#1 Affirm Unbiased Review: Scam or Savvy Shopping Tool?

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Affirm offers consumers the ability to finance purchases at the point of sale, both online and in-store, with no hidden fees or compounding interest. With Affirm, consumers can buy what they need and pay for it over time with clear, transparent terms.

As online shopping continues to dominate the retail landscape, so does the demand for flexibility and convenience payment options. Affirm, a popular alternative to traditional credit cards, has been making waves in the fintech world since its launch in 2012. With promises of transparent pricing, flexible payment options, and no hidden fees, Affirm claims to provide consumers with a more manageable and cost-effective way to make purchases.

But despite its promises, Affirm has received its fair share of criticism and scrutiny from both consumers and industry experts.

So, is Affirm a legitimate tool for savvy shoppers, or is it a scam? In this unbiased review, we’ll explore the pros and cons of using Affirm, including its interest rates, repayment terms, fees, and overall customer experience.

What is Affirm? An Overview

Founded in 2012 by PayPal co-founder Max Levchin, Affirm is a fintech company that offers a variety of point-of-sale financing options for consumers, primarily for online purchases.

Affirm partners with many retailers to enable customers to purchase goods online and pay by installment.

Credit cards often come with hidden fees and high interest rates, but Affirm provides installment loans with fixed interest rates and no late fees. These loans can be used to make purchases with retailers in partnership with Affirm both online and in-store.

Traditional loans, on the other hand, often require a lengthy application process and may come with early repayment penalties or other hidden fees. Affirm’s application process is quick and easy, and the repayment terms are straightforward and flexible.

Borrowers can choose their repayment terms upfront, which can help them budget more effectively and avoid the temptation to overspend.

How Affirm Works

Affirm’s payment options are available at thousands of retailers across the United States, including popular brands such as Walmart, Peloton, and Expedia.

After completing your registration and verification, Affirm works in 4 simple steps;

  1. Apply: When checking out at a participating retailer, customers can select “Affirm” as the payment option and fill out a quick application.
  2. Get Approved: Affirm uses a soft credit check to evaluate the customer’s creditworthiness and provide a real-time loan decision.
  3. Choose Payment Plan: Once approved, customers can select from a range of repayment options, typically between 3 and 36 months, and see their monthly payment amount and interest rate(ranging from 0-30%).
  4. Complete Purchase: After selecting a payment plan, the customer can complete their purchase and receive their goods.

Affirm’s Interest Rates and Fees

Affirm’s interest rates vary depending on the borrower’s creditworthiness and the retailer they’re making a purchase from. According to the Affirm website, APRs can range from 0% to 30%, and borrowers can usually choose from a variety of repayment terms (3, 6, or 12 months, for example). Affirm’s fees are also relatively straightforward; borrowers won’t be hit with any late fees, prepayment fees, or hidden charges. However, there is a potential origination fee of up to 10% of the purchase price for some loans.

It’s worth noting that while Affirm’s interest rates may be lower than some credit cards, they can still be relatively high compared to traditional personal loans or home equity loans.

Affirm’s Partner Retailers

One of Affirm’s key selling points is its partnerships with a wide range of online and brick-and-mortar retailers. As of February 2023, Affirm has partnered with over 12,000 retailers across a variety of industries, including fashion, home goods, electronics, and travel.

Some of Affirm’s most popular retail partners include:

CategoryPartner Retailers
FashionAdidas, American Eagle Outfitters, Betabrand, Burton, Cole Haan, Fashion Nova, Nectar Sleep, Patagonia, Rebecca Minkoff, REVOLVE, Superdry, Sweaty Betty, Toms, Untuckit, Warby Parker
BeautyDermalogica, Fenty Beauty, Glossier, Pureology, SkincareRX
Home GoodsAllModern, Article, Bed Bath & Beyond, Casper, Crate & Barrel, Joybird, Nectar Sleep, Pottery Barn, West Elm, Williams Sonoma
ElectronicsAcer, Alienware, Apple, Bose, Canon, Dell, HP, Lenovo, LG, Microsoft, Samsung, Sonos
Sports & FitnessGarmin, Golf Galaxy, Peloton, Sunny Health & Fitness
TravelCheapOair, Expedia, Hotels.com, Norwegian Cruise Line, Princess Cruises, Universal Orlando

By partnering with a large number of retailers, Affirm is able to offer borrowers the option to finance their purchases at the point of sale, making it a convenient and potentially cost-effective alternative to traditional credit cards or loans.

Affirm’s Reputation and Customer Reviews

Affirm has a mixed reputation and customer reviews online. Here’s a breakdown of what customers are saying about the platform:

Review SourceRating (out of 5)Number of Reviews
BBBA-801
Trustpilot2.64,500
Google4.7212k
  • BBB: Affirm has an A- rating with the Better Business Bureau, and the platform  has been accredited since 2020. The BBB has received over 3000 complaints about Affirm in the last three years, with common complaints related to billing and collection issues, advertising and sales practices, and problems with the product or service.
  • Trustpilot: Affirm has a 2.6-star rating on Trustpilot, based on over 4,500 customer reviews. Many customers complain about issues with payment processing, customer service, and problems with refunds and returns. However, some customers have also left positive reviews, praising Affirm for its convenience and ease of use.
  • Google Reviews: Affirm has a 4.7-star rating on Google Reviews, based on over 212k customer reviews. Positive reviews mention the ease of use and quick funding times, while negative reviews focus on payment processing and customer service issues.

Affirm vs. Other Financing Options

PlatformAPRLoan TermsLoan AmountsCredit ScoreBBB RatingTrustpilot Rating
Affirm0-30%3-36 months$50-$17,500640+A+2.6/5
Klarna0-29.99%6-36 monthsUndefinedNo minimum requirementA+3.9/5
Afterpay0%6 weeks$35-$2,000No minimum requirementB+3.5/5
Uplift0-36%3-36 months$100-$25,000550+A2.8/5 stars
Upstart8.69-35.99%3-5 years$1,000-$50,000620A+4.8/5

The Bottom Line

Overall, Affirm is a reputable and well-regarded lending platform that offers a unique alternative to traditional loans and credit cards. Its partnerships with popular retailers provide customers with a convenient way to finance their purchases, while its transparent loan terms and competitive interest rates make it an attractive option for many borrowers.

While some customers have reported issues with customer service or denied loans, the vast majority of reviews on BBB, Trustpilot, and Google are positive. Ultimately, whether or not Affirm is the right choice for you will depend on your individual financial needs and circumstances. However, if you are in the market for a flexible and affordable financing option, Affirm is definitely worth considering.

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