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Unlock the value of your goldAvailing of gold loans have been a practice prevalent in India for generations.In today’s times when the value of gold is at an all time high is when it makesmore sense to monetise it in a time of need. This trend was prevalent mainlyamong the agricultural classes and the low income groups but is now catchingup with the higher income groups and salaried classes as well.Gold loan companies like Muthoot Fincorp have modelled their products toeffectively service the salaried classes with EMI schemes etc. now even higherincomes groups are choosing to avail of the liquidity from gold loans, therebyunlocking the value of the gold that would normally be in a safe locker. Thesegold loans cost much less than personal loans.Seeing the potential of this market, public and private sector banks have alsojumped on the bandwagon. Reports say that the organised gold loan businessin India grew at a compounded annual growth rate of 40 per cent between2002 and 2010 and the gold stock in India grew at 22 per cent in the sameperiod.What is a gold loan? It is a loan against gold which is available quickly andeasily. Any other form of loan would require documentation and hence lots oftime. Whereas gold loans are available over the counter and in ‘just 3minutes’- as some of the advertising boards of companies like Muthoot Fincorpscream. Loans are available for up to 80 per cent of the value of the gold andinterest rates hover around 12 per cent.Do not take loans to purchase a fashion accessory or cell phone. Keep in mindthe interest you are paying. Gold prices are at an all time high. Predictions arethat they are slated to go higher. Since the borrower faces no threat in theevent of a price rise, there is no need for worry. Most reputed lenders areunder the supervision of the RBI, hence no fear there too. Pick a lender withrepute and one that has been in the business for a long time.