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 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 £400 and £1,000 (and up to £3,000 for returning customers) over periods of 6–18 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 online 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 . 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. New clients are limited to 12 months. 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.
  • Aadministration fee. Unlike some other lenders, Fair Finance charges an upfront fee when you sign the loan agreement.
  • Referral scheme. Once you’re a Fair Finance customer, you can earn money 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.

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

Pros and cons


  • Quick access to funds.Fair Finance aim to give you a decision within 1 working day and deposit the money in your account on the same day.
  • Less than perfect credit scores considered.Fair Finance states that it doesn’t look at people as “numbers” and will consider income and expenditure when making a decision about your loan.


  • Administration fee. Fair Finance charges you an administration fee for taking out a loan.
  • High interest rates.Like any payday/short term loan, Fair Finance loans have higher rates than other forms of personal loans. Be sure to exhaust these options before turning to a short term loan.

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.

Fair Finance customer reviews

Fair Finance has very high ratings on Trustpilot. From over 600 reviews it came out with 4.8 stars which is ranked as ‘Excellent’ (updated August 2023).

Customers praised Fair Finance for having friendly and professional customer service as well as a fast and easy application process.

Customer support

You can contact Fair Finance by phone on 020 8988 0627 or by email at enquiries@fairfinance.org.uk.

Our verdict

If approved, Fair Finance could give you access to same day funding. However, as a high-cost short-term loan, interest rates are high so ensure that you have compared all your options. There is also an administration fee to be considered, especially when other short term lenders may not charge any additional fees.

Frequently asked questions

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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. Most of the data in Finder's comparison tables has the source: Moneyfacts Group PLC. In other cases, Finder has sourced data directly from providers.

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