How to predict the effect of inflation on installment loans

People who grew up in a time of economic turmoil find it very difficult to adjust to today’s harsh reality.

Inflation has raised prices at least by the dozens. This also significantly influenced the price of the loan application. In order to know the cost of a loan and the one-time down payment, borrowers need to know how inflation works when it comes to repaying the loan.


What is an installment loan?

An installment loan is a financial contract between the lender and the borrower. The borrower applies for a loan, the lender offers the loan at a stated interest, and the borrower collects the loan and repays the loan amount over a specified period of time in fixed regular installments. The term of the loan varies from a few months to over a year.

Predicting how installments may increase in size is a task for the borrower. If the task is difficult, the borrower can seek help from a financial adviser or collect information online. The named blog Reviews of Fit My Money installment loans with lenders and rates to compare for free.

How inflation interacts with interest

Some experts advise saving inflation-adjusted installment loan dollars so you have money and pay off the loan faster. This strategy sometimes fails because the borrower ignores interest. To understand how inflation will affect loan payments, you need to know the rate of inflation and choose a variable or fixed interest rate.

Fixed installments are payments of the same amount each month of the term of the loan. The variable may have the interest changed accordingly with the inflation changes.

If a person asks for a fixed payment personal loan this can have a good influence on their loan experience as they will know what the repayments will look like and the exact amount of money they will repay by the end of the loan term.

In this case, it also means that inflation-adjusted fixed installment loans will cost less (when inflation rises, the payments are worthless). Additionally, wages increase with inflation, so the borrower now has more money to cover the loan.

However, when inflation works to the benefit of the borrower, interest rates normally fall. And low interest rates can cause people to borrow more than they can afford and force them to borrow money irresponsibly. And really, in June 2020, 20% of Americans who took out personal loans were unsure of their resources to repay the loan.

People still need financial help. Figures for 2020 show the number of personal loan applications increased from 3.58% (April 2020) to 6.15% (May 2020). In terms of inflation, borrowers may observe that personal loans are now allowed at larger sizes. the average personal debt has increased from $8,618 to $9,025 due to 2020 data.

Variable rate loans versus inflation

In the case of variable interest rates, when inflation rises, interest generally follows. Variable rate loans are more preferable by lenders as they can offset inflation. Lenders always factor in variations in inflation when granting the loan in order to make a profit.

Borrowers also need to see what kind of money they will need to put into the down payment when inflation occurs. If the terms of the loan do not provide for this, the borrower may default and not repay the loan.

Also, most loans are not inflation protected. On the other hand, once interest rates have risen, they will not follow if inflation falls. In order to protect their assets, the borrower and the lender can agree on a rate limit.

The borrower may be able to set a limit such as a certain amount of money on the principal interest or a percentage difference from the original interest rate. The national prime rate will be adjusted for inflation, so the lender will also be protected.

How to Calculate the Effect of Inflation on a Loan

The impact of inflation on existing loans varies between fixed and variable rate loans.

Suppose you want to take out a loan to buy a car. The interest rate is fixed and amounts to 6.25%. This percentage, for example, translates into a monthly payment of $225. At the start of a loan, the national prime rate was 5%.

Inflation rises and the Federal Reserve raises the prime rate to 6% over a two-year period. The loan is now only 0.25% above the national prime rate. In reality, the borrower spends a little less in installments than before. The $225 from a year ago is worthless. Income has increased as a result of inflation and the borrower even has reserve money for loan repayment.

Low inflation while the loan is still active makes $225 worth less than before and the borrower’s budget is now stretched by a greater portion than before. The lender gets the favor here because they are earning more (the prime rate is down to 4.5% and the borrower is not paying 2.25% more than the average prime rate. If the same loan application were to occur today, the lender would offer a lower interest rate.

To settle the situation and repay the expected amount of money, the borrower can request a loan refinance and update it according to national averages. Refinancing will save money, but must be agreed with the lender.

In reality, if the borrower asks for a loan of one thousand dollars, the real interest rate is 8% and the inflation rate is 3%, the loan interest rate is the sum of these two aspects. In the end, the inflation rate influencing the loan, the interest rate will be 11%.


The question of the influence of inflation on the lending rate is clear. The only question that remains is whether it is more lucrative to apply for a fixed installment loan or a variable installment loan and this is what the borrower must decide for himself.

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored article in conjunction with Fit My Money. The information we publish has been obtained or is based on sources that we believe to be accurate and complete. If you are unsure about an investment decision, you should seek professional financial advice.

Thelma J. Longworth