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Cheap Personal Loan

How to borrow money without paying the earth.

In the big scheme of life, and compared to fifteen years ago, there is such a thing as a cheap personal loan. With rates from 6% you can have a £2000 holiday for only £200 of borrowing fees. So don't be despondent- as well as benefits on many products, your overall choice of lending includes credit cards, flexible banking and 'pink' overdrafts or credit zones.

You would have thought that borrowing money was as simple as looking for the lowest possible APR. Often that's true, but here are a few quick pointers to getting a cheap personal loan.

Firstly, let's get businesses out of the way. If you're borrowing to start a company, then you need to go to your bank. Not only will the cheapest lenders refuse you (they lend for holidays, redecorating etc.), but also you need your bank manager to become your friend when you go into business anyway.

In general banks are oddly not the first place to go if a low APR is all you want- because of the intricacies of credit scoring and personalised quoting (plus their overhead in branch expenses) , bank rates are usually high- but do expect a responsible decision from your bank manager. For a really cheap personal loan deal, check out the newer breed of financial provider, especially at lower borrowing amounts. This includes the many supermarkets that provide loans.

You should also investigate offsetting or flexible accounts. Egg, Barclays and the Woolwich are all good examples; where you can offset borrowing interest against your savings; and often attach your loan to your mortgage. Similarly, if you have equity in your home, a cheap personal loan solution might be a homeowner loan or an extension to your mortgage.