First-time guide for applying for a personal loan

First-time guide for applying for a personal loan -diarynigracia

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Top 3 Personal Loans That Can Save You


Tough times may sometimes require you to have extra cash. But we all know that’s not always possible. There are cases where an emergency might happen, unpaid bills already piled up, medical procedures that you must pay, and even tuition that you must take care of. Not having enough money to pay for all these is a massive headache, and financial services, like a personal loan, can help you get through this crisis.

Minutes to Read: 6 minutes

Age Bracket: 21 – 40 years old

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Getting a personal loan can help you pick yourself up after a challenging financial situation and continue fulfilling your obligations by paying off everything you need. Personal loans are not just for emergency cases, it can also finance big purchases such as travel and weddings. The flexibility depends on how you will use it, and paying it off with equal monthly installments with interest is one way to achieve those headache-free days. If you’re planning to get one, here are some tips, tricks, and guides to help you through your application process.



What is a Personal Loan?

Finding something that can finance your unexpected purchases might be tricky. Our first option will constantly be dipping into our savings or emergency fund as one way to finance it. However, we don’t always have enough to cover these expenses, and personal loans are an excellent option to finance these major purchases.


A personal loan is a money you borrow from a bank, online lender, or a private institution, with an agreement to pay it in monthly installments with interest over a given year. It is an unsecured loan, which means you don’t need to provide collateral to borrow money. However, your chances of being approved depend on your credit score. Unlike other loans that have a specific use, like Mortgage loans used to finance purchases of your house, personal loans are used for various purposes. It all depends on you. With learning a thing or two about personal loans, here are some terms you must know.


  • Principal Amount – the amount of money you borrowed that you agreed to pay back
  • Interest Rate – the amount charged for borrowing money; a percentage of the total amount you owe.
  • Loan Term – the length of time that it takes you to pay off your loan
  • Monthly Payment / Amortization – fixed payments you’ll be making monthly until you pay off your loan.




Qualifications and Requirements


Before considering applying for a personal loan, you should ask yourself first, “am I qualified for one?” The thing is, if you’re not qualified for a personal loan, it’s best for you not to apply to avoid wasting your time if you’re sure your application will not be approved in the first place.


Every institution that offers personal loans has a basis for whether or not you are qualified. Being able to pass this basis assures them that you’re capable of paying the borrowed money. If you still have no idea about this basic requirement, here are some qualification boxes you must tick. However, it may still vary depending on your applying provider.




  1. You must be at least 21 years old.
  2. You must be a Filipino Resident or a local resident foreigner
  3. You should have at least ₱21,000 gross monthly income
  4. You should be employed for at least one (1) year at your current workplace. If you’re self-employed, your business must operate for at least one (1) year.
  5. Should have an existing credit card (for some loan providers)


Once you have ticked all the boxes, you are now qualified to apply for a personal loan. All that’s left to do is find a bank or a lending institution for your loan and look into the documentary requirements needed to apply. However, in the meantime, here are some basic requirements that lending providers ask for.




  1. Filled out and signed loan application form of the provider you’re applying for
  2. At least one (1) valid government-issued ID
  3. Proof of address
  4. Income Documents
    1. For Employed
      1. Certificate of Employment (COE)
      2. Latest Income Tax Return (ITR)
      3. Latest Payslip
    2. For Self-Employed
      1. Latest 1-year Audited Financial Statement
      2. SEC Registration /  DTI Certificate
      3. Business or Mayor’s Permit
      4. Latest Bank Statement
      5. List of Trade References with contact details (if possible)




CIMB Bank Personal Loan


CIMB Bank is a Digital bank that offers consumer, commercial, and investment banking. They also provide asset management products and banking services to their customers. CIMB is the leading focused ASEAN Bank, being the fifth (5th) largest banking group in ASEAN based on assets, and is a world leader in Islamic Finance.


Through CIMB Bank, you can apply for a personal loan through their fully-digital loan application, which can be done within 10 minutes. All you need is one (1) of your valid IDs and one (1) payslip as proof of your income.



