If you have problems keeping up with daily expenses or paying the utility bill on time, it’s worth considering a loan, especially when you’re considered a foreigner in another country.
Not only can a loan help you solve financial problems, but if the payments are on time, it can improve your credit score. But is it possible for foreigners to get a loan in Singapore?
The good news is, there are several foreigner loan options for non-residents in this country, and there are different loan types to cater to your needs. This article will discuss the various financing options that can help expats living and working in Singapore.
Luckily, there are many places that a non-Singaporean can borrow money from. These will often be unsecured loans and can either be personal loans specifically for foreigners or personal loans usable by permanent residents and non-residents alike.
Either way, it is best to look at the different options you can get in Singapore if you are from a foreign country.
Singapore has one of the strongest macro economies in the world. Its banks are considered solid and stable concerning global competition. Strong banks can offer better loans to their clients than their competitors, which may help you get a better loan product and a generally lower interest rate than its neighbouring countries.
|Banks||Foreigners’ minimum annual income||Annual Interest Rates||Effective Interest Rates||Processing fee|
|HSBC PERSONAL LOAN||S$40,000||3.8% p.a.||7% EIR||0|
|STANDARD CHARTERED CASHONE||S$60,000||3.88% p.a.||7.56% EIR||0|
|OCBC EXTRACASH LOAN||S$45,000||5.42% p.a. to 5.54% p.a||12.11% EIR to 10.96% EIR||200|
|CITIBANK QUICK CASH (NEW LOAN CUSTOMERS)||S$42,000||3.99% p.a.||7.5% EIR||0|
There are many banks in Singapore that you can choose from to fund a loan. Once you’ve determined your needs and what you can afford, you should consider the competitive advantages of each bank, as well as their reputation.
The interest rate you pay will vary with factors such as the type of loan, the term, and your credit score. To get the lowest possible rates, be sure to compare the loan quotes of three or four banks before you commit.
The HSBC Personal Loan has an interest rate of 3.4% p.a. (6.5% p.a.) for those earning above S$30,000 per annum on a loan tenure of 7 years. The processing fee waiver excludes all fees related to that transaction. A foreign resident residing in Singapore must have an annual income of S$40,000, which is significantly less than that required by other banks.
Currently, HSBC Personal Loan provides the lowest interest rates among the best personal loans for foreigners in Singapore, making it the foremost choice to consider.
The interest rate on the Standard Chartered CashOne Personal Loan is 3.48% per year (EIR from 6.95% p.a. for longer repayment periods), which makes it one of the most competitive offers out there. Although no processing fee is involved, Standard Chartered charges an annual fee of S$199 for the first year and none for the second year until the repayment period (subject to terms and conditions).
The interest rate starts at 4.7% p.a. (EIR 9.46% p.a.) for a personal loan from OCBC. To repay your loan over a 12- to 60-month period, you will need to open an OCBC EasiCredit or Credit Card account. However, this loan comes with a one-time processing fee of 1% of the loan amount. In this case, a S$20,000 loan would incur a S$200 processing fee. Any foreigner must apply for an OCBC Personal Loan with a minimum loan amount of S$1,000 if you want to get approved.
You can apply for a Citi Quick Cash Loan with an interest rate starting from 3.45%. P.a. (EIR 6.5% p.a.) for a loan of S$20,000 and above. Citibank customers applying through SingSaver can enjoy this rate exclusively. You won’t have to pay a processing fee for a Citi Quick Cash Loan. You can also use your Citibank Ready Credit account and Citi Credit Card to credit a maximum of 90% of your outstanding credit limit.
Whether you don’t meet the minimum salary requirements or personal loans from banks just don’t work for you, there are other options you can check out to get the money you need.
A line of credit is an arrangement in which a lender sets up a sum of money for you to borrow over an extended period. You borrow at your discretion and only pay interest when you do so. The line of credit is typically accessible from banks or other financial institutions, and it’s a cheaper option than getting separate smaller loans.
A credit card balance transfer is the process of using one credit card company or lender to pay off your debt with another. When you transfer a balance to another company, you free yourself from the original contract with the company you’re paying the balance to. If you have good enough credit to qualify for a balance transfer, it’s generally the best debt consolidation option to offset your current high-interest loans.
A balance transfer can help you pay off your card balance faster and save you a significant amount of money in interest.
When you’re seeking a small amount of cash you could use for immediate expenses, you can go to a licensed moneylender for personal loans in Singapore.
Interest rate and loan tenor will vary for each lender, and the same can be said for their requirements. Shop around with different lenders to see which terms work for you.
The Factors to Consider When Shopping for Foreigner Loans
Note that all these factors are inherently linked, so each needs to be carefully evaluated when seeking a loan.
