Before explaining how an online loan works, it’s best to define the term to understand better what it implies.
You can get an online loan from an online-only entity or the online department of a bank. Most times, online loans are unsecured, but depending on the provider, their features may differ. In fact, online loans come in more shapes than traditional financial aids. Similarly to conventional banks, online lenders have their credit conditions and minimum eligibility. They often share all their requirements on their official websites and allow you to complete a form to see if you qualify for financial help.
Online lenders handle the entire borrowing process remotely, from prequalification to funding. The advantage when working with alternative loan providers is you don’t set foot into a bank office. You can use your phone to apply for a loan, upload verification documents, and stay in touch with the lender. When they approve your application, you receive the funds into your bank account.
1What makes online loans different from traditional bank-provided ones?
Let’s assume you know what a traditional loan implies. We’ll compare online loans with traditional ones to determine what makes the first special. First, we must highlight that many banks offer both conventional and online loans. But when you get financial support from an online entity, there are a few distinctions in the process. Most times, online providers have more attractive offers based on the feedback they receive from their clients. Let’s discover them.
You have no in-person contact with the company’s representative. When spending so much time connected to your phone, you develop a repulsion to all services that ask you to visit an expert’s office to apply for services. Online loans require no interaction with a customer service representative. You can address your questions and concerns via phone or email. Depending on how comfortable you find talking to people you never met, this can be a good or bad thing.
Online lenders allow for quick review and applications because they use top-notch tech solutions to provide high-quality services. To streamline their application and review processes, they rely on automated systems to do most of the work and prevent mistakes. Some lenders use even custom-tailored solutions to verify the information clients provide.
You benefit from targeted loans. Traditional lenders offer a limited number of financial services (one or two). But online financial providers create services with a specific borrower in mind. They specialize in services that serve people with various needs. While some target people with poor credit, others specialize in offering finances to those with excellent credit.
Borrowing money online allows for potential savings. Alternative financing solutions have lower rates on loans because the providers don’t have to build, maintain, and physical staff offices. But this isn’t universally true, so check a specialized car loan directory to compare rates and check if the lender you want to work with has lower interest than your local bank.
Whether you pick an online lender or a traditional institution, always check their minimum requirements, interest rate, loan offerings, and repayment terms to determine which one meets your needs.
2Online lenders make preparations for the rise of Gen Z
Even if it may sound surprising, financial institutions plan strategies to attract Gen Z consumers, even if they may be too young at the moment to apply for a loan. At present, banks focus on attracting this social category with saving accounts because it’s never too early to start saving. However, with Gen Z, they have to do more than offer their clients a lollipop and a plastic piggy bank because this generation has access to information.
The battle for customers has already started because both online lenders and banks target Generation Z. They are a new kind of clients, different from millennials, particularly in how they access and use information. They are born in the digital age and the members of a generation that uses instant messaging platforms to connect with their peers. They are entirely comfortable using the Internet’s power to acquire the products and services they need. Generation Z couldn’t be more comfortable if some millennials have second thoughts in using the services online providers offered. In fact, they find online resources as their primary mode of communication.
Fintech companies are leading the way in creating services and apps for the emerging Gen Z public. And from what they found until now, this generation has a unique goal, to avoid the mistakes millennials did, namely to engage in debt with traditional banks.
3Online loans are for everyone
It’s simple to apply for a loan with an online provider. You register on their platform, complete a form with your personal information, and send it. It takes less than 48-hours for the lender to approve or deny your application.
However, your application to receive negative feedback is low because some lenders focus on helping people with bad credit or new to credit. Banks refuse your application if your credit score is lower than 600. But alternative solutions providers can work with a credit score in the mid-500s. With a traditional lender, the lower the income and score, the more challenging it would be to qualify for a loan. And if they would approve your application, they may ask for a high-interest rate.
4Are online loans safe?
There are many trustworthy loan providers on the Internet, but you should be cautious of scammers. When the lender contacts you repeatedly to convince you to get a loan, no matter how low your income and credit score are, they may be a scam. Use third-party platforms to check reviews for loan providers and read the complaints other clients offer on the lender’s official website.
Make sure always to check the interest rate, and not apply with an organization that asks for rates higher than 60% APR. Even if online lenders are more flexible with lending money to people with lower income, it may be when the deal sounds too good to be true.