1)Review websites can help you choose the best credit card, the best savings account and so on with their extensive research on standardized products. But without access to your individualized profile, it might not be very helpful when it comes to taking a loan. “Up to $$$” and “as low as x%” mean nothing if they do not apply to you. 

Unlike factual information that applies to everyone, which a writer can just research and collate all the findings - such as a mile or point earned for each dollar spent - how much you can borrow and the interest rate you will pay varies from individual to individual. This is because every individual has a different credit score, and many other factors are taken into consideration. And without applying directly to them and providing them with all the documents required to make an assessment, like you do so on our platform, you just cannot know for sure what they can offer you, and compare who gives the better offer. Even a 0.1% difference in interest can mean paying thousands of dollars extra if the tenure is long or the quantum is large. If one lender is always the cheapest to all profiles, the others would have closed shop.

2)Comparison websites mostly work by using basic filters to narrow down which lenders should you speak to, but you still need to approach them one by one in the end. Some go by pre-approved offers by pre-negotiating with lenders on a few broad sets of credit profiles, such as type A, B or C, at for example 1, 10% or fail. However, that means if you could be charged at 1.1%, you would be charged at 10% because the lender did not get to assess your credit profile directly to give you a tailored rate. You may notice the quantum offered tends to be lower as well due to the simplified underwriting process.

That is probably why, countries like China and India are clamping down on such websites and influencers, while in the US, companies had to settle lawsuits with the FTC.

3)You could also use a loan broker, especially if you have a good one you can trust. I mean, why go through all the trouble of visiting the lenders(or their websites) one by one, filling up their application forms one by one, when someone can do the legwork for you? 

However, that may introduce a whole new set of issues, especially with brokering not even regulated. E.g several real estate brokers have gone to jail in Singapore for their conduct despite being regulated - It is industry known fact that loan brokers may not just cherry-pick which customers to prioritise, they may also cherry-pick which lenders' offer to only show you especially if they are owned by a lender.

As there is no strict legal definition of a marketplace or fintech company, a couple of other brokers claim to be one. What makes us uniquely different and 1st in the market, is there are no humans in the process.  See us like a CRM or tool, where you send your enquiries directly to dozens of lenders with just one submission that responds to you directly as well on the platform after assessing your application. Digitalized end-to-end means transparency, no biases over any specific lenders or borrowers, fewer choke points & human error, and no middleman calling you during work or lunch.

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No one likes to be compared and probably will not be making it easy for you to do so. FindTheLoan.com is here to change that. When using us, you will notice on your dashboard all their offers are in the same terms or jargon so that it is easy for you to compare apple to apple.

And when it comes to comparing loans, there is more than just going for the cheapest interest rate you see. Here are a few other factors that you may want to take into consideration, which will be clearly indicated on your dashboard. 

Fees

Take for example, 2 loans both with a quantum of $10,000 and 1 year in tenure, with the 1st loan at 11% p.a per year without any fees, while the 2nd has a lower interest of 10% p.a, but with an additional of one-time processing fee of $1,000 and 1% annual fee. The total fees of $1,000 and $100 make it slightly more expensive than the 1st, despite a lower interest rate - with an Effective Interest Rate (EIR) of 21% as you will pay a total of $2,100 in interest and fees.

There are times a lender may split the fees just to make it harder for you to compare. For one-time fees, they usually call it processing, faculty, set up or admin fee and for usage, they use terms like drawdown, usage, and advance fee. This is the reason that you will notice that our articles are written, as much as possible, with as many of the other names of the same loan type and terms that might be used, through our careful research (take for example there are 5 different names for gear up loan in another of our article under our Glossary page). In fact, it has become such a nightmare that at times even an experienced relationship manager joining another bank or lender might become confused.

Interest calculation method

Flat, compounding or reducing interest can drastically change how much interest you are actually paying especially for a loan with a long period. For example, a $100,000 (P) loan at 3% p.a (I) with just a 5 years (n) tenure calculated using the 3 methods can cause you to pay more than double the interest amount if not careful:

Flat/Simple

Compounding

Reducing

Interest is 3% x 5 years x $100,000 = $15,000

Interest is P [(1 + i)n – 1] or $15,927.41

Interest x the reducing principal as it gets paid off each month (and times not the full $100,000) and works out to be $7,820

On your dashboard, we will convert any reducing interest to flat so that it is easier for you to compare apple to apple. Simple interest is used on your dashboard instead of reducing as most banks and lenders communicate in simple interest plus it is also easier to calculate the total interest, even though it may appear more expensive. However, please note on the actual term sheet/loan agreement, if they are used to communicating in reducing interest instead, they may revert to that. Your total interest should remain the same as it is simply their preferred method of communicating interest rates internally or externally or if required by law. You can also double-check the amounts again by using our calculator.

Block period

Take for example a 45 days loan; a lender may calculate it as 45 days, 7 weeks or 2 months. A $100,000 invoice financing at 3% per month interest will work out to be $4,500 for one with interest calculated daily or $6,000 for another calculating it as 2 months - 33% more for the 2nd even though both on paper state the same 3% per month. For short term loans that are measured by days than months or years, this is another way lenders make it hard for you to compare apple to apple.

