How to navigate your way around comparison sites when looking for a personal loan?

Posted on Thursday, January 10, 2019 - 13:19

One of the benefits that come with taking out a personal loan is that there is a wide range to pick from. However, being spoilt for choice can make things a bit confusing which is why many Aussies use comparison sites to help them decide. Knowing what to compare can make your search for the right personal loan easier. We have compiled 4 essential tips on how to navigate your way on a comparison site.

1. The common suspects

Aussies have become savvy when it comes to checking if a loan comes with features that are suitable to their finances in the long run. Before taking out a loan it is vital to check features such as the interest rate, ongoing fees, and charges. Using a personal loan calculator, which is available on most comparison sites, can give you an estimate on how much you will be paying over the course of the loan. But there is more to comparing a loan than the price.

2. Look beyond the price

Comparison sites have undoubtedly become popular among Australians. Research by Nielsen revealed that out of 98% of Australians that were online 71% used a comparison service.

Furthermore, 14.8% of Aussies were likely to make a switch once they have visited a comparison site. Looking beyond the price of a loan can ensure that you end up getting the best value for your money over the term of the loan. This means checking if the loan comes with flexible repayment features that work with your cash flow, and a loan term that is suitable for your needs.

3. Speak to a financial advisor or broker

You will find that comparison sites tend to be straightforward and easy to navigate to find a lender that offers the best rate for you. However, it does have its own limitations. For example, as much as comparison sites are able to gather various loan rates from a wide range of lenders, you won't be able to get a complete picture of the various options available to you. Speaking to a financial advisor or a broker can get you a personal loan that comes with a rate and features that is suitable for your situation.

4. Avoid taking things at face value

With so many comparison sites to use on the market, you are bound to find a chancer. This is why you should avoid taking things at face value. The ACCC found that there were a few reputable comparison sites that were marketing misleading rates and claims that trapped consumers into taking out a loan. Such comparison sites are slapped with hefty fees for their misconduct. Remember to get a second opinion to see if what the site is offering is in fact true. Comparing loan rates with their competitors can also help you see if you are being offered the best rate.

You can also check to see what people are saying about the site in terms of reviews and forums which can help you gauge the service of the lender. Keep in mind to walk away from something that you do not understand before placing your hard-earned cash on it.

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