A guarantor loan is an unsecured loan that requires a friend or family member with good credit history to co-sign the credit agreement between the borrower and lender.
If you’ve been unable to secure a personal loan or you’ve got poor credit history, a guarantor loan could be the financial solution for you. If you’re looking for a small amount of finance or large, a guarantor loan helps you get your hands on the cash you need when you’ve exhausted all your other options. Pay for home renovations, consolidate your debt or pay for unexpected or emergency repairs.
Guarantor loans are a popular form of finance, with the average loan amount coming out at £4894. To give you a little insight into just how popular they are, in 2018 there were 150,000 people in the UK with a guarantor loan - so if you’re researching whether a guarantor loan is right for you, keep scrolling.
We’re here to answer your many frequently asked questions about UK guarantor loans, so let’s jump straight to it.
In a nutshell, a guarantor loan is a personal loan that requires another person, known as a ‘guarantor’, to agree to pay your loan if you, for whatever reason, can’t pay. This setup gives the lender assurance that the loan will be paid back one way or another.
A guarantor loan works much like any other loan, you borrow an amount, and pay it back over a specific term, except you need to name a friend or family member to guarantee the loan.
After you and your guarantor have signed the agreement, the loan will be deposited into the guarantor’s account and arrange to transfer the money to you. Repayments are usually made by monthly instalments over the term, just like you would with any other loan until it’s paid back in full.
The guarantor will only need to take over repayments and responsibility should you, the borrower default on your payments. As the loan is unsecured, your personal assets such as your house, are not taken into account.
We have created an easy-to-use guarantor loan calculator to help you calculate the cost of the loan.
Before applying, you need to make sure you meet the lender's criteria which can be found on their website. Applications are made online and can include information such as personal details, income and expenditures.
The lender will check and verify your application to make sure the details are correct and that you can afford to pay back the loan. They will also perform a credit check. This decision is made within a matter of minutes, although sometimes they may ask you to send in more documents.
If you are successfully approved, you will be presented with a loan agreement. The lender may offer you less than what you initially applied for. Please review this carefully and make sure you are happy before deciding to accept it or not.
If you accept the offer, the guarantor will receive the money directly into their chosen bank account. They will then arrange to transfer the money to you, the borrower either by online bank transfer, cash withdrawal or cheque. Learn more on why the money is paid to the guarantor
Payments will be taken via monthly Direct Debit until the loan is paid in full. If you default on your repayments, that’s where your guarantor will step in and continue repaying.
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As long as the person isn’t financially linked to you, i.e. not your husband or your wife, they can be a guarantor. They have to be aged 21 or older, preferably a homeowner as this increases credibility - but can be a non-homeowner, and they must have a good credit score and credit history.
Most people ask a close friend or family member to be their guarantor. It’s a big decision for someone to make with a handful of associated risks, so make sure you give them all the information they need to make the decision.
In summary, your guarantor will have to meet some requirements such as:
Remember You’re bringing in another person to the agreement, and if you default on your payments, it means your guarantor will have to step in and pay up. So you’ve got to be sure that you can definitely afford your repayments. Money problems between friends and family members can cause a real strain on relationships.
As with any loan application, it’s not only important to assess whether the applicant can realistically afford the loan - but can they afford the repayment costs? Before you sign any loan agreement as a guarantor, you need to ascertain whether the borrower can afford the loan in the first place.
Ask yourself whether you can comfortably afford the loan repayments alongside your current expenditure and whether the borrower needs the loan they’re applying for. What are they using the loan for? Is it for a holiday they could save up for? Or something more necessary? Are they looking to consolidate their debts elsewhere?
When deciding to become a guarantor, you should be able to trust the borrower that they will be able to make the payments and that you can afford to take on the debt if things go wrong.
Will they credit check me? As a guarantor, the lender will perform a soft credit check once you’ve signed the credit agreement. This will not leave a mark or show up on your credit score to other lenders. This is just so the lender can confirm you haven’t had any monetary issues of your own.
A guarantor loan is a type of loan for people with poor credit and will attract high-interest rates. This means it will cost you more to borrow than other unsecured personal loans on the market. But, by having a guarantor, it does make it less risky for the lender and therefore, will typically come with lower rates than other types of bad credit loans, like a payday loan.
Your credit history can impact the cost of the loan as well as term and how much you borrow.
Christopher Woolard at the Financial Conduct Authority confirmed that guarantor loans may soon be subject to a price cap similar to the high-cost short-term credit (HCSTC) regulation introduced to payday lenders in January 2015.
