HECS debt repayment, the threshold & our essential tips

hecs debt repayment

hecs debt repayment

Congrats, you’ve graduated university – what an achievement! Now real life can begin. But wait, before you start, don’t forget your gigantic, needy pile of uni bills. Yep, it’s HECS debt repayment time! Don’t worry though, they said. You only begin to feel the strain when you start earning the big bucks – oh wait, it’s all changed.

Starting 1st of July, uni students earning at least $45,000 will have to begin carrying the weight of their student debt. For those just feeling the brisk shock of rent, bills and general life upkeep, the lowering of the bracket is quite a disturbance. But before you start to kick the tires and light the fires, we are here to set your mind at ease. Surprisingly the world will continue to spin, even after you begin to repay your HECS debt, so here are the facts, tips and all-round survival guide.

The facts

Before the government’s decision to decrease the tax threshold, a student would begin repaying their HECS debt once they earned $55, 874. That means for a lot of uni students HECS debt repayment was a thing for the future.

So, the decrease in the threshold is quite significant.

The decrease may be significant, yet, the new plan only requires students to repay back 1% of their taxable income. So, let’s do the math. If you earn $45,000, then under the new threshold you’ll pay $450 a year to your student loans. That may not seem like a lot, but for all those who depend on coffee for productivity, it will cost you approximately 2.5 coffees a week. Or for us who see Netflix as the elixir for life, it will cost you approx. 3 years worth of subscriptions.

Clearly, something’s gotta give. But don’t worry there’s help on hand for managing debt repayments soon.

The stats

With the average income for a uni grad coming in at around $52,000 (subject to which career path you’ve chosen), you may not even have to be a grad or working full-time to start repaying your loan. The new threshold also offers very little breathing room to make that challenging transition from uni to actual responsibility. Learning the ropes of rent, bills and unexpected expenses leaves little room for error – and the new threshold simply removes another piece of the Jenga tower. We know these stats may seem daunting, but we can offer some must-read tips for paying off HECS debt.

What is HECS debt repayment?

Now, if you’ve been completely in the dark so far, let us shed some light on HECS debt repayment. HECS debt repayment is the task of paying off long lost uni debt. It’s a no-interest loan that disappears when you do! So, no need to fret about your future children carrying the load of your HECS debt. In reality, HECS debt repayment is a percentage of your income, that is automatically transferred out of your paycheck. If you want the source of the info, head over to MoneySmart.

Most budding uni grads thought HECS debt would be a thing of the future. That debt you thought about for a fleeting moment, then pushed it to the back of your mind for future you to worry about. Well, for anyone earning over $45,000, it will be rearing its ugly head ready to strike at any moment. We make it sound pretty scary, but don’t worry, we have all the right tips to navigate you through the rough seas.

How to get started with HECS debt repayment

If you’re young and fresh-faced, you may find it daunting having to pay off a hefty loan, but it’s quite easy. You know that tax file form you have it fill out at the beginning of each new job? Well, that’s the ticket to HECS debt repayment. If you have HECS debt, you should tick the option on the tax file form and once you started to earn enough moolah to surpass the HECS debt repayment threshold (not that hard to do now); payments will be automatically deducted from your account. When you achieve that elusive state of freedom from debt, you simply need to fill out another tax file form to stop the deductions.

Tips to help to manage HECS debt repayment

Prepare.

Managing debt is made easier with budgeting. Budgeting is key to managing your money and staying on top of your finances. If you’re affected by the latest change to the HECS debt repayment threshold, then, don’t panic – simply schedule it into your budget. If you’re finding your finances are tight as it is, then you may need to cut down on some luxuries.

Goals.

Set up a visual reminder of your HECS debt repayment. Instead of dwelling on your missing income, show yourself where it’s going. If you wish to make voluntary repayments, set goals for your HECS debt. It helps to visualise your achievements, so they seem more like reality, rather than a daydream.

Don’t let it scare you.

Don’t be frightened by your HECS debt. Especially, if you’re not used to debt, it can feel uneasy to owe so much. However, start by taking a step back, don’t let it overwhelm you. Remind yourself of the facts; it’s a no-interest loan and the repayments are made automatically. So, there’s really nothing to worry about.

Know how much you owe.

Before imagining the hordes of moolah you have to repay, actually CHECK how much HECS debt repayment you have. No freaking out, please! It may not be as much you think.

How to check how much HECS debt repayment you have?

It may be hard to believe, but accessing your HECS debt is pretty easy. Simply log into your MyGov account, pop over to the ATO and you’ll find a lovely surprise awaiting your attention – your HECS debt! To tackle your HECS debt repayment head on, it’s important to know how big the task is.

Do you want to make voluntary payments?

Unlike, other loans, your HECS debt is 100% interest-free! We thought you deserved some good news. So, monetary wise, there isn’t much advantage to paying off your HECS debt early. Or, that’s what they say. If you make voluntary repayments before your HECS debt gets indexed on the 1st June, you may avoid sneaky add-ons.

Still thinking about making voluntary payments? Here’s why you should:

  • You have no other repayments
  • Have a couple of bucks lying around looking for a purpose (unlikely, right?)
  • You wish to reduce the pressure of your heavy HECS debt

Carrying around debt can be overbearing for some. So, if you are struggling with a $40,000 weight strapped to your back, why not make a voluntary HECS debt repayment.

Perhaps you shouldn’t consider voluntary payments if the following applies to you:

  • You have credit card debt or you’re currently repaying a personal loan
  • You’re not yet earning enough money to surpass the HECS debt repayment threshold

Basically, if you have any other debt, you should repay it first before HECS. Considering HECS repayments are automatic and carry no interest (apart from the index), you can slowly pay it off without much hindrance to your precious smashed avo on toast funds.

If you’re super keen, how do you make voluntary payments?

With the wonder of online communication, you can make a voluntary HECS debt repayment via BPAY, direct credit, credit card or if you’re yearning for the good old days, you can post a cheque to the ATO.

To lodge a voluntary payment online, you must provide a payment reference number (PRN). If your heart is sinking at the thought of combing through all your files to find this mysterious PRN, then rest assured, you can simply find the number in your MyGov account. You can access the payment details for the ATO via their website.

Moving overseas and wondering about your HECS debt repayment?

Don’t be! Moving overseas doesn’t hinder your HECS payments, however, it also doesn’t save you from the responsibility either. Before you move overseas you must update your contact details and fill out an overseas travel notification if you intend to move overseas for 183 days or more. Once you’re settled and you have an income, you must lodge your worldwide income, and your HECS repayments will be taken from new net income. The HECS debt repayment threshold remains the same.

Can you ever cancel your HECS debt repayment?

The government has a process in place if you ever need to cancel your HECS debt repayment under special circumstances. However, the special circumstances only apply if you don’t finish your unit of study.

You can apply for your HECS debt to be cancelled if you did not complete your unit due to serious illness or other ‘special circumstances’. You cannot apply for HECS debt cancellation if you withdrew from the course after the census date. However, if you are seriously ill and withdrew after the date, you may apply.

That’s awkward

The latest reduction of the HECS debt repayment has shed light on the number of women in low-income jobs. Greens Senator, Andrew Bartlett highlighted the impact once the change was announced,

“The lowering of the HECS repayment threshold will be forcing 185,000 additional people to start paying back their fees, and 62% of them are women.”

Women occupy many of Australia’s low-income jobs, such as nursing and admin roles. They will be the first to be hit by the recent decrease in the HECS debt repayment threshold. Just something to ponder.

Don’t worry – there are plenty of other loans coming your way

In recent years, Australian household debt has risen to be one of the highest in the world. Looking at the total owed as a percentage of net income, Australia owes 212%, behind Norway, Netherlands and Denmark. Mortgage debt takes the crown for the highest percentage of household debt. And student debt comes in at 2.1%. So, HECS debt repayment is merely a warm-up for your upcoming debt marathon. But, don’t worry, you’re not alone. In the coming months, we plan to break down debt, the good, the bad and the ugly. You won’t have to fend off debt without our help!

If you’ve mastered your HECS debt repayment, and you’re ready to invest in a holiday, a new car or tie up some loose ends, apply for a fast personal loan today!

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Love learning about the latest personal finance tips to hit the shelves? Then discover all you need to know about the latest buy now pay later craze for a wealthier you!

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There are a few problems with everyone’s much loved buy now pay later services

buy now pay later

buy now pay later

Who doesn’t love convenience? You could say it’s the most sort after global commodity. Quick finance has now joined the likes of Uber, online calendars, sleep tracking alarms, with buy now, pay later services. Buy now, pay later services such as Afterpay and zipPay have recently flooded the market and have attracted different people from far and wide. Essentially, buy now pay later services offer the handiest convenience; being able to pay for your impulsive buy without actually spending any of your money – right away. And the best part, no interest! It sounds amazing, doesn’t it? Yet, like all things in life, this miraculous, dream-delivering service can be overused. So, we’ve decided to look into these shiny new services and discover the dangers behind their glistening exterior.

The basics of buy now pay later services

Buy now pay later Australia has recently revolutionized the way we shop, particularly in the wardrobe department. Services like Afterpay and zipPay have spread across the physical and the digital shopping scape. It’s a service that allows any small rhetorical buy to become a reality.

Imagine: you see an eye-popping sale and you simply must take advantage of it (you’re basically saving money right?), then, you realise it ends before your next payday. You consider spending your grocery money on the desirable purchase, then you see that all-too-tempting sign; We accept Afterpay. It’s in that moment that you realise, anything is possible. You immediately make the purchase and you walk away radiating happiness. And that is buy now pay later services.

Much like a small loan, you begin to repay your buy now debt with four equal instalments, typically due every 2 weeks. Buy now pay later services have grown rapidly over the last the last 2 years, with Afterpay reining in 1.1 million customers over 8,600 retailers. Afterpay annual sales are suspected to surpass 1.5 billion as the big players hop on broad.

How do they work?

It’s simple really. To use buy now pay later services, the store has to partner with the service…and that’s it really. Of course, you also need to download the app and enter your bank account details, but that’s all! No need for a credit check, no application, no approvals – it’s convenience at its best. Shop now pay later services are available online or instore. So, convenience follows you wherever you go.

Once you’ve made a purchase, you typically repay the amount over four instalments every two weeks. There is no interest and no upfront fees.