Repayment term and lock-in period

For example, if you expect cashflow to be tight over the next few months but expect completion of a large order or a sale of a property later which will allow you to easily repay your loan, an interest servicing repayment means you only have to service your interest monthly, making your initial monthly repayment much more affordable. However, if you have a long lock-in period when your cash flow is freed up, you will pay an early repayment fee to discontinue the loan. (To find out more on the various repayment term types, please refer to another article of ours.) If you are getting a property loan, having a long lock-in period may mean if you believe the interest rate will be trending downward, you might not be able to take advantage of that and refinance your loan to a new lender without paying a penalty.

Some lenders make it hard for you to compare the early repayment fee between loans by having a 2-tier early repayment fee calling the 1st one, for example, the more familiar “Early Repayment Fee payable within 6 months at 10% of principal sum “ which you will then tend to focus on – and may overlook later on the page, for example, a, “Early Redemption Fee payable after 6 months but within 2 years at  5%”

As most lenders only have a single lock-in period, for simplicity your dashboard’s lock-in refers to the final period free of any penalty whereas secondary ones, they would state in under the terms and condition column

Tenure

Naturally, the duration of the loan is another important factor. The same quantum divided over a long period means smaller monthly instalments and easier for the business to cope with, with the trade-off being more interest paid. Note for overdrafts and for loans such as Merchant Cash Advance, where there may not be a fixed tenure especially if it is on a revenue-based repayment model - the Financing Partner may not enter a tenure.

In summary

The above factors will be clearly indicated on your dashboard, using the same jargon and product names, regardless of what a lender calls them, allowing you to easily compare and Find The most suitable Loan for you. You can also consider using our loan comparison calculator, to compare 2 loans, side-by-side.

Check out our glossary if you like to go into greater detail for any of the terms above.

 

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Yes, it is! In fact, the greatest cost you probably have to think about is the higher interest rate or fees you may end up paying when you are not comparing around for a cheaper loan! 

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Enterprise Financing Scheme (EFS) is a series of schemes, not a loan type. For example. The “SME Fixed Asset” is essentially a scheme for 3 types of loans: Hire Purchase, Construction Loan and Property/Land Loan. While the “Project loan” also has a construction loan, it is meant for construction enterprises. Please visit ESG’s website for the most updated information. 

So please continue by selecting the actual loan type that you are looking for or visit our glossary for more.

As Enterprise Singapore will share the loan default risk with the Participating Financial Institutions (PFI), in theory, the PFIs may offer a higher quantum, longer tenure or lower rate than their in-house rate - but it is still the same loan type. However, the Participating Financial Institutions (PFI) are obligated to follow their standard commercial recovery procedure before they can make a claim against EnterpriseSG for the unrecovered amount in proportion to the risk share, so there could be different mileage to affect it affect how PFIs' quantum or interest.

You can also enquire from our other Financing Partners that are not Participating Financial Institutions that offer the same loan type, as you never know until you really compare them. Furthermore, besides looking for just the cheapest interest rate, the tenure and payment methods are things you should take into consideration as well. To learn more, read our FAQ on how to compare loans.

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Many of our Financing Partners can process their enquiries within hours. But depending on factors such as the nature of your risk profile, quantum, loan type, and the volume they are working on, it will differ from one to another.

Some loan brokers may tout fast turnover to attract a borrower despite having no control over the lenders who do not work for them. FindTheLoan.com ties up with our Financing Partners on a company level, unlike brokers who may be just working with a particular RM they know and a lender can have hundreds of and comes & go. Additionally, human intermediaries may not just prioritize one customer over another, you will also need to ensure you reached them at the right time or wait for them to get to their phones or email to view what you sent over.

With us being fully automated, you can reach dozens of suitable lenders directly and your enquiry appears right in their inbox. Via our platform, the Financing Partners and their users can also assign and balance out the distribution of the enquires among their entire salesforce and one less possible choke point.

For certain high risk industries/profile, many lenders limit how much they lend to a particular sector each month to diversify their loan books to not to be overly exposed to a certain sector - comparing among all the enquiries among their entire salesforces to pick the better one to fund. So even the RM may not be able to tell you if you qualify until he or she pushes it upward first. As such, certain high risk industries/profile may experience a slightly longer wait time. We also recommend that you take those websites that try tell you what rate can you borrow at instantly, with a pitch of salt.

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Regular repayment on a small loan may reflect an established credit history and you as a reliable borrower when compared to one who has limited or no credit history.

Other example includes during Covid 19, where many banks prioritize their existing clients first due to the large amount of enquires received. However, be careful not to take on an early loan you cannot afford. One late payment on your smaller loan could make your chances of qualifying for future funding even worse than if you had never applied for it at all.

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For personal loans, we work with lenders from various categories that are not as strict as a bank.

For business loans, as an officer of the company, your ability to manage your personal finance is often taken into consideration. This is especially in Singapore where the officer of a company is often the guarantor as a “second line of defence” for the lender. Therefore, the chances of you securing a business loan could be lower or you may have to pay higher interest as a result of bad personal credit. Some companies may even swap their officers due to this reason.

