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HSBC Personal Loan Review

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HSBC Personal Loan Review

Written by Corrina Murdoch
Fact-checked by Caitlin Wood

HSBC Personal Loan Review

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Loans Personal Loan Review

Personal loans enable consumers to access funding for a wide array of purposes. Useful for everything from home renovations to debt management, this type of loan is unique in that the borrower is free to use the money in any way they see fit. Of course, this is predicated on finding an agency with desirable loan terms. As a result, the loan industry is fairly competitive, with banks and alternative lenders offering different rates of interest and loan amounts. HSBC is one of Canada’s leading contenders in the personal loan market, aiming to set itself apart through competitive rates and easy-to-access services. 

Who is HSBC?

A well-known financial institution, HSBC was founded in 1981. Originally called the Hongkong Bank of Canada, this company is a subsidiary of a British investment bank. With roots dating back to when Hong Kong was a territory held by Great Britain, this bank since evolved into an internationally-recognized company with a wide range of offerings. This banking institution has 130 locations across Canada, making services as accessible as possible. 

Find out which banks are considered The Big Five in Canada.

HSBC’s mission

HSBC makes personal loans available to Canadians with a view to simplifying the process of accessing funding. By striving to offer low rates of interest and variable payment options and terms, HSBC showcases its mission of helping consumers get the funds they need by connecting them to opportunities to succeed through a host of products accessible in multiple manners. The bank has adapted to functioning remotely, making the vast majority of its products available digitally or over the phone. 

Services Offered

While personal loans are a key offering from HSBC, it is far from the bank’s only product. This institution offers everything from wealth management investment services to mortgages. The bank also provides credit card services and standard bank accounts like chequing accounts and savings accounts. In fact, those who are named HSBC Premier or HSBC Advance customers (those with a certain threshold of funds regularly held in bank accounts) can access preferential loan rates. 

HSBC Personal Loans

Personal loans through this financial institution offer consumers the opportunity to borrow funds that can be used for any purpose. With competitive interest rates and incentives for existing HSBC clients, the well-established loan service gives consumers the opportunity to gain control over their finances. 

Loan Rates

Personal loans are unsecured, meaning it can often be challenging to find a competitive rate of interest. In response to this financial climate, HSBC aims to grow its personal loan services by offering desirable loan terms — including interest rates. Depending on the credit profile of the consumer, and subject to some restrictions, the available rates fall anywhere from Prime +2.75% to Prime +6.75%. This type of loan is available with either variable or fixed interest rates. 

Loan Terms

A phrase that references the duration of the loan arrangement, the term length directly impacts the amount of interest paid on the loan. It, therefore, affects the overall affordability of the loan itself. HSBC offers loan terms that range from one to five years. The bank offers payment options of monthly, bi-weekly, or weekly. The more frequently you pay, the less interest you pay due to the compounding process, meaning weekly payments offer the most savings.

Additional Loan Features

  • Loan Insurance. Loan insurance is a service offered through HSBC where you pay a small amount extra to provide security in the event of death or disability. In these events, this pays the loan balance up to $100,000. It’s available whether you are the main borrower or a cosigner
  • Calculator. The HSBC website offers tools to let you learn how to determine your eligibility for insurance and loan payments. This service is offered free of charge and makes it convenient to access information on your financial prospects. 
  • Special Rates. For those who qualify as HSBC Premier or HSBC Advance customers, there are special loan rates available. Though there are some caveats, the basic standard for the Advance customer status is having a bank balance of $5,000 with HSBC or subsidiaries. The alternative is to have a mortgage through the bank that was originally worth at least $150,000. To qualify as a Premier customer, the client must maintain a balance of $100,000 with HSBC or subsidiaries.

Overview of The HSBC Personal Loan

The personal loan services of this institution are fairly straightforward, though the financial specifics depend on the borrower. Details include: 

  • Loan Amount. New clients can access loans between $3,000 and $30,000. Existing customers can access an additional $20,000. Loan amount eligibility also depends on the credit of the customer. 
  • Interest Rate. Loan rates can be either fixed or variable interest. The rates range from Prime +2.25% to Prime+6.75%**. The rate varies based on several criteria, including the credit of the borrower. 
  • Term Length. The term of the personal loan can be anywhere from one to five years. 
  • Payment Frequency. Available options include monthly, bi-weekly, and weekly payments. 
  • Approval Time. Consumers can expect a period of two business days to get approved for an HSBC personal loan. 
  • Personal Loan Creditor Insurance. HSBC offers personal loan insurance services for both death and disability, whether you are the primary borrower or cosigner. 

Find out what happens to your debt when you die

How Can I Use an  HSBC Personal Loan?

Personal loans are unique in that, unlike car or equipment loans, there is no designated use for the funds. Borrowers can use the money for anything they need. Popular options include:

  • Home renovations. A costly investment with significant rewards, many use personal loans to invest in their properties before selling their house in order to get a higher valuation. 
  • Large purchases. Whether for vehicles or business equipment, personal loan funds can cover the cost of expensive purchases, letting you pay it down over time with a reasonable rate of interest. 
  • Emergency funds. In the event of an emergency such as an injury or illness, a personal loan can be used to cover daily expenses. 
  • Debt management. If a household is struggling with high-interest debt, the loaned money can be applied toward those debts and then repaid to HSBC at a more competitive interest rate. 
  • Vacation funds. Instead of putting the cost of a vacation on a credit card, a personal loan lets you pay for a trip upfront and repay the amount at a lower interest rate. 

How to Apply For an HSBC Personal Loan

The application process for an HSBC loan is fairly straightforward, with several available options including:

  • Online: Navigate to the HSBC website and follow the digital application process. 
  • Phone: Call the customer service line and speak to an agent who will complete the digital application process on your behalf. 
  • In-Branch: Attend an HSBC location in person to speak with a representative directly. 

Regardless of how you apply for the loan, you will need to provide specific information to HSBC such as: 

  • Name, age, and proof of Canadian residence
  • Social Insurance Number
  • Proof of Income (bank statements and pay stubs) 
  • Contact information

This information is used in conjunction with your credit profile to determine your eligibility as a borrower.

HSBC Personal Loan FAQs

How long does it take to get approved for an HSBC personal loan?

After completing your application, you can expect a response within two business days. Ensure that you provide HSBC with correct and up-to-date contact information to prevent the risk of delays in communication. 

Can I get Personal Loan Creditor Insurance?

  Yes, this service is available to borrowers for either death or disability, though most opt to get the insurance for both purposes. In the event of illness or injury or debt that precludes the borrower (or cosigner) from working and earning money for payments, the insurance will cover the loan principal amount up to $100,000. 

Will an HSBC personal loan affect my credit score?

Because determining eligibility for an HSBC personal loan requires a hard credit check, it will impact your credit score in a slightly negative way in the short term. Over time, however, the impact on your credit profile will depend on whether you make your payments on time. Continual timely payments improve your credit while defaults harm it. 

Final Thoughts

The key to getting good terms on any personal loan is to conduct thorough research and understand what you are getting into. Consult a loan comparison platform to get a full picture of what loans you qualify for. Utilize all resources available to you such as online calculators in lieu of actually applying for multiple loans (since this harms your credit). HSBC offers personal loans with desirable terms for many. As long as you are eligible and able to repay the loan responsibly on time, the low-interest rates and flexible terms can make the loans a good option. 

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