bad credit loans

BadCreditLoans.com Review

Having poor credit means you can’t get a loan anywhere except perhaps from payday lenders, right?

Well, considering that interest rates on payday loans can exceed 300%, I say that’s not an option either.

With online lending platforms like BadCreditLoans.com available, you should never resort to a predatory loan that skips the credit check and doesn’t report to the credit bureaus.

Let’s take a closer look at BadCreditLoans.com to see whether you should accept one of its loan offers.

TABLE OF CONTENTS:

  • About BadCreditLoans.com
  • Personal Loan Options
  • Interest Rates & Fees
  • Getting Quotes
  • Customer Support
  • Pros and Cons
  • Alternatives

About BadCreditLoans.com

bad credit loans

BadCreditLoans.com is an online personal loan marketplace designed specifically for people who have poor credit. This platform gives borrowers with a shaky credit history a chance to get small, short-term, unsecured loans.

These loans could help with debt consolidation, medical expenses, paying taxes, covering car repairs, or even an emergency expense.

And, by making regular, on-time monthly payments on your bad credit loan, you can start the process of rebuilding your payment history which is a big part of a credit score.

Compare Rates

BadCreditLoans.com: Not a Direct Lender

BadCreditLoans.com is a free online marketplace for bad credit loans. It is not a direct lender; instead, it provides a service: connecting you with loans from participating lenders and connecting these lenders with you.

By completing a single online application, you can get loan quotes from several lenders who participate in this network. You can choose the lender that offers the most generous terms at the most favorable pricing.

Let’s be clear: Your loan choices will have higher interest rates, higher fees, and lower loan amounts when compared to the best personal loans you can find online. But they do provide an option for borrowers with bad credit scores who need a legitimate loan.

Company and Site Details

BadCreditLoans.com is based in Tacoma, Washington, but the website is operated by Chief LLC, which is based in Nevada. The company has been in business since 1998.

The lender network includes state and tribal lenders. The company does not disclose how many lenders its network includes.

BadCreditLoans.com has a Better Business Bureau rating of “F”, the lowest rating. The chief complaint is unwanted emails and phone calls from partner lenders.

Since the site isn’t a direct lender, these reviews don’t pertain to the actual loan you’d get — just this site’s role as a go-between.

Educational Resources

Along with access to personal loans, this website also provides extensive credit-related resources. This includes explanations of the various types of loans, including personal loans, business loans, credit cards, mortgages and home loans, student loans, and auto loans.

The site also has lots of articles about loan scams. This is important information because scammers tend to target borrowers who have poor credit.

BadCreditLoans.com offers personal loans, but the site can also connect borrowers with small business loans through some of the lenders in this network.

Personal Loan Options

Personal loans are the primary financial product you’ll find at BadCreditLoans.com.

Personal loans are unsecured which has pluses and minuses. On the plus side, they won’t require collateral the way an auto loan or mortgage would. On the con side, their interest rates and fees will be higher because there’s no collateral.

Personal loans can be used for any purpose, including:

  • debt consolidation
  • auto buying
  • auto repairs
  • moving expenses
  • medical expenses
  • business expenses
  • vacations
  • paying taxes
  • paying for a large upcoming expense
  • covering emergencies

Personal loans on this site are available in amounts ranging from $500 to $10,000, but your maximum loan amount can vary between different partner lenders — especially if you have a low credit score.

Based on our analysis, an applicant with poor credit will not get a loan amount higher than $1,000 from any participating lender on this site. This site defines poor credit as a FICO score below 500.

Loan terms range from as little as three months to as many as 36 months (three years). You could get your loan funds the next business day which is super convenient.

Interest Rates & Fees

Interest rates and fees for these loans are set by the individual participating lenders in the BadCreditLoans.com lender network and not by the site itself.

But our test applications, as of 1/5/21, showed that interest rates range from 5.99% to 35.99% APR. As you can expect, applying with poor credit puts you on the highest end of this APR scale.

For context, credit card lenders could charge up to 35.99% APR, though most cards come with interest rates between 15% and 27%. But since credit card balances don’t have fixed payments, you could end up paying more interest charges over time.

Lenders in this network also charge higher origination fees. They can reach 8% of the loan amount. On a $1,000 loan with an 8% origination fee, you’d pay $80. This $80 would come out of your loan amount, meaning your loan proceeds would be $920.

