Best Personal Loans in Malaysia 2022

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Best Personal Loans in Malaysia 2022

Need a quick look at the best personal loan rates in Malaysia? Check out the compiled list in the table below.

Bank Interest/Profit Rate Minimum
Monthly Income
Loan/Financing
Amount
Borrowing Period Can Government/GLC apply?
Alliance Bank 4.99% - 15.28% p.a. RM3,000 RM5,000 - RM200,000 12 - 84 months Yes
RHB Personal Financing 8.59% - 13.76% p.a. RM1,500 RM2,000 - RM150,000 12 - 84 months No
Al Rajhi Bank 4.81% - 6.81% p.a. RM3,500 RM10,000 - RM250,000 12 - 96 months Yes
CIMB 5.88% - 14.88% p.a. RM2,000 RM2,000 - RM100,000 24 - 60 months No
Citibank 5.33% - 9.80% p.a. RM4,000 RM5,000 - RM150,000 24 - 60 months No
Standard Chartered 5.50% p.a. RM3,000 RM3,000 - RM250,000 12 - 60 months No
BSN 6% - 8.50% p.a. RM3,000 RM5,000 - RM400,000 24 - 120 months Yes
Maybank Islamic 6.50% - 8% p.a. RM3,500 RM5,000 - RM100,000 24 - 72 months Yes
KFH 6.88% p.a. RM3,000 RM5,000 - RM150,000 24 - 96 months No
Hong Leong Islamic Bank 9% - 12.50% p.a. RM2,000 RM5,000 - RM150,000 24 - 60 months No
Bank Islam 4.50% - 6.50% p.a. RM4,000 RM10,000 - RM150,000 12 - 120 months No
AEON Credit Service 7.92% - 18% p.a. RM1,500 RM1,000 - RM100,000 6 - 84 months Yes
HSBC Amanah 4.88% - 10.50% p.a. RM5,000 RM6,000 - RM250,000 24 - 84 months No
AmBank 8% - 11.99% p.a. RM3,000 RM2,000 - RM150,000 12 - 60 months Yes
UOB 9.99% - 11.99% p.a. RM2,000 RM5,000 - RM100,000 12 - 60 months Yes

When should you apply for a personal loan? The truth is, there is never the best time to apply for a personal loan when you are not prepared for it.

In this article, you will find out the dos and don’ts of a personal loan application based on the experiences and best practices of ordinary Malaysians.

Read on to learn what a personal loan is about, how can you apply for a personal loan at the lowest rate and highest amount, and what should you do after a loan is approved or rejected.

Research stage

At this stage, you will uncover various answers to questions you might have about personal loans, and how you can use this information to make an informed decision.

How does a personal loan work?

Put simply, a personal loan is a sum of money with interest lent by the bank to a borrower for a fixed period. The loan must be paid back in fixed amount instalments, every month until the end of tenure.

It is quite straightforward until you come across some terms and jargon that you are not familiar with.

Don’t worry, here are some commonly used terms to describe personal loans:

Terms Descriptions
Interest rate Interest rate or profit rate is the amount (usually shown in a percentage form) that is charged on the loan amount by the bank to the borrowers for using its money.

It is the same concept as a deposit; you put money in a savings or current account, and the bank will pay you interest or profit for using your money.

Per annum (p.a.)

The interest rate is charged on a per-annum basis. If an RM10,000 loan is at 5% p.a. interest, the interest charge is RM500 per year. 


For example, if the repayment tenure is stretched to 3 years, the interest will become RM1,500 (RM500 per year x 3 years).

Principal

The amount of loan you applied for. The interest rate will be calculated based on this amount and added on top of it. Going with the example above:

Principal + Interest = Total Borrowing Amount

RM10,000 + 5% p.a. = RM10,500

Tenure

This refers to the loan repayment period. Choosing the right tenure is important for your finances.


A shorter loan period comes with a higher monthly instalment amount, whereas a longer loan period comes with a higher interest rate.

Period

Shorter

(1 - 3 years)

Longer 

(4 - 10 years)

Interest Charge

Low


RM10,000 x 5% x 1 year 

= RM500

High


RM10,000 x 5% x 10 years 

= RM5,000

Monthly Instalment

High


RM10,500 ÷ 1 year 

= RM875 per month

Low


RM15,000 ÷ 10 years 

= RM125 per month

Instalment

You need to pay back your personal loan every month until the end of your tenure. 


The instalment amount is fixed, which is calculated on the total borrowing amount and then divided by the total number of months.

