Online loan providers offer incentives

Even the big lenders such as Abbey are giving savings of up to 3.8 per cent off their high street price for people who take out a loan online.

“For basic financial products such as savings accounts and personal loans, purchasing on the internet can offer excellent returns,” said Lisa Taylor from Moneyfacts.co.uk, which carried out the survey.

The research comes as Direct Line gears up to provide online-only mortgage deals that offer discounted rates of 4.19 per cent for two years.

In addition to offering better loan rates online, Alliance & Leicester research has shown that people who use internet banking have a better control on their finances, so are less likely to go into debt.

However, in order to attract as many people as possible to take up online loans, Ms Taylor urged providers to ensure that they have sufficient human contact and help options to reassure borrowers.

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