Lender in Focus 5.6: Satsuma Loans Complaints and Refunds

Satsuma Loans Complaints and refunds

Satsuma Loans Complaints and refunds

Most customers have a good experience when they get their short term loans through Satsuma.

Loan reviews are, overall, very positive. Where there are negative reviews, there can be genuine reasons.

Some consumers will provide negative reviews for things beyond the lender’s control.

Other complaints might be valid because mistakes and errors can never be completely ruled out.

In the unlikely event, an experience is negative, there is a Satsuma Loans complaints process for consumers to follow.

Satsuma must consider every complaint they receive. They are required to act responsibly and to check the validity of each.

How Satsuma Loans complaints are made

If your experience with Satsuma Loans has not lived up to the high standards that you expect, you can follow their complaints procedure.

You can use an online form for your complaint. Alternatively, you might prefer to communicate by phone.

Written complaints are another option, but may result in a slower response.

You should have an agreement number or customer number. This can be used to help Satsuma customer service reps to quickly access your details.

The lender recommends that you also have in mind how you would like the issue to be resolved.

Your first action should always be to communicate directly with the lender. Satsuma will aim to provide a resolution within five days.

Some complaints can take up to eight weeks to resolve. If your complaint has not been fully resolved within that time, then you can take further steps to get your answer.

Complaining to the Financial Ombudsman

If you have not received a response from Satsuma within 8 weeks, your next step should be a complaint to the Financial Ombudsman. You should also do this if the response that you’ve received is not satisfactory.

The Financial Ombudsman offers an independent and impartial service. The Ombudsman can settle complaints about instalment loans and other financial products.

Types of complaints about Satsuma Loans

Satsuma’s loan reviews, from existing customers, can give some insight into any negative experiences.

Existing 1 and 2-star complaints mention:

·       the lender front-loads the loan interest, so early repayment does not reduce the total loan cost.

·       repayment options, with weekly or monthly instalments, are too confusing.

·       that the lender is hard to contact, with no responses to some emails.

Reviews also mention that customers of Satsuma loans are required to make any additional repayments by phone.

At this time, there is no option for online payments. Any borrowers that wish to repay their loans early, or make an extra payment to reduce their overall debt, will need to call whilst the office is open.

Online account management is available through MySatsuma.

The lender suggests that online payments will be an option in the future. Some customers have been unhappy about this service not being available.

The following, are genuine 1 and 2-star reviews by Satsuma customers, which may be seen as complaints about the lender:

“I wouldn’t recommend Satsuma Loans. I made a large early payment to my loan but there was no reduction in my interest, unlike other loan companies, so it was pointless making the payment.”

“Extremely costly compared to competitors, taking weekly payments rather than monthly. So you have to ensure you put aside the money each week to pay them back. Tries to intimidate you when offering to repay early by saying they will send a letter. When I clearly said I don’t want any correspondence by post, supposedly for FCA requirements. (other lenders you can pay online/over the phone no problem). Repayments are very much front loaded so even if you can repay early you’ve paid most of the interest in your early payments.”

“Quick and easy application. But I have tried to contact Satsuma to pay my loan back early and they just don’t respond to email messages. There is not the facility to pay off early online which gives me the impression that they just want loads of interest off you. And try to make it difficult for you to pay back early. This is not the case with Payday Express or Wageday advance, you can pay off when you like. So I am not happy with Satsuma and won’t use again. I am also going to contact BBCs Watchdog to complain about this.”

Satsuma Loans refunds and compensation

complaints and refunds with satsuma loans

Customers with serious complaints about Satsuma Loans could be entitled to a refund or compensation.

So far, Satsuma has not been required to make any large-scale compensation payments.

When the brand first launched in 2013, it was described by Provident as the ‘antidote to payday loans’.

With a 130-year reputation to uphold, Provident promoted Satsuma as an affordable alternative for loans of up to £300. The weekly instalments were a selling point that other lenders didn’t offer, with repayments over a maximum of 26 weeks.

Today, new customers can borrow as much as £1000 with repayments over a maximum of 52 weeks. These are much larger loans, but at this point have not caused any newsworthy difficulties for borrowers.

If a customer feels they might be entitled to financial compensation, they should contact the Financial Ombudsman. Complaints can be resolved formally, with the compensation awarded if it is deserved.

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) does not manage individual complaints. The regulator may step in to take action if there are valid complaints about lenders.

The FCA has a responsibility to protect the interests of consumers. If a lender is found to be acting irresponsibly, it is likely to lose its FCA authorisation.