Top retailers that offer buy now pay later services

Let’s be honest who needs another reason to blow their paycheck on a Kmart shopping spree? Well, buy now pay later services have certainly further tempted towards our favourite shopping realms:

And the list could go on and on and on! Afterpay and zipPay have quickly altered the way we think about shopping. Now if you want to hit the shops, you can pay off your items gradually, rather then all at once.

Why we love buy now pay later

The rise of buy now pay later services have been swift, and they have reinvented the way we see our money and what we can buy with it. If you’re not yet convinced that buy now pay later services are as convenient as everyone claims, here are some reasons why people love them:

Avoid dipping into your savings

When you feel the impulsive shopping urge grow inside of you, but you don’t want to dip into the shallow pool that is your savings, that’s when people turn to buy now pay later. If your favourite retailer is having a sale, instead of paying the full amount upfront, you can enjoy your purchase, then pay it off slowly. So, instead of paying $100 dollars, you’re simply paying $25 every two weeks. Seems a lot less!

The physiology of spending has certainly contributed to the growth of services like Afterpay. In our mind, we feel like we’re paying less. You might not even notice that $25 creep out of your account every two weeks. So, it’s almost like you’ve never paid for it, right? This is where the hidden danger lies, but more on that later.

For the big purchases

In line with the physiology of spending, buy now pay later make larger purchases more feasible. It breaks them down into tiny, bite-size chunks that are easy to digest. And before you know, you’ve eaten all of them, without even realising it! You can use Afterpay to upgrade your couch, spruce up of your bathroom, or even take a quick getaway! When it comes to large purchases, buy now pay later remove the harsh sting and suddenly the purchase transforms into a cuddly puppy. Again, this can also be a danger, more on that later.

Easy online shopping

Online shopping has already etched itself into the convenience hall of fame and buy now pay later is simply the cherry on the cake. Most major online stores, such as the Iconic offer Afterpay, meaning you can be snuggling in bed ordering the latest addition to your wardrobe and not pay a thing!

Buy now pay later definitely speaks for itself. What could be better than scoring a new addition to your wardrobe or the latest gadget, without parting with your hard-earned dough immediately?

What to look out for

Unfortunately, like everything in this cruel, random universe, there are dangers to the glistering buy now pay later services. So, whether you’re a buy now pay later beginner or a professional user, then it’s time to get educated:

Here are some of the dangers of the Afterpay frenzy:

Overspending

With buy now pay later services it’s easy to lose track of your spending. With Afterpay, a shopping spree turns from an expertise day out to seemingly free. During the course of your shopping, no funds will physically leave your account, so it’s easy to lose track.

And it’s important to keep in mind that you’re essentially taking out a loan with buy now pay later services. Owing credit is a responsibility that consumers cannot afford to take lightly. And buy now pay later services dress it up like it’s casual Friday. Speaking of Friday, ensure you’re ready for the Black Friday rush!

The elusive additional fees

Buy now pay late advise zero upfront charges, which is correct, however, if you’re ever late on a repayment, then you’ll see the charges rolling in. If you are late for a repayment Afterpay will charge you $10 fee, and if you missed the repayment again a further $7 fee will be charged. So, before purchasing an item on Afterpay consider other financial commitments and whether it suits your payment schedule for other expenses. Because it will cost you if you miss this bill.

Afterpay does take steps to protect their customers from easily falling into debt. For example, if a customer is late for a repayment, they are barred from making other purchases on Afterpay.

Refunds become fraught with complications

When you pay with buy now pay later services, refunds can be tricky. Firstly, the goods will be returned to the retailer. Then, the retailer must notify Afterpay and return a full refund to them. Finally, Afterpay will issue a refund to you.

It’s a long process that can be bogged down with paperwork and technicalities. So, when you’re purchasing an item through buy now pay later make sure you love it!

Effect on ability to apply for credit

This danger on your credit score is something that could affect your ability to apply for credit. And, trust us, we’ve seen it happen. Lenders see buy now pay later instalments as financial commitments that could bar you from being able to repay a quick loan. And if you pay you for buy now pay later services with a credit card, then, it will show up on your credit card as unpaid credit.

It can be easy to lose track of your buy now pay later spending. It can treat you to a nice dinner, but then, subsequently talk behind your back. Or it can be a two headed snake, or whatever other cliche metaphor you can think of. Point is, the dangers of buy now pay later can creep up and mess with your life in unforeseeable ways.

Irresponsible lending

As a small alternative lending company, Nifty Loans believes in the necessity for responsible lending practices. And buy now pay later services don’t account for the responsibility of lending. With no credit checks and no approvals, anyone can essentially obtain credit through these services. Leaving consumers vulnerable to debts and uncommitted.

So, clearly there are many reasons to love buy now pay later services, but there are pitfalls to be wary of too. Before diving into the magical world of buy now pay later services, it’s wise to be equipped with the tools to thrive in that world! Remember to still show restraint and keep your budget in mind at all times.

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We love delivering the latest info on lifestyle trends and personal finance titbits. We think the world is changing all the time, and you need to keep up. So, we want to help!
Love learning about the latest lifestyle trends to hit the shelves? Then discover all you need to know about work from home jobs for a wealthier you! Or just you’re looking to start donating to a charity, you need these tips!

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Craving More Me Time? Work From Home Jobs Are The Ticket To A Happier You

work from home jobs

work from home jobs

We’ve all been woken at 6 am by our ever persistent alarm and thought “I wish I could work from home today.” Snuggled up in bed, in our PJs, armed with a homemade coffee, smashing through work – for some, it’s a dream, for others, it’s a reality. Work from home jobs are increasingly becoming a driving force in the job market. And they are appealing to more and more working Australians. So, we thought we would see what all the fuss is about! We look at how to work from home the types of jobs, benefits and why more Australians are opting for this option.

The variety of work from home jobs

When it comes to working from home jobs, there are tons to choose from. With such variety in the mix, it can be hard to choose the best work from home jobs for you. Not only are there a myriad of different jobs to choose from, there are also different ways to work from home. You could work partly at home and partly in an office. Or if you’re a freelancer, you might like to escape home and work in a cafe or library once a week. The key to working from home is flexibility. You make the decisions. Hey, you could even work from your bathtub, just an idea!

We think these are the best work from home jobs

We love these jobs for their work-at-home benefits:

  • Virtual assistant
  • Medical Transcriptionist
  • Translator
  • Web developer/designer
  • Call centre representative
  • Tech support specialist
  • Travel agent
  • Writer/editor
  • Franchise owner

Some work from home jobs require previous training, and some you can learn on the go. So, it all depends on why you are searching for work from home jobs. Once you know why you can narrow your search to work from home jobs that suit your needs.

Why look for work from home jobs

Before beginning your search for work from home jobs, start thinking about why you’re looking to work from home. Here’s why you might need to look for more flexibility in your work location:

  1. Need control: Sometimes your life may demand you have more control over your schedule. Having the power to decide when to work and when you are needed elsewhere may be essential for some of you. Control not only refers to the location but also to your income. If you work for yourself you can set income goals and decide how much you want to earn.
  2. Flexibility: you may want a flexible schedule to pursue personal hobbies or spend time with your children
  3. Starting your own business: No one would disagree that starting your own business is pricey. That’s where Nifty Loans comes in! We offer business loans to help budding businesses start off on the right foot.
  4. Saving costs on a long commute
  5. Tax benefits: As a self-employed worker, you may be able to claim tax deductions on necessary work equipment. Check the ATO site for more info.
  6. Be your own boss

These are just some of the reasons why you may consider working from home. Whatever your reason may be, be confident it’s a good reason to embark on this new journey.

The benefits of working from home

  • Work/home balance
  • In our 24-hour economy, some of you may find it hard to switch off. If you’re at home and thinking about work, you may not be present with your family, partner or enjoying some much needed R&R. Working from home can give you access to time with your family or yourself where you can truly switch off.

  • Saving on gas
  • Calculate how much you spend on gas a week. Then, think about what you could do with that dough if you no longer had to drive to work. We’re guessing you could do an awful lot. When your home is your office, you can stop wasting your hard earned income on petrol and start investing in what you love.

  • Avoid the long commute
  • Petrol isn’t the only thing you’re saving on when you work from home. If you suffer the perils of a long commute, you may be foaming at the mouth when you think about working from home. Cutting out your long commute means you can invest your time in hobbies, passions and family and friends.

  • Fewer distractions
  • For you, it may be easier to concentrate at home, without the distractions of office banter. At work, you can find yourself beavering away when a colleague brings up an intriguing conversation about your latest tv show obsession then, half an hour may fly by without a productive minute.

  • Zen atmosphere
  • Without the office banter, the home may have a zen-like atmosphere. Being surrounded by your own belongings will lead to a sense of peace and comfort, leading to greater productivity.

  • More productivity
  • Again, without the distractions of work, you may find you are more productive at home. However, of course, there is the threat of home comforts distracting you too. More on that later!

  • Less stressful atmosphere
  • Sometimes the pressure of work can be overwhelming, and it can be hard to take time out. Some employees find working from home eases some of the stress you can find at work. Being in your own space, where you can relax, may help to keep you stress-free and healthy.

    If you are feeling overwhelmed at work but not looking to work from home permanently, you could have a chat to your boss about your mental health and ask for a chance to work from home temporarily.

  • More time with family
  • Are your kids growing up before you get a chance to see? Well, consider work from home jobs. You may still work the same hours, however, your schedule becomes more flexible. As a result, you take a few hours off to go see your kids sports carnival! You’ll thank yourself for it in the long run.

  • Your own space
  • At home, you can create your own space. You can decorate however you wish and do whatever increases your productivity. If you always wanted a standing desk, now is the time!

Why working from home benefits your employer

Don’t worry employers, we haven’t forgotten about you! For the employee, there are plenty of benefits from working from home. However, as an employer, there is a silver lining for you too.

The benefits of letting your employees work from home:

  • If they have requested to work from home, they could be happier and more productive
  • With the right technology, you’ll be more connected than ever! Enlist the help of Skype, and organisational tools like Trello and Slack.
  • Cut down on office maintenance costs. One less person in the office means fewer people drinking all the milk and devouring all the snacks!
  • Use it to your advantage by spinning work from home jobs into a marketing campaign for your business!

It’s certainly not a traditional idea for the workplace, however, with technology growing and ideas changing, it’s time to open your arms and embrace work from home jobs.

Why as an employee, you should occasionally work from home

It’s good to pinpoint the fact that work from home jobs don’t have to be a permanent arrangement. You could ask your boss for some time at home or simply ask for 2 days a week to work from home. If you’re interested, start the conversation with your boss and see what they are happy to offer. You never know!