The BadCreditLoans.com website is completely free to use, and there is no indication that any of the participating lenders charge an application fee.

Lenders pay the site for your business but we can find no evidence that these commissions cost customers in any way — at least not directly.

Getting Loan Quotes

Eligibility for a BadCreditLoans.com personal loan requires you to:

  • Be at least 18 years old.
  • Have proof of citizenship, such as a Social Security number, or legal residency.
  • Have a regular income, either from full-time employment, self-employment, or Social Security or disability benefits.
  • Have a checking account in your name.
  • Provide work and home telephone numbers.
  • Provide a valid email address.

To begin the application process and make loan requests, you’ll have to complete a three-page questionnaire online.

Compare Rates

Step 1

On the first page, you’ll enter the loan amount you need, your estimated level of credit, and the reason you want the loan.

You’ll also enter your first and last name, your birth date, and check whether you are active duty military.

Step 2

On page 2, you’ll enter your contact information, including your email address, phone number, address, and how long you’ve lived there.

This is also where you’ll provide employment information, including the frequency of pay, your employer name and phone number, how long you’ve been employed, and what your gross monthly income is.

The screen will also ask for your driver’s license number, the issuing state, your Social Security number, and your bank account type (checking or savings).

Step 3

Page 3 is where you’ll be asked to provide your bank information, including your bank routing number and personal account number.

You’ll also be asked to indicate how long you have had a relationship with your bank, as well as your job title, your next payday, if you’re paid by direct deposit and if you own your own car.

You’ll then enter your mobile phone and complete the process.

Seeing Loan Products

At this point, the site should show loan products you qualify for. Look for a loan with the best rates and repayment terms you can afford.

Shoppers with better credit scores will likely see more loan products. A borrower with poor credit may see only a couple choices.

By clicking on a loan offer, you’ll be directed to the financial institution that offers the loan where you’ll finalize your application.

Customer Support

Customer contact with BadCreditLoans.com is available by both phone and email (through the website).

But once you make an application for a personal loan, you’ll need to be in contact with the lender you’ve chosen.

BadCreditLoans.com provides only an online personal loan marketplace; it cannot answer your direct lender-related questions.

Customer contact options will vary with the lender you’ll be working with, as each has its own options available.

BadCreditLoans.com Pros and Cons

Pros:

  • BadCreditLoans.com is an online personal loan marketplace, giving you access to a large network of lenders. This will not only improve the chance of loan approval but also of getting the best rates and terms.
  • The web platform is completely free to use.
  • com provides its address and contact information on the website, which is not always the case with bad credit lenders.
  • Loan terms range from three months to 36 months, offering flexibility as to repayment.
  • The lender network offers higher loan amounts and lower rates for those with better credit.
  • If you have poor credit, a loan through a BadCreditLoans.com lender will give you the ability to improve your credit score, as long as you make all your payments on time. Making late payments will hurt your credit score even more.

Cons:

  • BadCreditLoans.com is not a direct lender, so you’ll be working with the lender you choose from this site’s loan offers.
  • Loan amounts are relatively small, with a $10,000 maximum. With other lenders you can find personal loans online for $100,000. But for poor credit (a credit score of less than 500), the maximum loan amount may be no more than $1,000.
  • The maximum interest rate is high at 35.99% APR, but this is typical of rates charged for bad credit personal loans.
  • com has the lowest rating possible with the Better Business Bureau, but keep in mind this BBB rating doesn’t reflect the quality of loans. (Since this site doesn’t lend money.)
  • You’ll be disclosing significant personal information, including your Social Security number, driver’s license number, and bank account information, to an unknown number of lenders.
  • Submitting a loan request form could open you up to unwanted phone calls from lenders.

Alternatives to BadCreditLoans.com

BadCreditLoans.com isn’t the only lending source in the personal loan for bad credit space. You can check out my post, Personal Loans for Bad Credit, for more options.

For example, a competing online marketplace, PersonalLoans.com also makes personal loans available to consumers with bad credit. But for those with credit scores of at least 580, they do offer more generous terms. The pricing is similar, but you can borrow as much as $35,000, with repayment terms up to 72 months.

But one advantage both BadCreditLoans.com and PersonalLoans.com offer is that both are online personal loan marketplaces, specializing in providing financing to those with poor credit.

