Alternatives to loans no longer available

August 04,2021

Loans that are no longer available and their alternatives

Were you looking for a specific type of loan, only to find it has been discontinued? In this short guide, we’ll look at loans that are no longer available and their closest alternatives.

Help to Buy equity loan

Getting on the housing ladder isn’t easy now — nor was it in 2013 when the government launched its Help to Buy Equity Loan. The scheme offered first time house buyers and previous homeowners a loan of 20% — or 40% for those living in London — so they could bulk up their deposits and get access to better mortgage rates. 


  • First time buyers wouldn’t pay interest on their Help to Buy loan for the first five years.
  • There’d be no need to repay the loan until the property was sold or until the term of the mortgage ended.

The loan would be available to buy new-build properties up to £600,000 in value — and a deposit of 5% would be needed to be eligible. Applicants would need to take out a mortgage on the remaining cost.

The scheme has since closed; so applications are no longer being accepted.

The alternative

Good news. The scheme has been rebooted. Not only that, but you can still borrow 20%-40% without paying interest for the first five years. 


This time, the Help to Buy equity loan scheme is only for first time buyers. A first time buyer is classified as someone who has never owned a property — not just in the UK, but abroad too. If they’re buying with a partner, they must be a first time buyer too.

How much can you borrow?

This will depend on where you live. As with the earlier scheme, Londoners can apply for a loan of up to £600k. But in other parts of the country — for example, the North East — the limit will be much lower.


You’ll still need to take out a mortgage for the remaining cost. However, your rate will be lower — due to the size of the deposit put down.

Learn more by visiting the scheme’s dedicated website.

Career development loan

The Career Development loan was a form of bank loan used to pay for training courses. The scheme was aimed at those looking to progress within their profession and job seekers wanting to appear more attractive to prospective employers.

The scheme closed its doors to applicants on January 25 2019. 

The alternative

The Advanced Learner loan doesn’t directly replace the Career Development loan but works in a similar way.

The scheme is open to applicants who need help with college or tuition costs anywhere in the UK. The amount you can borrow depends on (i) the topic you want to learn; and (ii) your tuition fees. 

You’ll need to borrow at least £300.00 and that money will be paid to your course provider, as opposed to going directly into your bank account.

If your loan is lower than the value of your course, you’ll need to pay the difference out of your own pocket.


To be eligible, you must have lived in the UK for at least three years and at the point you became eligible for your course.


9% of your earnings greater than £25,725 a year is repayable. A means-tested bursary fund is available.

How to apply

You’ll need to apply directly via your chosen learning provider.

Crisis loans

Crisis loans were discontinued in 2012. They were created in order to serve short-term needs for borrowers with no other option available to source money. Crisis loans were criteria based, with financial support being provided only in emergency situations which posed genuine risk to the borrower or their loved ones.

As mentioned, Crisis Loans have been discontinued. But you may be eligible to apply for a Budgeting Loan instead, depending on why you need the money.

The alternative

Budgeting Loans are the nearest alternative to Crisis Loans and can only be used for a number of reasons.


A budgeting loan could be used to pay for:

  • Hire purchase loans
  • Funeral expenses
  • Rental costs
  • Clothing 
  • Home maintenance

This list is not exhaustive. You may also be eligible if you’ve been on specific benefits for at least 6 months.

Please refer to the government’s official page, which lists the application criteria in full. 


No interest is repayable on a Budgeting Loan. You simply pay back the amount you borrowed, with repayments being deducted from your benefits.

Short term Salad Money loans

We specialise in providing short-term loans of up to £1,000 to NHS and public sector workers who might otherwise struggle to get credit. You won’t need to pass a credit check either, because we use Open Banking to assess whether your loan will be affordable.

What is Open Banking?

You can choose to share financial data — like your bank statements — with third parties like us. We’ll use that information to assess your eligibility for a loan —  but we won’t have any control over your data and you can withdraw your consent anytime.

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