See how much a guarantor loan will cost you by using the online calculator. Work out the estimated cost of monthly repayments, interest and the total amount repayable.
The main thing you need to be sure of before you take out any loan is - can you afford it. It’s not just the loan amount in full; you need to factor in the interest rates, too. Do you need a loan, or could you save up your money to buy what you want instead?
Here are a few additional things you should consider before applying for a guarantor loan:
As a broker, we do not charge you any fees to use our loan comparison tool; this is an entirely free service. Here at ThisLender, we’re here to help you find the best loan product for your needs. So, if you’re looking for the top UK lenders, you’ve come to the right place, we only work with direct lenders.
The terms and conditions for each guarantor loan product are shared with you before you accept the loan offer; read these carefully and ensure you fully understand them. You will also receive all fees and applicable charges from the lender, so you can calculate whether the loan repayments in full are affordable and realistic.
If you’re having trouble managing your money, please seek free and impartial advice from the Money Advice Service.
Yes. If you have poor credit or very bad credit, a guarantor loan has been specifically manufactured to help you in your financial situation.
Although you can apply, the guarantor you choose must have good credit.
At ThisLender, we work with direct lenders in the UK; this means the process of applying for credit is usually straightforward. You need to be over the age of 18, have a UK bank account and be able to demonstrate to the lender that you can afford the repayments.
You can use our comparison tool above to find and compare the best guarantor loan to suit your personal needs.
There are many pros and cons when it comes to a guarantor loan, we’ve listed some below.
You can use your guarantor loan for anything you want - unexpected and/or emergency repairs, a new roof for your home perhaps and other renovation projects. The number of things you can spend your loan on is limited only by your imagination.
We don’t suggest applying for a loan unless you really need it - for example, you shouldn’t spend your loan on nights out with friends, clothes shopping or everyday essentials.
If you are struggling with day-to-day living costs, we recommend that you seek financial support from Money Advice Service before taking on more debt.
Comparing guarantor loans will make sure you're getting a good deal. It might be a good idea to compare your options together with your nominated guarantor. This way, it will make sure you decide on a lender with rates that are affordable to you both.
Usually, you can borrow from as little as £1000 up to £10,000 or more. However, your credit history and affordability (your income and expenditure) will have a big part to play in how much you can realistically borrow.
The majority of guarantor loans can be taken from one year up to a maximum of five years or more. Again, this will depend on your affordability. For example, borrowing over a longer-term will help keep monthly repayments lower, but will cost you a lot more in interest compared to a shorter term.
The APR is the ‘Annual Percentage Rate’ and measures the cost of the loan calculated over a year. Shown as a percentage, it includes the interest rate plus any other additional fees charged by the lender.
You can expect to see a guarantor loan APR range from 40% up to 50%.
With any loan, there will always be some conditions that you have to meet to be eligible for the loan. It’s no different with a guarantor loan. To be eligible, you must:
Yes, you can. Although a guarantor is a compulsory requirement for a guarantor loan, there are other types of loans that do not require a guarantor such as:
For someone who has a less than perfect credit score or who just hasn’t built up enough credit to show they are a responsible borrower, it can be a good option to help build up your credit file. It can also give you access to funds that you just wouldn’t be eligible for if you were applying alone.
However, they do come with risks, and you and your chosen guarantor must be fully aware of them before going ahead.
Yes, providing the retired person has a regular income (such as a pension or other guaranteed income) and they can afford it.
If you fail to repay your guarantor loan, you will often incur additional charges that will be added to your loan. However, if you do miss a payment, the lender will contact you to try and resolve the issue. If this is not possible, the guarantor will be asked to step in and make those monthly payments.
The loan is always paid directly to the guarantor to help protect you and them against fraud. Your guarantor can transfer the money to you via BACS, cash, or whatever method is best for you both.
Yes, it can. Just like any other loan, if you manage to make the repayments on time, you will see a positive impact on your credit score. Should you miss or fail to repay, then this will leave a negative impact on your credit file.
If you are having financial difficulties or need to speak to someone regarding your financial situation before applying for a loan you can get free and confidential advice from The Money Advice Service, National Debtline or debt charity StepChange.
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Representative 97% APR (fixed)
Representative example: Borrow £1000 for 24 months at 24 equal instalments of £77.48. Total amount to repay £1,859.52. Interest £859.52. Annual interest rate 70% (fixed). APR rates range from 45.3% APR. to 1575% Max APR. Your APR rate will be based on your circumstances.
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