In this article:
- What are bad credit loans?
- What is bad credit?
- What types of loan can I get with bad credit?
- Why choose allthelenders for a bad credit loan?
- Can I get a bad credit loan with no Guarantor?
- What is a bad credit score?
- Am I more likely to get approved if I apply for a lower amount?
- Are bad credit lenders safe to use?
- What’s the difference between a bad credit loan and a good credit loan?
- Are bad credit loans unsecured?
- Is it worth comparing bad credit loans?
- How do I improve my credit score?
- Will I get an instant decision?
- What happens if my loan is refused?
What are bad credit loans?
Bad Credit Loans are loans that are specifically for people that have some bad or adverse credit. Typically, these type of loans are provided by specialist lenders that only work with customers that may have bad credit.
These type of loans are generally not available from mainstream lenders that would prefer to only lend to those with ‘good credit’.
You could consider the world of good credit loans and bad credit loans as night and day, there are very few lenders that sit in the middle ground and lend to both.
What is Bad Credit?
Bad credit is very subjective and means different things to different people. As a general rule of thumb, someone with a history or missed payments and defaults would be considered to have bad credit.
Someone that has only missed one payment on a credit account wouldn’t really be classed as having bad credit, although missed payments are certainly a trigger for lenders to consider something detrimental has happened to that person’s financial situation.
Most people would know or at least have an idea if they have bad credit. You would know if you have missed lots of payments or if you have been declined for credit in the past.
Having bad credit can be life-changing in many ways – it influences decisions you make and the paths you can take because having bad credit limits your options, not only your credit options but it also affects things like employment opportunities too.
What types of loan can I get with bad credit?
Synonymous with ‘bad credit’, a payday loan is a short term cash advance which should only be considered in an emergency. Considered officially as high-cost short term credit, a payday loan should be a last resort and is repaid in full on your next payday with the interest due. You can find out more about payday loans by looking at our in-depth article here.
Short Term Loans
The payday loan evolved, the short term loan is offered by the same companies that offer payday loans and have all but replaced the payday loan now. More of a traditional loan this is repaid in regular monthly instalments, usually up to 12 months. If you would like to know more about short term loans, why not check out our guide here.
Unsecured Personal Loan
If you’re looking for a longer repayment period than 12 months or for a relatively large amount (more than £2000) then you may need to consider an unsecured loan. Unsecured means that you don’t have to put up any security like a property or guarantor and the loan is agreed based on your credit history and personal circumstances. If you have bad credit, you’ll need to look for lenders that specialise in customers with bad credit, using mainstream lenders would waste your time.
Secured Bad Credit Loans
A far more specialist products, these types of loans again would be provided by a small group of lenders that would look for some kind of security or asset to guarantee the loan gets repaid – in most cases, this would be a property. Given these loans are secured, you would usually be able to borrow significantly higher amounts for longer periods, but beware the costs.
A loan where you have a friend or relative essentially guarantee the loan repayments on your behalf. Whilst the loan is in your name, if you fail to make repayments then your guarantor will be responsible for repaying the loan. Why not read our article on Guarantor Loans if you’re interested in knowing more about them, you can read it here.
Why choose allthelenders for a bad credit loan?
We are one of the UK’s leading price comparison websites for high-cost short term credit and bad credit loan products.
We specialise in helping people with bad credit – we have done for 8 years. We compare more lenders than anyone else and our loan comparisons are 100% fair, independent and impartial.
We also only work with FCA authorised direct lenders so you can be sure that you are not applying with unregulated brokers or lenders. allthelenders is safe, honest and a trusted site. We are an FCA authorised credit broker based in the UK.
Can I get a bad credit loan with no guarantor?
Yes you can, but it really depends on how bad your credit is. Whilst bad credit loans certainly exist, there are different levels of ‘bad’ for lenders.
If you have a history of repeatedly missing repayments, defaulting on loans or credit cards and generally displaying a poor management of your finances you many find it hard to get a bad credit loan, this type of credit is considered too bad to lend to. If this is the case, you may only find you’re offered Guarantor Loans as suitable options.
However, if you’re only ever offered guarantor loans when searching for a loan, it doesn’t always mean that you have bad credit – it could also indicate that you already have a lot of credit commitments so are not suitable for a personal loan.
Loans are not like credit cards, whilst having many credit cards with zero or low balances won’t harm your credit score, having many personal loans will.
What is a bad credit score?
There are 3 main credit reference agencies in the UK and all of them have different credit scores that fall into the ‘very poor’ or ‘poor’ categories.
Formerly known as CallCredit, Transunion give you a score of between 0 and 710 and their credit assessments break down like this:
|0 – 550||Very Poor|
|551 – 565||Poor|
|566 – 603||Fair|
|604 – 627||Good|
|628 – 710||Excellent|
Experian are probably the best known and largest credit reference agency in the UK. Scores here range from 0 to 999 and break down as follows:
|0 – 560||Very Poor|
|561 – 720||Poor|
|721 – 880||Fair|
|881 – 960||Good|
|961 – 999||Excellent|
One of the UK’s oldest credit reference agencies, Equifax scores go from 0 to 700 and break down as follows:
|0 – 279||Very Poor|
|280 – 379||Poor|
|380 – 419||Fair|
|420 – 465||Good|
|466 – 700||Excellent|
Credit scores are largely there as a visual reference for the general public, they are not used by lenders to decide whether or not to give you credit. A lending decision is far more complicated than saying your score is higher or lower than their expected score.
Am I more likely to get approved if I apply for a lower amount?
There is no evidence to suggest that applying for a lower amount will get you accepted. You should only ever apply to borrow exactly what you need and never more.
