Borrow Money Online

If you are looking to borrow money then there are several options available. The best way for you to borrow will depend on how much you need, the length of the repayment time and your personal circumstances.

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Table of contents

Written by Mark Grimley
Read time: ~5 mins
Published: 4th October 2023

How much money can I borrow?

When it comes to borrowing money, the amount you can borrow depends on several factors, including your creditworthiness, income, and the lender's eligibility criteria. Unsecured loans typically range from £100 to £35,000. If you’re a homeowner you may be able to borrow more by using your home as security.

Where can I borrow money?

When it comes to borrowing money, you have several options. Here are some common sources where you can borrow money. The best way to borrow money will depend on your cirumstances:

  • Banks: Traditional banks offer personal loans, lines of credit, and credit cards. However, if you have bad credit, it may be challenging to borrow money from bank, as they usually have strict eligibility criteria.
  • Credit Unions: Credit unions are not-for-profit financial institutions that may be more flexible in lending to individuals with bad credit. They often offer personal loans and other financial products at competitive rates.
  • Online Lenders: Online lenders have emerged as a convenient option for borrowing money. They often specialise in providing loans to individuals with specialist circumstances. Online applications are quick and straightforward, and you can compare multiple offers to find the best one for your needs by completing an Eligibility Check on Choose Wisely.

How can I borrow money?

If you're wondering how to borrow money, here are the general steps to follow:

  • Assess Your Financial Situation: Before borrowing money, evaluate your financial situation. Determine how much you need to borrow and how much you can afford to repay each month.
  • Complete an Eligibility Check: This will help you to compare personalised options best suited to your situation and needs. It will also increase your chances of being approved.
  • Complete the Application: Once you've chosen a lender, complete the application process. Provide accurate information and necessary documents to improve your chances of approval.

Can you borrow money with bad credit?

Yes, you can borrow money with bad credit. While having bad credit may limit your options, there are still lenders who specialise in providing loans to individuals with poor credit profiles. Here are a few options to consider:

  • Bad Credit Loans: Some lenders offer loans specifically designed for individuals with bad credit. These loans may have higher interest rates to compensate for the risk, but they provide an opportunity to borrow money when traditional lenders may reject your application.
  • Secured Loans: Secured loans require collateral, such as a vehicle or property, to secure the loan. Since the lender has an asset to recover in case of default, they may be more willing to lend to individuals with bad credit.
  • Short Term Loans are designed for short-term borrowing needs. The loan amount typically ranges from £100 to £1,000, depending on the lender. However, short term loans often come with high interest rates, so it's essential to consider the overall cost of borrowing before proceeding.

How much does borrowing money cost?

When borrowing money, it's crucial to consider the cost involved. The cost of borrowing can vary depending on factors such as the interest rate, loan term, and any additional fees charged by the lender. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Interest Rates: Lenders charge interest on the amount you borrow, which is expressed as an annual percentage rate (APR). The higher your credit risk, the higher the interest rate is likely to be.
  • Fees: Some lenders may charge application fees, origination fees, or early repayment fees. Make sure to read the loan agreement carefully and understand all the associated fees before committing to borrowing.
  • Total Repayment Amount: Before taking out a loan, calculate the total amount you'll repay, including both the loan amount and the interest. This will give you a clear understanding of the overall cost of borrowing.

What is the cheapest way to borrow money?

One of the cheapest ways to borrow money is to visit your highstreet bank or supermarket. However, borrowing from either of these lenders will mean you need a squeaky clean credit history. If you’ve ever had problems with debt such as missed payments or have a CCJ, it’s likely you won’t be accepted by these lenders. This is also true if you can’t prove that you earn a regular income.

In the instance that you have bad credit or aren’t currently receiving a regular income, having a guarantor who can support your loan application may be the next cheapest option. There are also credit cards which have been designed with bad credit in mind to help you build your score as well as providing a cheap borrowing solution.

The best way to decide on where to borrow money from is to think about how much you will need to borrow, how long it will take to pay it back and how you plan on paying it back. If you only want a small amount of money (less than £1000) then more flexible options such as a credit line, overdraft or credit card could also be worth considering.

