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Cost Of Taking Out A Loan: Different Types Of Interest Rates

Different types of interest rates when taking out a loan

Taking up a loan in Singapore? Before you assume that taking a fast loan in Singapore is as straightforward as borrowing a sum of money and then repaying it, think again. A legal loan in Singapore will require you to pay interest and processing fees – this means you’ll have to repay more than what you initially borrowed.

Just like how a licensed moneylender can charge up to 4% in interest per month, other financial institutions can also charge varying amounts of interest on your loan. How much you end up repaying depends on the types of interest rates used and how they are calculated.

Read on to find out the common types of interest rates in Singapore that you need to take note of.

1. Fixed Interest Rate

This is a common type of interest rate used on loans in Singapore. As the name suggests, the interest is fixed throughout the repayment period. The upside for such an interest type is that it does not fluctuate over the loan period hence allowing borrowers to have an accurate estimation of the repayment amount. On the downside, the fixed interest rate is usually higher than the variable interest rate because it is hedged against external factors that might increase the interest over time.

2. Variable Interest Rate

A variable interest rate, also known as floating rate, is an interest that adjusts over time in response to changes in the market. When the underlying benchmark rate or index rises or falls, it affects the variable interest rate paid by the borrower. For example, when it comes to legal home loans in Singapore, the variable rates are usually tagged to Singapore Interbank Offered Rate (SIBOR) or Fixed Home Rate (FHR).

An advantage of such an interest is the possibility of getting a lower rate should the underlying index decline. Conversely, if the underlying index rises, the interest rates might increase too.

3. Simple Interest Rate

A simple interest rate simply means a fixed interest rate of a principal amount to be paid over an agreed period. For example, when a couple decides to take up a S$10,000 fast loan in Singapore to fund their wedding from a licensed moneylender at an interest of 4% and repayable within a month, the interest charged is simply 4% of the loan amount.

The calculation for loans that are based on such rates is very basic and is generally expressed with straightforward multiplication of principal amount, interest rate, and the period agreed.

4. Compound Interest Rate

Compound interest is the addition of interest to the principal sum of a loan when it is not repaid. The methodology is called interest on interest. To understand this, think of a loan balance as two key components – the principal amount and the interest incurred from the loan. The lender will apply the agreed interest on the loan balance and the interest incurred to calculate the subsequent year’s interest payment

To illustrate this, let’s use an example of a S$10,000 loan in Singapore at 10% interest per annum. If the loan is not repaid by the end of the first year, the total amount owed would be S$11,000. At the end of the second year, the new balance would be S$12,100. The S$1,000 of interest incurred in the first year has incurred its own interest of S$100!

While compound interest can be a good thing for earning on deposits, it is not the same if it is used on loans. Compound interests can get expensive for borrowers and when a loan is not well managed, they can end up owing a lot more money than they initially intend to.

5. Effective Interest Rate

An effective interest rate (EIR) is the true cost of taking a loan in Singapore, taking into account the compounding effects over time. The cost depends on how long your loan tenure is and repayment frequency, as well as the number of instalments.

Typically, effective interest rates are higher than advertised interest rates. This is because advertised interest rates only consider the interest you are supposed to be paying. For example, if you are taking a $2,000 loan at 10% p.a. Interest, you are expected to repay $200 in interest annually. But EIR considers other factors such as processing fees, hence you could end up repaying more than that.

6. Reducing Balance Rate

Also known as the diminishing balance rate, the reducing balance rate only charges interest on your loan’s remaining balance. This effectively reduces your interest repayment each month as you continuously pay off your principal loan amount. This is perfect for lengthy loan tenures as you save more over time.

Here is a simple formula for calculating your payable interest following the reducing balance rate:

Interest amount per instalment = Effective interest rate per instalment x Outstanding loan amount

7. Annual Percentage Rate

The Annual Percentage Rate (APR) is an annual rate charged for a loan in Singapore and is widely used for most financial solutions – from mortgages and car loans to credit cards. So how does it work?