Alternatively, you can also consider going for loans such as Merchant Cash Advance or Invoice Financing that focus less on the repayment ability, but on your projected transactions. Secured loans such as Secured Overdraft and Property Gear Up loans are also other loans you can look at, where you provide security with your assets and therefore your repayment ability would matter less to the lender. Consider checking out our Glossary page to find out more about the various loan types.

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With a wide category of Financing Partners, we do have quite a couple that lend to companies who have been in operation for just a few months or are unprofitable. If you have been in operation for less than 6 months and do not have 6 months of bank statements to upload to the lenders - continue to the next tab without uploading them and they will try to see if they can assess and quote you or request for other documents to assess your lendability. 

Alternatively, you can also consider going for loans such as Merchant Cash Advance or Invoice Financing that focus less on the company’s profitability and track record, but on its projected transactions. Secured Overdraft and Property Gear Up loans are also other loans you can look at, where you provide security with your assets instead and therefore your profitability would matter less to the lender. Refer to our glossary page for more on these loan types.

 

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Yes, you can!

Lenders, regardless of their category typically do not provide program lending to individuals or companies that do not have a local presence as it would not be cost-effective for them to pursue legal action for non-repayments. For your application, you will thus need to provide an S Pass / Employment Pass / Work Permit with a minimum 6-month validity and Residence information such as Phone bill/utility bill and/or Tenancy agreement to establish your local presence. 

Lenders in the category of moneylenders also have a quota of how many such loans they can disburse each year. When you do so via us you can reach multiple lenders at once and avoid walking in and reaching one that already reached its quota, making a wasted trip. Getting multiple offers from multiple lenders also allows you to compare and save on the fees and interest among different lenders.

If you are a company, please check out this FAQ instead.

 

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Just like a renovation company cannot comment exactly how much will a renovation cost until they sit down with you and discuss at length your needs - No one apart from the lenders themselves can tell you exactly.

How much you can borrow and the interest rate you will pay varies from individual to individual. This is because every individual has a different credit score, and many other factors are taken into consideration such as explained here. And without applying directly to them and providing them with all the documents required to make an assessment, as you do so on our platform, you just cannot know for sure what they can offer you, and compare who gives the better offer. 

If one lender is always the cheapest to all profiles, the others would have closed shop. 

So take review websites with a pinch of salt. Fundamentally, most work on an advertising model and their partnerships or advertising agreements with certain lenders, which could influence how they present someone's information to consumers. That is probably why, countries like China and India are clamping down on such websites and influencers, while in the US, companies had to settle lawsuits with the FTC.

FindTheLoan.com helps you by allowing you to talk to multiple lenders at once. See us like a CRM or tool, where you send your enquiries directly to dozens of lenders with just one submission that responds to you directly on the platform after assessing your application. 

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For cybersecurity reasons, we restrict the file types and sizes. If you are unable to upload a file because of that, we apologize for the inconvenience; as it is for the safety of all users to maintain system integrity.

If you are uploading scanned paper documents, lowering the settings of the scanner will reduce the file size. Unless you are scanning photos where you are blowing it up later for large format printing or editing, a larger file size is typically not required.

If the same happens for downloaded documents instead, you can compress them before uploading them with any free tools you can find online such as Adobe's. Some tools allow for extreme compression but the output might be blurry. Typically choosing a slight or average compression would suffice.

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Most popular loan/financing products that a consumer or SME would need would most likely be available here (or coming soon) except for

  • Equity/convertible/hybrid products which have a certain investment/escrow/insurance element to it.
  • Highly standardized products that do not require much comparison. 

So, if you see product names on some lenders’ websites but not here, fret not. They could be marketing terms e.g revolving credit, readycredit, cashplus are all overdrafts. If you are unable to find a loan type on our platform, head over to our Glossary page. Our Glossary page is written in a way that encompasses many of the other terms of the same loan type that may be used in the market.

At times, it is a matter of simply which regions the lender is from, for example, in the UK, a secured loan is called a debenture, whereas in the US, a long-term loan even when unsecured, is called a debenture.

Sometimes lenders may advertise, for example, medical loans to catch the attention of those from the medical sector. If you look closer, it is often still the same basic products such as overdrafts, working capital loans, invoice financing etc. So, if you see terms such as Startup Loan, Hiring financing, Marketing financing and E-commerce Seller Financing, they do not necessarily mean a loan type.

Terms like project financing, and supply chain financing, for example, is more of a range of loan products/schemes to serve a particular business need, rather than a loan type itself. 

At FindTheLoan.com, we do not want to be part of this nightmare of confusing product names. We use common industry terms and avoid jargon, regardless of what lenders might use on their websites. Simply reach all our Financing Partners with one simple process, compare the offers easily with all the information neatly arranged on your dashboard and Find The Loan you need.

 

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As Singapore’s 1st loan marketplace, what separate us from comparison websites is you get tailored loan quotes not advertisement of best-case scenarios. That said, there are many valid reasons why the final terms can change from what was presented to you earlier. Such as where material facts on your risk profile, are not being discovered until much later or changes from the time you applied to just before disbursement. Nevertheless, these should not happen frequently.

