What is the Registry of Moneylenders?
The Registry of Moneylenders is an entity of Singapore’s Ministry of Law. It aims to regulate licensed moneylenders in Singapore and cultivate a safe and professional money lending industry in the Lion City. The Registry of Pawnbrokers, Legal Industry Division, Community Legal Services Group, and other entities are under the Ministry of Law as well.
What does the Registry of Moneylenders do?
The Registry of Moneylenders oversees the registration and regulation of all licensed moneylenders in Singapore. The Registry’s scope of responsibility is wide and it takes on a fairly large number of tasks.
This entity under the Ministry of Law has the power to grant or reject a licence issuance or renewal to moneylenders — this is precisely why licensed moneylenders have to comply strictly with all relevant laws and regulations if they wish to continue their money lending business legally. And yes, the Registry can revoke a moneylender’s licence as well.
What’s more, even if a licensed moneylender wishes not to renew its licence and perhaps wind up its business, it still has to inform the Registry at least a month before its licence expires.
Therefore, the Registry of Moneylenders is responsible for ensuring that the money lending industry in Singapore remains a highly regulated one. It protects the safety of borrowers by making sure that licensed moneylenders do not publish advertisements that are false or misleading. This includes displaying an interest rate that’s lower than the actual one charged.
Apart from regulating the licensed money lending industry in Singapore, the Registry of Moneylenders provides a wealth of resources for both moneylenders and borrowers alike. More on that below.
Important information borrowers can get from the Registry of Moneylenders
1. List of licensed moneylenders in Singapore
As a savvy borrower, it is always a good idea that you do your due diligence before committing to a loan. You can access the list of licensed moneylenders in Singapore anytime, anywhere, and at no charge.
This list is regularly updated to show all the licensed moneylenders in Singapore at any point in time — moneylenders whose licences have been suspended will be made known at the bottom of the list. As of 10 Oct 2022, there are 153 licensed moneylenders in Singapore and none of them are suspended.
In case you’re wondering, you should only borrow from moneylenders with valid licences! As a matter of fact, there have been increased cases of scammers and unlicensed moneylenders masquerading as licensed moneylenders to deceive victims into taking loans from them.
With a wide range of banks and licensed moneylenders available in Singapore, you should never turn to unlicensed businesses for your cash flow needs, no matter how desperate you are.
2. Loan terms and limits for licensed moneylenders and borrowers
Another important set of information that borrowers can obtain from the Registry of Moneylenders would be the full set of terms and conditions regarding loans. These include how much you can borrow from licensed moneylenders, what are the maximum interest rates that businesses can charge, and what fees they can impose.
As a borrower, it’s important to keep all this information in mind while you’re looking for a loan that suits your needs. They say that knowledge is power after all, and in this case, knowledge has the power to save you hundreds, if not thousands of dollars in fees and charges.
3. Where to report licensed moneylenders should you encounter any unacceptable practices, unfair practices, and/or contracts
You can contact the Registry of Moneylenders at 1800-2255-529.
Rest assured your details will be kept confidential — the Registry will not disclose your details to the moneylender you’re reporting without your consent.
4. The Registry of Moneylenders cannot help negotiate terms with your lender
If you’re facing financial difficulties and are unable to repay your lender, consider approaching social service agencies for assistance in negotiating a debt repayment plan with your lender. Unfortunately, the Registry of Moneylenders is not in any position to assist you in this regard.
However, what you can do to prevent this from happening would be to take on debt wisely. Do not borrow money to pay off another debt and ensure that your income is enough to pay off the loan you have taken up within its tenure.
Additionally, ensure that you fully understand the terms of the loan’s contract. Ask the licensed moneylender’s loan officers anything and everything as you’re looking through the contract. Don’t be caught unaware of any additional fees or charges that are hidden in the fine print.
The Registry of Moneylenders helps to regulate an industry in Singapore that admittedly does not have a good first impression when mentioned. However, licensed moneylenders are professional organisations and each one has passed a stringent set of tests and is operating within the law.
One such licensed moneylender would be MM Credit. Applying for a loan on our website is easy with a handy Online Loan Form available. Simply submit a form and our friendly and experienced loan officers will be in touch with you.