Updated 22.02.2023

BFS Loans – Reviews, Pros and Cons Uncovered

BFS loans are products of Barko Financial Services (Pty) Ltd (BFS). BFS, a top microfinance firm in South Africa, was founded in 1996 to offer innovative and ethical credit to employed South Africans. Since then, the company has evolved to become a leader in the industry. It has millions of South African clients from different formal employment sectors including, mining, civil service, and private sector employees. Most of the BFS loan products are tailored to satisfy the needs of mid-income to low-income earners. They include short to medium-term loan solutions. Clients can get the BFS loans to meet emergency medical bills, supplement food budget at home or pay for their children’s school activities. 

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Introduction to BFS Loans?

The cost of living in South Africa is high making it a challenge for ordinary South Africans to depend on a single source of income to meet their daily needs. Therefore, most employed South Africans have signed up with BFS for short-term, low interest loans. Essentially, the BFS loans provide personalized credit aimed at easing your financial strain when you need money the most.

Barko, the company behind the BFS loans, has been in existence for more than 20 years. It has a good reputation as a dependable lender in South Africa. Most South Africans get BFS loans because of the company’s compliance with the industry regulations, like the National Credit Act of 2005. Additionally, the company maintains good customer relationships and abides by high ethical standards.

With a target market of low-income working class individuals, BFS loans has offices across popular South African provinces. Therefore, you can access the company’s premises easily for any of their services. To be more precise, BFS loans has offices in Johannesburg, Polokwane, Pretoria, Bloemfontein, Benoni, Burgersfort, Boksburg, and Mokopane among other major towns. The company also has a branch locator feature that allows you to find the closest BFS branch near you.

Like most loan providers, BFS loans have minimum requirements that all loan applicants have to meet to qualify for a loan. Typically, people who qualify for the BFS loans should have a good credit rating and prove their ability to pay back the loan in the agreed period. These two factors also determine the amount of money you will be given. Fortunately, the BFS loans do not have steep loan repayment and loan management terms. In fact, this product boasts of flexible repayment conditions and lowest interest rates in South Africa. Since BFS loans are short-term, personalised loans, you get upto 30 days to repay the loan amount given to you in full or as per the loan terms and conditions.

Unlike traditional loans, you do not need any collateral or bank guarantee to qualify for BFS loans. The BFS loans are given to you based on your credit score, and at a customized interest rate. This makes it one of the best unsecured loans in South Africa.

The BFS payday loan is one of the easiest loans to qualify for. All you need is your employment terms and credit history. 

To make it easy for South Africans to access the BFS loans, the company has provided multiple loan application channels including but not limited to online loan application. When you apply for the BFS loan online, you get immediate feedback. This allows you to know your application status immediately and the subsequent steps you should take to receive your loan amount.

If your loan application is successfully processed, the loan amount will be forwarded to your registered bank account before the end of day. Once the money gets into your account, you can spend it however you want. 

For loan repayment, BFS loans will deduct money from your registered account using debit order as per the terms of your loan. Therefore, you will not have to physically visit your bank, withdraw money and forward it to your BFS loan account.

How to Qualify for BFS Loans

Given that BFS loans are unsecured credit, the company does not require a bank guarantee or security to advance you a loan. Therefore, the company focuses on your credit rating and your ability to repay the loan. Like traditional lenders, BFS loans try to protect their clients by awarding clients loans that they can afford. Doing this ensures the company abided by the set regulations to protect consumer rights. Therefore, when applying for any of the BFS loans, you should be alive to the fact that the company will not award you a loan that will strain your financial muscles.

Before applying for any of the BFS loans, it is prudent for you to get a free credit report. Apply for one from any of the credit bureaus in South Africa. This report will help you learn about your credit rating and know the areas that you need to work on to increase your chances of qualifying for a higher loan amount. Aside from knowing your credit rating, you should learn how the BFS loan interest is calculated and all the fees charged on loans. This will help you calculate the total loan amount you are supposed to pay to determine your affordability. 

BFS Loan Requirements and Documents

Typically, lenders have minimum requirements that all loan applicants must meet to qualify for loans. For Barko, all loan applicants have to be permanently employed and must have worked with the employer for a minimum of six months. To ascertain that you meet this requirement, your bank statements will be assessed and qualified by Barko. A further assessment of your monthly budget, as well as your take-home amount, will be conducted to determine your affordability. Barko will also conduct all the necessary credit assessments to understand your loan repayment history. 

If everything checks out, you will be required to produce a couple of documents for Barko to process your loan application. These documents include:

  • A certified copy of your South African identification card
  • Your most recent bank statements
  • Proof of permanent employment
  • Proof of residence

How to Apply for the BFS Loan

BFS Loans for blacklisted

There are various ways that you can apply for the BFS loans. You can apply for the loan by visiting Barko’s physical offices, through the company’s online platform, or through a call. Each of these options has its merits and demerits. For instance, applying online yields instant results if your application is successful.

Branch Application

Walk into any of the BFS branches with the necessary documents. One of the BFS customer representatives will pick up your case and help you apply for any of the BFS loans. Use the BFS loans branch locator to find the nearest BFS branch to your current location.

Telephone Application

If you can’t walk into any of the BFS branches, applying for a loan through the telephone is your second best alternative. To do this, you need to call 080 777 3777. You will be directed to a consultant for help. Inform the consultant about your interest in applying for a loan. The consultant will guide you by providing detailed instructions on what you have to do to apply for a personal loan. In addition, the consultant will send you an email address through which you will send in all the supportive documents

Online Application

BFS does not yet operate an online application form. Instead, you will need to visit on your computer and fill in the contact form with all the necessary information. You should also write a detailed message on the form stating your interest in applying for a loan. A BFS consultant will reach out and assist you with the loan application process.

