Short Term Loans

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What are short term loans?

Short term loans are loans paid back over 1 month to 6 months. There are plenty of short term loan lenders now offering loans that can be applied for 100% online. They offer amounts from R100 to R10,000 and are regulated by the National Credit Regulation. 

A comprehensive list of registered credit providers can be found on their website. You can also review our complete guides on direct lenders on our blog.

You can shop around for short term loans online by visiting lender websites to understand more about what they offer as well as interest rates and fees they charge. 

Below is a guide to short term loans so you can be more prepared when you begin your loan search.

Short term loans lenders

Can I apply for a short term loan? 

Every short term loans lender in South Africa has different criteria you will need to me to to be approved for a loan.  You will always need to meet the basic criteria for an application to be considered. The minimum criteria are:

  • A South African resident
  • Employed and earn a regular income
  • At least 18 years of age
  • A bank account owner

A credit check may be carried out and your credit score will influence your chances of being approved for short term loans. You may still be approved for an unsecured loan with a bad credit score as lenders are more interested in your current situation rather than your financial history.

Do short term lenders do a credit check? 

Yes. Short term lenders work like payday loans are most concerned with your current financial situation. If you have bad credit, loans may still be approved if your financial situation has improved.

Short term loans application process

How do I apply for a short term loan? 

Applying is very easy with Friendly Finance. All you have to do is fill out our application form, which will only take a few minutes. The information you will be asked to provide will include:

  • Name
  • ID Number
  • Home address
  • Number of Independents
  • Employment status
  • Income
  • Cell and email address
  • Bank Details

We will then search our network of direct lenders to find you a match. This only takes a minute and you’ll be sent to the lender’s website to complete your loan. 

Your lender may ask some extra questions just to finalise your loan. This could include things like evidence of your pay or ID documents to prove your identity.

Most lenders will also ask for your 3 most recent payslips or bank statements to prove your income. Don’t worry, as this is simple to do. You can upload the supporting documents to the lender’s portal and you’re done.

Repaying short term loans

When your short term loan is approved and you sign your loan agreement, the lender will set up a direct debit to your bank account. This direct debit will automatically take the repayment amounts from you on the agreed upon dates. 

The repayment amounts and dates will be outlined in your loan agreement. This means that all you have to do is make sure you have enough money in your account on the set dates.

Tips for finding a short term loans

Want to do your own loan search? Here are some useful tips to help you find the best loan and avoid pitfalls.

Lending criteria

A basic set of criteria you’ll need to meet to be considered for a loan. Usually, they include things like being older than 18 and in full time employment.

Check the loan fees

All lenders should disclose their fees, including interest rate, application fee and monthly service fee. Review these fees to make sure you can afford the total cost of borrowing. You don’t want to take out a loan you can’t afford to repay.

If you cannot pay back the loan on time, there is a chance you will incur additional fees and interest on the loan. You will likely continue to incur fees until the loan is repaid, which can lead to a cycle of debt that may be hard to break.

Look for a license number

Every lender should be licensed by the National Credit Regulator. A licensed lender will display their NCR number somewhere on the website (usually in the footer). Look for this number and avoid unlicensed lenders. You can see a clear example in the footer of

Short term loans license registration

Look for a secure website

A lender’s application page needs to be secure to protect the personal details you provide when you apply. A secure page will have the prefix ‘https’ rather than ‘http’.

Final thought … know your rights

If you are declined for a loan for any reason, you have the right to know why. Contact the lender directly and request an explanation if they don’t give you one as part of the decline message. The lender is required to respond.

Why would I want to know?

Understanding the reason for being declined for a loan could help you find credit next time. For example, if it was due to a low credit score, you may decide to go for a secured (asset-based) loan option next time where credit scores do not matter as much.

Tip: As applying with a lender is free it is tempting to think ‘I’ll just apply with every lender until I am approved’. But remember that a credit check is done nearly every time you apply for a loan. Having multiple credit checks run in a short space of time can negatively impact your credit score, which may affect your chances of being approved for a loan in the future.

Use our loan search service to find your loan now. We’re ready when you are!

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