Every time you take out a loan, there is a cost involved which is the interest, which ultimately adds up to the total loan cost. Every month, you are essentially paying a portion of the principal loan and a portion of the interest.

Two types of APRs can be applied – fixed and variable. A fixed APR means the rate remains the same throughout the entire loan term, while a variable APR means fluctuations. APRs can change anytime according to market variability and the borrower’s ability to repay on time, however, lenders are required to provide advance notice on the change and why.

The annual percentage rate considers all other borrowing costs such as administrative and late fees, however, it does not account for the compounding effect of interest. So, when looking for a legal loan in Singapore, between two offers that present the same nominal rate and monthly payments, choosing the loan package with a lower APR will usually require lesser upfront fees and offer a better deal.


Understanding the different types of interest rates can be complex, this is why it is important to find a licensed moneylender who can provide reliable advice and competitive rates when you need a loan to fund your projects. At Galaxy Credit, we offer a wide selection of loans such as personal loans and business loans. Contact us for a free consultation now.


While we try to provide the most accurate information on this website, it may not reflect the most current developments. The information on this website may be changed without notice and is not guaranteed to be complete, correct, or up-to-date. All information provided is for informational purposes only and shall not be relied upon as professional advice. We shall not be liable for any loss or damage resulting from the use of this website.

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Besides banks, a moneylending company is a specific financial service provider that will lend you money based on your income and credit history. If you are looking for a loan, then moneylending companies are good options to consider.

However, it is important to note that a moneylending company will have relatively high interest rates, but it will be able to provide you with the necessary funds based on your monthly income.

As with all other personal loan applications, a licensed money lender needs to go through a processing and approval time frame but the good news is you can apply for a loan online and it’s a relatively easy process. Besides personal loans, a moneylending company in Singapore also provides business loans. But do your due diligence and ensure you are signing up only with the best licensed money lenders.

Loan amount

The loan amount you can obtain from a moneylending company will depend on your monthly income and credit history, although the latter isn’t as important compared to if you were to apply for a bank loan. A moneylending company offers various loans with different purposes to consider and they come with their respective loan amounts.

The typical loan limit can amount to six times your monthly salary. Therefore, when you apply for a loan, make sure that the loan you choose is based on your financial situation and needs.

If you would like to check your credit report, you can get a copy from the Credit Bureau Singapore. You can also read our post for more information on obtaining your credit report.

Repayment period

The repayment period will depend on the type of loan that you have applied for. Short-term loans may have repayment periods of up to three months, while long-term loans may have repayment periods of up to 12 months.

It is important to note that if you’re seeking a relatively lower interest rate, you could look for a smaller loan with a longer repayment period.

Interest Rate

The interest rate charged by a moneylending company in Singapore will depend on the type of loan that you choose. It is important to note that there are personal loans and business loans, and both types of loans will have different interest rates. Also, interest rates for short-term loans will be higher than for long-term loans. Therefore, if you would like to save as much money as possible per month, consider applying for a long-term loan. For example, the interest rate of a long-term loan can be as low as 1% per month while that for a short-term loan is usually in the range of 3-4% per month.

Finally, remember that if you would like a low-interest rate on the loan, you must ensure that you have a good credit history and high income.

Do also ensure that you know the interest rate and repayment period for each type of loan. This will help you to decide on the best loan for your needs, as well as the most suitable moneylending company to get a loan from.

With these three things in min/d, you can now decide on a moneylending company in Singapore. Galaxy Credit offers one of the best personal loans with relatively low-interest rates and specialises in payday loans, study loans to further your studies, and debt consolidation services. Speak to our loan officers today and receive a free consultation on how to better manage your finances.

With the economic impact of COVID-19, it is common for affected individuals experiencing loss of income to start seeking financial assistance such as securing personal loans with the lowest rates. If you happen to need emergency funds but do not want to borrow from friends or family, you can consider taking up a personal loan.

Here are a few questions to consider before applying for one.

What are the requirements for a personal loan?

If you are looking to secure a personal loan from banks in Singapore, you have to take note of the requirements for eligibility.

