Imagine trying to solve a financial emergency and family and friends don’t pull through. In today’s Kenya, you can get a loan within a few minutes on your mobile phone. Getting an online loan in Kenya is much simpler than the traditional route of getting through your bank.
Years ago, borrowing money would’ve required a procedure and lots of paperwork. Now you can be in your living room and have access to quick loans. There are many loan apps in Kenya today. The credit market has even gone beyond smartphones as some creditors can issue loans via USSD from any phone.
The credit market is huge and the reasons are not far fetched.
- It solves a practical problem
- Technology has made it easier for borrowers and lenders.
There are many loan apps on Google Play Store. Except you have all the time in your hands, you may not want to check all of them. This post will save you this hassle and bring you the best loan apps in Kenya should check out first.
You won’t be disappointed. Let’s see these apps.
7 Top Loan Apps in Kenya
Originally called Mkopo Rahisi before rebranding, Tala is one of the older players in the mobile loan scene. Launched in 2014, Tala works with your M-PESA account offering loans from a minimum of ksh 500 to ksh 500,000.
Here is how to sign up for Tala;
• Download the Tala loan app
• Fill out our quick loan application in the Tala mobile app
• Verify your identity
• Get cash sent directly to your M-Pesa in an instant
Loan repayments are done either with M-PESA Xpress or Tala’s Paybill 851900 using the phone number you signed up with. Tala allows for full or partial payments anytime on or before your due date. Defaulting on payments leads to restriction of further loans.
Branch is a multinational mobile financial services firm with offices in San Francisco, Nairobi, Lagos, Mexico City, and Mumbai. They provide mobile loans to first-time borrowers and customers across Africa, Mexico and India.
Accessing loans on the Branch app is very easy with its smooth UI and Facebook-enabled sign up. To sign up you download and install the app from Google Play Store, link up your Facebook account then provide other requested information. You will be sent an SMS to verify your phone number, follow the link to complete verification.
Loans from Branch are sent to your M-PESA line from which you can withdraw. Interest charged on Branch loans are dependent on factors such as repayment history and cost of lending for Branch.
Timiza is a finance app from Barclays Kenya. With Timiza, you can open a bank account, save and earn rewards with Zidisha, get instant loans, pay utility bills etc. To begin using the Timiza you download the app from Google Play Store and supply requested information. You can also use Timiza via USSD on a non-smartphone by dialling *848#.
To open a Timiza account you must be registered with Safaricom and be a registered Safaricom M-PESA customer with an active line. Lastly you must have a Kenyan National Identification Document (ID).
Getting a loan on Timiza is easy as long as you meet the requirements. You must be an active Safaricom/M-PESA customer for at least six (6) months and have a good credit rating at the Credit Reference Bureau (CRB). You increase your loan limit by using the app for more services.
Zidisha is part of a few on this list that don’t take interests on loans. Instead, when you borrow money from Zidisha, you pay a service fee of 5% on the amount.
Zidisha operates as a non-profit organization connecting borrowers with lenders from North America and Europe. What you have is a direct person-to-person lending without intermediaries.
To request for a loan on Zidisha you have to provide your accurate contact information including your national ID. Then you verify your identity by linking to your Facebook account. Lastly, you will provide references to recommend you.
While Zidisha loans come without interests you have to ensure prompt loan payments to qualify for higher loan limits. For more you can see their FAQ page.
OKash is a loan app with an easy sign up process. With an M-PESA number only, you can register and begin requesting loans in a few minutes. OKash has a minimum and maximum loan limit of KSH2,500 – KSH50,000. Loan tenor range from 91 days to 365 days.
Users have complained of a short loan repayment period of about days. However, there is no denying the swiftness from registration to loan collection that comes with OKash.
KCB M-PESA is a service of Kenyan Commercial Bank (KCB) in partnership with M-PESA through Safaricom. The basic requirement to get a loan from KCB M-PESA is to be registered and be an active Safaricom M-PESA customer.
Interest rate on loans are 1.06% per month with a one off negotiation fee of 6.44%. For one month loan, it is 7.5% including excise duty applicable on fees. Loan offerings range from KSH 50 to KSH 1,000,000. Loan limits are increased with prompt payment of previous loans. For more visit the KCB M-PESA FAQ page.
You can access KCB M-PESA through the KCB app or mySafaricom android app.
M-shwari is a savings and loan product formed by Commercial Bank of Africa (CBA) and Safaricom. The CBA issues the M-shwari account which must be linked to an M-PESA line.
Registering for M-shwari is easy as the major requirement is to have an M-PESA line. Then to qualify for a loan you have to be an M-PESA active subscriber then use M-shwari and Safaricom services (data, voice calls, bank transactions etc) often. M-shwari offers loans from KSH 100 up to KSH 50,000.
Each loan collected on M-shwari comes with a 7.5% one-time facilitation. Loans plus facilitation fee are to be paid within 30 days. For example, if you take a KSH 1000 loan you will pay back KSH 1,075.
For more information see this very elaborate FAQs for M-shwari loans.
M-shwari does not have a standalone app like other loan apps in Kenya, it is part of the functions in the updated mySafaricom android app. To use M-shwari in the mySafaricom app, click on the Loans & Savings menu.
Other loan apps in Kenya that you can check out are;
- Saida Loans
- Okoa Stima
- Kopaa chapaa