Can I borrow more money on an existing loan?

It’s possible to top up a loan, but you should consider how this will affect your finances before going ahead. For example, taking out more credit could mean you pay more interest overall. So, you need to weigh up the pros and cons to find the best option for you.

3 min read
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How does borrowing more work?

If you need extra funds, you could consider topping up an existing loan instead of taking out a second loan. To do this, you’d need to get in touch with your current provider, either online or over the phone.

By borrowing more on a current loan, you’re effectively refinancing it. This means the terms of your agreement will change. The new terms depend on the lender’s criteria and your individual circumstances, which may have changed since you applied for the original loan.

Advantages of borrowing more

The main benefit of borrowing more on your loan is getting a lump sum in your bank account when you need it.

1. Extra funds

You can use it for a range of purposes, such as home improvements or debt consolidation.

2. Quick decision

Topping up a loan with your current provider should make the application process quick and easy, as they’ll already have a lot of your details pre-filled.

Most mainstream providers say they can give you a personalised quote and decision within minutes, either online or over the phone. The funds could be in your bank account anywhere from 15 minutes to the end of the following business day.

3. One monthly payment

Another benefit is that you’ll need to make only one monthly payment towards the overall balance. This could make budgeting easier. Whereas, if you took out a second loan, you’d need to juggle separate loan payments every month.

You could also use your loan to consolidate other debts, so it can help reduce the number of payments you are having to make each month.

4. Flexible terms

Personal and secured loans can be flexible. You may be able to agree on new terms with the lender, including how much you borrow and for how long. At Ocean Finance, for example, we could find you a personal loan up to £15,000 spread over 5 years. We could also find a secured loan of up to £500,000 over 3-30 years. Both would depend on your individual circumstances.

Before you commit, make sure you review your incomings and outgoings to make sure you can comfortably afford an increase in your monthly loan payments.

Disadvantages of borrowing more

1. Increased monthly payments

Increasing the amount you owe on your loan will most likely increase your monthly payments, depending on the length of the agreement.

2. Potentially higher interest rates

If you increase your borrowing, you will need to repay the new balance at a new interest rate, which could potentially be higher than your previous interest rate. Remember to compare the APR on different loans to find the best deal (this is the total cost of borrowing).

3. Possibly longer repayment term

Topping up your loan can extend the length of time it takes you to pay it off. This means you could be charged more interest overall. It’s best to consider if you’ll be able to maintain your payments over the long term.

4. Potential early repayment charges

It’s also wise to check if you’ll be charged any early repayment charges for clearing your existing loan with your new loan. Your lender may also charge early resettlement interest on your original loan before the end of your agreement. This depends on your terms and conditions.

How much can I afford to borrow? 

While in some cases it’s possible to borrow up to £15,000 with a personal loan and up to £500,000 with a secured loan, that doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll be eligible to do so.  

People with a high credit score and a good credit history are more likely to be approved for larger loan amounts than those with bad credit. But that’s not to say if your credit score is poor you won’t be approved for a loan (though there are no guarantees). It could also mean that you’ll be approved for a lower amount or offered less competitive interest rates.

What are my options if I need to borrow more?

If you need to borrow more than you can with your current loan, there may be other options available (depending on your existing loan type and circumstances).

A different provider

Another lender could potentially offer you more, through either a new personal or secured loan. 

Secured loans

If you’re a homeowner and looking to borrow upwards of £10,000, you may consider a secured loan. You could borrow larger amounts than with a personal loan, as the lender offsets some of the risk by securing the loan against an asset you own, such as your home. Remember, if you fail to make your payments against a secured loan, as a last resort, the asset could end up being repossessed by the lender.


If you own your home, an option could be to remortgage your property. This is when you switch your current mortgage to a new deal, either with your existing, or new lender.

As part of this process, you could consider borrowing more money. However, you’ll most likely end up with higher mortgage payments each month, or you’ll need to extend your mortgage term. Either way, you’ll likely pay more in interest overall by remortgaging.
If you fail to keep up your mortgage payments, the lender could repossess your home. You may also incur early payment charges if you switch before your existing deal ends.

Read our guide ‘Is remortgaging the right choice for you?’ for more information.

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Disclaimer: All information and links are correct at the time of publishing.

Adele Kitchen, Personal Finance Writer

Adele Kitchen

Personal Finance Writer

Adele is a personal finance writer with more than 10 years in the finance industry behind her. She writes clear and engaging guides on all things loans for Ocean, as well as contributing blogs to help people understand their options when it comes to money.