Fair Finance short term loans review

If money is tight at the moment, you might be considering a short term loan from a high-street money shop. Learn more about your in-store and online borrowing options with Fair Finance.

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Fair Finance

What is Fair Finance?

Faisel Rahman launched Fair Finance in 2005 with the aim of providing credit and advice to the most vulnerable in society. Fair Finance states that most of its customers are ignored by mainstream financial services, but it says it’s willing to consider those with a bad credit rating. Its rates are generally lower than instalment loans from payday lenders, but higher than you might get with a bank or a personal loan for bad credit. It is a direct lender authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

How do Fair Finance loans work?

Fair Finance offers high-cost short-term loans between £100 and £1,000 (and up to £3,000 for returning customers) over periods of 6 to 18 months. It considers applications from customers that are either working, on benefits or have a poor credit history. Customers can repay in either weekly or monthly instalments – the overall cost will be slightly different depending on which option you choose.

You can submit an application for a Fair Finance loan either on-line or by phone. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, Fair Finance has closed its branches and is no longer offering in-person applications.

Key features of Fair Finance short term loans

  • Loan amount. Borrow £100-£3,000. New customers are limited to borrowing £1,000, but you’re eligible for a top-up loan if you make 6 months of reliable payments, and you’ve repaid at least 50% of your original loan. The top-up loan allows you to pay back at a lower interest rate, too.
  • Loan term. You are given 6-18 months to pay back your loan. Flexible payment terms, with the choice of paying back either weekly or monthly.
  • Multiple languages. Advisers at Fair Finance speak over 12 different languages, including Spanish and Portuguese.
  • Build your credit rating. Fair Finance will tell credit agencies that you’re paying back your loan on time, thereby helping to improve your credit history. Other lenders can then see this, which may help future applications for loans.
  • Apply in-store or online. The company has sites only in London, so if you live elsewhere, you may have to apply online. If you work, getting an appointment could be difficult, too, as the sites are closed on weekends and shut at 5.30pm.
  • Not for profit. All profits Fair Finance makes charging interest go back towards financing customers.
  • Slow application process. With an onus on sustainable lending, the application process will take at least 24-48 hours. Other short term lenders could give you a loan within a matter of hours.
  • 5% administration fee. Unlike some other lenders, Fair Finance charges an upfront fee when you sign the loan agreement. This will be 5% of the amount you’re borrowing.
  • Referral scheme. Once you’re a Fair Finance customer, you can make anywhere between £20-£40 each time you refer a new person to the loans service.
  • No penalty fees. It won’t charge for late repayments, or for making early or extra payments either.

Warning: Late repayment can cause you serious money problems. For help, go to moneyhelper.org.uk.

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 Fair Finance’s loans hold up against the competition?

Table: promoted deals, sorted by total payable

If you’re considering a short term loan, its a good idea to compare different providers and find the best arrangement for you. If you have quote from Fair Finance, you can use the table below to estimate the cost of the loan that you have in mind, from a range of popular short-term lenders.

How much do you need to borrow?


How long do you need to borrow over?


