Peer to peer

Case study: Borrower Charlotte speaks to us

Charlotte lives in Littleover, Derbyshire, and has been employed by the NHS for the last five years, working her way up to the position of Systems Manager. Even at the tender age of 24, Charlotte already has a good credit history to her name, and in 2014, she decided to put it to good use by seeking a low-cost personal loan to cover the cost of something she had long yearned for – cosmetic surgery.


Why I took out the loan

I can remember being unhappy with the shape and appearance of my nose throughout most of my teenage/adult life, and I used to hate having any photographs taken of me in fear that the picture would catch me at the wrong angle. But it wasn’t until a couple of years ago that I seriously thought about finally doing something about it.

I am fully aware and completely agree that there is a lot of ‘stigma’ among certain people in society regarding nose jobs, and cosmetic surgery in general. However, this is not something that gave me any doubts when making my decision. I have close relatives who’ve also had cosmetic procedures done in the past, and seeing the positive impact that the surgery has had on their lives helped to put my mind at ease.

Getting the loan

The procedure was a cosmetic one, and therefore not covered by the NHS. I didn’t have the funds to cover it, so obviously I had to look at taking out a loan. This was actually the first time I had ever applied and accepted a personal loan. It was not a decision I made lightly, and there were many things I needed to take into consideration, which I discussed with family and friends.

I did approach my Dad initially and asked him to lend me the money for the procedure, but he refused as he did not want me to go ahead with it. I then looked into various types of personal loans on the internet; other loan companies, through my bank etc., while I also made enquires to have the surgery done on finance through the cosmetic group that did my procedure. However, none of these appealed to me.

I then came across Lending Works on a price comparison site, and found the online application with them to be very quick and easy. I also felt completely informed of the status of my application throughout the entire process. Although this is the first personal loan application experience I have ever had, I would definitely recommend Lending Works to family and friends. I also like the idea of peer-to-peer lending – it seems like an efficient solution for all involved.

The procedure and afterwards

I eventually went in for the surgery in January 2015, and the operation itself only took around 2-3 hours. But I was in a lot of pain for the first 48 hours afterwards, and I had to wear a splint on my nose for 10 days post-surgery until I had my stitches taken out. I also had black eyes and a swollen face for around 3-4 weeks after surgery. The initial recovery took around 6 weeks, after which I was able to lie back flat on my head and sneeze again. However, they say the entire recovery process can take between 6 months to a year, and it took ages for the swelling to go down completely, and for full sensitivity to return on the tip of my nose.

But I’m back to full health now, and already I’m so much happier with what I see in the mirror every day. Having the procedure done has dramatically improved my self-confidence, and thus my overall happiness. In addition, it has actually improved my respiratory system, and therefore improved my health too.

Paying back the loan and my views on borrowing

Making the monthly repayments is not something that I worry about, as I feel comfortable with the amount of debt that I have taken on. I keep my own record of the total number of remaining monthly payments to be made so that I can plan ahead.

The biggest influence on my decision to go ahead with the cosmetic surgery - and take out my loan with Lending Works - was down to me and my fiancé separating in 2014. Following our split, I moved back in with my parents and decided to go ahead with the procedure while I am still young, and with no other real commitments. The cosmetic surgery was something purely selfish for my own benefit, and if I had other commitments such as a wedding to save for, a mortgage, children etc., I would not have gone ahead with it.

However, if anyone is seriously unhappy with their appearance and is considering cosmetic surgery, then I would strongly urge them to get the ball rolling; start making enquires and go ahead with the procedure. Of course there are doubts, and there is never a good time to go ahead with a surgical procedure that leaves you facing weeks (or even months!) of recovery afterwards. But the rewards in the long run can make it all worthwhile in the end.

Lending Works has allowed me to get this surgery which has positively enhanced my life, and there is not a day that has gone by since having my loan accepted (and having the surgery done) that I have regretted it. It was the best money I have ever spent.

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