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How to consolidate payday loans

Borrowers may struggle with the additional fees and rates associated with payday loans. Here's how debt consolidation helps them take back control.

Find out more about the overall costs of payday loans, and how you can consolidate your debt below.

Payday loans are a type of short-term loan. They are often a relatively small amount, offered at a high interest rate and paid off over a short period of time, usually after your next wage comes in. Payday loans are typically used if an individual needs quick access to money before they are next paid - to cover an unexpected expense such as car repair. However, their high interest rate makes them more expensive than regular loans, and are to be repaid in full within a shorter period of time.

If the borrower cannot meet the repayments or needs to extend the lending period, the outstanding balance tends to increase sharply due to the high interest rate at which a payday loan is advertised. There are several ways in which a borrower can take control of their finances after using a payday loan, such as consolidating a debt. Often offered at a smaller interest rate than payday loans, debt consolidation loans can be beneficial at transferring a borrower’s debt into one simple repayment plan.

Expense of payday loans

A recent cap implemented by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)[1] means that charges on top of payday loans cannot exceed 0.8% of the total payment per day. This means for every £100 you borrow, you won’t pay more than 80p a day for fees and charges. However, over the course of the year, payday loans cost over 50 times more in APR than the average credit card[2], so missing or extending your repayment plan can prove costly in the long run.

If you have taken out more than one payday loan, or have been paying one off for an extended amount of time, debt consolidation can help you organise your finances into one manageable payment.

What is debt consolidation?

A debt consolidation loan is used as a way for a borrower to combine all their debts into one loan repayment plan. By merging multiple debts into one loan, you can lower your outgoings and potentially improve your financial situation.

To do this, a borrower would apply for a loan amount that’s enough to pay off their current debts, reshaping their debt into a more manageable repayment plan to a single lender. Choosing this method of consolidation also means a single interest rate is charged, which can save on interest being charged above the balance. By paying off this single loan in full and on time, you could also improve your credit score.

However, the Money Advice Service[3] recommends you only choose this method if the interest is the same or less than what you were paying before, and you can afford to keep up with the repayments. Therefore, it’s important to seek advice and compare lenders to find one that works best with your current situation.

Can I consolidate payday loans?

Yes - like other forms of debt and credit, it’s possible to consolidate your payday loans into one repayment. The purpose of a debt consolidation loan is to allow the borrower to pay off all existing debts with one loan, which can be managed more easily.

While payday loans are intended as short-term borrowing, there’s a variety of loan products on the market designed for longer-term use to help you manage your finances. Taking out payday loans on a regular basis could have a negative effect on your credit score, as lenders may view your borrowing as a risk. However, being approved for a new loan to help pay your debts can help you better manage your finances.

Advice on debt consolidation

When considering taking out a debt consolidation loan, seeking out expert advice can help guide you to improve your money management.

There’s an abundance of free, helpful debt advice services online including Step Change and PayPlan. These services can assess your unique situation to offer support and advice on how to take control of your finances, and can help you with things like making a budget.

You can also find further guidance on a range of loan types and frequently asked questions about money matters by visiting our Know How page.


[1] https://www.money.co.uk/guides/fca-payday-loan-caps-your-faqs-answered.htm

[2] https://www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk/en/articles/payday-loans-what-you-need-to-know

[3] https://www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk/en/articles/debt-consolidation-loans


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