What are the pros and cons of borrowing money?

Like any financial decision, borrowing money comes with its own set of pros and cons. Here are some key points to consider:

  • Access to Funds: Borrowing money provides you with the funds you need to cover immediate expensed or invest in opportunities
  • Building Credit: Responsible borrowing and timely repayments can help improve your credit score over time.
  • Flexibility: Depending on the type of loan you choose, you may have flexibility in terms of repayment periods and loan amounts.
  • Debt Accumulation: Borrowing money means taking on debt, and you'll need to repay the borrowed amount along with interest.
  • Interest and Fees: The cost of borrowing can be high, especially if you have bad credit. High-interest rates and fees can significantly increase the total amount you owe.
  • Impact on Credit: Failure to repay borrowed money can negatively impact your credit score and make it harder to borrow in the future.

Can I borrow money online?

Yes, you can borrow money online. Online lending platforms have made the borrowing process more accessible and convenient. Here are the advantages of borrowing money online:

  • Convenience: You can apply for loans online from the comfort of your home, avoiding the need to visit physical branches or make numerous phone calls.
  • Comparison: A comparison site like ours allows you to compare loan offers from multiple providers, helping you find the best interest rates and terms.
  • Quick Approval and Payment: Online loan applications are typically processed quickly, with many lenders offering same-day or next-day funding

Can I borrow money without collateral?

Yes, you can borrow money without collateral. Unsecured loans, such as personal loans or credit cards, do not require collateral. However, keep in mind that unsecured loans may come with higher interest rates, especially if you have bad credit.

Can I borrow money without a guarantor?

Yes, you can borrow money without a guarantor. Many lenders offer loans that do not require a guarantor, including for individuals with bad credit. However, note that not having a guarantor may affect the loan terms and interest rates offered to you.


Can I borrow money if I'm a student with no credit history?

Yes, as a student with no credit history, you may still be able to borrow money. Some lenders offer loans specifically designed for students, and you can also explore credit-building options like secured credit cards or loans with a guarantor.

Are there any government programs available to help individuals borrow money?

Yes, some government programs provide financial assistance to individuals in need. For example, in the UK, the government offers student loans and the Start-Up Loans program for new businesses. Additionally, welfare support schemes may be available for those facing financial hardship.

What should I do if I'm struggling to repay my borrowed money?

If you're facing difficulties in repaying your loan, the first step is to contact your lender. Explain your situation and discuss potential solutions, such as adjusting the repayment schedule or exploring alternative options. Ignoring the issue can lead to additional fees and damage your credit.

Can borrowing money help improve my credit score?

Yes, responsible borrowing and timely repayments can help improve your credit score over time. By demonstrating a history of managing debt responsibly, you show lenders that you're a reliable borrower. However, it's crucial to borrow within your means and make all repayments on time.

Is it possible to borrow money if I'm unemployed?

Borrowing money while unemployed can be challenging, as lenders typically require a stable source of income. However, some lenders offer loans for unemployed individuals, such as loans for jobseekers or loans secured against alternative forms of income, like benefits or rental income.

What happens if I default on my loan?

Defaulting on a loan can have serious consequences. It can negatively impact your credit score, making it harder to borrow in the future. The lender may take legal action to recover the debt, which could result in additional fees, collection efforts, or even asset seizure.

Written by
Mark Grimley
Head of Partnerships & Take Control Author at Choose Wisely

Mark joined Choose Wisely in 2015. He continues to work in close contact with the providers, brokers and journalists operating in the world of consumer credit.

Important Information.

All of the information in this guide is correct at the time of writing.

If you complete a loan search application on the Choose Wisely website, the rates shown may vary based on your personal circumstances, are subject to status and are available to those aged 18 and over. Rates available range from a minimum of 13.9%APR to a maximum of 1721%APR Representative and loan repayment periods range from 3 to 60 months.

If you need financial advice you can visit stepchange, speak to citizens advice, call the national debtline or speak to

If you've been declined, please refer to your credit report to gain an understanding of why before making further applications.
You can access your credit report for free from Credit Karma, Clearscore or Experian.