We live in exciting times where you can get everything from the palms of your hands, including obtaining loans.
This article will review the popular loan apps in Kenya available today. If an app is missing, kindly suggest the comments below or send me details, and I will review it.
Technology has made it possible to do things that seemed unthinkable about five years ago. We all know how bureaucratic getting a loan from a bank was back then. But now, with the innovation of loan apps in Kenya, your loan is just a phone away.
Top 13 Best Loan Apps in Kenya
Financial Institutions support the first two digital lending apps (Absa Bank and Housing Finance). The rest are regulated and unregulated by the Central Bank of Kenya.
Let’s dive into the details of each mobile loan app:
Branch is a popular app introduced to Kenyans in 2015 by Branch International. The Branch loan app is available in Kenya, India, Tanzania, and Nigeria.
The mobile loan app gives its users loans up to KES 70,000 with an interest rate of 14% which reduces with larger loan amounts.
To get started on Branch App, you can download the App from Google Play, and use Facebook or your phone number to signup. Once logged in, you will get to know if you qualify for a loan or not. If you are approved for a loan, you will receive it through M-Pesa.
2. Tala Loan App (Recommended)
The Tala loan app was initially known as Mkopo Rahisi and was rebranded to Tala. They offer loans up to 50,000, and the loan is disbursed through M-Pesa.
Tala offers a flexible repayment schedule of between 21 and 60 days accompanied by flexible interest rates of between 5% – 19% depending on the amount and repayment period.
They pride themselves on giving loans in less than 5 minutes, and you will build your credit up to the maximum amount by repaying your loans in time.
Timiza is an App by Barclays Bank, one of the local banks in Kenya. Their services can be accessed via USSD code *848#.
Unlike other apps from banks, the best thing about Timiza is that the app is not limited to the bank’s customers alone but is instead available to all Kenyans.
You download the app, register, and check if you qualify for a loan.
Timiza offers a loan limit of KES 150,000 with a repayment period of 30 days and with the following loan charges:
- Interest Rate: 1.56% P.M.
- Negotiation Fee: 5% of the Loan amount requested
- Excise Duty: 20% of the Negotiation Fee
- Roll Over Fee: 5% of the outstanding principal amount
Stawika is a rising money lending app in Kenya by Stawika Capital. Once installed on your Smartphone, the app will evaluate your data on the phone, such as M-Pesa usage and other factors, to qualify you for a loan.
Stawika offers loans up to 70,000 with a maximum interest rate of 21%.
The registration process is simple; you download Stawika loan App from their website since they were among the apps that Google got rid of from the Play Store after their announcement to ban unlicensed loan apps in Kenya. Use your phone number to register and provide a unique four-digit PIN.
5. Haraka Loans
Haraka means fast in Swahili. So anyone within Kenya will know that the app offers quick/fast loans. Haraka Loan is a product of Getbucks, a South African registered lender.
Haraka Loan App is available in other 4 African countries, i.e., Swaziland, Uganda, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe.
Their loan range is between 500 and 5000, and the loans attract an interest rate of 23.45%.
FlashPesa, a product of Ambush Capital has gained traction and earned itself a bunch of customers. Flashpesa offers loans ranging from KES. 1,000 – KES. 50,000.
The loans come with a repayment period of 15 days at a service fee of 25% of the money borrowed. I.e., if you borrow Ksh. 1000, you will receive Ksh. 750 to your Mpesa. Upon repayment of the first loan, FlashPesa successfully increases the borrowing limit by Ksh 1000 until you get to the Ksh. 3000 limit, then Ksh. 4500 onwards.
On your fifth loan, the limit should increase to Ksh. 6000 with a reduced service fee of 18% and a repayment period of 22 days. The more you borrow, the more you increase the loan limit and repayment period, reducing the percentage service fee until you hit the Ksh. 50K limit.
7. Zash Loans
Zash Loan is another player in the game offering loans from KES 800 – 50,000 with a processing fee of 25% of the loan borrowed and a repayment period of up to 90 days.
The loan is eligible to citizens aged 18 – 60 years old with a good and stable source of income.
LendPlus is another lending company offering a simple and quick solution for customers who need financial assistance. Customers can apply for a loan from anywhere.
Lendplus offer a loan limit of up to KES 30,000 with a repayment period of 30 days. Their loan interest rate is set to 2% Per day and only persons above 21 years old with stable income are eligible for a loan.
9. KCB M-Pesa
I believe Safaricom set the ball rolling for mobile loan Apps, and KCB, in partnership with M-Pesa, came up with a solution. The KCB MPesa loan can be accessed from your Safaricom sim card USSD code *334# or from the Safaricom App.
KCB M-pesa has the cheapest interest rates in the market with a minimum of KES. 1,000 up to KES. 1M. Unlike other lenders, KCB M-Pesa has a one-time facility charge of 8.85% payable within the 30-day loan duration.
Mshwari is a product of NCBA Bank in partnership with Safaricom.
Mshwari operates on the principle of saving for accessing a loan with an interest rate of 7% P.A. Your loan limit can be increased depending on how you keep on Mshwari and how you repay your past loans.
They offer loans at a rate of 7.5% P.M from as low as KES. 100. The maximum limit depends on your previous payment history.
11. InstarCash loan app
InstarCash is a mobile application that provides personal loans to users in Kenya. It has an easy and fast application process, where one can download it from the Google Play store, register, fill out the application form and receive an approved loan through M-Pesa.
Despite its lower loan amount, it also offers very affordable interest rates and quick approval, making it one of the best loan apps.
Used to be a popular and most loved loan app. The application started with a target of providing loans to at least 100,000 Kenyans for a start. The Okash loan app is currently one of the most popular mobile loan apps being used in Nigeria. It is no longer available in Kenya, therefore, don’t be lured by any other app masquerading around to be them.
13. Zenka loan app
Zenka is one of the best loan apps, and the best thing is that you get your first loan with 0% interest rate.
Zenka loans start at Ksh 500 and can go up to 30,000. After the first free loan, the Zenka loan app will charge an 11 – 30% interest fee depending on other factors if you repay your loan on time.
History of Loan Apps in Kenya
Loan Apps in Kenya became popular in the last three years with the launch of the Branch Loan App. We have had so many players come into the industry ever since. Others have died off, while others have grown so big, that their clients have increased in numbers.
Kenya is known for mobile money and is the hotbed for money lending Apps, with M-Pesa being the ideal option to receive loans from these Loan Apps in Kenya.
Now banks who have been traditional loan lenders are joining in by releasing their mobile loan app versions.