Every type of loan comes with a limit on the amount you can borrow each month and the maximum loan amount you can borrow each year. The amount you can borrow will then determine how much you pay in interest over time. Make sure not to take on more than you can handle.
The interest rate is the percentage you have to pay each month over the time you want to borrow. This is a significant number to consider because it determines how much money you can afford to pay back over the life of the loan. Interest rates can be different for different types of loans, so it’s important to know what the best rates are available when taking out a loan for your specific situation.
The loan tenure (or loan tenor) refers to the duration of a given loan. The type of loan you take will affect the terms and interest rates of any subsequent loans you take out.
Taking out a loan involves committing to repay what you borrow over time. That particular period also determines the other costs borrowers would need to pay. An example is interest rates, which can increase with the loan maturity period.
To get the best possible rate on your new loan, it’s crucial to understand how much you can afford to spend in the long run. The total cost of the loan includes all fees and expenses associated with securing the loan, such as lender charges, late fees, borrower fees, taxes, and loan administration fees. It also includes any payments you make on-time and any losses you sustain while making payments.
You will need to fulfil specific requirements depending on the bank or licensed moneylender of your choice. Moreover, to be eligible for personal loans for foreigners, you must meet the following criteria:
- Be between 21 to 55 years of age.
- Having an active Singapore Work Pass (PEP, S-Pass, or employment pass)
- Have full-time employment, with a minimum annual income of $40,000 – $60,000.
You will also need to submit documents that can provide additional information during loan application:
- Proof of identity – A valid passport and a valid Singapore work pass (PEP, S-Pass, or employment pass)
- Proof of residential address. A residential tenancy agreement (and/or your most recent phone bills, PUB bills, bank statement, or other utility bills.)
- Proof of earning as a salaried employee. Your latest CPF statement with at least three months of contributions from your monthly salary showing and your latest income tax assessment – or your latest payslip plus a bank statement showing the money being credited, your latest CPF statement, or income tax assessment. This also serves to establish if your monthly income can meet the minimum salary requirements.
- Proof of earning if you’re self-employed, on commission, or earning variable amounts. You must show your last 12 months CPF contribution statement or your latest income tax assessment.
- Proof of earning if you have less than three months of work experience. You must present an employment letter confirming the start date and salary, as well as a bank statement showing the salary is credited.
The application process for a personal loan for a foreigner varies from bank to bank–you might find a lower minimum annual income requirement in some banks compared to others.
But one thing that seems essential is your ability to support yourself financially. That means you can apply even if you have no local credit history. Just make sure that you more or less meet important eligibility factors, like age, having an employment pass, and meeting the minimum annual income.
How is a foreigner loan different from a personal loan?
The main difference between foreign loans and other loans is that the former are issued to individuals who are not citizens or residents of the country granting the loan. There are also stricter requirements for a foreigner compared to a permanent resident, like needing to meet a higher minimum annual income or monthly income.
How much can a foreigner loan in Singapore?
The ability of a foreigner living in Singapore to obtain loans varies by bank, requirements, and loan type. The maximum loan amount can be anywhere between six and ten times the amount of their monthly salary.
Can an S-Pass holder apply for a loan?
In a nutshell, yes. A valid S-Pass is among the most basic and often requested documents by lenders when foreigners apply for personal loans in Singapore.
Where can you take an urgent personal loan in Singapore?
Most banks and licensed money lenders will approve loans and give you the funds you need quickly. The approval time can take as little as a minute to 48 hours, and the loan disbursement time can range from one to five days, depending on the financial institution.
This isn’t exclusive to Singapore citizens, and foreigners can take advantage of this option should they choose to.
The main reason is that it is one of the safest and most reliable ways to finance your business or personal needs in the country. More importantly, the level of service provided by banks and financial institutions in Singapore is superb. You will find that many local businesses owe their success to these institutions.
- Before taking out a loan, consider the overall cost, including the interest rate and amount, processing fee charges, repayment terms and if your monthly income can support it.
- Get familiar with all the terms and conditions before signing any contract by reading the fine print. There may be hidden fees that are not as obvious at first glance.
- Get your paperwork in order and keep good records of all income and expenses.
- Stick with established banks and moneylenders to take advantage of their terms.
It’s easy to jump into an option with the lowest interest rates, but there are still other factors to consider before making a decision. With so many different types of companies offering loans and so many possibilities available, it can be quite challenging to make sure that you are getting the best deal possible.
Thankfully, Instant Loan has made it their mission to be a resource for this audience, providing valuable insight on how foreign loans work and what sort of foreign loan one can apply for.
Instant Loan enables the rapid assessment of loan options, alternatives, and decision-making for borrowers facing difficult or uncompromising financial circumstances by providing a list of loans for foreigners from the top licensed moneylenders in Singapore.