Penalty

This is a fee a bank will charge on your overdue amount for being late on your repayment.

Default

The term to describe an event of non-payment of a personal loan for over 3 months.


In this situation, the bank will usually impose a higher finance charge and/or take legal action against you.


Under this circumstance, you will face difficulty in securing any loans in the future as a result of your poor credit score.


Your repayment history will stay in the CCRIS database for up to 12 months.

What type of personal loan should I apply for?

Now you have caught up with some of the personal loan basics, this is the time to answer the question of preferences.

By doing a personal loan comparison, you can filter down the best personal loan to apply for.

The interest rate should not be the only factor when comparing personal loans, but your preferences too, such as:

What is the difference between secured and unsecured loans?

Should I get a conventional or Islamic loan?”

Do I need a Takaful or Insurance coverage?”

Secured loan vs Unsecured loan

Secured loans


  • Need collateral or security such as fixed deposit, property, unit trust, other assets
  • A guarantor is required, with or without an asset, depending on the eligibility

Unsecured loans


  • No collateral or security required
  • No guarantor, except when you don’t meet the eligibility requirements
Conventional loan vs Islamic loan

Conventional loans


  • Based on the principle of money lending, where the bank gains some profits for lending money to borrowers
  • Charge an interest rate on the total loan amount
  • Can be used for any purpose that is legal in the eyes of the law
  • The borrower bears all risks associated with the loan
  • Compound interests when payment is overdue

Islamic loans


  • Follow the Shariah contract of financing that avoids exploitative gains such as riba’ or usury
  • Charge a profit rate on the total financing amount
  • Can be used for any purposes that are permitted (halal) by the Shariah laws
  • The bank bears some of the risks to earn returns
  • Does not compound profits when payment is overdue
With Takaful or Insurance vs Without Takaful or Insurance

With Takaful or Insurance coverage


  • Optional
  • Liability coverage that helps settle all unpaid balances in the event of death or total permanent disability of the borrower
  • Slightly expensive as the coverage is added to the total borrowing amount

Without Takaful or Insurance coverage


  • Optional
  • The borrower/beneficiary is responsible to cover the unpaid balances in the event of death or total permanent disability
  • You receive 100% of the total borrowing amount

Do I need to apply for a personal loan?

Everyone has goals to achieve in their lives and a lot of times, they require money to kick start the journey. 

We can gain money from any means possible such as employment, selling of products or services, own savings, as well as loans.

Some people are lucky enough to fund their goals with one or more combinations of the above methods. 

But, what about others who have limited options or whose limited options are not viable?

Oftentimes, they shy away from the last option, which is a loan. 

If we look at this objectively, applying for a personal loan is practical for several reasons:

  • Education
  • Investment
  • Emergency cash
  • Funding for business
  • Buy a property (house, car, equipment etc)
  • Debt consolidation.

Top personal loan for debt consolidation

When you have multiple debts of different sizes, banks, due dates, tenures and interest rates, it can be a strenuous task to keep track of the repayments.

A debt consolidation loan is great for simplifying multiple debts into a single facility. 

You can repay them at a lower interest rate and longer tenure to save on monthly instalments and have more disposable income.

[Updated: 25 November 2022]

Before debt consolidation:

Debt Monthly Instalment Outstanding Balance
Credit card from Bank A RM500 RM15,000
Personal loan from Bank B RM500 RM10,000
Personal loan from Bank C RM1,000 RM25,000

Total commitments: RM2,000/month

After debt consolidation:

Product Standard Chartered CashOne Debt Consolidation Plan
Interest rate 5.50% p.a. flat
Tenure 60 months (5 years)
Applied loan amount RM50,000 (outstanding balances from all Banks above)
Total interest paid Principal amount x Annual interest rate x Tenure

RM50,000 x 5.50% p.a. x 5 years
= RM13,750
Total repayment amount Principal amount + Interest charges

RM50,000 + RM13,750
= RM63,750
Monthly Instalment Total repayment amount ÷ Tenure

RM63,750 ÷ 60 months
= RM1,062.50

How much do you save after consolidating credit cards and personal loan debts into a single loan?

RM2,000 – RM1,062.50 = RM937.50 ÷ RM2,000 x 100% = 47%

Say you have a minimum monthly income of RM5,000, that means you are committing roughly 21% of your total monthly income to pay for your consolidated debts.

Personal loan application journey

During a personal loan application, there are a few things you need to consider such as the amount you can apply for, the amount the bank can lend you, the required documents and the places to apply for a personal loan.

