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Personal loan monthly payment calculator
Use this calculator to find out how much your repayments and interest will be on a personal loan.
Calculate your personal loan monthly paymentCalculate how much you could expect to pay each month
|Loan terms (in years)|
How to use this personal loan repayments calculator
- Enter the amount you want to borrow under Loan amount.
- Write the loan term in years (not months) under Loan terms.
- Enter the loan’s interest rate if there are no fees under Interest rate. Otherwise, write the annual percentage rate (APR), which includes interest and fees.
- Hit Calculate.
- Review your results.
In addition to the monthly payment, our personal loan repayments calculator also tells you how much you’ll pay back on the principal and the total interest you’ll pay. This total interest includes fees if you use your loan’s APR instead of its interest rate.
- Principal. The amount that you currently owe from the money you borrow. Your loan principal is the same as your loan amount when you first take out your loan, and it decreases every time you make a payment.
- Monthly payment. The amount of money you’re required to pay on your loan each month. Part of your monthly payment goes toward interest and the rest goes toward your principal.
Is a lower monthly payment always better?
Not necessarily. A lower monthly payment might have less of an impact on your day-to-day expenses. But it can be more expensive in the long run.
Why’s that? To get a lower monthly payment, you need a longer loan term. And the longer you take to pay back a loan, the more time there is for interest to add up. This can get particularly pricey if you have a high interest rate.
If you want to lower your total loan cost, look at your budget and figure out how much you can comfortably afford to pay each month. Look for a loan that offers a monthly repayment around that amount.
Compare personal loans
How do I lower my personal loan monthly payments?
If you’re looking to take out a personal loan, below are a few ways to lower your monthly payments:
- Get a lower interest rate. In order to get a lower rate, you will need to improve your credit score first. Pay off any existing debts on time, correct any late payments, keep your credit balance low and avoid too many hard credit checks.
- Extend the loan term. If you don’t have time to improve your credit score first, lengthening the loan term is the easier and faster way to reduce your monthly payment amount. However, you pay more interest overall with a longer loan term.
- Get a guarantor. A guarantor is someone who agrees to cosign the loan with you. Your guarantor’s finances should be in excellent shape in order to qualify for a better rate.
- See if there are financing fees. Is the rate an interest rate or APR? An interest rate has no financing fees, while an APR includes the interest rate plus financing fees. Be sure to review lender fees to know when they’ll be applicable and where you can avoid them.
- Get a secured loan. A secured loan lowers your interest rate, which lowers your monthly payments.
Secured loans vs unsecured loans
The difference between a secured loan and an unsecured loan is the collateral. When a loan is backed by collateral, it is a secured loan. When a loan isn’t backed by collateral, it is an unsecured loan.
Collateral, sometimes referred to as security, is an asset of significant value that the lender can seize if the borrower fails to repay the loan. Secured loans are less risk than unsecured loans because the lender can repossess and sell the collateral in the event of loan default. For this reason, secured loans are typically cheaper than unsecured loans in terms of interest costs.
How are my interest rate and loan term determined?
Your interest rate is typically determined by your credit score and overall financial position. The lender’s eligibility requirements and risk tolerance affects the interest rate too. Before applying, it always helps to improve your financial position and boost your credit score.
The loan term is easier to negotiate with a lender than the interest rate. Normally, borrowers can request a certain term based on how much they want their monthly payment to be. The longer the term is, the lower the monthly payment will be, but the overall interest cost will be higher. However, some lenders may be more stringent about loan terms. It depends who you finance with.
What’s considered a good interest rate on a personal loan?
Interest rate depends on a borrower’s personal factors, especially their credit score. If you have good to excellent credit, usually a score of 660 or higher, you may encounter a range of 4% to 19.99%. If your credit is fair or bad, usually below 660, you may encounter a 20% to 47% range. But credit score is just one of the factors that lenders look at, and your rate can vary depending on your overall finances.
Example: Good credit vs bad credit monthly payments
Stacey has a credit score of 600. Stacey’s best friend, Martin, has a credit score of 730. Together, Stacey and Martin would like to invest in a leisure boat worth $20,000. They’ve decided to take out a $10,000 unsecured personal loan each to purchase the boat. Because Stacey and Martin have different credit scores, their loans and monthly payments look very different.
Stacey’s loan application was approved with a 30% interest rate due to her poor credit. Martin’s loan application was approved with a 10% interest rate due to his good credit. Below is a breakdown of their monthly payments and overall interest cost on a 3-, 5- and 7-year term.
|Monthly payment on 3-year term||$424.52||$322.67|
|Total interest paid over 3-year term||$5,282.57||$1,616.19|
|Monthly payment on 5-year term||$323.53||$212.47|
|Total interest paid over 5-year term||$9,412.04||$2,748.23|
|Monthly payment on a 7-year term||$285.93||$166.01|
|Total interest paid over 7-year term||$14,018.10||$3,944.99|
Where to get a personal loan
In general, there are three types of lenders: traditional lenders, alternative lenders and private lenders.
Traditional lenders include banks, credit unions and other financial institutions. These lenders typically have the strictest eligibility requirements, but offer the best personal loan rates and terms.
Alternative lenders include financial services companies, online lenders and other non-traditional creditors. Usually, these lenders have looser eligibility requirements, but charge higher interest rates and have less favourable terms because of the additional risk they take on.
Finally, private lenders include anyone who is in the business of lending money in an unregulated market. Common examples of private lenders include friends, family and private equity lenders. Normally, friends and family won’t charge interest, but expect you to repay the principal. Other private lenders can charge whatever interest they want and can design their own loan terms and conditions. Since they operate in an unregulated market, the onus is on the borrower to consider all the details.
All of these lender types offer personal loans. They could be secured or unsecured. Which type of lender you choose depends on your financial situation, credit score and goals.
How to qualify for a personal loan
Each lender is unique, which means that how to qualify depends on who you work with. In general, the below is required for personal loan qualification:
- Credit check. Most lenders want to see credit scores of 660 or higher, especially if the personal loan will be unsecured. That doesn’t mean you can’t get a personal loan with bad credit. There are online lenders who work with borrowers with bad credit, but expect to pay higher interest.
- Steady income. To make payments on your personal loan, most lenders want to see steady income. Without stable cash inflows, there’s a greater risk that you’ll default on a loan.
- Age of majority. You will need to be the age of majority in your province or territory to qualify.
- Be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident. Having a valid Canadian address and residency is often required for qualification.
3 alternatives to personal loans
Personal loans are simply one way to finance. Before proceeding with a personal loan, consider the below alternatives to ensure you’re making the best financing decision:
- Line of credit. A line of credit allows you to flexibly borrow up to a certain approved limit. You are only required to make the interest payments and can pay down the principal when it’s convenient for you. This is a great option for individuals who don’t have steady income, such as business owners or seasonal workers.
- Credit card. If the amount you’re trying to finance isn’t large, a credit card is a good option. The interest rate on credit cards can be high, so make sure you can pay down the balance in a reasonable amount of time.
- Home equity loan/line of credit. Homeowners with positive equity in their property can use this option. These loans or lines of credit use positive equity in your home as security for financing. Keep in mind that if you default on the loan or line of credit, you could lose your home.
Knowing how much you could expect to pay each month equips you with a crucial piece of information for comparing personal loans. Two lenders may offer the same amounts but with very different interest rates and terms, causing one to be more expensive than the other.
Our personal loan monthly payment calculator also helps you understand what loan amount you can afford to borrow.
Interested in calculating something different? Check out our full list of personal loan calculators.
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