Tips to find work from home jobs

Finding work from home jobs can be tricky, you have to navigate a minefield of online scams and falsehoods to find the gems. But don’t panic, that’s what we’re here for! We can give you the best tips for finding perfect work from home jobs:

  • Tailor your job search: when you’re searching for jobs on SEEK, Indeed or Jora, use keywords like work home jobs or freelance
  • If it’s too good to be true, it is
  • Look carefully at the fine print of the job description: avoid jobs that work on commission only, unless you’re not looking for a secure income
  • Avoid unsolicited emails: Unless you know the company, then avoid responding to emails from companies you’ve never heard of offering you a job
  • Beware of promises: Tread lightly when an ad advertises that you’ll make thousands just in the first year
  • Don’t spend money to get a job: Some online scams ask you to send them a fee before getting started in the position. When you see that, it’s time to run!
  • When you’re organising a work from home job, ask for a list of references. Discover who else has worked with them
  • Get freelancing! Think about freelancing. If you have skills in marketing, writing, web design, graphic design and more, you can find jobs on sites like Upwork or Toptal

Following these tips will land you a work from home job that just might be your perfect match! Speaking of online conveniences, did you know that Nifty Loans is 100% online? That means no paperwork loans, fast application and quick approvals. If you need a boost to your funds whilst you’re hunting for work at home jobs, you know where to turn!

How to masterwork from home jobs

Once you’ve made it through the maze of job searching or tackling the negotiations with your boss, congratulations. You’re officially working from home! Now, you might be lost. The realisation of this major lifestyle change is sinking in and you realise you have no idea how to work from home. Well, have no fear! As a result, here are some top tips on how master working from home:

  • Stick to regular working hours

    Schedule yourself regular hours and stick to them. Obviously, one of the major perks of work from home jobs is flexibility, so you can always adjust your work at home hours as needed.

  • Separate your work and personal life

    Don’t let your work life erode your personal life at home. Furthermore, working from home can risk the merging of your work and personal life. So, when it’s time to finish, turn off all your devices related to work and a enjoy a night of leisure.

  • Organise, plan than organise again!

    If you’re a professional planner, then working from home will suit you. To succeed at working from home, keep a close eye on all your upcoming tasks and your progress.

  • Take breaks

    When you feel your brain giving up, take a break. Take a walk, have some quality time with your furry friend, or make a cup of coffee. Take advantage of the freedom you’ve earned.

  • Your at-home office

    This tip may be the most crucial of them all. Have your very own at-home office. Working from home can pollute your personal space with your work. That’s the last thing you want. So, designate an area in the house that’s just for work, and only spend time in there when you’re working. To increase productivity add a touch of greenery to your at home office and spice things up with some powerful colours!

    If you’re looking to update your home to suit your new lifestyle, why not consider a small home improvements loan?

  • Keep your workspace clean

    Take pride in your workspace, even if you’re the only one who’ll see it. Keep your zen up keeping your space nice and tidy!

  • Let the music set you free

    Put on your favourite tracks whilst you’re crushing your workload. Perhaps invest in a new pair of quality earphones. If you’re a bit short on cash after your transition to working from home, why not consider a short-term loan.

Let’s be friends

Work from home jobs can be a tough adjustment, however, if you stick with the new lifestyle change, you’ll find yourself happier at work and at home.

Love learning about the latest lifestyle trends to hit the shelves? Then discover all you need to know about changing your spending habits for a wealthier you! Check out some of our other self employment tips.
Want more of Nifty Loans? Great! Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Google + and also keep up to date with the more personal finance and lifestyle trends via our blog.

Find out the new tricks of internet banking you need to master

internet banking

internet banking

The internet is ever growing and expanding. Elevating us to new heights and reaching into all the facets of our lives. About five years ago it snuck into the heart of banking to birth internet banking. It’s completely revolutionised the way we bank. Gone are the days of hiking to the bank to check on your account. Or using a phone internet service to transfer funds and pay bills. All you need now is a smartphone and an app and you’re ready to conquer the world of personal finance!

How does internet banking work?

All the major banks in Australia offer internet banking services. The lines at the bank are dwindling as we sit at home and pay rent, our bills and transfer money to a friend whilst we’re snuggled up in bed. Banking has shifted from the streets to the sheets. It’s accessible to everyone from anywhere. All you need is the app and internet connection and you can access your funds 24/7. Internet banking puts all your bank accounts at the touch of the fingertips.

Internet banking works the same as physical banking, however, it’s all stored online. Instead of asking a bank clerk to transfer your money over to a different account, you have the power to do it. Your finance is quite literally in your hands!

What services do internet banking offer?

In case you haven’t kept up with the release of internet banking, here’s an update on all the services internet banking has to offer:

Opening accounts

Remember heading out to the bank just to open a new account for your expenses? Maybe you want to open a new dedicated savings fund (a great way to budget for a new toy)? Internet banking apps give us the power to open new accounts at the touch of the button. There’s no need to mess around and waste your time with trips to the bank to organise your accounts.

Pay bills

Cheques have been rendered useless with the invention of internet banking. There is also no need to call pay visa to pay your bill. You can do it online! Same goes for practically any bill. By adding someone’s BSB and account number to your payee list, you can transfer money owed to their accounts. However, nothing is slow when it comes to the internet. Their companies are already bypassing the need for a BSB and account number, but we’ll get to that later! Paying bills into other bank accounts may take a day or two to complete, depending on the speed of your bank.

Transfer funds

Internally transferring funds has never been easier! Moving funds from one account to another happens is instant. In addition, to save time and hassle you can schedule recurring payments to certain accounts if it’s a payment you make periodically. The philosophy behind technology like internet banking is to save you time and simplify your life. Life is busy enough without worrying about the state of your finances. Internet banking minimises the time you need to spend on the organisation. That’s time you can spend enjoying your hobbies, passions or simply just rejuvenating after a busy day!

Keep up to date

Internet banking is like the perfect personal finance assistant. It keeps you up to date with your current finances without wasting your time with useless information. Anywhere you are, you can log in your bank account and keep track of your finances. You can lose track of spending your income. With internet banking, major banks provide informative graphs, illustrating where you are spending your money. This is great for those who want to see just where their hard earned money is going.

You can also manually view the history of your account and keep track of what you are spending every day. For those who love a meticulous budget, online banking is like The Facebook to your social life.

The types of internet banking

Internet banking through the banks

Traditionally, all transactions would transfer through the nominated banks. So, when you needed to send money straight from your bank account, the banks have full autonomy over the transaction. For example, when you transfer money between banks, it can take days (depending on when you send it). Some banks take longer to transfer funds than others.

The middle-man

Introducing the middleman in internet banking. The middleman is a third party that handles the transfer of your money. Typically, you’ll register your bank card and grant access to a third party to pass on the money to whoever you choose. The middleman service cuts down the clunky process of gathering BSB and accounts numbers and generally accelerate the process of money transferring.

It’s a game changer.

How many times have you gone to dinner with your squad and you either pressure one person to pay or you try and split the bill 8 ways? Don’t worry, it’s happened to all us. As a result, we’ve all felt the scorn of the waitress when asking for the bill to be split evenly 8 ways. We dread the hassle of chasing up our friends for a few dollars and subsequently waiting days for all the payments to transfer. The middle-man is the newest trick of internet banking that’ll save you time.

The new tricks of internet banking that’ll save you time

Banking on your mobile

Internet banking has now gone mobile. You no longer need a computer to utilise the functionality of internet banking. You can carry your bank account with you, wherever you go! No need to have access to a laptop, simply download your bank’s internet banking app and start managing your moolah on the go.

Pay ID

Pay ID is a middle-man that works directly with your internet banking app. The app gives humankind the gift of never having to search for someone’s BSB and account number. To begin using Pay ID simply create your ID through your bank. Once the setup is complete you can begin your Pay ID experience. If someone needs to send you money, tell them to send it straight to your ID. Pay ID cuts a lot of corners, however, a single fact remains, you still have to remember your Pay ID number.

Beem It

Beem it is the newest trick to enter the internet banking scene. It’s an app that verifies your credit card and identity and gives you the power to request money from other Beem It users. So, picture this: You’re gone out to dinner with three friends and you need to split a $160 dinner bill. Luckily you all have Beem It and you can simply select the split option and it will send an even amount to the people who owe you.

And that’s it! The amount is transferred instantly into your account. No lag, no hassle! Beem It is flagged as one of the most innovative internet banking inventions to hit the app market. So, get downloading today from the App Store or Google Play.

Paypal

Paypal has slowly emerged as an essential partner in the digital space. The app is integrated with so many internet wonders that have hit the scene. Uber is probably the easiest example of Paypal integration. All your Uber rides can be automatically debit to your Paypal account. Your Paypal account can be connected to a bank account or credit card. As a result, we experience flawless payments that save us time and hassle.

Paypal is also the key to your online shopping spree. Instead of enduring the exhausting ordeal of providing your credit card details, you just simply need to log into your Paypal account.

Internet banking has paved the way for easy and innovative services to minimise the hassle of exchanging your hard-earned moolah.

How internet banking is making buying easier

For those who cannot bear the stress of guessing your size on online sites, internet banking has seeped its way into your physical shopping experience too.

Buy with your phone

Internet banking not only makes online shopping a breeze but converts your phone into a one-stop shop for all your shopping needs. Furthermore, buying with your phone simplifies your shopping experience. Cutting down physical credit cards is the next step is simply your personal finance. It all starts with your internet banking app. The availability of these services differ depending on who you bank with and what smartphone you have.

For Apple users, most major banks in Australia (except The Commonwealth Bank) support apple pay. Apple Pay is simply a digital wallet that holds a virtual version of your credit card. For Android users, there is Google Pay, which offers the same functions as Apple Pay. If you opt for Google Pay, you’ll find it’s more compatible with Australian banks. With Westpac only offering buy with your phone options for Google Pay.

If you’re a Samsung owner, you have your very own Samsung Pay. Paying with your phone works like PayWave and is only suitable for payments under $100. Furthermore, if you have a bank account you can probably set up your virtual credit card for free. Unless you bank with The Commonwealth Bank, unfortunately, they have no buy with your phone options yet.