How much can I borrow?

The typical loan amount you can borrow from banks is ranging from RM5,000 to RM200,000. 

This amount is also known as the principal amount.

Once you have decided on your principal loan amount, you need to choose a tenure that suits your financial capacity.

RinggitPlus has a personal loan calculator where you can calculate your monthly repayment easily by indicating your borrowing amount, monthly income and tenure of choice. However, this personal loan calculator does not take into account your other monthly commitments such as car loans, home loans, credit cards, student loans etc, which the bank will also consider before approving your applied loan amount.

To better manage your expectations (such as high loan margin, low-interest rate, and fast approval), you need to check if you can afford to pay your total monthly commitments by determining your debt-service ratio (DSR).

How much can a bank loan me?

DSR is a tool to measure your available cash flow after meeting your debt obligations. 

Banks use this calculation to see if you have enough money to pay your monthly instalment via this formula:

Total Monthly Commitments ÷ Total Monthly Income x 100% = DSR
 e.g. RM1,500 ÷ RM3,000 x 100% = 50%

There is a consensus on the optimum DSR level to increase the chances of loan approval: your total monthly commitments should not exceed your total monthly income.

In the example given above, the total loan commitments are 50% of total monthly income, which means a borrower is allocating half of his/her monthly income on debt servicing alone, with little room to save, spend and invest (if any).

In this situation, the bank will usually reduce the loan amount to consequently reduce your DSR level. 

You can do your own DSR calculation before the loan application to increase the chances of approval.

What documents should I prepare to apply for a personal loan?

To speed up your loan application process, make sure you have compiled all of the required documents. 

The type of document will vary from bank to bank, depending on your employment type. 

All in all, you can find the general requirements in the table below:

Documents General Loan Application Loan Application for Salaried Individuals Loan Application for Self-Employed Loan Application for Senior Citizens/Pensioners
Application Form



Valid Proof of IC/Passport





Photo (Passport Size)

Nil


Nil


Resident Proof





Income Proof i) Latest 3 months' salary slip
ii) Latest BE/EA form with an official tax receipt
iii) Latest EPF statement
iv) Latest 6 months bank statement
i) Latest 3 months' salary slip
ii) Latest BE/EA form with an official tax receipt
iii) Latest EPF statement
Latest 2 years' income tax returns Pension returns or bank statement
Others Nil
i) Current working contract
ii) Payment track record & sanction letter (for any existing loan)
i) Copy of the Business Registration
ii) 3 years salary statement/shop establishment
iii) Documents to prove office address and ownership (i.e utility bill)
Nil

Where can I apply for a personal loan?

Two ways you can apply for personal loans in Malaysia: offline and online.

On offline channels, you can walk into the bank’s branch of choice, speak to a loan officer, fill up the application form, present your documents and submit them. 

Another way is by calling up the bank’s customer service contact centre. 

This way, it gives you a more personalised service, although the downside is, that you may not have the flexibility of time and money.

On online channels, you can compare and apply for personal loans conveniently. 

You can also use some of the tools to find out your credit score, calculate loan affordability, download statements and many more – all at your fingertips. 

At RinggitPlus, we have a wide range of personal loans that can meet your needs with a fast and easy online loan application.

Loan approval process

There are multiple ways banks can disburse the approved loan to you. 

Some banks require you to open a savings account with them, whereas others will pass you the cheque or do an IBG Transfer to your designated bank account.

Bear in mind that your eligibility, credit history and credit score play major roles in determining your loan application approval.

Am I eligible?

To qualify for a personal loan application, you must first meet the eligibility criteria as set out by the bank, including but not limited to:

  • Nationality: Malaysian, permanent resident or foreigner
  • Age: 21 – 60 years
  • Employment type: Salaried employee (public/private sector) or self-employed
  • Income type: fixed, contract, commission basis
  • Residential status: own house, rented, living with family/relatives, company provided etc.

Tips: Your lifestyle is also a contributing factor to your loan approval. If the bank spots an inconsistency in your employment histories, salary and disposable incomes, and places of residence, you may not be a favourable borrower.

What is a credit history?

A credit history shows a record of your debt repayment, which indicates your ability to commit to loan repayment.

By reference to the Central Credit Reference Information System (CCRIS), banks can gain insight into your previous repayment habit. 

This credit report stores all your credit histories from all financial service providers in Malaysia for up to 12 months.

Okay, then what about credit score? How does it differ?

A credit score, on the other hand, is a 3-digit numerical rating that evaluates borrowers’ creditworthiness and is based on their credit histories.