Firstly, you have to be at least 21 years old with an annual income of at least S$20,000 a year. If you are a foreigner (with an employment pass of at least 12 months validity), you will need an income range of S$40,000 to S$60,000 a year. If you make much more than $30,000 a year, banks might extend lower interest fees to you.

The requirements to borrow from a licensed moneylender is pretty straightforward. All you need is the application form (which you can fill up online), plus other supporting documents that may include:

  • Proof of the borrower’s total income for the preceding 3 months prior to loan application
  • Utilities bills
  • Pay slips; or Income tax statements

And possible supporting documents for foreigners:

  • Original valid employment pass
  • Passport
  • Appointment letters from the borrower’s employer; and
  • Bank statements

How much can you borrow according to your income bracket?

If you are choosing to secure a personal loan from a licensed money lender instead, the maximum amount that you can borrow depends on your annual income. Based on the Ministry of Law’s guide to borrowing from money lenders, for Singapore citizens and PR, If your annual income is below S$10,000, then you can only borrow up to S$3,000. If you’re a foreigner, S$500.

If your annual income is between S$10,000 to S$20,000, the maximum amount you can borrow is S$3,000 for Singapore citizens/PR and foreigners residing in Singapore.

If your annual income is over S$20,000, then you can borrow up to 6 times your monthly income for both Singapore citizens/PR and foreigners residing in Singapore.

Here’s a summary of the annual income and maximum loan amount for each income bracket:

Annual Income For Singapore Citizens and Permanent Resident Foreigners residing in Singapore
< $10,000 $3000 $500
$10,001 – $20,000 $3000
> $20,000 6 times of monthly income

Understanding personal loan interest rates

Lenders make their decisions based on factors including credit records and other existing credit facilities. To get the lowest personal loan rates, you need to build a strong credit report. Borrowers with high credit scores tend to get personal loan interest rates that are low.

When borrowing personal loans from banks in Singapore, they will typically label their interest rates as x%, which stands for a customised interest rate that you would only see once your application is approved. The interest rate is usually dependent on your credit score, loan amount, and your loan tenure. What you should be looking at is the effective interest rates or EIR as it includes processing fees and your loan repayment schedule, which is a true reflection of the cost of the loan.

When borrowing personal loans from licensed money lenders in Singapore, the money lender has to go through the terms and conditions of your loan such as repayment schedule, late fees, and interest charges before you sign the contract. A loan contract stating all the terms and conditions is required by law. The difference between signing up with licensed money lenders as opposed to banks is the quick turnaround time to get your funds, which can be as fast as an hour.

How to maintain my credit score?

An infographic explaining how personal loan interest rates work in summarised points

Maintaining a good credit score is part and parcel of getting the lowest personal loan rates. Banks and other financial institutions can offer a lower interest rate for a loan if your credit score is high. Credit scores are indicators of creditworthiness or the indication of the likelihood of a borrower paying their debt on time.

A great way to maintain it is to pay all your credit card bills and loans on time and in full. Also, refrain from applying for multiple loans at the same time from various money lenders as this will lower your overall credit score and increase your debt threshold.

Once you have a good credit score, you can leverage this as a way to get low-interest rates for your future loans. You can find out more about your credit report and rating from the Credit Bureau Singapore or Singpost branches at a $6.42 inclusive of GST.

Looking for low personal loan interest rates in Singapore? Find out more about your legal loan options with Galaxy Credit today.

Cryptocurrency is all the rage these days, with terms like crypto millionaires and NFTs (non-fungible tokens) on everyone’s lips. Since most people like quick cash, investing in crypto is something we might have considered.

In this article, we explain what exactly Crypto is, its risks and benefits, and whether you should invest in it. If you are looking to make some quick cash to either pay loans or increase your net worth, crypto could be an option.

What is Cryptocurrency?

A cryptocurrency is a form of payment that can be exchanged online for goods and services. The most famous of them is Bitcoin, which was invented in 2009 by an anonymous person. It works via blockchain technology, which transmits data and records transactions. Also, cryptocurrencies are decentralised, which means they are outside the authority of governments and banks.

