What You Need To Know When Getting A Loan As A Foreigner


Are you a foreigner settled in Singapore? Are you in need of some urgent financial aid? You can consider the option of foreigner loan services to request for financial assistance in times of urgency. Whether you are an international student or a foreigner working in the country, unforeseen circumstances such as medical emergencies or loss of belongings might warrant the need for emergency financial aid. Even if you do not require financial aid now, it would be useful to find out how foreigner loans can benefit you, and how you can go about applying for one.

What is a foreigner loan?

Also known as a ‘work permit loan’ or ‘personal loan for work permit holders’, foreigner loans are available to foreigners who are working in Singapore under a valid work permit. While Singapore citizens have the alternative of obtaining bank loans, most banks either do not issue loans to foreigners, or do so at a high interest rate. Thus, licensed moneylenders offer an alternative to foreigners with foreigner loans.

Eligibility for obtaining a foreigner loan

A foreign worker in Singapore can apply for a foreigner loan provided they meet the eligibility requirements:

  • Possess a valid work passes
  • Employed full-time
  • Aged 21 to 55 years

When submitting a request for a foreigner loan, the licensed moneylender typically asks for a set of supporting documents. These are needed to see if the borrower seems likely to stay in Singapore long enough to repay the loan, and whether they have a stream of income to repay the loan with interest. Below are the supporting documents your licensed moneylender may ask you to provide:

  • Work permit
  • Residence tenancy agreement
  • Bank statement
  • Letter of employment
  • Payslips

Conditions for foreigner loans

As foreigner loans are offered to foreigners, there is a risk that the borrower might leave the country before making the full payment. Therefore, licensed moneylenders consider foreigner loans as high-risk and short-term loans, requiring a higher level of scrutiny than other types of personal loans. The moneylender’s decision to allow or deny the foreigner loan will largely depend on the borrower’s credit and employment history.

What to note before taking up a foreigner loan

Foreigner loans differ from institution to institution, so it is best to do thorough research on the terms and conditions for each moneylender before committing to any. At the very least, take care to note that the moneylender is reputable and licensed. When you have narrowed down your search of moneylenders, take a trip to their office to enquire in person so that you can verify the reliability of the lending company.

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