Shane's acquarium
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Case study: Borrower Shane's story

Shane is 56-years old, married and hails from Norwich. He is disabled as a result of a dreadful accident which took place in 1983 while he served in the Armed Forces. The spinal injury he sustained (level T4) has left him paralysed from the chest down. But not one to let such an awful setback get the better of him, Shane has made the best of things ever since, and, most recently, that involved taking out a loan from Lending Works in order to improve his life even more…

Shane

Why I decided to take out a loan

The main reason I was looking for a loan was to get some much-needed furniture into my home, and also to get some decorating done as our place needed a bit of a pick-me-up. Being a paraplegic in a wheelchair, I naturally spend a lot of time at home, and for me it is important that my surrounds are comfortable, uplifting and aesthetically pleasing.

Getting hold of my loan

I found it both funny and frustrating in equal measure. I am obviously retired, and living on a war pension, which affords me a relatively comfortable income. I have also always ensured that I have kept up my credit score, and various reports from companies like Noddle have confirmed this. Yet many banks and other lenders either didn’t consider me as a good candidate for a loan, or offered extortionate rates of interest.

That was when I came across Lending Works, who I hadn’t actually heard of before. It was the smoothest and simplest process I could have imagined, especially after all the nonsense I’d encountered with other lenders. With Lending Works, I simply applied, and was contacted by an agent that same day. From there on, the process was so quick and easy. The agent explained everything clearly, and was incredibly helpful. All I had to do was upload a handful of documents; my approval came through, and the next day I had the money in my account!

I wasn’t familiar with peer-to-peer lending, but to me it seems like a sensible concept. Anything that eliminates banks from the equation has a good chance of being more efficient.

Putting the loan to good use

Once the money was in my account, I set about doing a few things. I had plenty I wanted to do around the place, but I also wanted to use my money well. First and foremost was the furniture, and the various bits I purchased have been wonderful additions to my kitchen and living room. My kitchen in particular is looking so stylish now. I even bought an awesome bright yellow SMEG fridge! I’m not sure if my wife likes it as much as I do, but there you go.

I also got the hall stairs and landing decorated, which has been long overdue. But perhaps most exciting for me is the new aquarium this loan has helped to fund. I am just in the process of setting it up now, but I’ve already got the big fish tank in. And for me, it’s about a whole lot more than just fish. As a result of my injury, I was unable to have children, and have always enjoyed having things to look after. I used to have canaries, but they were stolen earlier this year, and it’s really had a profound effect on me. I became quite depressed, and at one point wasn’t even bothering to leave the house – even to go see friends.

Already the aquarium has made such a difference, and I’m in a much better place now. And it isn’t even finished yet! It’s really given me something to look forward to each day, and a nice project to sink my teeth into, so I couldn’t be happier.

Shane

Feeling justified in getting a loan

I didn’t really worry about taking out a loan too much if I’m being honest, and the deal I got pretty much vindicates that. I can easily afford the repayment amount, and I don’t consider it to be a heavy obligation, as it won’t weigh down on my finances to any great extent. Besides, I just look at what I’ve got as a result, and how happy these various items of furniture have made me. If I had to do it all over again, I wouldn’t change a thing. Each to their own, but to me the stigma surrounding taking out a loan can sometimes seem a bit silly, especially in situations where they can do so much good, and still be affordable.

All that’s left to do now is to get that aquarium all finished up!

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Michael Todt

Mike joined Lending Works in early 2015 with a background in marketing and journalism. Having long held a passion for economics, he is now the chief contributor to the Lending Works blog, and regularly writes about all things peer-to-peer lending, fintech and personal finance.