“Wealth” is one of the basic necessities of humans. The life remains pleasant as long as one has adequate amount of wealth. However, when one faces financial difficulties and every single day brings about a new expense, then the life starts becoming difficult. In such circumstances, one at times even has to go through the undesirable avenue of taking a loan in order to fulfil his needs. The way Islam has given a beautiful system of giving Sadaqat, charity, Zakah and donations to help out the poor, weak and destitute, similarly, giving loan to the needy has also been greatly encouraged. In fact, the reward of Sadaqah is ten times, whereas the reward of giving loan is eighteen times; because even a non-needy person takes Sadaqah, whereas loan is taken by only a needy person. (Sunan Ibn Majah, vol. 3, pp. 154, Hadees 2431)
Virtues of giving a loan
1 Every loan is a Sadaqah [donation]. (Shu’ab-ul-Iman, vol. 3, pp. 284, Hadees 3563)
2 The Muslim who gives loan to another Muslim twice, is as if he gave Sadaqah once. (Sunan Ibn Majah, vol. 3, pp. 153, Hadees 2430)
Giving loan is a difficult act
In today’s day and age, the number of those who do not pay back the loan has increased dramatically. Moreover, acting upon this righteous action has become very difficult in the current era because of those individuals who despite having the capability of returning the loan do not return it back and make the lender come again and again by making lame and false excuses. Just think to the fact that one person does a favour upon the other and helps him in the time of need, and in return he remains confounded to recover his own possession. What a great injustice this is?
First priority should be to avoid taking a loan. The best strategy of wisdom is to cut your coat according to your cloth. Whereas, increasing expenses and amounts of loans just for the fulfilment of immoral traditions and useless desires is foolishness. Although it is permissible to take a loan but wellbeing lies in avoiding it. The Holy Rasool صَلَّی اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَلَیْہِ وَاٰلِہٖ وَسَلَّمَ would seek refuge with Allah عَزَّوَجَلَّ from loan. When somebody asked about the reason, he صَلَّی اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَلَیْہِ وَاٰلِہٖ وَسَلَّمَ said: When a person becomes a borrower, he lies when speaking; he breaks promise when he makes it. (Sahih Bukhari, vol. 2, pp. 108, Hadees 2397) It is extremely important to take care of few things before taking a loan.
Presence of witnesses and agreement
While acting upon the teachings of the Holy Quran, one shall note down all the details of the loan in a written form and should definitely have witnesses over it so that they can give the witness in future if needed.
Firm intention of returning the loan
One should have the firm intention of returning the loan instead of running away with it. The intention is hidden from the person but Allah Almighty is well aware of the states of the hearts. The Holy Rasool صَلَّی اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَلَیْہِ وَاٰلِہٖ وَسَلَّمَ said: One who took a loan with the intention of repaying it, Allah Almighty repays it on his behalf; and he who takes a loan with the intention of harming the other, then Allah Almighty destroys him. (Sahih Bukhari, vol. 2, pp. 105, Hadees 2387)
How would it get repaid?
It is essential to devise a strategy to repay the loan before taking up the loan. It shall not be the case that there are no sources of income and the lender is given false hopes. In such cases, it can result in the relations of both being disrupted.
Return date should be fixed
While taking a loan, it is beneficial to fix a return date. Such a date should be selected which does not require to be extended any further. Extending dates further can create unpleasant environment among people and doing so is also far away from the ideal situation of payment. The best way is to pay the loan on time yourself. The Holy Rasool صَلَّی اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَلَیْہِ وَاٰلِہٖ وَسَلَّمَ has stated: The best among you is the one who pays back the loan nicely. (Sahih Bukhari, vol. 2, pp. 107, Hadees 2393)
Paying in the best of the manners
When one takes a loan, it shall be repaid in the best of the manners. It shall not be the case of returning the loan after bothering the lender immensely. What is the point of returning the loan after delaying it for no reason, defaming yourself and presenting yourself to be a victim of criticism among your friends and acquaintances! The Holy Rasool صَلَّی اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَلَیْہِ وَاٰلِہٖ وَسَلَّمَ has stated: Excuses from a wealthy (borrower) is oppression. (Sahih Bukhari, vol. 2, pp. 109, Hadees 2400)
May Allah Almighty protect us from the burden of debt and for those who are indebted, may Allah Almighty enable them to repay their debts quickly.
اٰمِيۡن بِجَاهِ النَّبِيِّ الۡاَمِيۡن صَلَّى اللّٰهُ تَعَالٰى عَلَيۡهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم