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Frequently Asked Questions

Flexible & affordable, instant loans you apply for online

Instant cash loans are ideal for emergencies and unexpected cash shortages and can quickly and easily be obtained online. Complete and submit a simple online loan application and access your money in minutes.

So you’re in a bit of a rut and need some cash to get out, it has happened to just about everyone. Even those with the highest degree of restraint in managing money have found themselves short of cash at some point or another.

The sooner you need the money, the more it will cost

Think of it the way you would about any service, you'd generally pay more for a “rush rate” then if you accept the normal time frame for the service. With an instant cash loan, you’ll have to repay the principle loan amount in addition to interest and fees which are higher than those on other forms of finance.

In the UK when people hear the phrase short-term loan, they immediately think of a payday loan. We’ll therefore start with this option, because it is indeed the fastest way to get cash online.

A payday loan is an instant cash advance on your salary

It’s an unsecured loan that typically requires no credit search or only a “soft search”, which doesn’t show up on your credit report. This makes a payday loan one of the only solutions for people with bad credit or those who lack any significant credit history to prove to traditional lenders that they’re reliable enough to pay back a loan.

Although interest rates are high, the whole application process can be done online and some lenders will credit the money within just 15 minutes; making it a very popular option. They’ve actually become so popular that most people use mobile phones to complete the online loan application.

Instant loans are mostly used for cash emergencies

Instant cash loans are also known as crisis or emergency loans because they’re not a long term solution for cash flow problems, they’re merely a short-term solution.

It is not difficult to qualify for an instant loan. You merely need to be 18 years of age, a UK resident and prove that you have some form of steady monthly income. Make sure to compare the APR of a few lenders and only borrow exactly the amount you need.

Taking out an instant loan is definitely one of the fastest ways of getting some cash flow going but, it’s certainly not the only option available.

Alternatives to instant loans

Before you take out a loan, do you have any alternative options?

Appealing to family & friends

The best and most affordable way to get some quick cash when you need it the most is from family and friends. They’re likely to be quite understanding and, even though you may feel a bit awkward about asking them, once you’ve repaid the money you’ll find that it may even strengthen your relationship.

If borrowing from family or friends isn’t an option for you and, a bank loan or overdraft request will simply take too long, you’ll have to consider alternative micro lenders offering an instant, short term cash loan.

Selling unused items for fast cash

As an alternative to an instant cash loan, you could sell some items you no longer use or want for some instant cash. If you have gold jewellery or an electronic item you no longer use, why not sell it to avoid the fees and interest you’ll incur from taking out a loan? It may take a little more effort than making a call or filling out a loan application but, it will certainly be worth it.

Use your credit card

Using your credit card may be one of the easiest ways to get money fast. If you’ve reached your credit limit then you'll have to request an increase in your credit limit. You can quickly and easily do this by contacting your credit card provider. You may even already be pre-approved for an increase and can find out by logging in to your online banking profile.

Request an overdraft facility

If you don’t, you’ll end up paying some hefty unauthorised overdraft fees in addition to a higher interest rate. Requesting the overdraft or increased limit will reduce the fees and interest rate so it’s important to contact your service provider.

You will also incur transaction fees if you withdraw the money, whether it was authorised or not. To request an overdraft you can simply call your bank or walk into a branch and they’ll tell you whether they can authorise it or not almost immediately.

The problem with overdrafts is that they’re usually very limited. An unauthorised overdraft may only give you access to £100 while an authorised one will give you about £300.

If you’re in the habit of running into overdrafts you may want to consider changing your account to one which allows overdrafts free of both fees and interest. If you’re happy with your current account but also tend to go over your set credit limit you could contact your bank and request that the overdraft or limit be extended.

Try using a pawnbroker

Pawnbrokers are another option that can help you get cash fast and requires no credit check. In exchange for a loan you put up, or pawn, an item equal to or more valuable than the loan. Antique items and jewellery are usually the most common type of items pawned but, you can simply inquire with the various pawnbrokers if you’d like to put up something less common.

If you repay the loan with interest as agreed you will receive your valuables back, if not, they'll be sold to recover the money at the appraised value. You will be issued with a receipt for the item; hang on to this because if you lose it you may not be able to reclaim it if the value if less than £75.

If the item sells for more than you were loaned, you can receive the difference but, pawnbrokers will never chase you to give it to you so you have to show up and ask for the balance. The loan term will rarely ever exceed 36 months and, you usually get two weeks to back out of the loan should you wish to do so.

To avoid any unexpected issues you should check to see if the pawnbroker is a member of the National Pawnbrokers Association as they have a code of conduct that requires members to conduct their business in an ethical manner. Although this may not save you from having an item undervalued, you’ll certainly have a better chance of recovering your item should things go south.

The interesting fact that you may not be aware of is that pawnbrokers usually offer lower interests rates than payday lenders – so if you’ve got something to up as collateral for a loan and need same day cash – this may be your best option.

Some additional options include asking for a cash advance from your employer, using some money from any savings you may have or getting a loan from a local credit union.  You may also qualify for a Social Fund loan which like a credit union will offer a much lower interest rate than most other lenders.

An instant loan from a traditional lender

Getting a short-term cash loan from a bank is definitely a better alternative than almost all options previously mentioned. This is a perfect option for those who have a good credit history but, if you’re struggling with bad credit and don’t meet the requirements as set out by your bank, you'll have to get a guarantor to help you.

A guarantor loan is where another person, that isn’t financially tied to you like a spouse, provides a guarantee that should you not make payments; they will do so on your behalf. You will still have to prove that you can afford to make the payments but a poor credit history will be, to a certain extent, overlooked.

Although this will certainly not give you access to instant cash, you may want to consider it as an alternative because it will work out to be a lot cheaper. Keep in mind that the guarantor will have to undergo a credit check as well as supply an ID, proof of income and address and sign a contract.

Need more cash than you qualify for?

What if you need more money than you can get from either a bank or a microlender? Another option that relates closely to pawn brokering is logbook loaning.

This is where you put up your car as collateral for a loan. It’s very risky because you may lose your vehicle for a couple of hundred pounds if you don’t repay the loan. Logbook lenders don’t generally allow you to borrow more than half of the value of your vehicle but, this will still provide you with a large loan amount.

A logbook loan carries a very high-interest rate

Because of this, the cost of the loan may, if taken out over the full term of 78 weeks possible for this type of loan, may cost you more than double the value of the loan in interest.

Depending on the lender, you may have to repay the interest first and clear the loan in the last month by repaying the amount you actually borrowed. Some require weekly payments rather than one monthly repayment so you will need to keep track of what you’ve repaid carefully.

We recommend using a micro lender that is a member of the Consumer Credit Trade Association (CCTA) as they are bound by a certain code of conduct that may prevent them from mistreating you. This is the best option for those that need a large sum of money but have a few days to spare to because logbook lenders usually pay a loan out by cheque.

Wondering how this falls into the “instant cash” category? If you need instant cash you can request a cash advance however, this will cost you up to 6% of the value of the loan.

So we’ve discussed ways of getting a cash loan almost instantly but there are a few ways that you can avoid running short of cash before the month is over.

Create & manage your budget

Budgeting – if you’re not already using a monthly budget to guide your spending this is as good a time as any. If you receive a stable monthly income then budgeting is a lot easier than for someone with a variable income.

There is a range of useful budget tools online that you can use for free. These will help you arrange all of your reoccurring monthly expenses as well as incorporate the variable expenses. Once you know how much you have to put aside for each expense you will then know exactly how much you have left over to allocate to non-essentials such as outings.

Making the most of being a part of a dual-income household 

If you’re married and both have an income, you have much stronger budgeting and saving opportunities because you obviously have a larger combined income to work with. Sitting down with your spouse and working out how and when bills and expenses are going to be paid will also ensure you avoid running short of money before the end of the month.

You should pay all of your essential bills as soon as you receive your paycheque; to ensure you pay them on time but also so that you develop a habit of paying the important things first.

Your goal should be to learn how to live as far into the new month using last month’s salary; this will ensure you always have a little extra available to push you through an emergency without damaging your finances. You will also get into the habit of spending consciously and not losing control of your money before the month is over.

Start an emergency fund

Start an emergency fund ahead of time, so should you ever run low on cash – you can simply use this money – interest and fee-free. You may be thinking that you can barely make it through the month so how are you ever going to put away any money to start up an emergency fund but, there are certainly a few tips you can follow to get started.

If you receive a pay increase from work, a bonus or inherit any money you can use it to jump start your emergency fund. You could also find a part-time job or request to work overtime to make some extra money to put towards your emergency fund. You could also have a garage sale or just pawn some things you no longer need or use to start the fund.

Find the best savings account to maximise returns

You should always shop around for the best savings accounts available, one that offers a higher interest rate in addition to easy access to money. There is no use having an emergency fund if it will take you days, or even weeks to get permission to use it.

You will obviously need to replace this money at your earliest convenience but, if you can’t replace it by the next month, you’re not going to have creditors breathing down your neck or charging you excessive fees and interest for the delay. These are the benefits of your hard work and restraint, which you can enjoy when it matters the most.

If you need an instant cash loan, don't be afraid to reach out to a trusted lender or bank; that's what they're there for. If these options are not available to you, try the alternatives that we discussed or appeal to friends and family. Remember to ensure you keep up with you repayments to safeguard your credit history.

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List of direct lenders offering Instant loans

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