Using Technology Right

With all this talk of cutting out trips to the bank, it’s time to talk Nifty Loans. We just love technology, especially financial technology. As a result, we love to focus on processes that function at maximum capacity to give our customers quality service. That’s why we use the latest in safe banking technology to access a read-only copy of your online bank statements and expenses to assess your short-term loans application. So, if you’re looking for fast personal loans, then you’ve found the right place. Learn more today!

Submit a bank statement online today!

Let’s be friends

Love learning about nifty personal finance tips? Then, discover all you need to know about positive credit reporting and how’ll it will affect you.

Want more of Nifty Loans? Great! Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Google + and also keep up to date with the more personal finance and lifestyle trends via our blog.

The scales are evening with positive credit reporting

positive credit reporting

positive credit reporting

Ah, to be young. Think back to when you were just beginning to understand the world, and earned your first dollar in pocket money allowance. You didn’t consider the daunting world of finance ahead of you, did you? You probably imagined purchasing an ice cream and tasting the delight of the soft cream hitting your mouth. Borrowing money or keeping a check on your credit score? Nah!

Slowly but surely the comforts of childhood peel away and we are left to face the brutal world of finance hurtling towards us.

Come time to take out our first loan, we see the industry wrapped in negativity. Especially, with credit scores and credit reporting. Your credit score reflects your standing amongst lenders and, until recently, has only punished people for poor choices.

Have no fear! Positive credit reporting is coming to Oz for all to enjoy. At its core, positive crediting reporting allows people who have made poor financial decisions, to re-establish themselves as trusted borrowers. Before diving into positive credit reporting. Let’s take a look at the history of credit reporting.

Firstly, what is credit reporting?

A credit report is a statement that highlights your borrowing history. Lenders use these reports to determine whether you are a trustworthy borrower. They also look at the likelihood of you repaying your loan.

A credit report contains the following information:

  • Your personal details
  • Any bankruptcy or court judgements
  • Credit applications that you lodged in the last five years
  • Credit providers you currently with credit with
  • Late or missed payments
  • Defaults on loans, or credit card payments
  • Number of credit inquiries

As a member of the financial community, it’s important to keep a check on your credit score by ordering a free credit report. To request a free copy of your credit report, visit Equifax for more information. Simply, ordering of copy of your credit report will not impact your credit score (contrary to popular belief). When you’re thinking about applying for a quick loan, or credit card, that’s the optimal time to check your credit report. It’s essential to be aware of your financial standing before applying for more credit.

What is negative credit reporting

Negative credit reporting has been the staple for credit reporting throughout its history. It’s the practice of lenders basing their assessments of a potential borrower solely on the negatives blemishes on their credit report. However, with positive credit reporting, that negative credit reporting is taking a backseat.

History of credit reporting

Credit reporting in the modern sense is an American concept. Historically, it’s legacy has paved the way for Americans and other capitalist systems to realise the “American Dream” through access to credit. Credit reports cement our standing as a member of the global financial community. They dictate how much insurance we pay, how much interest we are charged and, sometimes, where we live and work. Having a healthy credit score is more important than ever. Let’s dive into how the system rose to this height of importance.

In its infancy, credit reporting was simply a word of mouth system. In the 18th century if you wanted to secure a loan you would simply ask for the reference of a well-trusted neighbour. Mercantile Agency was the first crediting agency. Lewis Tappan founded the agency in 1841.

He ran his business by scouting information from across the country, gaining insights through correspondents. The reports were biased to class and race, mainly catering to the wealthy, elevating their standing. Ah, so that’s where the classic aphorism comes from – the rich get richer and the poor get poorer.

In the aftermath of the Civil War, the three pillars of credit reporting were in place: mass surveillance, information-sharing was made widely available as a rating system.

It was only in the 50s that technology was integrated with the credit reporting process. FICO was founded and an algorithm was formed to calculate credit scores. The process remains similar to this day. Before the push for positive credit reporting, the algorithm only punished poor financial decisions. Therefore, making it difficult to crawl back from bad credit.

What is positive credit reporting?

Now, you might be thinking it’s all doom and gloom for your credit score. Have no fear! Australia recently introduced positive credit reporting.

Known as comprehensive credit reporting, positive credit reporting is being rolled out across Australia. It allows lenders to make a more balanced assessment of a borrower’s credit history. With the new additions to credit reporting, lenders receive a more positive outlook on your credit history.

The new additions to your credit report:

  • Information about current accounts you hold
  • Closed and open accounts
  • The date you paid any default notices
  • How well you have repaid recent repayments

Other major countries have already implemented positive credit reporting. Improving borrowers leverage when they are hunting for cash loans. Positive credit reporting changes the negative dialogue that has shrouded credit lending and can help borrowers have access to much-needed credit.

In short, rather than just showing the bad things you do, positive credit reporting will show the good, too.

How does positive credit reporting affect your credit score?

Positive credit reporting is like Christmas. Its arrival has landed a number of goodies at your doorstep. Let’s unwrap them!
Most Australian borrowers aren’t sure how positive credit reporting will affect their ability to borrow credit. So, get informed about positive credit! It’s dramatically changing the way we lend and borrow money.

The benefits of credit reporting for the borrower and their credit score:

Easier to recover from a bad credit score:

By recording recent positive behaviour, acts like making repayments on time will balance out other negative spots on your credit report. Missed or late payments remain on your credit score for at least 5 years. As a result, your lending ability could be negatively damaged by your financial circumstances 5 years ago. With positive credit reporting, lenders can assess your current financial circumstances when looking at your application.

No more “thin” credit files:

When it comes to assessing your credit history, lenders tend to look for a long history of credit. They want to see that you have an established line of credit. The additions of positive credit reporting will lengthen your credit report. A borrower armed with a positive credit report increases the likelihood of a lender accepting their loan.

Soften the blow of one negative event

In the world of negative credit reporting, one poor financial decision or an unavoidable default would significantly impact your credit score. Now to the world of positive credit reporting. A place where the sun shines and only a pattern of missed repayments will significantly impact your credit score.

Striving for accuracy

Positive credit reporting is a swing in the right direction for accurate credit reporting. The method presents the best possible version of your credit score to the lender. Positive credit reporting reduces the risk of high-interest fees and rejections if you have previously had bad credit. The need for no credit check loans is disappearing, as all your credit history should look shiny and new!

Positive Credit Reporting: the power to the borrowers

With negative credit reporting, the system had all the power. Traditionally, the negative aspects of your credit history would outshine the positive ones. Positive credit reporting reinstates the power to the borrower. This may be a foreign concept to you, so let’s explain.

If your credit score is bad, your options are limited when it comes to lenders. And you’re more likely to be slapped with a higher interest rate. If positive credit reporting re-adjusts your report and presents a more accurate finding than you can shop the loan market with your good credit score. Without comprehensive credit reporting, borrowers would always be at a disadvantage. With the power balance between the lender and borrower would be weighted to the lender.

Why we love positive credit reporting

It’s no secret that Nifty Loans wants to give every Australian a chance to apply for credit when they need it. We know that life can deal you a hand you haven’t prepared for leaving you stuck. Our loan philosophy is built around the idea that one bad round of life, shouldn’t affect your ability to borrow money. We believe in cultivating a positive small loans experience for our borrowers.

Giving access to people who are seeking loans is what we do best. Nifty Loans adheres to responsible practices. We don’t accept an applicant if they cannot afford to repay their loan. We have 100% adopted the positive credit reporting philosophy into our loan assessments. Past finance may not be an accurate representation of your current situation. We love that the rest of Australia is embracing this credit philosophy.

How to keep track of your credit score

Comprehensive credit reporting has certainly increased the accuracy of our credit reports. The added additions to our credit reports introduce new ways to improve a bad credit score. So, get driving on the road to a good credit score with the help of positive credit reporting.

How to improve your credit score and keep it healthy:

Stick to your repayment schedule:

if you have a notorious habit of forgetting important dates, then opt for direct debit. An automatic payment system is a great way to easily maintain a good credit score. Set goals for yourself, and celebrate the day you become debt free again! To make sure your repayments don’t overwhelm your bank account work them into your budget.

Keep track of your credit score:

Information is power, so it’s important to know the status of your credit score. With a free copy of your credit report, you can also track the progress of your credit score. And how it reacts to financial decisions you have made.

Keep your credit card balances low:

Manage your credit card debt. Did credit card debt land you in a bad credit score to begin with? Then perhaps stay clear of credit cards whilst you’re trying to rebuild your score. If you borrow money from your credit card, why not use it as an opportunity to improve your credit score by making your repayments on time?

Don’t close old accounts:

As mentioned above, a long credit history is a good credit history. So, don’t be tempted to close old accounts or credit cards. This will shorten your credit history and ultimately damage your score.

Selectively choose new credit inquiries:

Whilst you’re trying to rebuild and maintain your credit score, go easy on loan inquiries. Don’t apply to several companies just to increase the likelihood of being accepted. Even with positive credit reporting in play, it will still significantly damage your credit score.

So, cheers to a positive credit reporting and maintaining a healthy, good lookin’ credit score.

Let’s be friends

It’s exciting to see Australia embracing a positive outlook on credit reporting. Borrowing money and knocking your brain into overdrive thinking about credit reports can result in stress and anxiety. So, don’t forget to return to that bright-eyed kid every so often and go out and buy yourself an ice cream with a few spare coins.

Love learning about the tops tips for finance? Then, discover tops tips on how to change your spending habits.

Want more of Nifty Loans? Great! Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Google + and also keep up to date with the more personal finance and lifestyle trends via our blog.

Personal Loans and Credit Cards: A Nifty Loans Comparison

personal loans

personal loans

Borrowing money is something that all Australians do. When we don’t have the cash for something we need or want, we pay an institution to lend us the money. And that’s it! Sounds simple, doesn’t it? However, with our fast-paced world, littered with roadblocks and advertisements, it can be difficult to know which lending practices are right for you. If you’re in search of quick or instant cash, personal loans and credit cards are your most viable options, but, which is better?

Well, that’s what we are going to investigate. A comparison is always a balancing act, weighing up the disadvantages and the advantages of each option. So, let’s take a look at the scales.

Firstly, what are personal loans?

Personal loans are typically small loans ranging from pocket change ($100) to the cost of a second-hand car ($5,000). Most lenders require you to repay your loan within 1-5 years. Some lenders are more flexible than others with loan terms. We’ll tackle the art of the personal loan comparison later on.

Firstly, let’s tackle the main two types of personal loans; unsecured personal loans and secured personal loans.

