3 Things to Look for in a Lender



Personal finance becomes more complicated with age, as financial commitments and obligations expand and diversify. Banking grows complex, and personal debt expands to include revolving credit card balances, house loans, and car finance. Investment concerns also take centre stage as you grow older, challenging you to make the most of your earnings and set aside reserves for the future. With so much at stake, you cannot afford to leave money on the table – particularly servicing personal debt.

Borrowing wisely remains a central tenet of long-term financial health. Not only does success call upon responsible borrowers to show discretion about when and how finance is used, but it also demands accountability from lenders themselves. Whether you are securing a mortgage or a short-term payday loan, the lender you select can have a substantial impact on the overall finance experience. For the best results, take into account as many aspects of the borrowing process as possible, before making costly commitments. And always evaluate potential lenders according to strict standards.

Navigating a Competitive Lending Marketplace

At one time, borrowing options were limited to relatively few types of finance, each earmarked for specific functions. Barring extenuating circumstances, applicants expected to be approved and lenders felt reasonably assured loans would be paid back in a timely manner. Times have changed. Banking and borrowing are not always as straightforward as they once were, and today’s lenders operate in a highly competitive environment, loaded with borrowing alternatives. So many, in fact, novice borrowers may need help evaluating finance options.

Fortunately, as the number of industry stakeholders and the variety of financial products have increased, so has consumer access to information. Modern loan shoppers, for example, can review up-to-the-minute information about rates and services, before settling on a lender.

Need a no-credit-check loan? Use resources like Readies’ lender comparison page to select the best provider. In the market for revolving credit? Comparing credit cards is easier than ever using informational websites to contrast card options side-by-side. Time to refinance your mortgage? Several online resources, such as godirect.co.uk maintain updated lender listings detailing mortgage alternatives from multiple providers. These are just a few of the online examples currently available for comparing financial products, highlighting the importance of evaluating the merits of each lender and the pros and cons of each borrowing opportunity.

Top Lenders Share Common Traits

As you contemplate finance, hold lenders to a high standard, insisting on these essential features.

Transparency – Lenders have recently been under fire for unfair practices, such as mis-selling PPI insurance and underrepresenting the cost of various forms of finance. The regulator is charged with quashing these bad practices, but it is up to each lender to assess not only the terms of finance offers, but also the integrity of financial firms offering loans. Lender transparency enables borrowers to review every aspect of their finance arrangements, without fearing hidden fees, penalties, and the presence of questionable add-ons.

Competitive Terms – Finance companies operate in a highly competitive environment, so there is downward pricing pressure in lending markets. The key for value-driven loan shoppers is finding the best rates and terms. Readies and other resources can be an invaluable asset for comparing and contrasting products and services. APR is of course an important consideration, but effective analysis also includes a look at loan origination fees, closing expenses, late payment penalties, and other lender costs.

Consistency – Whether you are in the market for a mortgage or seeking a short-term personal loan, the best lenders offer a straightforward borrowing process with consistency results. Just as lenders review your personal credit references, it is possible for you to use online reviews and other resources to evaluate potential lenders. Watchdog agencies also publish information about complaints and problems tied to individual lenders. The reports can help you steer clear of lenders at odds with oversight groups or dissatisfied clients, instead building a relationship with a reliable, consistent provider.

Various influences have an impact on personal credit outcomes, but the lender you choose is among the most important considerations. For the best finance results use all available resources to guide you to the most consistent, transparent providers, offering competitively priced financial products.

Paul graduated in 2001 with a degree in Finance. Since then he has gone on to work for several of the UK's most well-known financial institutions.

An avid blogger and a huge football fan, Paul is here to guide you through the ins and outs of personal finance and perhaps save you some money in the process!

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