Mobile Loans in Kenya

Mobile loans can be quick and easy to access, they can be tricky if used incorrectly.
We provide all the information you need to know about mobile loans in Kenya.

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Mobile Loans Introduction

In a report by the Communications Authority of Kenya, the number of active mobile subscriptions in Kenya was 46.6 million. This was in September 2018. With a total population of 51.39 million, more Kenyans own mobile phones than any other gadget (Computer, TV, Radio, etc.)

That is why more Kenyans are likely to subscribe to mobile loans because of the ease of access to these services compared to traditional lenders like banks and MFIs.

From this part, I will be answering some of the common questions asked regarding mobile loans in Kenya.

What is a mobile loan?

Short answer: A loan you get on your mobile phone. For example, when you use your phone to borrow from a lender to sort out your financial situation, you have taken a mobile loan.

In Kenya, the most common mobile loans are from loan apps, but recently some lenders are offering loans through USSD, and they are part of the mobile loan providers.

How can I get a loan for my phone?

To get a loan from your phone, you need a smartphone and internet access most of the time. I know most mobile loan lenders prefer you have a Safaricom line with M-Pesa enabled. Then you need to have a good credit score for you to qualify. As I have mentioned, others offer loans through USSD, so in this case, you don’t need to have a smartphone or internet access.

Which is the best mobile loan app?

It depends since different users have different experiences. To answer this question, I will have to differentiate the types of lenders that lend through mobile. These are regulated, lenders and unregulated lenders. When I say held, I mean those lenders that the CBK regulates, and most of them are banks.

The best mobile loan app in the list of regulated loan apps is Timiza because you don’t have to be a customer of Absa bank to get a loan from this app. Their interest rates are reasonable too.

In this list, I can add Fuliza by Safaricom, Mshwari, and KCB Mpesa, which are readily available if you have a Safaricom line with M-Pesa enabled.

Unregulated lenders are the ones who introduced mobile lending to Kenya, and in this list, I can single out the best based on my experience. These are the Tala loan app and Branch Loan App.

The rest are good but not best for user experience and interest rates charged on their loans.

Where can I get a quick loan in Kenya?

I think by now I have answered your question from the previous question above. The most comfortable place to get a quick loan in Kenya is right there on your phone. You can start with Fuliza, a service that allows you to complete your M-PESA transactions if you have insufficient funds in your M-PESA account.

Then check Mshwari, and if you need more, go to KCB Mpesa. But note, you must have saved a certain amount to qualify for a loan from KCB Mpesa.

You can try the unregulated mobile lenders if you want, but it better start with Branch or Tala. (Don’t rely on these apps too much).

Now that I have answered the most popular questions, let us go through the list of mobile loans in Kenya, as I had promised at the beginning of this article.

List of Mobile Loans Providers in Kenya

Here is a list of mobile lenders in Kenya under different categories:

1. Loans offered by Safaricom

These loans are offered directly on Safaricom, and you don’t need another app to access them. They include:

  • Fuliza
  • Mshwari
  • KCB M-Pesa

2. Mobile Loans offered by Banks

Banks have taken up the mobile lending space and have developed products that offer loans to either the public or their customers. In my opinion, these are the safest loans and have low interest since these providers are regulated.

The mobile loans offered by banks in Kenya include:

  • Timiza – By ABSA Bank
  • NCBA Loop – You have to save and use the app for some time for you to qualify for a loan.
  • HF Whizz – You will have to use it for some time and undergo the KYC process to qualify.
  • Eazzy App by Equity
  • KCB Mobi Loan – If you are a customer of KCB Bank, you are eligible.
  • Pesapap by Family bank
  • MCo-op Cash by Co-op Bank

3. Loan apps downloaded on Google Play

Here are the traditional mobile loan apps found on Google Play. I will only list the ones that I know are genuine and offer loans. Although, some have questionable practices even though they give out loans. They will invade your privacy and call your contact list if you default.

Here are some of them:

Mobile Loan in Kenya Conclusion

That is it; I hope you learned one or two things regarding mobile loans in Kenya, and you can be able to make informed financial decisions. Let me know what you think in the comments or if you have any questions.

Watch out for my next article.