If you received a quote with terms and fees that were changed drastically subsequently, do let us know via our contact form, so we can try to monitor it. That way other users can continue to receive accurate and tailored loan quotes when using our platform. Please provide as much information as possible as well as the new term sheet that was presented to you.

It could also be an offence under the Moneylender Act for a moneylender to offer loans at a specified interest, but the actual interest charged is higher, or without stating the conditions which apply, if the rate of interest offered is subject to terms and conditions. Apart from giving us feedback, you may wish to consult the relevant authority, as it could also be deemed as false advertising.

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We are Singapore's 1st loan marketplace despite a number of brokers claiming to be marketplaces and we are designed to allow borrowers to connect to lenders directly without a human intermediary. (Do consider reading another of our FAQ on how a marketplace is different and the advantages of using one.)

To achieve that, apart from our technology, we onboard a lender on a company level, despite many RMs from various lenders reaching out - as they are not authorized by their company to legally enter into partnerships, it will be hard for us to enforce on the individuals on how we expect them to respect your confidentiality, privacy as well as other legal and service quality matters. This is unlike brokers who circulate your enquiry to Relationship Managers they are acquainted with, which a bank can easily have hundreds of and comes & go, with the bank or lender itself never once having met the brokers.

A lender may thus deem it necessary to examine their workflow to see if they can fit with a new partner in a compliant manner(See point 5 of this article). As we are young, some lenders may not wish to go through the legwork and cost to be able to work with a new partner. We believe that will change as more borrowers flock to use us or start giving feedback to their lenders to work with us so that borrowers do not have to apply with them separately. Meanwhile, should there be any particular lenders you need to approach separately, FindTheLoan.com should still be able to cut down your application time with those that you do not have to apply individually. We will continue to work hard to expand the range of partners.

Some lenders chose not to work with us as they did not want to be easily compared. It makes no sense to us because even without a unifying, centralized platform, anyone wishing to compare can still approach them separately. So why make it difficult for the customer?

There are also some digital banks we are unable to work with due to our system being incompatible with their credit scoring machines at the moment though they still can use our web version meanwhile, if they really want to, taking the information and manually transferring it to their system. We will be investing in expanding our technology to be able to work with more lenders.

Lastly, just like you wouldn't want more friends to try to borrow money from you, lending is one of the few industries that may not always want more referrals or new customers. For example, during covid, some lenders that had wanted to work with us, have paused to instead focus on serving existing customers only, for the time being. Some lenders' only reason here is mainly to cater to their private banking/enterprise-level customers from their HQ country, although we have seen several brokers' websites claiming to be their partners - this group of lenders typically do not seek new business here or may not even be legally allowed to. Unlike brokers, since we are free to use, our objective is not to lure you in with as many logos as possible if these lenders are not ready to serve you. Our aim is to let you know exactly whom can you enquiry with and exactly what you are offered so that you can compare and Find The Loan you need.

 

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On top of the security features built into the AWS service, one of the most secure cloud computing environments available, which even companies like Netflix use, our application leverages the OpenSSL library to provide AES-256 and AES-128 encryption. That and additionally, with user authentication, access controls, and regular security assessments and updates.

Unlike working with individuals, you may have no idea who they circulate your information to and what they do with it - e.g We have heard of group chats where dozens of lenders' RMs are in, and your enquiry is simply dumped inside regardless of whether a particular lender even serves that loan type or your profile. As a publicly available platform, we have clear guidelines on how we treat your data, which you can find out more by visiting our privacy policy. 

Some business lenders lend to companies as young as 6 months old, some 12, and some 36. Some only if the local shareholders hold 50% of the shares, and some 30. Some offer only certain loan types if you are only 12 months incorporated but will require you to be 36 months if your local shareholders hold less than 51%. Now add in other parameters like e.g. below: A broker may find it hard to remember who serves what profile and out of convenience, just send your info to everyone.

  • what sector are you in
  • were you profitable last year and this year
  • your revenue
  • and so on - there are thousands of permutations available and brokers may sometimes just not be able to remember who serves what type of borrowers.

 

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You have just received a commercial contract for $200,000 with a 30% margin. The trouble is you do not have the equipment to complete the job. Purchasing the necessary equipment would cost you about $50,000, which is all you have in your account. If you took out a two-year loan on the equipment, and say the interest is $10,000, your profits would still be $ 60,000 - $10,000.

A consumer may also need to take up personal loans at times to capitalize on good opportunities.

Prudent loan taking gives your company the means to expand more quickly than if you had relied solely on your cash flow. Taking a loan also does not mean a company is in trouble. On the contrary, it could mean your company is expanding. A company IPO is essentially to have access to more funds and most of us have a home loan or car loan, right? Taking up debt is not necessarily a bad thing and rushing to pay off your entire loan may not always be a prudent thing as it means reducing your cash flow. However, always remember to have proper budgeting done, to ensure your repayment each month is taken care of.

If your customers are small businesses, they too will understand the importance of needing liquidity in cash flow.

64% of SMEs currently face some form of delay in receiving payments from customers. In fact, delayed payment was ranked as the top finance-related challenge in a recent survey. If your business involves large MNCs or government projects especially, they should understand their long credit terms will affect their vendors’ cash flow as well.