Do Blacklisted Individuals Qualify for BFS Loans?

Different lenders hold different perspectives over blacklisted individuals. To some, blacklisted borrowers do not have any credit or one who has a significantly low credit score. Depending on their terms and conditions, borrowers might qualify or miss out on loans based on these two factors. However, Barko is more interested in your affordability. Therefore, blacklisted individuals can qualify for the BFS loans. Barko will evaluate your application to determine your suitability for a loan. Nevertheless, BFS might offer you a loan if you were blacklisted because of the non-payment of an existing loan. This proves that you are irresponsible with loans and can’t be trusted with more debt. Remember you should avoid going into further debt to repay your current loans, instead you should be undergoing debt review and setting a debt consolidation scheme. 

Reviews of BFS Loans

Reviews help customers understand a service provider better. On the flip side, it also allows the service provider to learn what the client thinks about the product sold. Customer reviews, in particular, let you know what other customers think about a service provider. Ultimately, it is best for you to contact the service provider through their official contact for first-hand information about the services offered. Here are some of the customer reviews on BFS loans.

I have received the best service from Tshepiso at the Potch branch. He is professional and always walking the extra mile. Thank you for your friendly help when I need it and you are truly an asset to the company.

Karin Pel

Fantastic Randburg Team. Shout out to Alvenia and the team at the Randburg Branch. Friendly, efficient and professional!

Michelle J

Hi, I took out a loan with this company and i defaulted on payment, and they involved my company, where my company called me to address this issue, since then my company agreed to settle this loan, and when I called the branch to obtain their banking details they stated that they do not have a branch banking details and I need to come to the branch to swipe my card or cash, but my boss want to settle this directly from the company account, how do I deal with this, because I want to pay this and be done with you guys. Bad experience ever.


Thank you Mr Neil from BFS Alexandra branch for resolving my query!!! I am Happy Client now ! Keep up the good work.


Hi. I have written my complaint on the 29-04-2020 on this platform in relation to the bad service I have received on the 28-04-2020 at BFS Midrand branch. Upon complaining I was called by the regional manager Neil requesting me to come and revisit. I have since gone and was welcomed by a friendly consultant by the name of Pinky Chid who gave a superb service. I am a happy client and I am in a position to recommend your institution to friends and family.

Tebello M

I have been a client of Barko Financial Services since 2017,ever since l then all l have received has been an excellent five star service. l lost my job in 2019 and relocated to Johannesburg in search of greener pastures, things got tough after l got my first salary trying to balance things, l quickly searched for my nearest Barko Financial Services, l ended up visiting Bloed Mall Barko Financial Services situated in Pretoria where l was warmly welcomed by a friendly lady by the name Cassandra. l wanna say Big up to Cassandra for her friendly and professional customer service.Keep up it and keep flying the BFS flag high. All the staff are friendly and thank you for such a wonderful service. l did not know that excellent customer service still exists in walk-in centres but once again my confidence in excellent customer service has been restored. Thank you guys!


Pros of BFS Loans

Before applying for a loan, it is wise for you to learn what you will gain. Barko financial services loans are no exception. You have to learn about their benefits before applying for any of the loan products available. These loans have the following advantages:

Cash Loans Benefits

  • The loans range from R500 – R50 000. Those who meet all the loan requirements set by the company are eligible for higher loans.
  • Flexible repayment terms – after award of loan, you can choose a repayment loan term of between 1 – 24 months.
  • The loan application process is easy.
  • Successful applicants receive low interest rate loans.
  • The company offers a fixed repayment term allowing you to plan ahead.
  • Insurance.
  • The loan application process is safe and secured. You do not have to worry about the security of your information.
  • Barko offers quick loan approval allowing you access to the loan amount as soon as possible.
  • Once you accept the terms of the loan, you will not be charged any extra costs other than what was indicated in the loan terms.
  • You can receive short-term – typically 30 days – loans with significantly low interest rates.

Personal Loans Benefits

  • Loan applicants can access loan amounts between R1000 – R100000
  • The loan monthly repayment period ranges between 1 – 60 months
  • Quick loan approval
  • Lower interest rates charged on the loan
  • You can apply for your loan online
  • Safe, secure and insured
  • The loan has a fixed repayment term and low interest

Financial Loans Benefits

  • You can access as much as R150000 in loan
  • The loan repayment period can be as short as 1 month or as long as 60 months
  • Like all the other loans, th BFS financial loan has a low interest rate
  • You can apply for the loan online
  • If successful, your loan application will be approved on the same day

Cons of BFS Loans

Like any financial product, BFS loans have disadvantages that you need to know before applying for one. They include:

  • No loan repayment extension.
  • Risk of debt addiction

Barko Financial Services Contacts

You can contact Barko through:

Getting a short-term, low-interest credit like the BFS loans is a great backup plan for anyone with occasional need for extra cash. This money often helps you supplement your regular income and allows you to meet your monthly financial needs. Contact Barko Financial Services for any of their loan products and solve your pressing financial issue.

BFS Loans Whatsapp Number

BFS Barko posted the following WhatsApp number on their Facebook page. However, it’s recommended to use one of the above contact methods if you are looking to get in touch. Always be extremely careful when giving out any personal information via WhatsApp.


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Job is a seasoned writer with a good understanding of the emerging markets, Africa to be specific.