Many companies, including a few Singaporean ones such as and StraitsX, issue their own cryptocurrency, also called tokens, which can be used to buy goods or services that the said company provides. There are currently more than 10,000 different cryptocurrencies being traded publicly. All cryptocurrencies also have the same value in every country and there are no exchange rates.

How can you hold Cryptocurrencies?

There are three main ways to hold cryptocurrencies. All involve having a “wallet”, which is an account that holds your crypto.


Firstly, you can hold them on exchanges such as Binance or Coinbase. On such platforms, you will be issued a “hosted wallet”, so-called because these platforms hold the wallet.

Non-custodial wallet

A “non-custodial” wallet allows you to have full control over your crypto. The downside is that if you lose your password, the wallet is gone forever.

Hardware wallet

Unlike the previous two options, a “hardware wallet” is a physical device the size of a thumb drive that stores your crypto. The upside is that you cannot be hacked since this is offline, with the downside being an inconvenience.

How do you make money out of Cryptocurrencies?

Much like stocks, the value of your portfolio increases when the price of the crypto token/s you hold rises, and vice versa. In other words, you make money when you sell the crypto tokens at a profit.

Cryptocurrency risks

As with all investments, there are risks. Crypto is known to be more volatile than stocks or gold, which is why it would be good to keep a healthy capital at bay so that you may buy more when it drops and sell when it’s at a higher price.

No sure-win crypto token

Although there are many established tokens with reputable companies behind them, the market is very competitive, with many tokens getting unlisted every few months. If you happen to hold such tokens, you lose all their value.

Vulnerability to hacks and criminal activities

For example, if your crypto is stored on an exchange, hackers can hack into your account and transfer your assets to their accounts. You may or may not be able to recover your crypto tokens — some are traceable while others are untraceable.


These tokens are often either hyped-up to offer extremely good services, such as giving you a percentage of their earnings, or entice you to invest by a tactic called “pump and dump”. “Pump and dump” happens when a token suddenly rises many times in value, attracting you to buy at an already high price. Once enough people buy at a said high price, the manipulators will “dump” the price by selling all their tokens, leaving you at a great loss. You may end up needing to pay loans that you have borrowed to buy such tokens looking for quick cash.

Cryptocurrency benefits

Many see cryptocurrencies as the currency of the future. We may end up using coins like Ethereum or Bitcoin to pay our monthly bills, or to procure certain products or services. Hence, buying these coins may be considered a long-term investment.

Get cash quickly

There is indeed such a thing as making quick cash. In May 2020, Bitcoin’s price was about USD 9,500. In May 2022, it was hovering around the USD 31,000 mark, though, in July 2022, it went down to around USD 19,000. Many coins have grown exponentially over just a few days, such as DogeCoin, which often pumps dramatically due to a tweet from billionaire and Dogecoin fan Elon Musk.

Advancing technology

The technology behind crypto, blockchain, is also why many people believe in digital currency. This technology is touted to be able to revolutionise industries from shipping to gaming. Having many believers and potential, many investors believe that cryptocurrency is not a fad and will only become more important as time goes on.

High liquidity

Some cryptocurrencies have high liquidity. This means that you can sell or buy them very quickly at market price. For example, if you need money to pay loans, you can simply liquidate your tokens for fiat, which is a term for real-world money.

Should You Invest In Crypto?

It depends if it is within your means. It is important to remember to never invest more than what you could comfortably afford to lose.

Investing in crypto can be an option to diversify your portfolio, which is always a good thing. This is especially true if you believe in the technology behind the tokens that you buy, and also that crypto usage will become more widespread as time goes by. However, do take note that the MAS discourages the general public from engaging in cryptocurrency trading as it is “highly risky”.

Bent on snagging some tokens right now but lack the funds? You might want to consider borrowing a relatively small sum from Galaxy Credit, a 24-hour money lender in Singapore, anytime, any day. As it stands, nobody said you have to invest a tonne of money into cryptocurrency for potentially big wins!


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