HOUSTON - Many people have started using "Buy Now, Pay Later" financing, such as Klarna or AfterPay, to buy things like clothes or appliances online.
However, another company is offering the same type of financing, but for unexpected expenses.
Sunbit offers "Buy Now, Pay Later" financing for things like auto repairs, dental work, or eyeglasses.
Just as with other BPNL companies, the merchants must be partnered with Sunbit. But 7,000 businesses in 46 states are, including Honda Motor, Kia Motors, Cycle Gear, and Eyemart Express.
"The mechanic tells you, ‘Oh sorry, looks like you need to replace the breaks and tires,’" explained Sunbit CEO Arad Levertov. "But don't worry, we have a payment plan for you, Buy Now, Pay Later."
To approve you for the transaction, Sunbit scans your ID and runs a soft credit check, so it won't impact your credit score.
"Basically we scan the back of the driver's license and you can see there is a barcode on the driver's license," said Levertov.
Sunbit covers expenses from $60 to $8000. You'll make a down payment and choose a 3, 6, or 12-month plan. The company says interest ranges from 0% to 36%, depending on your credit score and the state where you live.
"We are able to approve 9 out of 10 people," said Levertov. "Whether it's with a 500 credit score and above will get approved, it will be a different amount, different terms."
The Sunbit website offers these examples:
- A $300 purchase with 0% APR, repayable over 3 months, could have a down payment of $42 and monthly installments of $86.
- A $350 purchase with a 29.99% APR, repayable over 12 months, could have a down payment of $70 and monthly installments of $27.
Sunbit's terms also state you may be charged a $10 fee for late payments, and late and missed payments can be reported on your credit history.
But Levertov points out that Sunbit's rates are a fraction of the interest on a payday loan, and can be lower than the credit card in your pocket.
"For a customer that would get 20% APR, we would charge probably 10%," explained Levertov.
Other companies also provide financing for things like auto repairs and dental care, so compare your options for the best terms.