Comparing Instant Online Cash Loans Using Excel

Instant online cash loans typically quickly assess your basic financial situation in order to provide you with a very simple loan. Instead of considering the many factors that many influence your personal ability to pay, instant online lenders usually only look at a few criteria. In return, they will give you a loan quote with only a few criteria. This makes evaluating the different options much easier for you. You can set up a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet in little time to help you consider the options.

Setup the Sheet

The first step is to set up the rows and columns you will use to evaluate the loans. Start by entering the criteria you will evaluate the loans with across the top row. Rows go left to right, and columns go up and down. Starting in the cell, or block, furthest to the left and closest to the top, enter the word "Company Name." This will be the column where you record the name of the company or lender you are considering. In the next cell in the row, you can start entering the criteria you will use. You should include: APR, APY, limits, monthly payment and any other criteria you have. You can leave one column for "miscellaneous" information such as whether the website was easy to use, you liked the feel of the company, or you read a good review.

Fill in the Sheet

When you get a quote from an online lender, fill in a row for that lender. Enter the lender's name and website in the first cell in the row. Then, start filling in the other information. Excel is capable of doing math for you; this means it can figure out the total cost of the loan for you instead of making you do this on a calculator. Make sure you have a column for the number of months of the loan. Next, make sure you have a column for the monthly loan payments. Finally, make a column for total cost at the far right side of the sheet, try using this formula in the column:

= (click on the cell that says how many months your loan option is) * (click on the cell that has your monthly payment amount)

This is a fairly basic formula. However, if you need to use more complicated formulas to figure out APY based on APR, for example, Excel can do this for you as well.

Prioritize and Compare

You should have a few priorities you are comparing the loans on. If the interest rate is the most important thing to you, look at this column first. Once you determine which loans offer the best interest rates by looking at this column, you can then compare the loans according to your next highest priority. For example, look at the same loans and see what they have written in the "monthly payment column." As you continue to go down your list of priorities, one or two loans should stand out as the best option for your online cash loan. 


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