As per the September 2015 statistics published by the UAE Central Bank, the amount of total loans to UAE residents is worth AED 330 billion, 7.5 percent higher than last year. A look at the statistics on Souqalmal.com also reveals that the number of visits on the personal loans section of the website has jumped by 71 percent in 2015, as compared to the previous year.
The demand for personal finance is definitely going up in the UAE, but do UAE residents know enough to make an informed decision when choosing a loan?
Do we know enough to make a smart personal finance decision?
According to a recent poll conducted by Souqalmal.com, 70 percent of UAE residents did not know how to calculate their loan repayments. The poll collected responses from over 350 respondents, with an aim to find out about the level of financial awareness amongst potential borrowers in the UAE.
To address this knowledge gap, Souqalmal.com has launched three calculators, for personal loans, mortgages and car loans, to help users find out how much a certain loan will actually cost them. Even seemingly small changes in interest rate, tenure or down payment can significantly alter your monthly repayments and total repayment value.
The fact that you would be paying off this loan over the next few years, makes it worth the effort to research your options and assess how much debt you can afford to take on. The loan calculators will help you check whether you’ll be able to comfortably repay it over the given tenure or not.
The idea behind the calculators was not only to help users gauge whether they can afford a new loan or not, but also to help existing borrowers. For example, if you have an outstanding home loan amount which you had borrowed at a high interest rate, you can consider going the balance transfer route with a bank offering a lower rate.
Custom-built calculators for borrowers in the UAE
All the calculators are designed keeping in mind the specific requirements of loans in the UAE. The mortgage calculator, for example, takes into account whether you’re an expat or UAE national, whether you’re buying your first house, subsequent one or an under-construction property, as well as whether there’s an introductory fixed rate on the mortgage or not.
The personal finance calculators are equipped with another useful feature – the results are also accompanied with a list of loans that you are eligible to apply for, based on your salary and requirements. This essentially takes you one step closer to finding the right loan for yourself.
With the introduction of these loan calculators, tailor-made for UAE residents, Souqalmal.com aims to simplify your search for the right personal finance product for yourself. The easy-to-use calculator will not only give you a true picture of your actual loan repayments, but also save you precious time in your search.