As online marketplaces, each gives you access to multiple lenders in their networks. This is a big advantage over making applications with direct lenders.

After all, a direct lender provides you with a single opportunity for financing. If they decline your loan application, you’ll need to move on to another lender where you’ll start the process all over.

In contrast, online personal loan marketplaces for consumers with poor credit provide you with multiple lenders, increasing the likelihood of approval on the first try.

Is BadCreditLoans.com For You?

Personal loans are available for borrowers with bad credit, but the loan amounts are relatively small, and the cost is high. But if you’re facing an emergency and need money fast, BadCreditLoans.com could help.

It’s not the perfect solution, but it will be much better than taking a payday loan. Those lock you into a vicious cycle with no easy exit.

Bad credit personal loans not only offer more generous terms than payday loans, but they also give you an opportunity to improve your credit. By making all your payments on time, you’ll be adding a good credit rating to your credit report, which will boost your credit score.

If you still don’t like these sorts of loans, consider asking a co-signer to help you get a personal loan with better interest rates and lower fees. Your co-signer would be responsible if you didn’t repay the loan.

For borrowers who aren’t facing an emergency, check out my credit building tips throughout this site. By improving your credit and meeting the minimum credit score mainstream lenders require you can borrow at the best rates and lowest fees.

If you’d like to get more information, or you’d like to apply for a loan, check out the BadCreditLoans.com website.

personalloans.com

PersonalLoans.com Review

Personal loans have become popular in recent years, and it’s not hard to see why.

They’re basically signature loans, in which you can get a large loan amount – certainly more than you can get with credit cards – without putting up any collateral.

Loans can be used for any purpose, and carry fixed interest rates, monthly payments, and terms.

That means by the time you complete the term, the loan will be completely repaid. They’re the perfect way to get off the credit card merry-go-round.

One of the best sources for personal loans is an online personal loan marketplace known as PersonalLoans.com.

With a single online application, you can get loan quotes from several lenders. That will give you a choice of loan terms and rate – as well as the best chance of approval.

Best of all, there’s no cost to you to use the website. And you can shop for a loan program using a “soft pull” on your credit, which will not hurt your credit score.

TABLE OF CONTENTS:

  • About
  • Personal Loan Options
  • Interest Rates and Fees
  • Getting Quotes
  • Customer Support
  • Pros and Cons
  • Alternatives to PersonalLoans.com

About PersonalLoans.com

personalloans.com

Launched in 2017 and based in Roosevelt, Utah, PersonalLoans.com is not a direct lender, but an online loan marketplace. That’s a major advantage since it will give you the ability to get loan quotes from several financial institutions with a single application.

Participating lending partners will pull your credit report and based on your credit type, lenders can accommodate loans for credit profiles ranging between fair to excellent. But it does appear that they don’t make loans to consumers who have a poor credit history.

For example, according to their website, eligibility for personal loans requires that you don’t have accounts more than 60 days late, recent or active bankruptcies, or demonstrate a pattern of late payments.

One of the advantages of PersonalLoan.com is the variety of personal loan lenders they work with. Some participating lenders are banks or credit unions, some are peer-to-peer lenders, and others are finance companies. This will give you the greatest availability of lenders, rather than limiting your choice to a single lender type.

Though the website does have detailed descriptions of different loan types, including fast cash, tax loans, bank loans, and payday loans, they don’t actually offer these loan types. Rather, they’re describing how those alternative financing arrangements work, and what the risks are.

PersonalLoans.com uses an algorithm to determine which lenders and loan programs will work best for you. That will narrow down the number of lenders to only those offering programs that will fit your loan request.

PersonalLoans.com has a Better Business Bureau rating of “F,” the lowest rating on a scale of A+ to F. However, that rating is based on only two complaints filed against the company in 2018.

Compare Rates

Personal Loan Options

Once again, PersonalLoan.com is not a direct lender, but an online loan marketplace. The loans you apply for will be provided by lenders participating on the web platform.

Personal loans are unsecured installment loans that can be used for any purpose. And while you’ll usually need to list a purpose – which typically will be debt consolidation, home improvement, business expenses, purchasing or repairing an automobile, paying for a vacation or wedding, or covering emergency medical expenses – exactly how you use the funds is entirely up to you. That’s one of the major advantages offered by personal loans.

