The innovative short-term lender Creditspring offers customers a new way to deal with unexpected expenses. In return for a fixed monthly membership fee of £6, you can borrow £250 up to twice a year at 0% interest.
London-based Creditspring, which launched in September 2018, was founded by two former bankers. Their stated aim was to give consumers access to credit in a simpler, safer and cheaper way. Instead of paying interest on money borrowed, customers pay a fixed membership fee which amounts to £72 per year – a bit like an insurance policy.
Creditspring is limited to those with an annual income of at least £20,000, and you have to be a member for 14 days before you can draw your first advance. You’ll also be subject to credit and affordability checks.
Creditspring is a trading name of Inclusive Finance Limited, and is a direct lender authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).
Key features of Creditspring membership
Soft search facility. If you apply and aren’t eligible, your application will not affect your credit score. It will leave a “soft footprint” on your credit report that only you will be able to see.
Membership costs £6 per month Creditspring states that you will never pay more than £72 over any 12 months, however if you opt not to take out any loans, you will still pay the full membership fee.
Cooling-off period. Creditspring has a 14-day waiting period before you can take out a loan. The aim is for people to use their advances as a back-up plan for future emergencies, not to use immediately.
Borrow £250 twice a year. Get access to two on-demand cash advances of £250 per year. Your second loan will be available as soon as you have repaid the first.
Repay over four months. Advances are paid back in four equal instalments of £62.50.
0% interest. Creditspring does not charge interest on its loans. You’ll only pay the monthly membership fee (as well as repaying the money you borrow).
Early repayment. You can repay all or part of your advance early at any time. Your monthly repayments would then be adjusted according to your new remaining balance.
No late fees. Creditspring will not charge you if you are late with a monthly payment or a loan instalment. However, doing this could harm your credit rating which will make it more difficult for you to obtain credit in the future.
Cancel membership at any time. If you choose to cancel while you have a loan outstanding, you’ll need to contact Creditspring to request an early settlement figure.
Please note: high-cost short-term credit is unsuitable for sustained borrowing over long periods and would be expensive as a means of longer-term borrowing.
How do Creditspring loans hold up against the competition?
Table: promoted deals, sorted by total payable
Creditspring has a pretty innovative approach to short-term borrowing, and as such there aren’t too many companies offering a similar service. You can get an idea of the costs of borrowing from some more “standard” short-term lenders by using the table below. These lenders are for when you need money fast, while Creditspring is essentially a kind of insurance against times when you might need money fast in the future.
Ultimately, without knowing what your future holds, it’s hard to know for certain whether Creditspring or a more standard lender would work out cheaper overall. Deciding between these two routes could boil down to how much you personally would value the peace of mind that a service such as Creditspring could offer.
How much money do you need to borrow?
How long do you need to borrow over?
Important information: You should always refer to your loan agreement for exact repayment amounts as they may vary from our results.
How does it work?
If you’d like to become a Creditspring member, simply complete the application form on the website. You will be asked to provide some personal and contact information as well as details about your employment and outgoings. Creditspring will run a “soft” credit search that won’t affect your credit score.
If you’re approved, and opt to become a member, Creditspring will then run a “hard” credit check, which will be visible on your credit record. You can then take out your first cash advance after a 14-day cooling off period. You can expect the money in your account within 24 hours of your request (payments are made between 8am and 8pm 7 days a week, excluding bank holidays).
You’ll have four months to pay back each advance, starting one month from the day you receive it. This means if you borrowed £250 today, Creditspring would collect £62.50 for the next four months on each monthly anniversary.
You can take out your second advance as soon as the first one is repaid in full and on time, and you can have two advances per year.
What are the eligibility requirements?
You should only join and borrow from Creditspring if you are certain you can comfortably meet both the monthly payments and the loan repayments. To become a member you must:
Be aged 18 or over.
Have a UK bank account.
Be in full-time employment.
Earn more than £20,000 a year.
Not have any recent CCJ, IVAs or bankruptcies.
Could I lose my access to credit from Creditspring?
Yes. There are some key circumstances that could invalidate you during your membership:
If you fail to pay monthly membership fee on time.
If you fail to pay a loan repayment payment on time.
If you don’t inform Creditspring immediately when you leave your job; or when your income reduces; or there is any other negative change to your finances.
If you lie in your application.
If, without Creditspring’s consent, you cancel or don’t complete a valid Direct Debit instruction.
Pros and cons of a Creditspring membership
This is a non-exhaustive selection of the advantages and disadvantages membership brings.
Membership can offer peace of mind, to a degree.
When a financial shortfall strikes, you won’t lose time searching for and applying for credit.
For most people, the monthly fee should be comfortably manageable.
You can cancel your membership at any time.
If you end up not needing to borrow, you’ve still lost the membership fees.
When a financial emergency strikes, you might need more than £250.
The minimum income requirement of £20,000p.a. will render the service out of reach to some of those who might benefit most.
The bottom line
Short term loans offer a quick fix when you get into unexpected trouble with your finances, but are realistically an expensive method of borrowing.
Creditspring offers an alternative to those urgent, payday-style loans. It does not charge interest, but the cost of credit is covered in the membership fee which amounts to £72 per year, so you’re effectively choosing guaranteed borrowing over potential, expensive borrowing. Before you become a member, you should consider whether you need to take out short term loans on a regular basis and if it’s a reasonable value option in your circumstances.
Creditspring is for people who plan ahead and are forward thinkers. There is a 14-day waiting period because Creditspring aims for people to use their advances as a back-up plan, for future emergencies. The idea is to encourage people to prepare for unexpected expenses. You have a statutory right to cancel your membership at no cost to you as long as you tell Creditspring within a 14-day period, starting from the day after your agreement was made.
Creditspring offers only option which is to borrow the full amount of £250. However, you can repay early at any time, so if you only need £100, you could borrow £250 and repay £150 right away. In this example, your subsequent monthly repayments would then be £25 per month (not including the cost of your membership).
You can take out the second advance as soon as the first one is repaid in full and on time. You can get two advances per year.
You can repay all or part of your advance early at any time. If you choose to repay part of your advance early, your monthly repayments will be adjusted according to your new remaining balance. Repayments of your advances are always paid in equal instalments. For example, making an additional payment of £50 during the first month will then reduce all four of your monthly repayments by £12.50.
We compare payday/short-term loans from
Chris Lilly is a publisher at finder.com. He's a specialist in credit-based products including business and personal loans, mortgages and credit cards, and is passionate about helping UK consumers make informed decisions about their borrowing. In his spare time Chris likes forcing his kids to exercise more.
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