Microcredit Loan Scheme To Be Rolled Out Nationwide

A loan scheme designed to help people avoid using moneylenders is to be rolled out nationwide.

The "microcredit scheme" began trialling in November last year, facilitated through the Credit Union network and is being run in partnership with the Credit Union Sector, the Department of Social Protection, the Citizens Information Board, An Post and Not for Profit Groups.

The 'It Makes Sense' loans scheme is open to social welfare recipients who qualify for the Household Budget Scheme, and offers small loans between €100 and €2,000. The loans are available at a low variable interest rate and are easy to access.

Speaking on RTÉ's Morning Ireland, spokesperson for Money Advice and Budgeting Service (MABS), Michael Culloty, said that the latest figures show some 360,00 people use legal moneylenders, which can have up to 200% interest and collection charges.

"If you need a loan you go to the credit union, ask for it, and even if your credit rating isn’t good, and perhaps have defaulted, you will be considered," Mr Culloty said.

"You will be given an answer and a possible loan within 24 hours."

Mr Culloty said the national rollout of the small loan scheme is "hugely important, especially for people in crisis situations".


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