Personal loans offered through PersonalLoans.com range in loan amounts from $1,000 to a maximum of $35,000. Loan terms vary and will be set by the individual lender. You should expect terms of anywhere from a few months to a few years.

Personal Loan Requirements:

  • You should have a minimum credit score of 580 and be a permanent resident of the United States.
  • You should be either employed, self-employed, or receiving a pension, Social Security, or other government benefits.
  • Your income should be a minimum of $2,000 per month, though it may be higher based on the loan amount you’re requesting, other debts you owe, and your monthly house payment.

The interest rate to pay on your loan will depend on a combination of factors. Those will include your credit score, your monthly income, your total monthly debt obligations, including the new loan, as well as the amount of the loan requested.

Because of the network of lenders participating on PersonalLoans.com, three types of personal loans are offered: personal installment loans, bank personal loans, and peer loans (P2P).

Interest Rates & Fees

Like other online lending marketplaces, PersonalLoans.com doesn’t set interest rates and fees. Those are determined by the individual participating lenders, based on your credit profile, income, and the loan you want.

PersonalLoans.com isn’t responsible for the actual loan agreement but rather the lender you chose. Be sure to read the fine print, looking over the repayment terms making sure you clearly understand the repayment time frame.

You’re not obligated to take any of the offers, however, if you find an appealing option, oftentimes you can receive the funds within a business day.

Interest Rates

Most personal loans will have an interest rate ranging between 5.99% for those with the strongest credit and income profiles, to a high of 35.99% for those with lower credit scores. Loan terms can be as short as three months to as long as six years.

Fees

Be aware that many personal loan lenders also charge an origination fee. This is a fee-based on a percentage of your loan amount. It normally ranges between 1% – 8% of your loan amount, and will reduce the loan proceeds you’ll receive.

For example, on a $20,000 loan with a 5% origination fee, the fee will be $1,000 ($20,000 X 5%). Since the fee will be deducted from your loan amount, the net proceeds will be just $19,000.

If the loan you’re applying for does include an origination fee, you’ll need to consider this in deciding your loan amount. It will be particularly important if you’re looking to use the personal loan as a debt consolidation loan. You may need to increase the amount you borrow to cover the origination fee.

Getting Loan Quotes

To qualify for a loan through PersonalLoan.com you’ll need to meet the following eligibility requirements:

  • You must be at least 18 years old.
  • Have proof of citizenship, such as a Social Security number or legal residency.
  • You must have a regular income, either from full-time employment, self-employment, or Social Security or disability benefits.
  • Have a checking account in your name.

The application process takes place entirely online. But by completing the application, you’ll only be soliciting loan quotes from participating lenders. Once you decide on which lender you want to work with, you can make a formal application with that lender. That will vary from one lender to another, in both the amount of information requested and supporting documentation that needs to be supplied.

The PersonalLoans.com online application can be completed in two steps.

Step 1

Step 1 requests basic information, including the loan amount requested, your credit level (excellent, good, fair, or, or not sure), the purpose of the loan, your full name, your birth date, and whether or not you are active-duty military.

Step 2

Step 2 requests more detailed information. This includes your email address, phone number, physical address, homeownership status, income source (employment, self-employment, benefits, or unemployed), the amount of time you’ve been receiving that income, and the frequency of pay. If you’re employed, you’ll also be asked to provide your employer’s name and phone number. And whatever the source of your income, you’ll need to provide your gross monthly income.

On the same page, it will also request your driver’s license number, the state of issuance, your Social Security number, and the type of bank account you have (checking or savings).

Once all that information has been inputted, you can click “Submit Your Request.” Your loan quotes should arrive within minutes. Funding can take place in as little as one day after approval.

Compare Rates

Customer Support

You can reach PersonalLoans.com either through email on the website, or by phone. Phone support is available Monday through Friday, from 6:00 am to 7:00 pm, Pacific time.

They’ll be able to help you if you have any questions or concerns about the service itself, but they won’t be able to provide assistance in dealing with individual lenders. Once you select a letter to work with, you’ll need to direct your questions to that lender.

Exactly how that communication will take place will depend on the customer support options offered by the lender of your choice.