A good credit score can increase your chances of getting a loan approved with  lower interest rates and faster loan approval

A high credit score means you are favourable to the bank, whereas a lower credit score means your application may not be favourable or get rejected.

So how can you check your credit score? 

You can do so with CTOS which is a privately-run credit agency that collects data from public sources and is also referenced by the banks when approving a personal loan.

To give you a general idea of the credit score and what it means to lenders, do refer to the table below!

Credit Score What It Means to Lenders
744 - 850 Excellent.
You're viewed very favourably by lenders.
718 - 743
Very Good.
You're viewed as a prime customer.
697 - 717 Good.
You're above average and viable for new credit.
651 - 696 Fair.
You're below average and less viable for credit.
529 - 650 Low.
You may face difficulties when applying for credit.
300 - 528 Poor.
Your credit applications will likely be affected.

Best case scenario – loan application is approved

  • 1 to 5 working days for loan approval
  • Get notified by the bank upon disbursement
  • Received contract documents consist of a product disclosure sheet, personal loan repayment table, and terms and conditions
  • Check the bank account for the money

Worst case scenario – loan application is rejected

  • Call up the bank to follow up
  • Check your repayment history (previous loan such as PTPTN) via CCRIS
  • Check your credit score via CTOS
  • Improve your creditworthiness by making prompt repayment
  • Wait for a while before applying for a new personal loan from a bank
  • Explore other personal loan options and reapply

Monthly commitment

This is the most important stage after getting your loan approved. 

Your future loan applications, especially home loans, will be greatly affected if you don’t service your current debts properly.

When is my personal loan monthly instalment due date?

Your first monthly instalment payment will commence one month after receiving your approved loan in your bank account.

As per your personal loan’s terms and conditions, your monthly instalment due date can fall either on the first or in the middle of the month.

If at any time during the instalment period, you are not able to commit to the full amount, you can pay a minimum amount as recommended by the bank.

Doing so will save you from being penalised for late payment, however, attract finance charges between 15% - 18% p.a. on the remaining unpaid balances.

What happens if I pay my loan instalment late?

Always strive to make full payment of your instalment  before or on the due date to avoid being penalised by the bank. 

That’s not all, your credit score will take a turn for the worse.

Generally, all banks will impose a 1% fee, whereas non-banks will charge around an 8% fee, calculated daily until you pay it off

For example:

Overdue amount: RM875
Numbers of days overdue: 10
Late payment charge: 1% p.a.
RM857 x 1% x (10 ÷ 365 days) = RM0.23

In case you are on the verge of defaulting on your loan, you must immediately get in touch with the bank to discuss a possible recourse on your repayments.

Alternatively, you can engage Agensi Kaunseling dan Pengurusan Kredit (AKPK), a debt management program by Bank Negara Malaysia that offers free services on money management, credit counselling and debt restructuring for individuals.

Can I settle my loan outstanding balances off early?

You have the option to settle off your outstanding loan balances before the end of your tenure, subject to the terms and conditions of your loan.

Tips: A personal loan is usually calculated on a flat rate basis; therefore, a partial settlement is not advisable. If you have double paid your monthly instalment for the month, the bank will deem it as an “Advance Payment”, which will not reduce your interest payment and the principal amount for the month.

You must inform the bank in the written notice before your loan early settlement. 

An Early Settlement fee may or may not be charged, depending on the personal loan agreement.

How to make my monthly instalment payment?

You have the flexibility to make your monthly instalment payment in various channels such as follows:

  • Online banking (IBFT or IBG transfer, bill payment etc)
  • Standing instruction (auto deduction)
  • Cash deposit
  • Over the counter

Tips: Earn cashback on your interest payments when you make a prompt repayment every month throughout the tenure. Check out this top personal loan with a cashback program:

Financial freedom

Achieving financial freedom means you are no longer tied down with unmanageable debts. 

These comprehensive personal loan guides and tips intend to help you to make a sound financial decision and get your loan approved as you expected.

At RinggitPlus, we understand your unique needs and worries when it comes to applying for a personal loan. 

You can navigate to our other online personal loan pages that are designed to meet your income, affordability and preferences:

>>  Compare and apply for Fast Approval Loan

>> Compare and apply personal loans for Low-Income Earners

>> Compare and apply personal loans with Low-Interest Rate

>> Compare and apply personal loans for Government/GLC Employees

>>  Compare and apply for Shariah-compliant Islamic Loan

>> Compare and apply for a Secured Loan

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