Loan on your phone: The experience of using money-lending apps

March 29, 2019 - 11:15 AM
Money lending app
In this photo, a man uses a smartphone to apply for an online loan. (Flickr/Image Genie)

A company that specializes in web analytics services reported the top money-lending mobile applications used by Filipinos which show how technologically inclined we have become in financial matters.

SimilarWeb lists Tala Philippines, Atome Credit, PondoPeso, Pesoloan, Flash cash loan, Cashalo, Cashwagon and CashMe as the top apps for money lending.

People can easily transfer and borrow money through these apps without the hassle of personally going to the bank and lining up in counters and ATMs.

Tala Philippines, for one, “underwrites borrowers in real time using non-traditional data” from customers’ phones, targeting those who have not had access to traditional financial services.

“Nung una kong nakita yung Tala, inisip ko kung totoo ba ‘to… Nabigyan ako ng pag-asa nung natanggap ko yung unang loan ko,” says 54-year-old Bea, a retail fashion entrepreneur from Taguig and one of the ambassadors featured at a Women’s Month exhibit.

Atone Credit, meanwhile, provides small loans that can be paid online or over the counter. Like Tala, it is rated with more than 4 stars on average on Google Play.

These digital lenders allow a quick and convenient way of transferring money, as well as offer an alternative means of paying in establishments, among others.

Highly convenient

One of the greatest advantages of a money-lending app is its convenience. People can perform their transactions without the hassle of traveling to the bank.

Money-lending apps don’t require people to personally borrow cash from their family, relatives and friends.

A blog post from an app development company shared that such apps can also be used for personal loans and loans concerning private institutes in matters of commercial lending.

Philippine peso bills
A man counting Philippine peso. (The STAR/KJ Rosales)

“The apps easily lend money. Once the borrower submits a loan application within the app, it will be then approved by the admin (who will check the applicant’s security and credit score). Once the admin is positive about the status of the borrower, the loan is granted,” it reported.

Using such apps is environmentally-friendly as well since there is minimum to no paperwork required to fulfill forms.

Higher fees

Borrowing money through online means might be generally convenient but it has its own consequences as well.

A blog post warned that it might have higher fees and interest rates compared to securing loans the traditional way.

Interest rates refer to the extra amount charged by a lender that a borrower is obliged to pay. It is the amount atop the premium money that the borrower must repay to the lender.

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“Professionals would advise you not to get this loan, unless the need is urgent. Online loans have higher interest rates and fees, compared to normal loans,” the blog said.

Furthermore, online loans offer borrowers a shorter amount of time when it comes to paying their debts.

In loans applied through banks, borrowers have the chance to pay their debts within a year or two. Online loans, on the other hand, only allow borrowers to pay within weeks or a couple of months.