likely to be very similar. It’s also a very fast and simple process, with approval and funding available in as little as 24 hours in most cases. The key steps to follow here are:
- Compare personal loans right here with Savvy and decide on the best one for your needs based on all the most important factors. If you decide to apply with one of Savvy’s partnered lenders, you can click straight through from our site to theirs.
- Make sure you’re eligible for the loan and don’t leave anything to chance. There’s little point in applying for something you won’t be able to qualify for from the outset.
- Gather all the required documentation you’ll need, such as your photo ID, payslips and bank statements.
- Fill out your lender’s online application form to tell them more about you as a borrower and the type of loan you’re after.
- If they’re satisfied, they’ll be in touch with you to provide any further supplementary documents and eventually send through your loan agreement to sign. Once you’ve done this and returned it, you’ll be free to use the funds you’ve borrowed.
Helpful personal loan guides
Still looking for the right personal loan?
Personal loans come in all shapes and sizes, so read more about the ways you can use them, as well as how they might work for you.