Furthermore, their finance and purchaser are often not the same people anyway. In fact knowing that you have a financier supporting your business can also give them the confidence that you have access to funds to get the necessary equipment or to fund your payroll, ensuring the project’s success. It’s really a matter of perspective.
 

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Modern websites require a host of other service providers to function. For example, when you serve Netflix, your video runs through CDNs, and servers like Amazon Web services before it reaches your computer or phone. These service providers typically have many layers of redundancies built in, as they serve millions of businesses and enterprises. Any outages are rare and are usually fixed very quickly if it's due to them.

A browser (e.g. Edge, Chrome, Firefox, Safari) is what you use to access the internet via your device. As all browsers are different, you might experience quirks in accessing some websites due to it or some other settings on your device.If the issue is on your end, consider reaching out to your browser's support team for further assistance or try any of the following and see if it helps:

  • Disable all extensions and customizations in your current browser.
  • Temporarily disable your antivirus program.
  • Run your antivirus program.
  • Use a private/incognito browsing tab.
  • Use a different browser on the same computer.
  • Use a different computer.
  • Reboot/Restart your device.
  • Temporarily disable your firewall.
  • Clear Your Browser Cache.

If you have tried the above and it does not work, visiting websites like https://downforeveryoneorjustme.com/ -  might tell if it's something on your end or ours. If it is ours, we apologize and please try again in a moment or let us know if the problem persists.

If you have any issues receiving your SMS OTP, your Internet Service Provider, or telco could also be another choke point. Try restarting your phone or triggering OTP from other websites to see if you can receive them. If your phone has a spam filter, try checking its spam box.

For email OTP, please try checking your spam box. 

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While FindTheLoan.com allows you to reach multiple lenders easily, greatly increasing your chances - it still ultimately boils down to the discretion of the lenders and what you or your company's financial profile is like. If you did not receive a quote, please consider applying again in a few months when business picks up or when your financial profile improves, and the Financing Partners would be happy to do a re-evaluation. Alternatively, try different loan types such as Invoice Financing or Merchant Cash that focus less on your company's financial profile, if you are a company.

At times it might also be due to the profile of an individual officer of the company. Such as those that are facing litigation or have credit issues. For example, late payment to a credit card bill, which you may have forgotten, leaving a record in your credit profile. If it has since been settled, contact your bank followed by the Credit Bureau to update it, before trying again may help. Some companies with strong repayment ability may even change out their officers to improve their overall profile.

Or try a Secured Overdraft or Gearing Up Loan where you pledge your insurance, investment, deposits or private property as collateral. Apply again with another guarantor, especially if you are applying for a personal loan, which may also help.

There are a number of things that a lender looks at when determining if they like to lend to a borrower. To find out more consider checking out our blog here.

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Whether you are a private limited, sole proprietorship or partnership, we have a Financing Partner that can serve you.

However, most banks and lenders do not fund the following:
1. Moneylender and massage parlours
2. Currency, Commodities and Precious metal (all types) traders
3. MLM / Pyramid Scheme Companies
4. Investment holding Companies
5. Real Estate Investment, Financial Institutions and Investment Fund Companies
6. Shell companies

Some lenders also do not fund foreign companies or limit their exposure to certain sectors such as Construction, Marine and Oil. With FindTheLoan.com you do not have to apply with individual lenders one by one, only to find out that they do not serve your industry. Simply reach all our Financing Partners with one simple submission, compare, and Find The Loan you need.

If you are an individual or a foreigner, please check out this FAQ instead.

If you are a local company but not with 100% shareholders, different lenders are willing to work with borrowers of various holding percentages. The advantage of using Singapore's first loan marketplace is you do not have to figure out who you should be speaking with - the platform will be able to based on your inputs, tell you to whom you should be sending your enquiry, and reach all of them in just one application instead of one by one.

Even companies with 0% local shareholding have lenders willing to lend to depending on the loan types you are looking at. Generally, if you can provide some form of securities for the lender, they would be willing to consider it. 

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In some countries, loan brokers are required to disclose any connections to lenders, including the extent of their powers. This is to prevent conflict of interest such as presenting you with a higher quote despite a lower interest rate out there due to their relationship. Or overselling their capabilities to justify the fee. Unlike in the US & UK, where there has been the Truth in Lending Act & Consumer Credit Act since the 70s  - There is no regulation on brokers in Singapore at the moment or if one even needs to set up a company or be a formal representative of an agency. Sometimes all they get is a company name card while working another full-time job.

And unlike in the real estate and insurance/wealth management sector which has the Introducer Act that clearly defines the arm’s length when it comes to 3rd parties. Together with no regulations and guidelines on what can be considered as misrepresentation, there may be a gap in your legal recourse if you cannot even establish “who” is exactly saying what, in a dispute.

And naturally, when you engage a broker, you want them to find the best loan out there for you. But since the industry is unregulated here, it is entirely based on the individual’s professionalism. 

So, if you are engaging a loan broker, here are some tips that might be helpful. 

