Kayode Tokede examines how monthly workers with FirstBank accounts can benefit from the lender’s many lending initiatives amid tough economic times

In the past, people with monthly income – especially bank customers – were not able to quickly access personal loans to meet their immediate financial needs due to the strict conditions.

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had introduced Know-Your-Customer (KYC), among other policies, to improve financial inclusion and reduce the incidence of identity fraud in the banking sector. These have strengthened the capacities of banks to grant loans at reduced rates to customers.

Through these, people with monthly income have access to loans each month at an attractive interest rate, below the stipulated limit, which has facilitated clients with the possibility of accessing subsidized loans (loans personnel) and respond to urgent needs.

Amid double-digit inflation, among other headwinds, meeting the demands of owning a dream car, house, and traveling for the holidays becomes a challenge as daily expenses increase.
Personal loans are borrowed money that can be used for major purchases, debt consolidation, emergency spending, and more.

These loans are repaid within the time periods indicated in the general conditions of the facility. The payback period can be from a month, from a few months to a few years.

Salary accounts can do more than just receive a monthly salary; they have an inherent wealth that can be unlocked to help clients achieve their dreams as they advance in their careers and gain control over situations at home and at work.

Over the years, First Bank of Nigeria Limited has adopted the strategy of creating opportunities for salary account holders to unlock the wealth in their accounts with many initiatives introduced to bridge the gap in access to quick loans.

The bank’s salary accounts offer a zero opening balance, zero minimum daily operating balance, no account maintenance fees, First Free Verve or Master Card Issuance and access to consumer loans.

The bank also introduced the Personal Payday Loan (PLAS), the First Advance and FirstCredit Payday Account designed to meet requests for personal loans.

With the PLAS from FirstBank, the salary account holder can access personal loans up to N30 million to pursue investment projects, carry out renovations on their properties, acquire assets, give their children the better education and other rewarding achievements. PLAS offers flexible options to supplement and refinance existing loans at competitive rates.

The product is also designed to help clients meet their immediate personal financial obligations such as rent renewals, vacation trips to prime destinations, and pay for professional exams to take their careers to the next level. With PLAS, Nigerian employees must be assured of a financial partner in FirstBank to make their dreams come true. PLAS is available to employees whose salary accounts are domiciled with FirstBank.

FirstAdvance is a digital loan solution designed to provide convenient and easy access to cash for clients who are waiting for their paycheck to be paid.

The product is intended for employees whose accounts are domiciled with FirstBank and have received regular salaries in the past six months or more.
The maximum amount accessible is N 500,000.00, subject to 50 per cent of the average three-month net salary, whichever is lower.

The eligible amount is calculated after deduction of all other loan obligations to the Bank. This product is accessible through the Bank’s main digital channels: FirstMobile and USSD.

Features of FirstAdvance include: salary account must be domiciled with FirstBank, loan amount up to 50% of monthly net income, term is 30 days or next payday [whichever comes first]. Reimbursement is made as soon as the salary is received, while a lien is placed on the unfunded account, among others
The bank also offers FirstCredit, a product designed to provide customers with a quick and easy loan to finance their immediate needs.

FirstCredit loans are accessible from anywhere without visiting the bank. It didn’t involve any documentation or warranty required and all the customer needed was a mobile phone or tablet.

FirstCredit is simple and convenient as it promotes immediate access to loans to meet needs. It facilitates quick loan applications and disbursements with no physical documentation required or collateral required. There are also no hidden charges or fees.

Its characteristics include: the client’s account must be operational in FirstBank for at least six months; association of the account with a valid BVN is a requirement; primarily account details including phone number and residential address must be properly updated and the customer must have a positive credit history and score with the credit bureaus. The maximum loan amount is 300,000 N

Others have a loan term: over 30 days, a fixed interest rate of 10% and insurance fees are also taken upfront on the loan disbursement. To apply for FirstCredit, customers should dial * 894 #, select Loans and follow the instructions.