Your guide to P2P Lending in Singapore
What you need to know about P2P loans, including how they work and how to compare lenders.
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If you’re looking for a competitive loan, consider the benefits peer-to-peer lending. P2P lending in Singapore offers unique loan opportunities for small businesses and enterprises. Find out if a peer-to-peer loan is right for you and your business.
What is peer to peer (P2P) lending?
Peer-to-peer lending is the practice of lending money to individuals anonymously through a third-party company.
By lending their money, the investors gain access to an attractive fixed income asset class that can yield better returns than other investment options. Borrowers can also take advantage of lower rates. All these are facilitated by a peer-to-peer lending platform that connects borrowers with investors.
Peer-to-peer (P2P), or peer-to-company (P2C) providers do not match individual lenders directly with a borrower. Rather, they enable the lender to invest in a portfolio of consumer loans. In other words, the P2P provider facilitates a platform where investors can finance and earn interest on a portfolio of loans. Borrowers, on the other hand, are given an individual rate based on their credit score and other factors.
How P2P lending works for borrowers and investors
- Borrowers. To borrow, you submit an application to the P2P lender. The provider then evaluates your eligibility by verifying your identity, credit history, employment, and financials. It will assess the risk of the loan and give you a personalised interest rate. The P2P provider will usually deduct an application fee from the final amount transferred to you.
- Investors. Potential investors review the available applications and identify the borrowers they would like to fund. Investors will not be able to see any personal information from borrowers. Funds are then transferred to the borrower and their repayments will be made to the investor based on how much of the loan they funded.
P2P lending in Singapore
If your business is in need of working capital or you’re looking to diversify your investment portfolio, these are the main P2P lending platforms in Singapore for you to consider:
- Funding Societies
- Capital Match
Though small at present, the peer-to-peer industry is eyeing a big potential market. Its convenience and competitive interest rates enhance its appeal in comparison to mainstream financial institutions. This is also the first borrowing platform to open up the doors to smaller investors looking for higher and more secure returns.
It is unlikely that the P2P industry will replace banks altogether, but by harnessing technology and offering tiered interest rates to borrowers based on their credit scores, P2P providers can provide a convenient alternative to banks and other financial institutions.
Pros and cons of P2P lending in Singapore
- Borrowers can secure loans at rates generally lower than those offered by banks
- A speedy, online application process
- P2P lenders normally offer lower loan amounts than banks
- A higher return on funds compared with other investments
- The opportunity to diversify your investments in addition to spreading your funds over several loans for minimising your risks
- Lenders will need to know that there is no government-backed guarantee on the funds they provide.
How to compare P2P loans
- Are they compliant? Check the credibility of the platform that you’re considering. They should have a credit license listed on the bottom of the page. Also, check what banks or services they are affiliated with.
- What rates are you being offered? The rates offered by P2P lenders in Singapore are usually lower than those offered by the banks, but you should also see whether they are fixed or variable.
- What fees are associated with your account? Take a look at the effective interest rate to see how much the loan is likely to cost you with the fees included, and remember to check whether you will need to pay any upfront fees to set up the loan.
- What are your loan terms and the amount you are borrowing? Some P2P lenders in Singapore may not be able to offer you as high a loan amount as other banks or lenders, so check to see that you’ll be able to borrow what you need for as long as you need it.
- Have you researched the lender’s reputation? The lender’s reputability should also form part of your comparison. You might want to read independent customer reviews online, see how easy the lender is to be contacted, and how transparent they are with their fee and rate information.
- What are the requirements for an investor? As a borrower, you want to ensure the person you will be borrowing from is reliable and that the lender has strict guidelines in place to ensure no unscrupulous investors find their way into the lending network. Check out the lending requirements before you apply to be aware of the type of people you will be borrowing from.
- Are you eligible to become a borrower? While you want to check that you are eligible, you also want to ensure that the peer-to-peer network doesn’t have a too relaxed borrower eligibility criteria. Some overseas peer-to-peer networks who started lending to borrowers with bad credit failed due to a high number of defaulted loans, so you want to ensure the lender you go with doesn’t engage in high-risk borrowing behaviour.
Frequently asked questions