Types of personal loans

  • Unsecured loans: An unsecured personal loan is typically small personal loans, that is not “secured” by equity. Unsecured personal loans are less risky for the borrower, as there is no chance of repossession. However, as the lender assumes more risk with unsecured personal loans, they tend to charge higher interest rates.
  • Secured personal loans: Secured personal loans are personal loans that are secured by equity, such as a motorbike, car, boat or caravan. With a secured personal loan, the risk lies with the borrower, as if you default on your personal loan, the lender has the power to repossess your equity. On the plus side, as the risk is less for the lender, the interest rates tend to be lower.

When looking to borrow a personal loan, you’ll mostly come across both these options. With all this choice, you may find yourself wondering which is best, however, it depends on the reason for your cash loan. If you’re looking to borrow a small personal loan to tie over your monthly expenses, then an unsecured personal loan is right for you. On the flip side, perhaps you’re hunting for a used car, and need an extra fund boost, then a secured personal loan would be the perfect fit.

As you can see, personal loans are primarily based on what your financial situation is and the reason for your loan enquiry.

How to apply for personal loans?

You may be thinking “All this sounds like what I need, but surely applying for a loan is stressful and complicated.” Before the birth of the internet, you would be required to travel to the bank and wait in endless queues to apply for personal loans. However, the internet has gifted the world of finance with a platform to make borrowing easy. There is a myriad of personal loan lenders who are 100% online (Nifty being one!). So, say goodbye to red tape and mountains of paperwork. Knock, Knock it’s the future calling!

What is a credit card?

Most Australians over the age of 18 own either a debit card or credit card. Know before we dive into credit cards, it’s important to note the difference between a debit card and a credit card. A debit card doesn’t allow you to borrow credit. You only have access to the funds in the bank account connected to the card.

When you make a purchase with a credit card, you may decide to borrow credit to pay. Once, you’ve used this credit, the credit card company then charges you interest on your purchase. Typically, credit cards incur high-interest rates, however, they are a handy line of revolving credit.

How to apply for a credit card?

With the beauty of the internet, credit card applications, (like personal loans) are also online! You can apply for the comfort your living room over breakfast or on the commute to work. Before thinking about applying for a credit card, take a look at these 3 simple steps:

  1. Compare credit cards
  2. Access their online application and read through it, check that you meet all the minimum requirements
  3. Fill in the application, making sure all the information is correct, then hit send!

With the power of online convenience, financial applications are accessible to anyone, no matter where you are or what you’re doing.

Looking at the scales: Personal loans and credit cards

So, personal loans or a credit card? Should you charge your latest expenses to a credit card, or take out a quick personal loan? These questions are what we’ll try to settle. Nifty may be 100% online, but we’re old fashioned at heart, so we’re going to use the classic pros and cons scenario to compare personal loans and credit cards.

Advantages of personal loans

The advantages that stand out amongst all the others for personal loans is lower interest rates. That means you spend less money on interest! Interest is essentially a fee for ‘renting’ moolah from a financial lender. Of course, lower interest rates can vary depending on which financial lender you choose. (We may be biased, but Nifty has stella interest rates!)

Personal loans come with an end in sight! When you apply for personal loans, you set an amount a time in which to repay your debt. That gives you a date on your calendar to celebrate being debt free!

With lower interest rates and fewer fees, personal loans are typically cheaper in the long run, when compared with credit cards. That means more money for the things you love!
Budgeting your loan repayments into your weekly, fortnightly or monthly budget will see your loan repaid in no time! The trick with budgeting is to stick it to. If you do that, then you won’t be tempted to spend your funds allocated to repayments. Therefore, personal loans are the ticket to saving and halting those impulsive buys when you can’t (really) afford them.

You can use personal loans to consolidate your debt. Debt consolidation is simply the act of combining multiple loans into a single low-interest rate low. Of course, this does increase your monthly repayments, however, it will be cheaper in the long run.

Disadvantages of personal loans

Of course, like everything in life, there are disadvantages to taking out personal loans to pay for expenses.

Personal loans are only for a finite amount of time. If you require an extra boost to your funds again, you must apply for another personal loan. Applying for several personal loans, especially within a short period of time, may have a negative effect on your credit score. If your credit score is already bad, perhaps multiple personal loans are not the right option for you. Don’t fret though, we have a secret solution for you: debt consolidation – but we’ll take more about that later.

Compared to credit cards, personal loans are less flexible. Once you sign a small loan contract, you are obligated to keep it. Most lenders charge an early exit fee if you repay your loan off early (not Nifty though).

These disadvantages are important to consider when deciding between a personal loan and credit card for your finance needs.

Advantages of credit cards

Let’s take a look at credit cards. Credit cards are a variable option if you’re searching for a borrowing platform, however, are they better value compared to personal loans? Let’s find out!

After you apply and are approved for a credit card, you have an immediate line of credit to spend. It’s an instant transfer of moolah! So, if you’re in need of something urgently, a credit card is an ideal option.

And now, our favourite advantage of credit cards is the rewards! Who doesn’t want to be rewarded for spending money? It’s the ultimate dream. Well, with credit cards it can be a reality. The rewards and how many you earn will depend on which credit card company you choose and how much you spend. It’s certainly a massive plus, with couples claiming they paid for their honeymoon with credit card rewards.

Besides an abundance of rewards, credit cards also provide a constant flow of cash. With a constant line of credit, you can spend your credit whenever you want and whenever you want.

Disadvantages of credit cards

With all these great advantages, there are certainly some disadvantages to owning a credit card.

Credit cards can leave you caught in a cotton wash cycle that never ends. Credit cards provide constant access to funds and hence, the temptation to spend and incur credit is very high. Obsessively using credit cards to make impulsive purchases can lead to a cycle of unmanageable debt. Monthly credit card bills only require a minimum payment, which can contribute to a cycle of debt.

Credit cards traditionally carry higher interest rates, compared to personal loans. As a result, you spend more in the long run if you always use a credit card for large expenses.

You know you best!

Here are some questions to ask yourself when you’re considering personal loans or credit cards.

  1. Why are you applying to borrow money?

    If you are looking to make a large purchase (up to $5,000), then perhaps personal loans are more appealing. With lower interest rates, personal loans will cost less in the long run.

    If you’re simply looking to pay for few oddball expenses with a line of credit, then a credit card might be your best option. And don’t forget the rewards!

  2. How do you manage your repayments?

    As we have mentioned before, personal loans come with an end date, whereas credit card debt can be never-ending. So, consider your current financial commitment and see how flexible you are. Can you stick to a repayment budget? If so, then make it fun! Design a budget that is more like a vision board. Something you enjoy looking at and interacting with. Whether it’s on the computer or hanging in your kitchen.

  3. Are you consolidating your debt?

    If the answer is yes, then consider a personal loan. Some lenders allow you to transfer credit card debt over to a personal loan. Before consolidating your debt, shop around for the most suitable option for you. ASIC’s Money Smart is always a good place to start your search for anything finance.

Bad credit and personal loans

Online lenders (like us!) are traditionally more lenient than traditional lenders, (like the big banks). Nifty Loans does adhere to responsible lending practices, and would never approve an applicant that couldn’t afford their loan repayments. Furthermore, we think every Australian deserves the right to invest in their finances, even those who suffer from bad credit.

That’s why we offer bad credit personal loans.

When we assess our applications, we take a complete snapshot of your finances, including your past and present. If you’ve been receiving a regular income for the last 90 days, then you may be eligible for bad credit personal loans!

The Verdict

When it comes to making tough financial decisions, it always comes down to your individual circumstance. However, hopefully, this breakdown of personal loans and credit cards has given you a good idea about what you need.

Remember before making your decision between personal loans and credit cards, keep these tidbits in mind:

  • Interest and comparison rates
  • Fees
  • Your financial circumstances

Consider all your options before making a decision and remember that our loan specialists are always ready for a chat.

Let’s keep in touch

Love learning about the tops tips for finance? Then, discover tops tips on how to change your spending habits.

Want more of Nifty Loans? Great! Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Google + and also keep up to date with the more personal finance and lifestyle trends via our blog.

Payday Loans Pitfalls And Nifty Loans

cash advance

cash advance
When you think payday loans do you see shots fired and holsters waving like we’re in a western movie? Well, you’re not alone. Payday loans are at the heart of Australia’s alternative lending market. However, there are several payday loans pitfalls that disrupt the integrity of the market. Traditionally, they have been a grey area, but recent regulation has transferred the market and produced healthy alternatives to payday loans.

Before we dive into all this, let’s look at what payday loans are.

Firstly, what are payday loans?

A payday loan refers to a high-interest short-term loan. The payday loan term will typically last between 16 days and 1 year. The conditions of a payday loan generally include making repayments every paycheck. Some lenders will organise a direct deduction from your pay. The longer your loan term, the more you pay in interest.

The objective of payday loans is to help those who need an extra bit of cash to see you through to the end of the month. Payday loans may seem like a saving grace, however, they can leave us with high debt and high interest rates. The last thing you want when you’re in a pickle financially is a bad loan that could put you at risk of ruining your credit score.

There are payday loans pitfalls that can leave you wondering whether there is another option for paying off pesky bills or unexpected medical bills. So, let’s look at payday loans. What are some payday loans pitfalls and what are healthier alternatives to payday loans?

So, how do payday loans work?

Typically, the goal of a payday loan is to boost your cash flow until your next payday arrives. You hand over a blank cheque and a copy of your driver’s licence and you can be approved for a payday loan, no credit checks – nothing! That may sound like a dream, but there is a chance the borrower could dig themselves into debt they may battle to escape from.

Picture this – you write a postdated cheque for the amount of your loan, plus additional fees and charges, and once you receive your next paycheck, the lender will cash your check. You may extend the loan, resulting in a cycle of debt that can be difficult to recover from.

There are buckets of payday loans pitfalls to avoid.

Payday Loans Pitfalls

Payday loans pitfalls: Lack of responsible lending practices

Perhaps the most dangerous of the payday loans pitfalls are the accusations of irresponsible lending practices that the payday loans industry has been plagued with for preying on vulnerable individuals. Their services are typically targeted towards poorer communities, with fewer means to repay the payday loan.

Payday loans pitfalls: Must repay the loan as soon as possible

If you are able to repay your payday loan on time then you won’t incur large fees, however, failure to repay your loan could incur additional costs and fees that could lead to a spiral of financial hardship.

Payday loans pitfalls: Their effect on mental health

With the pressure of repaying your loan over a rather short period of time and the temptation to extend your loan if you cannot repay it, payday loans could have a negative effect on your mental health.