1. Under the Consumer Protection (Fair Trading) Act "Representing that the supplier has a sponsorship, approval or affiliation with respect to the supply of goods or services that the supplier does not have." is an unfair practice. 

At times, brokers, in a bid to attract customers- may claim to have more relationships than they have. Some brokers' websites even as much as display logos of banks that cannot offer credit products here. 

But with thousands of websites from various industries appearing on the internet, there is no easy way for authorities to police false advertising effectively. In fact, a recent study by NUS found that half of the products sold online had overstated their environmental claims. 

Therefore we recommend, in your broker agreement, to have them declare any (or lack of) relationship they may have with any lenders.

Especially for those owned by a lender, it helps to ensure that they are faithfully finding the best loan for you. Just like a number of real estate brokers have gone to jail in Singapore for their conduct - It is no secret loan brokers may not just cherry-pick which customers to prioritise, they may also cherry-pick which lenders' offer to only show you. In the event you find out otherwise, you have an agreement that may be used in your favour. FindTheLoan.com connects the lender and borrower directly. If a lender decides to quote you, he or she enters it directly onto your dashboard.

2. Exclusive agreements. Most brokers use exclusive agreements, where there are clauses that prevent the use of another broker or you from superseding them by approaching some lenders by yourself.

We have heard of brokers suing a borrower when the borrower managed to find a loan by himself. While they are unlikely to use a non-exclusive agreement,  negotiate to exclude the lenders that you can approach by yourself (or via FindTheLoan.com which is free to use). Brokers, other than providing an introduction, often add little to no value to the transaction which could leave them vulnerable to circumvention. As such, some may - in order to cover all the situations, they can get paid - have agreements that might be not just excessive in terms of scope but also in terms of length :

3. Negotiate for a shorter agreement period so that in the event you find that they are not actively working for you, you do not have to wait till the agreement period is over before you can seek another broker.

You may also consider negotiating for a clause to have the fees reduced after a certain period of time if they are not able to come back to you with loan offers. This helps to ensure that they pick up your case only if they have the bandwidth to serve you at the moment, and do not prioritize another customer, for example, those seeking a larger loan or with an easier-to-handle case.

4. Compare their fees. If you are shopping for a cheaper loan, why not shop for a cheaper broker? Or use us which is free.

We also recommend that there is no need to tell them how urgent you need a loan, as seeing you are desperate might just encourage them to charge you higher. We had heard of brokers boasting they found lenders, but withheld it from the customers because their cases were "so complicated" and the next day, the lenders were magically willing to lend, right when the customer agreed to increase the fee.

5. Ask about their data policy. We have had several customers who told us they started receiving calls and messages from unlicensed moneylenders after using some brokers. 

We work with a lender directly and not just any RM. Therefore, we are also able to have legal agreements in place on how they are expected to treat your data. For more, please visit our data policy page. On FindTheLoan.com, you also choose exactly which lender that will receive your info

The digital banks here are already taking note by getting consent directly from borrowers first, before receiving any further borrower info from the broker. If a broker's website claims to work with a digital bank but does not give you a form or link to give consent to the bank, to receive your information from the broker, they are likely to be engaging in false advertising. 

6. Claim they can negotiate for a better interest rate. Unless you are a high net-worth individual or a very large company, "program lending" is generally used and has no room for the negotiation of rates despite what some brokers may claim. 

Many lenders are also now utilizing machine scoring. This means that credit decisions are made by software, based solely on your financial data. Your best chance of getting a favourable rate is likely to come from comparing as many lenders as possible.

7. Tout they speak to multiple RMs from the same financial institutes to see who gets back faster. We are not sure why they think this is a selling point but we have seen a couple of them writing that as a selling point. This might actually work against you. If you are the salesperson, and you know that the broker is talking to 5 other colleagues of yours, would any of you take the enquiry seriously? 

8. Test their knowledge. While there are many ex-bankers turned brokers, there are also many without any prior industry experience or only in the industry for a very short stint or worked for a lender that offers very few loan types and may not understand the other loans that well.

For example, gear-up loan, there are at least 5 different names for it. And when signing the partnership agreement with our Financing Partners, some of them get confused about which is which. But as we work with a lender only on a company level and do not work with individuals, talking to the CEO or Head of Sales most of the time, most of them know their stuff well and just might not know the other terms other lenders are using - many brokers may not be able to recommend the right loan type or know how to compare a loan properly and may introduce a more expensive loan offer.

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Well, it depends on how nuanced you wish to be. For example, do you want to differentiate between banks and neo-banks? (which you can also read more about on our blog page)

Besides banks, there is actually a whole host of other legal entities that can provide business & personal financing, such as finance companies, licensed moneylenders, excluded moneylenders, exempted moneylenders, and crowdfunding platforms to fintech companies. Many borrowers are not aware of who are the lenders out there or exactly which lender lends to them and often waste time applying to the wrong lender which is why a platform like ours comes in handy.

For example, banks can accept deposits from consumers while fintech companies generally raise their funds from private or institutional investors which they use to lend out to you. Findtheloan.com works with various types of lenders and credit providers to ensure our customers not only have access to a wide range of financing and credit products at a competitive rate but also to ensure different types of borrower profiles are well served, as each type of lender tends to focus on a different risk profile. We are not keen to just add another logo for the sake of doing so and you end up receiving multiple identical offers. However, if you are a financier who feels you can add value to our customers differently from what our current partners do, please reach out to us!

