Affirm is one of the most famous “shopping financial lending” companies in the United States, which allows consumers to buy goods (from hundreds of stores) and pay for them over time. So, it’s one of the many “Buy Now Pay Later” options out there which started to dominate the online shopping world recently.
Although Affirm is a great option, there are certainly plenty of Affirm alternatives out there for you to try out! Today, we’d like to talk about 15 of them.
Below, let’s have a brief look at what these 15 alternatives to Affirm offer, how they differ from Affirm, and understand whether they would be the right choice for your particular situation.
Table of Contents
- 1. Klarna
- 2. Bread Payments
- 3. QuadPay
- 4. Sezzle
- 5. Afterpay
- 6. PayPal Credit
- 7. Splitit
- 8. Perpay
- 9. BillEase
- 10. Viabill
- 11. Partial.ly
- 12. FlexWallet
- 13. FuturePay
- 14. Zebit
- 15. Laterpay
- More Info About Affirm?
- Does Affirm Hurt Your Credit?
- Is Affirm the Same as AfterPay?
- What Credit Score Do You Need for Affirm?
- How Does Affirm Work?
The highlight of Klarna is the opportunity to buy now and pay later with no interest. This is in contrast to the 10%-30% APR offered by Affirm. So you will have to pay only the price of the product and nothing more – assuming that your payments aren’t late.
Aside from that, what’s also nice about Klarna is that it lets you pay for the order up to 30 days later!
With that said, keep in mind that Klarna is for those who are looking for short-term loans. Klarna allows you to split the payment into 4 equal parts that are charged every 2 weeks. So in total, you get about 6 weeks to pay the full price of the product.
Unlike Affirm, Klarna doesn’t let you spread out the costs over a year or two. But it’s also interest-free, which is super nice.
With that said, there is also a “pay over 6 months” service with APR, though we think that the interest-free service is much more interesting.
To issue a loan, Klarna performs a soft credit check, but it doesn’t affect your credit score even if you fail to pay in time.
Klarna also has a reward program where you get 1 Vibe for each $1 spent with the platform. Vibes give you access to gift cards at places like Starbucks, Sephora, or Uber.
As a Vibe member, you’ll be able to benefit from exclusive deals and sales as well.
Bread Payments is very similar to Affirm, so it’s a nice alternative if you want something like it.
With Bread, you may borrow loans from as little as $100 to as much as $10,000. The APR on this platform ranges from 0% to 29.99%, which is pretty much exactly what is offered by Affirm.
To give you peace of mind, Bread also allows multiple payment options, automatic payments, and no prepayment penalty.
You may get loans for 6 to 24 months though, whereas Affirm goes from 3 to 36 months.
Additionally, shopping with Bread Payments may impact your credit score, and Bread also sometimes obtains credit profile info from SageStream.
If you liked the idea of Klarna but want something else, then QuadPay may be a better option for you.
Just like Klarna, QuadPay has no hidden fees or APR – you are paying only what the seller of the product asks for.
In terms of duration, QuadPay allows you to split the purchase price into 4 payments over 6 weeks. No matter how you pay and whether you pay on time, QuadPay doesn’t affect your credit score.
QuadPay promises quick approval of purchase requests as well, but like other platforms, not every request will be approved.
All in all, QuadPay is again a nice choice if you don’t have enough money right now but don’t want a long-term loan.
Sezzle is particularly focused on beauty products, including apparel and accessories. Aside from that, you may purchase furniture with Sezzle.
There are a few car shops working with Sezzle as well, so if you want to change the look of your car but don’t have the budget, perhaps Sezzle will be able to help you.
When it comes to terms, Sezzle is pretty much identical to Klarna and QuadPay. You may again split up the price of the product into 4 installments paid over the course of 6 weeks.
There are no interests or hidden fees as long as you pay in time, and Sezzle doesn’t impact your credit score too.
Afterpay offers access to hundreds of apparel stores – just like Sezzle. Aside from that, Afterpay has partnered with furniture brands to help you style your home, and you may also purchase kitchen appliances, office furniture, electronics, and not only.
The terms with Afterpay are familiar to us – you get the chance to split the payment into 4 interest-free installments that are due every 2 weeks. So, you get 6 weeks to pay the entire product price – nothing new here.
And like Sezzle, Klarna, and QuadPay, Afterpay doesn’t run credit checks, and your payments don’t affect your credit score.