If you are asking yourself this question, then you do not truly need the amount you are applying for. Borrowing larger amounts means more money to repay in interest and increases your monthly repayments.
If a lender is unable to offer you the amount you asked for they will likely indicate that whilst they cannot accept you for that amount, they would be able to lend you a smaller amount and they would usually tell you this. However, do not take less than you actually need if it means having to apply elsewhere to make up the remainder as this will harm your credit report.
Are bad credit lenders safe to use?
It is never a bad thing to do some quick and simple checks on a lender website just to be safe. Generally speaking all lenders will have this information in the footer of their website:
- FCA licence number
- ICO (Information Commissioners Office) licence number, this is for data protection
- A telephone number and email address
- A UK address
These are the bare minimum requirements you should be looking for. As long as the lender meets all of these then the lender would be considered safe to use.
Whilst on the whole we are dubious about lenders using review sites such a Trustpilot for customer feedback, you should be mindful of lenders that have consistently low scores. Having an FCA licence doesn’t automatically mean the firm are good lenders.
It’s always worth checking if the lender appears right here on allthelenders also, we only work with the best lenders in the industry – if the lender is unwilling to have their loans compared against others, this could be a red flag.
What’s the difference between a bad credit loan and a good credit loan?
Primarily the difference would be in the cost of the loan. If you have poor credit you will likely pay more interest on the loan to compensate for the higher risk the lenders take in lending to those with poor credit.
Having a bad credit score means that you will have fewer borrowing options than someone with good credit and the lenders that operate in the bad credit market know this so are able to charge more for the loans.
In terms of the loan companies themselves, there are no real differences. You will find that most household names that you may recognise do not offer bad credit loans so the bad credit lenders will likely be companies that you have never heard of, with the very few exceptions.
Some bad credit lenders do not have any way of applying directly and you’ll need to apply through a broker in order to be considered, using a service like our Eligibility Checker is a great way to see the lenders that will accept you before you apply and before you have a hard credit search done.
Are bad credit loans unsecured?
For the most part, yes, however, it depends on who you have applied with and for how much. You should be aware if the loan you are applying for is secured or unsecured before applying.
Secured loans are particularly specialised and much harder to find so there is a good chance that most loan options you see would be unsecured.
Unsecured loans are generally a better option for most people – should something bad happen that stops you from repaying your loan it means the lender cannot take your home or anything else that may otherwise be secured against a loan.
Is it worth comparing different bad credit loan deals?
Arguably, it’s more important to compare bad credit loans whenever possible because of the cost of the loan is much higher than good credit loans.
Costs in the bad credit loan sector can vary greatly and a £2000 loan, for example, could end up costing you either £3000 or £4000 or maybe even more (total amount repayable). There is no reason at all not to compare bad credit loans, after all, we’re all after the best deal possible aren’t we?
Some people falsely believe that applying to the most expensive lender will give them a better chance of getting approved for a loan. This is absolutely false and even the most expensive lenders have their strict lending criteria to adhere to.
Having a choice is always beneficial to the customer and this applies to most things in life, when it comes to loans it’s no different and it could mean saving a considerable sum of money.
How do I improve my credit score?
If you are looking to improve your credit score and the way lenders see you, you’ll be pleased to know that it’s a really easy process, but it takes time.
Changes do not happen overnight so you must be in it for the long haul, however, if you follow these steps you’ll be sure to see your credit score creep up over time.
Stop applying for credit
Continuously applying for credit tells lenders that you’re desperate or in some kind of financial trouble so this is best to avoid. Just because you received an email from a company saying you may be eligible for this card or that loan, if you don’t need it don’t apply just for the sake of it.
Don’t miss any payments
It’s important to maintain your payments on all of your existing credit agreements, even if it’s just the minimum payments. Missing payments is a big red flag that you’re having difficulties managing your existing levels of debt so lenders would be unlikely to give you more credit.
Try and pay more than the minimum
If you have credit cards, where possible try and make bigger payments where possible to clear the balance quicker.
Make sure your accounts and details are up to date
Ensure you’re registered on the electoral role and that all of the information the credit agencies hold on you is accurate.
Will I get an instant decision?
In most cases when you apply for a bad credit loan online you’ll get an instant decision. In some very rare cases where the lender is unable to get to a decision online they refer the application to be reviewed manually.
If this happens you’ll usually see a message like ‘We need a bit more information’ and they’ll say that they will be in touch.
This doesn’t mean it’s been declined so it’s best not to continue applying for loans until you hear back from the lender.
If you’re lucky enough to get approved instantly, usually the whole loan process is completed online, including the signing of your loan agreements and depending on the time of day you apply, many lenders pay out the same day.
What happens if my loan is refused?
If your loan application is declined, it can be hard not to feel a little deflated however you need to think about the reasons why you were declined.
You can now get full access to your credit report online for free so you can see what the lenders see – take a look and if there’s an anomaly on there try and get it fixed. If not, think about how you can improve your credit score to make you more appealing to lenders.
You can find your Transunion credit report at Credit Karma, your Experian report at Money Saving Experts Money Club and your Equifax credit report with them directly.
Having a loan application refused can lead to panic and desperation resulting in multiple applications to many different loan companies, but this could only make the situation worse. Using soft searches like our Eligibility Checker is a good way to get an idea of who will accept you before you make that full application.
We compare a wide variety of bad credit loans here on allthelenders to help those with poor or bad credit get the best possible deal on their next loan. With such a large number of people experiencing credit difficulties in the UK, the bad credit loan market is growing rapidly which means more competition and better rates than there have ever been for customers.