Very often a borrower will think of a bank first when they want to borrow money. That is because of the strong branding the banks enjoy. However, there are actually a lot more excluded moneylenders in Singapore than there are banks that do lending to the mass market. Forgetting about them may mean your ability to get more loans or to compare.

Excluded moneylenders require no extra license to operate their business while Exempted moneylenders typically are Excluded moneylenders who have been allowed to lend to certain categories of people without having to apply for a banking or moneylending license. For more details consider checking out this blog of ours : How many lenders are there in Singapore? 

 

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Unlike consumer loans, which tend to be purpose-driven, e.g. if you need to buy a house, you will just go for a property loan, businesses tend to be cashflow driven and have an array of loan types available to ease their cash flow, and it can be at times confusing to know which loan to go for.

Here are a few questions that may help you decide.

  • How much do you need and how long do I need it for?

For example, a term loan tends to be cheaper than an unsecured overdraft or invoice financing on an interest p.a basis - but if you only need the cash flow for a quick inventory purchase which your customer will then repay in a few weeks, there might not be the need to get a term loan and getting locked in for a few years and paying interest longer than you need to.

  • How frequently do you need it?

If you foresee demand to be strong and there will be a need for constant cash flow, a term loan that you can use for any purpose might be better than having to keep applying for invoice financing every few months.

  • How soon do you need it?

For example, while a property gear-up loan may offer you a longer tenure and cheaper interest rate, meaning the monthly installment is lower, there might be a longer processing time for property loans such as having a lawyer to arrange the title deed, which may mean you may have to consider a term loan for the time being and later use proceeds from the property gear-up loan to pay off the term loan, replacing it and paying a cheaper interest rate subsequently.

Broadly speaking loans can be classified into secured and unsecured.

Secured loans like the name suggests are loans that are backed by an asset or securitized with collateral such as property, reducing the risk for the funder as in the event of default, they will have an asset which they can sell off in the event of defaults, to recover some of the loan amounts. Examples of other secured loans are equipment or property gear up, merchant cash advances etc. You can read more about each loan type in our glossary. Secured loans involving properties usually have lower interest rates, larger quantum and longer tenure as they are strong assets.

Examples of unsecured loans are working capital loans (also called a term loan), unsecured overdrafts, credit cards, personal loans, renovation loans etc.

If you have decided which loan type to go for and want to know how to compare the loan offers you have received, please refer to our How to Compare Loans article.

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A guarantor is needed if the applicant does not meet the requirements, and a suitable guarantor is required to ensure repayment ability. If some Financing Partners have quoted you while some still required additional information before they can quote you - you can always decide if you want to get another quote to compare the offers or just proceed with those they are prepared to give you a loan right now by clicking proceed on your enquiry dashboard.

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Depending on the loan type, different information is required. And just like why you need to do regular medical tests to have an up-to-date understanding of your health, lenders would require your latest documents as well to determine your financial health.

Personal information (such as NRIC/Passport number) is required when it is necessary to establish or verify an individual’s identity to a high degree of accuracy.  Income information (like CPF contribution, payslip and NOA) allows our Financing Partners to gauge your repayment ability or Debt Servicing Ratio. When applying for a Business Loan, they are required to allow the lenders to know if you, as an officer of the company, have any bad credit or pending litigation and so on which may impact your ability to run the company or repay a loan - especially for countries where shareholders are the 2nd line of recourse after the company or are the guarantors.

Different lenders may also require slightly different documents for their credit process. Some lenders or brokers may have a simple enquiry form on their websites, opting to call and ask for the documents later or worse part by part, which can delay the process. As FindTheLoan.com allows you to connect to multiple lenders at once, our forms for some loan types or borrowing profiles might be slightly longer than a single lender's.

Some websites go for a simplified underwriting process and collect only very basic information which means your offers are likely to be more expensive than those found via us. Please refer to here for more.

Our forms are carefully designed after consulting dozens of lenders. For lenders that we think are requesting excessive information, we do not include them in our forms so that our users do not have to cater to everyone and have to furnish an overwhelming number of documents  - an experience we hated too when we were manual brokers, having to keep going back to our customers to ask for more information. Lenders that require any additional info to quote you, can do so by requesting on your dashboard. You always have the choice if you still want a quote from them especially if you are already pleased with the quotes from the other lenders that can get back to you immediately.

For documents that you are unsure where to download them from, consider checking out https://www.findtheloan.com/where-to-download-required-documents
 

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There are many factors that go into assessing a borrower and usually a multitude of reasons are taken into consideration instead of one single main factor and each lender will have their own credit system just like when deciding to buy a house or a car, there are many things you would balance into consideration such as location, the amenities around and not just the pricing.

In general, a lender would look at the following, which if improved upon in the near future, may change their consideration:
Credit and repayment history.
Cash flow history and projections for the business.
Collateral available to secure the loan.
Character (credit score, litigation).