With that, the “4 installments over 6 weeks” is a pretty standard model for interest-free loan providers.
So the main thing you should consider with these platforms is the stores they’ve partnered with, as well as perhaps the payment methods they accept.
If you are mainly paying for your purchases with PayPal, then have a look at PayPal Credit. PayPal Credit offers a bunch of nice benefits to its users, so it may be a way more interesting financing option for you than the previous platforms.
PayPal offers distinct terms for purchases under $99 and for purchases of $99 and more. With $99 and more purchases, you can pay the purchase price of the product within 6 months.
If you pay the due balance in full within those 6 months, then you will not have to pay any interest. Otherwise, you will need to pay a 23.99% APR interest that will be charged from the purchase date.
With purchases less than $99, you may pay within a month. You may extend your payment longer, but you’ll have to pay interest in that case.
These terms are fairly nice, but what’s also great about PayPal Credit is that PayPal provides purchase protection. If the product doesn’t exactly match its description or doesn’t arrive at all, PayPal will refund you the purchase price plus original shipping fees.
If you have to return anything, then PayPal will cover shipping costs as well, though terms apply.
PayPal Credit is one of the best ways to delay payments, and it can be used at pretty much any store that accepts PayPal payments. With that said, keep in mind that the service is subject to approval by the lender and Synchrony Bank.
The highlight of Splitit is its late fees – more precisely, Splitit claims to never charge any late fees. With that said, they do note that late payments may incur interest charges under your credit card agreement. So yeah, no matter what, paying in time is optimal.
Splitit doesn’t charge interest as well – just like some of the platforms we’ve had a look at previously.
Splitit divides the purchase price into 4 interest-free installments. The first installment is paid when the order is completed, while each subsequent installment is charged monthly. So you have more time to pay for the product than with platforms like Klarna or QuadPay.
Splitit has also partnered with hundreds of stores to help you finance purchases of electronics, furniture, jewelry, and even bikes.
Perpay is interesting in that it allows you to set a spending limit and shop within it. The spending limit ranges from $500 to $2500, but it’s limited for new users. As you use the platform and build a positive payment history, you will be able to increase the spending limit.
Perpay allows you to split the payment into 8 installments that may be paid from weekly to monthly. The platform doesn’t charge any interest on payments, and it also doesn’t perform credit checks.
With that said, Perpay has some requirements for joining, including but not limited to:
- Minimum annual income of $15,000.
- Full-time employment.
- Three months of history with current employer.
So yeah, Perpay perhaps isn’t as easy to work with as other platforms. With that said, if you don’t have an annual income of $15,000, will you even be able to afford to borrow a loan?
BillEase is a pretty nice choice for residents of the Philippines. With BillEase, you may loan from 2,000 to 40,000 Philippine pesos, while the loan term ranges from 1 to 12 months. With that said, BillEase provides 6- and 12-month loans only to repeat customers.
In terms of interest, BillEase’s APR is kind of high – 41.88%, although you may get 0% APR with select merchants.
Due to its high APR, we’d say that go for another platform if possible. However, if there are no other decent options in the Philippines, then at least have a look at BillEase.
Viabill allows you to split your purchase costs into 4 equal payments, which we’ve seen in other platforms. With that said, Viabill charges you monthly rather than every 2 weeks, so you get more time to pay for your purchases.
Like Klarna, QuadPay, and other similar platforms, Viabill charges zero interest as long as you pay on time. But even if you do make a late payment, your credit score will not be affected since Viabill doesn’t report to US credit agencies.
The stores that Viabill has partnered with are also nice – you get access to purchase financing in automotive, electronics, fashion, sports, toy stores, and more.
There are probably a few thousand merchants working with Viabill, so you should be able to find what you are looking for with this platform.
Partial.ly is quite a bit different from other platforms in that it allows merchants to set their own terms for payment. With that, Partial.ly doesn’t have a centralized fee structure – you’ll have to determine the terms with each of the merchants separately.
Although this might allow some merchants to rip off their customers, good businesses may be able to offer even better terms than all other platforms on the list. So Partial.ly is definitely worth a look at, although it might not work for you.
FlexWallet is a lot like Perpay we had a look at earlier. Just like Perpay, FlexWallet allows you to set up to $2,500 spending limits. With that said, FlexWallet lets you not only purchase the products but also lease them.