Personal Loan Details


Loanable Amount: Minimum of ₱30,000 up to a maximum of ₱1 million

Interest Rates: Monthly Add on rates – from 1.12% up to 1.95%

Annual Contractual Rates – 24%, 30%, or 36%

Loan Term: From 12 months up to 60 months (multiples of 12 months)

Processing Duration: Loan application in just 10 minutes, approval in 24 hours, and disbursement in one to two banking days

Loan Fees: Documentary Stamp Tax – ₱1.50 per ₱200 loan (Fraction of)

Disbursement Fee – ₱0 if disbursed through CIMB account. If disbursed through other banks,  1% of the Principal Amount or ₱500 (whichever is higher)

Late Payment Fee – 5% of the unpaid installment due or ₱300 (whichever is higher)

Early Settlement Fee – 3% of the unbilled amount or ₱300 (whichever is higher)



Eligibility Criteria


Since CIMB does not require a lot of documentary requirements, making it one of the easiest personal loans to apply to. However, you have to be eligible to apply for a personal loan. Here are CIMB’s eligibility criteria for their personal loan.


  • Applicant must be at least 21 years old, but age should not exceed 65 upon loan maturity.
  • Applicant must be a Philippine Citizen and a non-US person
  • Applicant must have a Philippine mailing address and an active Philippine mobile number
  • Should have at least ₱15,000 gross monthly income
  • If employed, must be tenured for at least six (6) months or at least one (1) year of continuous employment.
  • If self-employed, the business must be operating for at least one (1) year.



How to Apply


  1. Download the CIMB Bank PH application on your phone. Once downloaded, open the application. Click “Open an Account” and then “Personal Loan.”
  2. A screen page with a list of their eligibility criteria will be shown on your screen. Make sure you’re a fit before applying for the loan. A list of valid IDs will be shown as well, prepare one of the valid IDs mentioned and click “Let’s Start.”
  3. CIMB will ask you the amount you want to borrow, your preferred loan term, and the purpose of your loan. After selecting, click “Continue.”
  4. Provide your active Philippine Mobile Number and email address. You will receive an SMS OTP to verify your mobile number.
  5. Create a username, password, and MPIN that will be used to verify your transaction.
  6. You will be verified by undergoing a selfie check. You will be asked to take a photo of your valid ID. After that, you will be asked to face your camera while following the steps on your screen.
  7. After the selfie check, fill out the necessary details asked on your screen, such as your Philippine Address, Name, and other personal information. Ensure all the details you provided are correct, complete, and verifiable.
  8. After filling out your personal information, fill out your employment information.
  9. A summary of your loan application and personal details will be shown on your screen. Make sure to review it to avoid issues with your application. Click “Submit” once you’re done.
  10. You will be asked to upload at least one (1) proof of income document (i.e., One (1) Full month payslip, Certificate of Employment, BIR Form 2316). Click which document you will provide and upload a photo of your document. To speed up the application process, you can also provide a picture of your company ID (optional)
  11. Select your preferred disbursement account. You can choose either through a CIMB account or another bank (this might require a disbursement fee).
  12. The application process is now done, and your application will now be subject to review and verification.
  13. Once your loan is approved, accept the loan offer before it expires. After accepting, your loan will be disbursed to your chosen account.




Citi Personal Loan


Citibank is the leading banking partner for different institutions with cross-border needs. It is known for providing financial services for the public sector, top-tier Filipino Corporates, multinationals, and financial institutions operating in the country. They offer different financial services such as trade finance and services, end-to-end cash management solutions, funds services, and corporate banking services.


With Citibank’s personal loan offer, your application can be approved as fast as 24 hours. You can also enjoy maximum benefits with your Citi Personal Loan, such as fast cash for your business expansion, extra funds for your home improvement needs, and funding your expenses.



Personal Loan Details


Loanable Amount: Maximum of ₱2 million

            Interest Rates: 26.9% – 30.9% per annum

            Loan Term: from 1 up to 5 years

            Processing Duration: Approval in as fast as 24 hours

            Loan Fees: Disbursement Fee – ₱1,750 for each disbursement

Documentary Stamp – ₱1.50 for every ₱200 of the amount

Late payment fee – ₱500 or 6% of the overdue amount (whichever is higher)


Eligibility Criteria


  • Applicant must be at least 21 to 65 years old.
  • Applicant must be a Filipino resident or a local resident foreigner with a valid Philippine Address.
  • Applicant must have a Tax Payer’s Identification Number (TIN)
  • Applicant must be a Citibank’s Principal Credit Card Holder for at least three (3) months
  • Should have at least ₱250,000 gross annual income