These factors may change from time to time for reasons such as a change in their targeted demographic, diversification to ensure they are not overly exposed to a certain industry and sometimes it not you but them and you may get a different result if you try another loan especially a secured one. Check out another article of ours for more on that.

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Taking a loan doesn’t mean that a business is not doing well. A growing company can always take a loan to buy more equipment, inventories, to set up a new office or to bid for a new project. If your customers are small businesses, they too will understand the importance of liquidity in cash flow.

64% of SMEs currently face some form of delay in receiving payments from customers. In fact, delayed payment was ranked as the top finance-related challenge in a recent survey. If your business involves large MNCs or government projects especially, they should understand their long credit terms will affect their vendors’ cash flow as well.

Furthermore, their finance and purchaser are often not the same people anyway. Just like most of us have a car or housing loan, taking a loan doesn’t necessarily suggest how your company is doing, but how you might be expanding. Knowing that you have a financier supporting your business can also give them the confidence that you have access to funds to get the necessary equipment or to fund your payroll, ensuring the project’s success.

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Using Singapore's 1st loan marketplace, a benefit of ours is that you can reach multiple lenders at once to easily compare and Find The Loan best suited to your needs. We work with lenders from various categories, such as fintech lenders, finance companies etc as different lenders focus on serving different profiles and have different ways of structuring their loans. For example, banks usually offer lower interest but are very hard to get approvals - whereas some lenders adopt a strategy of offering you larger quantum with easier approval but require a higher interest rate to offset their risk.

In Singapore, you generally only need to be a legally registered company to offer B2B loans as an excluded moneylender. If you are curious to know, the distinction of lenders - you can do so by reading up for example, the Finance company act, Moneylender Act and the Banking Act, on the Attorney-General's Chambers website and MAS’s website respectively.

However, to offer loans to individuals, one would typically need a banking or moneylender license. While some may feel a social stigma attached to receiving financing from a licensed moneylender, many popular and reputable fintech companies and even neo-banks actually acquired such licenses to legally serve individuals or businesses which are not considered Local Company, such as sole proprietors (under ACRA Singapore, what we generally refer to as just companies are separated between Local Company and Business Entity). 

Moneylenders are also included in the many categories of lenders we work with, as they can ease the funding gap by offering lower starting loan amounts, faster processing time and relaxed eligibility criteria. 

Another reason we do so is to ensure users get directed to licensed moneylenders instead of risk turning up at an unlicensed one. Unlike unlicensed moneylenders or loan sharks, licensed moneylenders are regulated by the law on various aspects of their dealing with you: From a cap to how much fees and interest they can legally charge ( we have seen at times non-bank lenders charging more than moneylenders for the same borrower), to explaining the terms of a loan in a language you can understand and providing you a copy of the loan contract. Such laws are introduced to transform the industry and to allow them to play a role in the credit ecosystem. You can visit the Ministry of Law’s website to find out more.

For your enquiry with fintech lenders holding such license, whether they parked the license under the company or a subsidiary we will generally display them by their brand name under the non-bank lender category in your “Select Financing Partner” page if that is how they want to identify themselves, and since that is still that “party” that handles your enquiry.

 

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While integration with Singpass and accounting software such as Xero or QuickBooks may mean not having to upload your bank statements etc. Many lenders for KYC purposes may still prefer to see for example bank statements, a copy that is printed or downloaded and consists of all individual lines of the transaction, instead of just some summary numbers, to look for trends and discrepancies. While it might be easier for you to apply with just one particular lender at times that use these integrations, FindTheLoan.com allows you to connect you to the many types of lenders with varying preferences, in one submission, and have to take them into consideration.

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We are so glad you asked! FindTheLoan.com is not just about empowering and educating borrowers - but also about protecting you and directing you to legitimate lenders.

Our company's UEN number is stated below. You can search for it on the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority's (ACRA) website to check if it is a legitimate company in Singapore. Our CEO is a guest writer for the Consumers Associations of Singapore(CASE) and we have done events with other associations, which you can see from our blogs and social media pages respectively.

However, we have seen scam websites that took other companies' UEN numbers, contents and logos to create similar-looking websites. If you are brought there via an advertisement, SMS or email - Very often, scammers try to direct you to a fake website, for example, FinbTheLoan.com or FindTheLoan.co, hoping that you do not notice the slight difference in the URL and enter your credentials unknowingly into them. So if you are unsure whether you are at a phishing website made to look like the original, always double-check the website's URL at the top of your browser.

Many phishing scam works by stealing your banking account's credentials or credit card details so they can transfer your money. There is no need to enter your card and banking account details to make a loan enquiry. Also, legitimate lenders will never ask you to transfer monies in advance before the loan can be disbursed under the pretext of processing fees or deposits.

The National Crime Prevention Council (NCPC) has a website that aims to educate the public on phishing scams and loan scams among other types of scams. You can also consider checking them out at https://www.scamalert.sg/

Note that, only certain categories of lenders are even allowed to advertise. Licensed moneylenders are not permitted to advertise and send you WhatsApp or SMS soliciting for loans. When using FindTheLoan.com, your contact information is never shared with the lenders until you choose to do so after comparing - protecting your privacy too.

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