The payments for the lease are weekly, and curiously, you may acquire ownership of the product if you’d like. But if you don’t need it, then you’ll only have to make the required payments and return the product to the owner.
FlexWallet lets you shop and lease at plenty of locations as well, among them Best Buy, Walmart, and Office Depot.
FuturePay allows you to buy now and pay later in monthly installments. This platform allows for early payments as well, so you don’t have to drag the loan with you if you can pay the balance in full now.
One thing to keep in mind is that FuturePay has financing fees, though they are fairly low – $1.5/monthly for every $50 of unpaid balance. With that, FuturePay encourages you to pay early. Charges are applied at the end of the billing cycle, which is monthly.
Zebit offers two interesting services to allow you to spread out product payments.
The first one is Deferred Shipping where you divide the down payment into 3 equal installments paid weekly.
Once you pay the price of the product in full, the order is processed and shipped. After that, the remaining order balance is paid over 6 months bi-weekly, weekly, semi-monthly, or monthly.
The second service is ZebitLine, which is similar to what other platforms offer. With ZebitLine, you make the down payment at checkout and then pay the remainder of the order value over 6 months.
So essentially, Deferred Shipping is ZebitLine, but the down payment is paid in three installments.
Finally, we have Laterpay. Laterpay is focused on digital products and content. What’s nice about Laterpay is that it allows you to purchase multiple products and only pay when your invoice has reached $5. Laterpay has no fees – you pay what you see.
More Info About Affirm?
Affirm is an online lender that allows consumers to purchase goods on credit. When making a purchase, consumers choose their repayment options, such as monthly payments.
Affirm was founded in 2012 and launched its consumer app in 2017. In the past several years, the company has partnered with Walmart, Shopify, Zen Cart, and BigCommerce. Consumers can use Affirm as a payment method through any of the partner sites.
Does Affirm Hurt Your Credit?
Applying for an account with Affirm does not hurt your credit score. As with any other lender, the company performs checks on your credit score to determine the risk of approving a loan. However, instead of a hard credit check, the company uses a soft credit check.
A hard check is typically associated with a loan application. Having multiple hard checks in a short period may temporarily lower your credit score. Soft credit checks are not part of the credit scoring model, which means that they do not hurt your credit score.
While applying for an account does not impact your credit, failing to repay a loan can lower your score. When you use Affirm, you are agreeing to the terms of a loan, including a fixed repayment plan. If you do not repay the loan, the company may report you to credit reporting agencies.
Is Affirm the Same as AfterPay?
Affirm and AfterPay both provide buy-now-pay-later services for online shoppers. However, the two services provide different terms and repayment options.
While Affirm allows you to choose from several repayment schedules, AfterPay divides the loan into four equal installments paid every two weeks. AfterPay offers less flexibility but lower fees for those who pay on time.
The average interest rate for an Affirm loan is between 10% and 30% while AfterPay charges 0% interest. However, AfterPay charges late fees for missed payments. Affirm does not charge late fees.
Affirm and AfterPay also have different partnerships, which may impact the selection of online stores where you can shop. AfterPay mostly partners with health, beauty, and jewelry companies. Affirm maintains partnerships with Walmart, Shopify, and other leading eCommerce sites.
What Credit Score Do You Need for Affirm?
Users have reported being approved for Affirm loans with credit scores as low as 550 and 600. However, the company claims that users are more likely to be approved with a credit score of at least 640. A lower score may result in a higher interest rate or the need for a down payment on the purchase.
How Does Affirm Work?
To use Affirm, you need to create an account and verify your contact information via a text message. After opening your account, you can instantly start shopping through the company’s partner merchants, such as Walmart or websites that use Shopify or Zen Cart shopping carts.
When you are ready to checkout of a partner website, select “Affirm” as the payment method. Each transaction is considered a new loan and requires Affirm to perform a soft credit check. If you have an adequate credit score, you can select the terms of your repayment plan.
You can choose to pay back the loan in monthly installments over a 3-month, 6-month, or 12-month period. Affirm also displays the interest rate for the proposed installment period.
The interest rate varies between 10% and 30%. However, users with good credit may pay 0% interest when shopping from select stores.
After accepting the details of the payment plan, you can complete the checkout process on the online store’s website. The only step left is repaying the loan.
Affirm does not charge a penalty for early repayment or late fees for missed payments. However, your outstanding balance still attracts interest when you miss payments.
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