Payday loans pitfalls: Chance of falling into unmanageable debt

With the readily available option of ‘rolling over’, whereby your lender will offer to extend your loan if you cannot pay it,, many who take out payday loans fall into unmanageable debt spirals.

How Google protects customers from payday lenders

With the rise of payday lenders, the internet has become a playground for the industry. With Facebook and Google ads, finding a payday lender is too easy. In May 2016, Google addressed this problem by imposing a ban on all payday loan advertisements. In addition, the ban includes any borrower that requires customers to repay their loan in 60 days or less. It also requires all lenders to display a disclaimer on their site stating their loan terms and whether they work with third parties.

The ASIC also requires lenders to conduct thorough, reasonable searches into applicants financial situation. Furthermore, with the increase of regulation surrounding payday lenders, we have seen healthier alternatives for pay loans pop up!

So, it seems payday loans are a definite no-go! You may be thinking what other options are open to you when pesky financial problems arise. Well, don’t fret just yet, there are healthy alternatives to a payday loan.

Healthier alternatives to a payday loan

  1. Charge the amount to your credit card
  2. Apply for a traditional small personal loan (that’s where Nifty Loans comes in!)
  3. Ask a family member for a loan

What are Nifty personal loans?

Nifty Loans offer personal loans for those who need a financial pick-me-up. We access applications quickly and efficiently, keeping in mind that every situation is unique. To avoid our customers running into financial hardship, we are 100% transparent about all our costs and additional fees. Nifty is dedicated to responsible lending practices, so we will never approve a customer that cannot meet their proposed loan repayments.

Why apply for a personal loan?

There is a myriad of reasons why applying for a personal loan is a smart move. Much like borrowing money off your credit card whilst you’re short of funds, a personal loan can act as a helping hand in pesky financials muddles.

Reasons to apply for a personal loan:

How does Nifty loans differ?

Nifty is a small personal loans company. We are a far cry from the neon signs you see advertising payday loans. Our business is 100% online to release the stress from financial problems. We have a dedicated customer service team that is ready to answer any questions regarding your finances.

Let’s take a closer look at how Nifty loans differs from payday lenders:

Nifty adheres to responsible lending

  • We don’t let consumer enter their data in manually

    Some payday lenders allow their consumer to enter their income and spending habits manually, cultivating a system where desperate borrowers lie to get approved for a loan. To avoid these payday loans pitfalls, Nifty utilises the latest in safe banking technology to access a read-only view of your bank statements and spending habits. The safety of your information is of utmost importance to us, so no need to fear, we will safeguard your privacy.

  • We offer Financial hardship

    When our customers are suffering from financial hardship we set up a 2-month repayment plan to help them get back on track.

  • We do perform credit checks

    When we access a personal loan application, we do conduct credit checks. However, they are only one piece of our master approval plan. To give the right help to clients who need it and can afford to repay their loan principal.

  • We have minimum requirements to get approved for a personal loan

    Nifty wants to provide small loans to people who require financial assistance, however, can also afford repayments. We do not lend to clients who have proven they cannot pay back the loan principal. To avoid clients who we cannot approve applying for our personal loans, we have devised four basic minimum requirements for our loan application:

    1. You must be at least 18 years old
    2. Must an Australian citizen or permanent resident
    3. You’ve been receiving a regular income into a personal bank account for at least 3 months.
    4. Have an active phone number or email address

    In addition, simply because an applicant may meet these requirements doesn’t secure an approval. Furthermore, we do perform credit checks and apply a diligent approach to our responsible lending practices.

  • You choose your repayment plan

    If you are approved for a Nifty personal loan, we allow you to select your own repayment plan. We encourage all your applicants to choose a plan that realistically works with other financial commitments they have. Our friendly customer service is ready to help any applicant with questions they have regarding their loan application and the terms we offer.

Flexible loan terms

Nifty loans offer flexible loan terms for all applicants. Customers are not restricted to a 16-day loan term. Our minimum loan term is 3 months with a maximum of 24 months.

Supportive customer service team

Nifty loans have a friendly and dedicated customer service team and an efficient A.I bot, David. Whether you need to have a chat with a human or simply want your questions answered, Nifty’s customer service is here to assist.

Furthermore, providing financial services that are helpful and contribute to someone’s livelihood should be the main purpose. These financial services should avoid the payday loans pitfalls mentioned before. Services that are transparent about costs, and are available to discuss any questions or inquiries you may have.

Want to keep in touch with Nifty’s weekly discussion of relevant topics? Well, follow us on Facebook, and head over to our blog to find out more about the Facebook Hacking Scandal and The up and coming Commonwealth Games!

The Commonwealth Games are coming!

commonwealth games

Sporting events have plotted history, inspiring the likes of all communities to come together in the name of friendly competition. The Commonwealth Games have been a staple of a competitive celebration of the world’s finest athletes for 88 years.

Now, the Games have landed on our home turf once again. The Gold Coast is hosting the Commonwealth Games beginning on the 4th April 2018. The Games will be a celebration of hundreds of sports and a great chance to display Australian sporting pride (something we are keen to do after dropping the literal ball at recent events *cough cough*).

Before we become glued to our TVs and dive into the celebration of the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games, let’s explore the history of one of the World’s most famous sporting events.

the history of the commonwealth games

The Commonwealth Games began in 1930 and was first held in Hamilton, Canada. The first event hosted 11 countries and sent 400 athletes to compete in six sports and 59 events. The sporting event now hosts 71 nations and territories sending 6,660 athletes and officials.

how did the commonwealth games begin?

The Commonwealth Games began as a concept to help unify the Commonwealth through friendly sport. The revitalised Olympic Games inspired the idea of a Commonwealth Games (then known as the British Empire Games) to unite the Commonwealth nations.

In the first Commonwealth Games, teams from England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Bermuda and South Africa were among the countries to participate. To support the Games, the host town, Hamilton in Canada, provided $30,000 to cover costs.

The Commonwealth Games have been held every four years since 1930 (except for 1942 and 1946 during World War II).

who participates in the commonwealth games?

All the countries under the banner of the Commonwealth are invited to participate in the Commonwealth Games. This includes countries where the Queen is sovereign (like Australia) and where the countries are independent (like Canada). The total population of the Commonwealth is 2.1 billion, with 71 Nations and Territories competing in the Games.

The Commonwealth Games bring together members of the Commonwealth to compete on a level playing field that’s built on trust and respect for sports. The games give us all something to root for, whether it be a nation, an athlete or a sport; we can all come together and celebrate achievements of all nations.

The official list of all participating nations in the Commonwealth Games can be found here.

how many times has the commonwealth games been hosted in Australia?

Australia has hosted the Games five times throughout its history: in Sydney (1938), Perth (1962), Brisbane (1982), Melbourne (2006) and now the Gold Coast. Australia has hosted the most Commonwealth Games events out of the other competing Nations. We also hold the prize for the most amount of medals, including the most gold and silver medals at the Commonwealth Games. Go us!

where have the commonwealth games been held?

The strength of the Commonwealth Games comes from all the diverse locations that have hosted the event. Most of the larger countries, such as Scotland, India and Canada, have had their turn in the hosting spotlight. However, there are some countries that participate in the Games that you may have never heard of. Here are some tiny countries that compete in the Commonwealth Games:

  • Grenada : The country is the most southerly of the Windwards Islands in the Eastern Caribbean. The country won a silver medal in the Melbourne Games, followed by a gold and a bronze at Glasgow.
  • Ghana : The Republic of Ghana (formerly known as the Gold Coast) is located in West Africa and lies on the Gulf of Guinea. Ghana won 5 gold medals at the Jamaica 1966 Commonwealth Games.
  • Samoa : Samoa is made of nine islands and is located at the centre of the Southwest Pacific Island group. The name Samoa means ‘Scared Centre of the Universe’. Samoa has not hosted the Commonwealth Games, however, did host the Commonwealth Youth Games in 2015.
  • Trinidad and Tobago : Trinidad and Tobago are two islands located in the West Indian Island states and are situated 11.2 km off the Venezuelan coast.

most popular events at the commonwealth games

There are 23 sports at the Commonwealth Games, each containing a myriad of different team and individual events. Anything is possible when it comes to competition, so have a look at the complete list of sports hosted at the Commonwealth Games.

The most popular sporting spectacles at the Commonwealth Games seem to be swimming and athletics. However, the games are also a platform to watch sports that are not usually on free-to-air television, such as shooting, squash and weightlifting. So, expand your sporting horizons this Commonwealth Games and watch and cheer for sports you haven’t watched before.

the benefits of hosting the commonwealth games

Hosting the Commonwealth Games can be disruptive for those who inhabit the city, however, it does bring great benefits. Hosting the Commonwealth Games is set to benefit the local area both economically and socially. Here is a list of benefits that the Australian Government is intending to gain from hosting the games:

tourism

  • Improved skills and opportunities for business
  • Building the Gold Coast’s image as a world-class boutique city
  • Inspires a drive for customer service excellence
  • Integrates the opportunity for permanent infrastructure improvements, such as the Gold Coast Light Rail Stage Two.

community

  • Community hype and celebration
  • Platform to unite the Commonwealth Nations and also the local community
  • The talent of local artists from a diverse range of communities are on display
  • Enhance the reputation of the local community
  • Increased engagement in the local community

economy

  • Infrastructure development for the host city
  • Improvements to key venues
  • Places the opportunity for the education sector and knowledge economy to become a major industry on the Gold Coast
  • Drive growth in local creative industries
  • Planning for the Games has already created thousands of jobs and business in Queensland

Clearly, the Commonwealth Games provide a sense of pride and also boost morale and community. It’s a fun and friendly display of athletes talents and the attractions of Queensland.

free events at the commonwealth games

As part of the celebrations, the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games are hosting several components that are free to enjoy. There are free sporting events to witness as well as a packed festival lineup. Of course, attendees at the Commonwealth Games will also be able to enjoy the other attractions on the Gold Coast that bring in millions of tourists each year.

the festival 2018

The Commonwealth Games will host festivities across Queensland, with the heart of the celebration at the Gold Coast. All these events are free to the public. The vision behind Festival 2018 is based on three acts, “ Encounters in which we meet the world, Change in which we affect positive change in the world and Aspire in which we uplift and transform ourselves and those around us.” (Sourced from the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games)

This vision is embedded into the feel of the games, the organisers say. Endeavouring to connect the global community with Queensland’s culture.

