When you visit the Google App store, you will find several apps offering instant Mpesa loans in Kenya. Surprisingly, a casual search might miss the most successful ones such as Branch and Tala, which have given loans to the tune of billions. Each instant loan App will offer you a small amount of money that you can repay in a few weeks, a month or two. This is perfect for small emergencies when you only need the small amount of money. However, if you want a bigger loan, or a longer-term repayment period, they will not be of great help. Consider a case when you need an amount like 30,000. If each App provides only 2000, you have to download over 15 apps to get what you need. In addition, how will you pay back the amount within the few weeks you are given?
Using online resources, you can combine the loans from the different apps to get one big loan and also stretch the repayment period by up to one year. This will give you the opportunity to solve your big problem and make affordable monthly payments avoiding the pitfall of CRB listing, which many have fallen into.
Have you come across a platform called The Online Sacco? From the name, you can guess it’s a loan service operating online. Unlike the instant loan apps, the platform offers various services including advertising and networking opportunities for people doing business. In this case, we will only focus on the loan service. Just like the Apps, the Sacco is free to join and starts members off with small loans of Ksh1000. When a member makes timely repayments and takes more loans, the limit grows. Loans are released within 24 hours after application.
The platform differs from instant Mpesa loan Apps since their loans are based on a digital token called a Toser. The Toser is like a company share with a value calculated in Kenyan shillings. For example, if a Toser is worth Ksh100, you will get 10 Tosers when you pay Ksh1000. Members of the online Sacco can buy and sell Tosers to one another.
When you want to apply for a loan, the number of Tosers you have in your account is considered. It’s then multiplied by three to arrive at the loan amount you will be awarded. Therefore, if you have Tosers worth Ksh3000, you qualify for a loan worth Ksh9000. A higher number of Tosers means a higher loan amount.
Consolidating Micro Loans from Different Instant Loan Apps
You still have to download the multiple loan apps and get a micro loan from each before consolidating it into one big loan. When you get the money, use it to buy Tosers at the Online Sacco before applying for a big loan with a flexible repayment period. For example if you get Ksh2000 from 10 Apps, you will end up with Ksh20,000 in total. Buying Tosers with this will translate to a Ksh60,000 loan from the online Sacco. After reimbursing the loans, interest and charges from the Apps, you will be left with over 30,000.
Consolidating the loans presents many advantages to you. The main one is that you have the money that you needed to solve your problem. You will also build your loan limits with the instant loan apps since they usually increase limits based on timely loan repayment. You will also have made an investment in the process that you can recoup once you finish paying the loan. In addition, the Tosers you bought might have a higher value by the time you finish paying your loan and therefore cover the extra cost incurred in the consolidation process. For example in six to twelve months, the Tosers you bought for Ksh20,000 might be worth Ksh30,000.
Consolidation Pitfalls to Avoid
It’s a pretty straightforward process but if you are not careful, small issues can ruin your perfect plan. First, you have to ensure you have the online Sacco account before you get loans from the other micro lenders. Online Sacco membership is by invitation only so work on the invitation first.
Another important thing to note is that loans by the online Sacco are sent through prepaid debit cards. You will be able purchase Tosers through Mpesa directly, but without the card, you will not secure a loan from the online Sacco. The cards are issued free by various institutions including family bank. So, you should get one before kick starting the consolidation process.
Finally, make sure you pay back the instant loan apps immediately you get money from the online Sacco. If you delay, you might use it and end up with two loans that you cannot service properly. Remember, the figures quoted in this article are just examples.