What do you do exactly?
We make searching and applying for loans as efficient, simple and accurate as possible, with no obligation on your part.
What we do:
- We have partnered with leading lenders to check your eligibility before you actually submit your application, so your credit rating is not affected.
- If you make an application, we will send your details to the lender so you don’t have to re-key any information.
- We present you with the best loans tailored to your needs, leaving you to choose which loan you think is best for you
- We can also provide you with advice regarding our lenders range of secured loans.
Do you leave a credit footprint?
We currently work with Equifax to provide us with ‘soft’ credit searches that do not impact your credit rating. The ‘soft’ footprints left by our free eligibility check can only be seen by you. No one else can view this activity on your credit report. If you decide to make a formal application for credit, then your lender may record a ‘hard’ footprint on your credit file in response to this.
How does it work?
Our lending partners have shared with us the rules they use to determine the rates you get. We can then use credit information provided by Equifax and the details you provide in your application to give you an accurate quote on the lenders’ behalf.
Do you offer insurance?
Freedom offers a range of insurance and protection benefits, including; life insurance, critical illness cover, family income benefit, income protection, house insurance and accident, sickness and unemployment cover.
However, we do not offer payment protection insurance. It is important that you are able to maintain your payments should anything happen to reduce your regular income. Therefore, we would suggest that you seek independent financial advice before making a decision. The Money Advice Service is an independent service set up by the government and they offer free, impartial advice. They can be contacted on 0300 500 5000 or their website can be found at https://www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk.
Do you charge for your service?
Our income is derived from commissions paid by the lenders and other third parties we deal with for any successful introduction we make. In addition a broker fee may be charged in relation to a secured to cover our administration and processing costs. This fee will be reflected in the APRC applied to loan. If you chose to add the fees to the loan it will be included in any monthly payment you are quoted. Alternatively , you can opt to pay the broker fee upfront, your Mortgage Adviser will discuss these options with you.
What happens once the loan application has been submitted?
For unsecured loans, you will either be transferred via the telephone directly to the lender or they will usually contact you within 24 hours to make the final arrangement for processing your loan.
For a secured loan, one of our advisers will contact you within the next 24-48 hours to talk you through your options and quotes and what the next steps are. Once we have received all the related paperwork and an acceptable valuation of the property, your application will be passed to the lender for their final underwriting checks prior to completing your loan.
If your question or issue is not answered here, you can still contact us.
How do lenders decide which applications they will accept?
For both unsecured loans and secured loans, lenders will first look at your credit history and how you have conducted your previous and current credit or loan accounts.
Then, they must consider affordability, which, put simply, means the lender must decide if you can afford the loan based on your income and outgoings.
For secured loans (which by their nature are secured against property), they will also consider the equity in the property against which the loan is secured. This equity is the difference between the value of the property and the outstanding first charge mortgage balance.
Based on the areas of credit history, affordability and equity (for secured loans only) the lender makes a risk assessment of how likely is it that the borrower will repay the loan. If the risk is too high, the borrower will be declined for the loan. If the risk is acceptable, then the lender will (subject to other minimum requirements) make a loan/mortgage offer. We cannot provide you with individual reasons for applications not being accepted.
How is the loan rate determined by lenders?
Assuming a loan offer is made, the actual annual percentage rate (APR) will normally depend on two things, the loan amount and the level of risk. Broadly speaking, higher loans mean lower APRs but higher risks mean higher APRs.
When you enter your details, Freedom Finance will give you actual APRs for all the loans you are eligible for. This way you will know the actual APR of the loans on offer before you apply to your chosen lender.
Does it pay to shop around for the best loan rate?
To shop around you may have to complete a different application form for every lender. Even worse, each lender will then conduct its own credit search against your name. Applying to multiple lenders in this way can be damaging to your credit history.
However, shopping around with Freedom Finance is different. You only have to enter your details once and our soft search technology will not damage your credit rating.
Another downside of shopping around: you may never get the low rate loans you see advertised. If you have already been turned down for one low rate loan, it is highly unlikely that you will qualify for any other loan at that rate, because lenders use very similar acceptance criteria. You might see tempting rates advertised, but there is no guarantee that you will get these – and getting turned down again could damage your credit rating.
But with Freedom Finance, you cut out the time-wasting and the disappointment. The quotes you see after entering your details are tailored to your individual circumstances.
When might it be appropriate to consider a secured loan?
Unsecured lenders can only lend up to £25,000 typically over terms of between 1 – 7 years and their eligibility criteria can be stricter as they do not have the property as security. So if you are looking to borrow more than £25,000 or a loan over a longer term to keep the repayments low you could consider a secured loan.
Whilst a secured loan can be taken over a longer period than unsecured personal loans, the downside to this is that the longer the term of the loan, the higher the total amount repayable will be.
If you are looking to free up some equity from your property but you are tied into a mortgage which has early redemption penalties, secured loans offer a way to access your equity without having to pay these penalties.
If you have a prime mortgage (one with a low APRC rate) but have recently had credit problems, a secured loan could allow you to borrow money whilst still keeping the benefits of your low rate mortgage.
You should think carefully before securing debts against your home. Failure to repay your mortgage may result in charges for late payments, missed payments and defaults. Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on any mortgage secured on it.
Before taking out any loan you should consider whether you are aware of any circumstances now and in the future which mean that your regular income will reduce. It’s important that you can afford the repayments now and continue to do so throughout the term of the loan.
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