At the Gold Coast, the Games will be presenting 160 events across the 12 days of the festival. The festivities will be held across the Gold Coast and aim to present the wider community with an understanding of Queensland’s diverse culture.

Festival 2018 welcomes a diverse range of musical performers that endeavour to showcase a diverse range of musical talents. The Festival 2018 spans across the line of the coast, with two major locations in Broadbeach and Surfers Paradise. To help keep you in the know with exactly what’s up, here’s a description of each location of the Festival 2018:

location

  • Surfers Paradise Beach

If you’re in Surfers Parade from 1 pm onwards there will be plenty happening at the main stage. In the party centre of the Gold Coast, there will be plenty to experience for all ages throughout the day. Every night, the Main Stage will exhibit performers from 17 different countries, including Fresh Voices of the Commonwealth, Bleach Electrified and Electric Lady.

  • Kurrawa Park, Broadbeach

There is much to offer at Kurrawa Park with an inflatable maze, family shows and performers from Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islands and First Nations communities.

  • Surf Parade, Broadbeach

If adrenaline is your game than Surf Parade is where you’ll want to be over the course of the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games. The location is playing host to two massive stages with the best musicians, acrobats and dancers. For extra adrenaline pump, head to the open air 360-degree Roundabout Stage, with an array of global dancers, urban circus performers and physical theatre.

  • Across the Coast

Apart from the above central locations, Festival 2018 is popping up all over the coast. So keep a look for surprising and entertaining (and free) events for the whole family to enjoy.

free sporting events

There’s no doubt that Commonwealth Game tickets, plus accommodation and all the extras could take a toll on your bank account. Don’t let that stop you and your family enjoying the spectacle of the Games. Consider a holiday loanto help boost your Commonwealth Games fund.

  • Cycling – Mountain Bike: For free, you can view the race from various vantage points along the track. The Mountain Bike race will be held at the Nerang National Park, Nerang. The event will be held on the 12th April starting at 10:30 am.
  • Cycling – Road: For the road cycling there will be plenty of action to enjoy from the Public Viewing Areas. View world-class athletes battle it out on the road. The race takes place on the Currumbin Beachfront. The event is held on the 10th of April starting from 10 am.
  • Marathon: The marathon is an impressive display of strength and endurance. The Gold Coast Commonwealth Games marathon includes four races; the men’s marathon, women’s marathon, men’s T54 (para) marathon and women’s T54 (para) marathon. The races will begin at Runaway Bay and end at Burleigh Heads on the Gold Coast. There are many spectacular spots to view the races along the picturesque coastline.
  • Triathlon: Want to see a mix of sports and talent all in one race? Well, the triathlon is perfect to visit a variety of talent all in one place. The individual Triathlon takes place on the 5th of April, flowered by the Para-triathlon and Mixed Team Relay on the 7th of April.

Food

No need to worry about a packed lunch for you and the kids. The Games have provided The Hub which will offer a wide range of food and drinks at each event.

To keep to date with all the essential Gold Coast Commonwealth Games info, download their free app here.

attractions on the gold coast

  • The beaches! Including Burleigh Heads, Surfers Paradise, Main Beach and Broadbeach. Also, relax on Burleigh Hill, overlooking the beautiful coastline, for a picturesque picnic with the family
  • Have a shop at the Harbour Town Outlet or Pacific Fair; two of the largest shopping centres on the Gold Coast with hundreds of retailers.

To escape the hype of the Commonwealth Games, get amongst nature at Mt Tamborine. There are plenty of activities to keep the whole family entertained, such as Tamborine Mountain Glow Worm Caves, and the Rainforest Skywalk.

how to plan for the commonwealth games

The Commonwealth Games will attract a fair amount of extra traffic to the Gold Coast area, however, there are plenty of ways to minimise your travel times. Here are some top tips for travelling around the Gold Coast during the Commonwealth Games:

  1. Plan ahead
  2. Stay nearby
  3. Use free public transport instead of parking at the venue
  4. Consider walking or cycling for quicker journeys
  5. Allow more time for travel

ready, set, go the games!

Whether you’re planning on enjoying all the sporting festivities live down at the Gold Coast or watching your favourite sports from the comfort of your home; remember to enjoy the fun and Games!

Want to keep in touch with Nifty? Of course, you do! Visit our blog for the latest updates on the  Facebook data scandal and how it affects you.

Privacy & The Facebook Scandal

privacy

In the last 10 years, the use of internet has drawn a new light on the question of privacy. New boundaries have been set for what defines privacy on the internet, however, these lines are still quite burly. Whenever we sign up for a new free service, such as Facebook or Google, we are signing over rights to some levels of privacy. We are essentially trading the information we provide via likes, comments, shares and searches in exchange for use of their free service.

With the unfolding of the Facebook data scandal, the question of data privacy online is rotating through the news.

You may not be surprised to read that Facebook has been selling data to Cambridge Analytica, a private data company. You may have trusted Facebook with your data and now feel betrayed that it’s been used for this purpose. The idea of our data being shared like that can be a little overwhelming. Deciding what is ethical and what isn’t and how you feel about privacy is difficult. Especially if you don’t know too much about all the nitty gritty of it. So, let’s get the facts straight and dive into what the Facebook data scandal is and how it may challenge the question of privacy.

firstly, what exactly is the facebook data scandal?

In the last week, the Facebook data scandal has blown up across news platforms. The story reports that 50 million Facebook users’ data was sold to Cambridge Analytica where it was used to construct marketing campaigns for the Trump presidency.

The breaking of the Facebook privacy scandal points to the philosophy of data usage that is at the heart of free services, like Facebook and Google. The data we produce on social media is a rich source of opportunity for companies. The issue of difference with this scandal is that the Cambridge Analytica used this data to advertise a political campaign, not a product or service. The company purchased the data from a third-party source that was not authorized to sell Facebook data. So, the scandal poses a question about trust: whether we can trust Facebook with our data and trust them to protect our privacy.

As a result of the scandal, Facebook’s shares have dropped massively on Wall Street, showcasing a decrease in public trust.

what is privacy?

Recently, the lines of privacy have been blurred by the internet. It has become a question of ‘do we want companies knowing that we have a taste for organic chai tea and utilise that information to market as hundreds of tea brands?’.

Information privacy is the right to control your own personal information. This right is distorted when we are actively participating online. Personal information is defined by the Australian Government as an opinion relating to a person whose identity is apparent.

There are laws and boundaries put in place to protect our privacy in the real world and online. However, sometimes companies break the boundaries, and that’s when consumer and company trust is broken.

Currently, Facebook is suffering this breakdown of the relationship with their users. Technically, they didn’t do anything illegal, as all users have signed a Terms of Conditions agreement. However, users are questioning whether it’s ethical. And if it is unethical, how is the problem fixed?

Let’s take a look at differential privacy and see how it differs from the privacy policies that are currently in play.

what is differential privacy?

Yes, privacy on the internet has become so far-reaching that we have created a new term for it! Differential privacy allows tech companies to collect and share data about user habits. Differential privacy also endeavours to retain the privacy of individual users. This type of privacy online disconnects data from individuals. Furthermore, your data is lumped into a group of 150 people and the results of the analysis might indicate that 100 people preferred a different type of salad, for example. The company knows that 100 people preferred salad, but not who those people are.

Differential privacy is a solution to the issue of trespassing on privacy for users and gives companies a way to utilise data for profit, legally.

the question of ethical data use

In light of the Facebook data scandal, we are now questioning whether we can trust Facebook to ethically use our data. Therefore, it also poses the question of what is ethical data usage? Where is the line between using data to advertise products and using data to help elect members of parliament?

It may seem frightening, the idea that Facebook has access to your data and can give it to the highest bidder. However, sometimes this can work to our benefit. When it comes to selling products, your data is a snapshot of whether or not a company should promote their product to you.

In this sense, it’s beneficial to both parties, including the consumer and company. You have easy access to products and services you may not have discovered otherwise. Many services and products we use are tracking our decisions online, what we are searching and what we like. Services like Netflix and Spotify give us recommendations based on what we have previously watched or listened to.

Let’s take a look out how data is used by these companies to help you get a better understanding of exactly how your data is used.

data analytics

Researchers like Cambridge Analytica are not the only companies who purchase data from Facebook or Google. Marketing organisations apply the same strategy to analyse who they should market their product to and how. You may be hesitant about companies having access to your data, however, mostly it’s for your benefit and it’s generally not personal information. Simply information such as what you are searching or what you are clicking on. From this data, marketing companies will predict your personality and market products accordingly. So, maybe the latest dress you bought online was because of a Facebook ad or a Google search you did. A lot of the time, data is used to connect you with products you need.

how companies keep you up to date on privacy policies

You can find a company’s privacy agreement in the Terms and Conditions. Each time their privacy policy is updated you’ll receive a notification. Here are notable examples of privacy policies from companies you interact with on a daily basis:

  • Google : Google keeps the right to retain all search history and use it for future services
  • Youtube: Youtube owns everything users post. Deleting a comment or video from Youtube does not delete it from Youtube’s server
  • Facebook: Allows Facebook to track user activity on other websites and automatic sharing of data users publish on the site with third party organisations.
  • Netflix : Netflix reserves the right to disclose user information without notice.

To use all these platforms you must agree to their terms and conditions. So, before signing up to a new platform, check their privacy terms and evaluate whether you are comfortable with the level of privacy.

how to protect your information

So, when it comes to privacy, Facebook doesn’t illegally access your data. You give them permission via the Facebook privacy settings. If Facebook having access to your data is uncomfortable for you, then head over to your Facebook privacy settings and change them. Here is an 8 step guide to change your privacy settings:

step one: change your profile privacy

You may have already set your profile privacy to friends only, but, if you haven’t, here’s how you can. Head to settings, and click on the Privacy tab. From there, you can select who can see your posts. Select from Public, Friends, Only Me or Custom.

step two: change your audience

The next step in securing your privacy on Facebook is to change the audience of your old posts. Furthermore, changing your profile privacy doesn’t affect past posts, only new ones. Head to the Privacy tab again, click on Limit Past Posts and then select the Limit Old Posts and press confirm.

step three: hide yourself on facebook

Do you ever receive a friend request from people you’ve never met, nor have any mutual friends with? If so, you can stop this from happening by limiting the visibility of your Facebook page. In the Privacy tab, head to the ‘who can send you a friend request’ section and select Friends of Friends.