  • One (1) Valid government-issued ID with photo and signature
  • Duly accomplished form. Either fill it out online or you may download the form.
  • Proof of Income
    • For Employed
      • Latest complete one (1) month pay slip issued within the last two (2) months
      • Certificate of Employment (COE) with salary issued within the last two (2) months
      • Latest ITR with BIR Stamp
    • For Self-Employed
      • Latest Income Tax Return (ITR) of your business (Form 1701) – All pages
      • Latest Audited Financial Statements of the Business with independent auditor’s report and balance sheet and tax receipt with banking stamp – all pages.
    • For foreign Nationals
      • Any of the following proof of residency
        • Immigrant Certificate of Residency (ICR)
        • ACR I-Card with Visa status “Permanent.” Otherwise, it should be valid for more than 1-year
        • Visa and Work Permit/Alien Employment Permit (AEP) with a validity of more than 1-year
        • Special Resident Investors (SRIV)
        • Special Resident Retirement Visa (SRRV)
        • For the Top 2000 companies, an employment contract or letter from Company HR printed on company letterhead with name, position, and confirmation of term.


How to Apply


  1. Visit the Citi Personal Loan Application page and fill out the online form.
  2.  Wait for a phone call from a Citi sales officer the following day. This is to verify your loan application.
  3. Email the required documents needed for the application to




SSS Salary Loan


Social Security System, commonly known as SSS, is a government financial institution located on East Avenue, Quezon City, Philippines. It was established on the 1st of September 1957 through the Social Security Act 1954 and the Republic Act (RA) No. 11199, known as the “Social Security Act of 2018” or the SSS Law effective from March 5, 2019, which protects private employees.


A salary loan can be availed by an employed SSS member or an active self-employed and/or voluntary member. It provides financial assistance to those in need and is short of cash in times of need.


Salary Loan Details


Loanable Amount:

  • One-month Salary Loan: member’s average last twelve (12) monthly salary credits or the amount the member applied for, whichever is lower.
  • Two-month Salary Loan: member’s twice the average last twelve (12) monthly salary credits or the amount the member applied for, whichever is lower.

            Interest Rates: 10% per annum

            Loan Term: up to 24 months

            Processing Duration: two to three weeks

            Loan Fees: Service Fee – 1% of the total loan amount

Late Payment Penalty fee – 1%



Eligibility Criteria


Be an employed active member of SSS with updated payments of other loans with SSS.

  • If employed, your employer must be updated with the payments of the contributions and loans.
  • If not employed, must be currently paying self-employed or voluntary member.
  • If planning to apply for the one-month loan, you should have thirty-six (36) monthly contributions, six (6) of which should’ve been posted in the last twelve (12) months before the application.
  • If planning to apply for the two-month loan, you should have seventy-two (72) monthly contributions, six (6) of which should’ve been posted in the last twelve (12) months before the application.




  • Member loan application form
  • SSS Digitized ID or E-6 (acknowledgment stub) with any two (2) valid government-issued IDs, one of which should contain a recent photo.
  • If filed by Member-borrower’s Authorized representative
    • Authorized Representative’s SS card or any two (2) valid IDs with signature and at least one (1) with a photo
    • Letter of Authority (LOA) signed by both the member-borrower and Authorized representative
    • Member-borrower’s SS card or any two valid IDs with signature and at least one with photo.
  • If filed by the Employer/Company’s Authorized Representative
    • Authorized Representative’s SS card or any two (2) valid IDs with signature and at least one (1) with a photo
    • Letter of Authority (LOA) from employer and any two (2) valid IDs, both with signature and at least one (1) with photo.
    • Member-borrower’s SS Card, or in its absence, Application for SS Card (SS Form E-6) acknowledgment stub and any two (2) valid IDs both with signature and at least one (1) with photo.


How to Apply


The member-borrower may submit their loan application at the nearest SSS branch. If the member has a My.SSS account, they can submit their loan application online for convenience. If the salary loan application is submitted by the employer online, the application will be directed to the employer’s My.SSS account for certification. Hence, the employer must have an SSS Web Account.



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