Name Product Available Amounts Monthly repayment Total payable Link
Lending Stream Instalment Loan
£50 to £1,500
Go to site
More Info
Representative example: Borrow £200 for 6 months at a rate of 292% p.a. (fixed). Representative 1,333% APR and total payable £386.61 in 6 monthly payments of £64.44.
The Money Platform Short Term Loan
£250 to £1,000
Check eligibility
More Info
Representative example: Borrow £500 for 6 weeks at a rate of 255.5% p.a. Representative APR 839.20% and total payable: £647 in 1 payment.
QuidMarket Short Term Loan
£300 to £1,500
Go to site
More Info
Representative example: Borrow £300 for 3 months at a rate of 292% p.a. (fixed). Representative APR 1,301% and total payable: £454.37 in 3 instalments of £151.46.
CASH4UNOW Short Term Loan
£150 to £1,000
Check eligibility
More Info
Representative example: Borrow £200 for 4 months at a rate of 292% p.a. (fixed). Representative APR 1306% and total payable: £332.00, in 4 payments of £83.00.
Mr Lender Short Term Loan
£200 to £1,000
Go to site
More Info
Representative example: Borrow £200 for 6 months at a rate of 292% p.a. (fixed). Representative APR 1,256.0% and total payable £367.40 in payments of £81.33, £73.23, £65.13, £57.33, £49.24, and £41.14.
With this loan your monthly repayment decreases over time. Our 'Monthly repayment' above is a representative figure designed to help compare lenders side by side.
Moneyboat Short Term Loan
£200 to £1,500
Go to site
More Info
Representative example: Borrow £400 for 4 months at a rate of 255.5% p.a. (fixed). Representative APR 939.5% and total payable: £597.48 in 4 payments of £149.37.
Fund Ourselves (Welendus) Short Term Loan
£100 to £1,500
Go to site
More Info
Representative example: Borrow £200 for 122 days at a rate of 211% p.a. (fixed). Representative 501.2% APR and total payable £286.82 in 4 monthly payments of £71.71.
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Compare up to 4 providers

Please note: You should always refer to your loan agreement for exact repayment amounts as they may vary from our results.

We compare payday/short-term loans from

Lending Stream Instalment Loan
The Money Platform Short Term Loan
QuidMarket Short Term Loan
CASH4UNOW Short Term Loan
Mr Lender Short Term Loan
Moneyboat Short Term Loan
Fund Ourselves (Welendus) Short Term Loan

Is high-cost, short-term borrowing a good idea?

“High-cost, short term credit” products offer a fast fix when you get into difficulty with your finances, but are a very expensive method of borrowing. You should only consider this as a last resort – they’re unlikely to solve your money problems in the long term, and aren’t suitable for borrowing over longer periods, or for sustained borrowing. Before you apply for a short-term loan, make sure you have considered all other options carefully. Find out more at moneyadviceservice.org.uk.

What are the eligibility requirements?

You should only apply for a Fair Finance personal loan if you’re certain you can meet the repayment terms, and you meet the following criteria:

  • At least 18 years old
  • Getting income from either work or benefits

If you visit a branch, you should take with you:

  • Proof of name: a passport or driving licence
  • Proof of address: tenancy agreement or utility bill
  • Proof of income: payslip or benefit letters
  • Bank statements: all from the most recent 3 months

Fair Finance considers customers with a bad credit rating.

You can still apply if:Your application is unlikely to succeed if:
You have been turned down for credit beforeYou are late with payments on several loans, credit cards, your rent or utility bills
You have recently moved to the UKYou have several payday or short term loans
You are currently bankrupt, in an individual voluntary arrangement or a debt relief order

How does a loan from Fair Finance work if applying online?

1. Fill out the online application form.
2. The lender will review your information and do a credit check. You will receive a decision within one working day.
3. If approved, you’ll have to send in a copy of all your bank statements from the previous 3 months, as well as one payslip and/or a benefits letter.
4. Once these documents are verified, you can sign the contract online.
5. Funds will be sent to your account within one working day after that.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, Fair Finance has closed its branches, so you can only apply for a loan online or by calling 020 8988 0627.

Additional borrowing options

  • Top-ups. Fair Finance does allow loan top-ups, however, you’ll need to have proven your trustworthiness by making six months worth of good repayments and re-paying at least 50% of your loan. To apply for a top-up, you’ll need to call Fair Finance and do this over the phone.
We show offers we can track - that's not every product on the market...yet. Unless we've said otherwise, products are in no particular order. The terms "best", "top", "cheap" (and variations of these) aren't ratings, though we always explain what's great about a product when we highlight it. This is subject to our terms of use. When you make major financial decisions, consider getting independent financial advice. Always consider your own circumstances when you compare products so you get what's right for you.

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