However, if you’re joining a new group or starting a new job, your new friends/co-workers will not be able to find your page, so just remember to disable it if you want them to add you.

step four: control who can see your timeline

To limit who can see what on your Facebook timeline, head to the settings tab and click on timelines and tagging to edit things such as “who can post on your timeline?” or “Who can see posts you’ve been tagged in on your timeline?”

step five: how to block people

If you’re receiving messages from someone you don’t want to hear from, or they are commenting inappropriate or abusive messages on your profile, you can block them. To block someone head to Settings and click on Block. Type in their name or email address and click block.

If you have been a victim of cyberbullying and abusive and need help, please call Lifeline on 13 11 14.

step six: enable tag review

A new feature enabled on Facebook to help protect your privacy is Tag Review. Enabling tag review will give you the power to review posts you’re tagged in before they appear on your timeline. To enable Tag Review head to the Timeline and Tagging tab in settings and enable the feature.

step seven: see which apps can access to your facebook

When you log into a new app with your Facebook account, you are giving that app access to your information you publish on Facebook. To limit who sees your data, clean out the apps you no longer use. If you don’t want to log in to other apps with your Facebook, simply turn Platform off.

step eight: alter ad preferences

By heading to Settings and Adverts you can alter your ad preferences. Facebook constructs a list of things you are interested in and tailors ads to those preferences. Play around with your ad preferences if you are seeing things you’re not interested.

So, those are the simple steps you can take to protect your privacy and your data. Facebook does give you the option to alter your privacy settings and you customise who can legally see what on your Facebook. So, that’s good news!

nifty and privacy

Nifty loans takes privacy and the safety of our client’s information seriously. Our application form is 100% online, so we dedicate a lot of resources to keep your information safe. We care about the privacy of our users because we are users of other companies and we would demand the same respect. Our quick personal loans are safe, smart and secure. We protect any information you provide on our fast loans application.  When it comes to sharing your information this is our standard policy:

We may use your personal information that we collect to contact you about our products and services where you have consented for us to do so.

Nifty commits time and energy to help retain your privacy and only releasing information to other parties when you consent it to.

we want to hear your thoughts

To protect our data, Facebook and Mark Zuckerberg are enforcing their policies that enable third-party applications to share our data. But, we want to hear your thoughts! How do you feel about the Facebook scandal? Do you trust Facebook with your information and the ability to protect your privacy?

Find Out How To Hack Loans and Self Employment

self employment

The internet has introduced a new way of working in Australia and all over the world. It has cultivated a global market for all business-minded individuals to participate in. With this change in how Australians work, we are finding that more and more people are entering into the self employment sphere.

The advantages of self employment are endless! The dream of choosing your own hours and investing and watching your passion become a reality is magical, until you require a small personal loan.

Enter: a massive dumping of red tape. When applying for a small loan, traditional lenders, such as banks, require various supporting documents. Don’t fret, though. Being self employed doesn’t mean you cannot acquire a loan. In addition, there are other options when it comes to personal loans (Nifty *cough*). But, before we go into that, let’s delve into the world of the self employed and what to consider when it comes to self employment jobs.

So, what defines a self-employed Australian

Firstly, self-employed Australians are people who work for themselves, under their own account. They hold jobs where their income is dependent on the profit of a service or good they provide. Triumphs of the entrepreneurial types and business owners typically inspire us. However, when it comes to borrowing money, self-employed Australians face jumping through hoops set by traditional lenders, like big banks.

Get the stats! Facts surrounding self employment and loans

When Australians are turned down for a loan, 54% of them don’t know where to go next.

Currently, 2.4 million Australians are self employed, which equals about 17% of the workforce. With the help of stats, let’s understand the position of self-employed Australians.

  • 26% of Aussies turned down by a bank are self-employed or work part-time
  • 42% feel their main financial institution doesn’t understand their needs
  • 2.4 million Australians are self-employed

There is clearly a gap between the needs of the client and the lender. It can be tricky tackling the difficult position of a self employed Australian. Particularly, when self employment jobs are being left behind financially by traditional lenders. So, when you consider the change from employment to self employment, think about whether you need to borrow funds initially to kick start your business.

Are you considering entering self employment? Here are some tricks to know beforehand

Taking the plunge and starting your own venture can be daunting. There a myriad of things to consider before stepping out into the world of self employment. So, here are is a list of handy questions to ask yourself before entering self employment:

  1. Where will you work?

    Before taking the leap into self-employment, it’s important to consider where you will work. To figure out where to best situate your work environment, think about whether you want to work from home, to begin with, or rent an office space. How versatile is your business? Could you work from anywhere with just a phone and laptop? Meditate on where you want to start your business and how you want it to operate initially.

  2. How will this impact my family and friends?

    Discuss your plans for self-employment with your family and talk about how it may impact their lives. Also, talk your plans through with a trusted friend, don’t be afraid to get some advice on your next big move.

  3. What are the lifestyle impacts?

    Self employment can alter your lifestyle. Sometimes it’s hard to see it coming before it happens, so prepare your family and friends for a possible increase in workload. Think about how your business can help create the lifestyle you desire, then find a way to make it happen!

  4. How should I protect myself against risk?

    Sometimes risks fail, and to protect yourself and your family, it’s best to have a backup plan, such as insurance.

  5. How will you market your business?

    To truly stand out, in our world full of small businesses looking to strike gold, your marketing has to be on point! Therefore, when it comes to choosing the right marketing, you must consider your budget – what percentage you want to allocate to marketing. Also, consider whether to work with a marketing agency or hire your own in-house team.

  6. Have you factored in the cost of taxes?

    Knowledge is power! So, gather all the insider intel you need on business taxes you’ll need to pay. Stay ahead of pesky expenses!

  7. Do you know what laws apply to your business?

    Similar to taxes, before entering into a new industry, understand the laws relating to your new venture.

  8. Does your business require extra funding?

    Enter: Nifty Loans! If your business needs an extra boost of funds, Nifty offers no paperwork personal loans up to $4,600. Unlike traditional lenders, we don’t require any additional information compared to regularly employed applicants. We only require that as a self-employed applicant, you are earning a regular wage!

  9. Have you sorted out a bookkeeping and filing system?

    Devising a method for bookkeeping and filing is key to a successful and organised business. Starting a new venture can be confusing and time-consuming, so it’s best to set up a system where your files are easy to access when needed.

  10. Finally, are you passionate about your possible business venture?

    Self employment can be thwarted with pitfalls and some hard times. If your idea is inspiring, however, and you love what you want to accomplish, then it makes all the sweat and tears worth it!

The need-to-know lowdown on personal loans for self-employed applicants

Have questions when it comes to personal loans and what they can do? Once again, don’t fret! We have you covered. Here is mini-guide to personal loans if you’re self-employed:

  • Types of personal loans:
    • Unsecured personal loans: Unsecured personal loans are small loans that are not ‘secured’ by equity, such as a bike, car or caravan.
    • Secured personal loans: A secured personal loan is a loan that is ‘secured’ by equity.
  • What to look for when you’re hunting for a personal loan:
    • Low-interest rates
    • Low fees
    • Short loan term
    • Quality customer service
  • What do Nifty Loans offer for self employed personal loans:
    • No hidden fees!
    • Once up establishment fee
    • Choose your own loan term, from 12 to 24 months
    • Excellent online customer service
  • What are some uses for self employed personal loans:
    Quick cash loans can be used for practically anything from business to personal use. You can give your next car fund an extra boost, or upgrade your office equipment. Here are some reasons that inspire applicants to take out a personal loan:
    • Upgrading office equipment
    • Investing in some new software for your business, like productivity or accounts software
    • Have a wedding on the horizon? Try a personal loan to pay for your dream wedding venue or a trendy photographer to capture every moment
    • Invest in a brand new car to match your new company
    • Adding some chic interior decor to your home
    • Updating the bathroom or kitchen

Your reason not on this list? No worries, the benefit of self employment personal loans is that they are flexible and you can apply them to any situation!

Commercial banks and personal loans

Big banks create hoops for self employed applicants to jump through, no matter how much you are earning. When applying for loans with traditional lenders, you’ve got to make sure you know the in’s and out’s of all your numbers. And prepare to run through a mass load of old paperwork!

What do you need to apply (documents may vary depending which lender you are with):

  1. Gather the last two years of (personal and business) tax returns. The most recent years cannot be older than 18 months. ATO notice of assessment (for the most recent year) or ATO lodgement notification. Banks require your tax returns to prove any income that you declare on your application
  2. Financial statements: Includes documents like your profit/loss statements to support the income you have declared on your loan application
  3. Proof of rental income (if applicant): If you own any rental properties, you must declare them by submitting support real estate statements
  4. Notice of Assessment (NOA): When applying for a loan, you must submit your latest NOA issued to you by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO). An NOA document details tax information like the amount of income tax you owe. Some lenders require NOA statements from the last two years.
  5. Recent bank statements: Submit bank statements showing your savings and business transactions.
  6. Company-specific information: Must submit business information such as ABN and address

Self employed job and struggling to get a personal loan? You’re not alone

At this point you may be thinking, “Why should my loan application be so complicated, if I own a successful small business, with a regular, comfortable income?” It’s a valid question, and one that self employed Australians ask often and are left wondering.

If you are left unsure, here are some reasons you may be rejected:

  • Newly entered self employment
  • Fail to provide required documentation
  • Tax returns not complete

The Nifty difference

With Nifty loans, you can forget digging through mountains of paperwork and endure endless photocopying. Nifty doesn’t treat employed, or self employment applicants differently. We don’t punish self employment with hefty paperwork. We simply require our applicants to be receiving a regular income into a personal bank account for at least 3 months. That’s it!

Forget gathering all your financial records, all we want to know is if you’re receiving a regular income to meet repayments.

A bit about Nifty’s same day approval loans

What you need to apply:

  • Must be at least 18 years of age
  • An Australian citizen or permanent resident
  • You’ve been receiving regular income into a bank account for at least 3 months
  • Have an active contact number
  • And that’s it! There is no endless list of forms to complete, accompanied by mountainous paperwork. We believe in a simple, painless small loan experience. And that’s the Nifty difference when it comes to self employment applicants.

Navigating the course of self employment can be tricky, especially with traditional lenders making it tricky to borrow small loans. Always remember there is always another way when it comes to financing, you just have to search for it!

Interested in a personal loan for private or business use? And in the self employment sector? Find out more here.