PersonalLoans.com Pros and Cons

Pros:

  • PersonalLoans.com is an online personal loan marketplace, giving you access to a large network of lenders. This will not only improve the chance of loan approval but also of getting the best pricing and terms.
  • The PersonalLoans website is free to use.
  • You can apply using a “soft credit pull” that doesn’t hurt your credit score.
  • Loan terms range from three months to 72 months allowing you to set the most affordable monthly payment possible.
  • Participating lenders provide generous loan amounts, going as high as $35,000.
  • The PersonalLoans.com lending network includes banks and credit unions, which may provide an opportunity to get better pricing than you may get from other lender types.
  • The lender network offers higher loan amounts and lower rates for those with better credit.

Cons:

  • PersonalLoans.com is not a direct lender, so you’ll be working with any lender you choose to obtain your loan from.
  • Loan applications can only be completed online, as there is no capability to apply by phone.
  • While loans are available for those with fair credit or better, PersonalLoans.com may not be the right choice if you have poor credit, including a recent bankruptcy or a pattern of late payments.
  • You’ll be disclosing significant personal information, including your Social Security number, driver’s license number, and bank account information, to an unknown number of lenders.
  • PersonalLoans.com has a Better Business Bureau rating of “F”, though that is based on very limited information.

Alternatives to PersonalLoans.com

The personal loan space has gotten crowded in recent years. There is an increasing number of direct lenders and online lending marketplaces. PersonalLoans.com is an online lending marketplace specializing in personal loans for those with fair credit or better.

If you have poor credit – including a recent bankruptcy or a pattern of late payments – a better choice might be BadCreditLoans.com. That platform can accommodate a wider range of credit profiles, with credit scores as low as 500.

For other alternatives, check out my post, Personal Loans for Bad Credit.

Is PersonalLoans.com For You?

PersonalLoans.com is an excellent platform to shop for personal loans if you have fair credit or better. The site offers participation by different lender types, including peer-to-peer platforms and banks and credit unions. That will give you the best opportunity to get very competitive loan rates and terms.

Meanwhile, the whole online lending marketplace concept is a big advantage for consumers. It provides an opportunity to get loan offers from multiple lenders by completing a single online application. That will avoid the need to shop among various lenders, completing a separate application for each, saving you many hours in time as well as effort.

Just be careful to read the fine print with any loan offer you receive. Unlike mortgages, personal loans are not standardized. Each lender can have different rules from others, and you’ll need to know what each is for any loan you select.

If you’d like to get more information, or you’d like to apply for a loan, check out the PersonalLoans.com website.

Monevo personal loans logo

Monevo Review

Everyone knows that you need to shop around before you settle on a personal loan offer or loan provider.

But there is nothing more frustrating than starting the intensive loan application process and finding out that the actual rate you qualify for is different than what was advertised.

Out-of-date loan options are a common problem when shopping around for a loan. It can leave borrowers feeling misled and confused.

Loan applications can also result in a hard credit check that impacts your credit score. Luckily, there is a company out there that wants to help you avoid this.

Monevo is an online loan marketplace or loan aggregator that uses award-winning technology to not only match you with great direct lenders, but also give you real-time offers that reflect what you’ll actually get.

Table of Contents:

  • What is Monevo?
  • How Monevo Works
  • Loan Details
  • Getting Started
  • Customer Support
  • Security
  • Pros and Cons

What is Monevo?

Monevo personal loans logo

Founded in 2009 in the UK established by the international finch company Quint Group, Monevo Inc is a lender aggregator that allows you to fill out one application and browse loan offers.

In 2017, they moved to the United States market and set up headquarters in San Diego, CA.

Monevo operates in four countries: the UK, the United States, Australia, and Poland.

Monevo’s goal is to help simplify the personal loan shopping process. They are partnered with over 30 lenders, including:

  • SoFi
  • One Main
  • Earnest
  • Prosper
  • Avant
  • Marcus by Goldman Sachs

…and more

You only need to fill your personal details in one application, which prevents you from applying individually for loans and taking multiple hard credit hits.

The best part is that it only takes about 60 seconds to complete their application. This saves you countless hours of individual applications and rate comparison.

The main differentiator for Monevo is that they are able to give you the most accurate rates because of their constant communication with the personal loan lenders underwriters

Their award-winning technology allows them to communicate with each lender to get you the most exact rates possible.

This means that you are receiving rates in real-time, so you don’t have to worry about being blindsided by drastically different rates when you formally apply.

Compare Rates with Monevo

How Monevo Works

It’s important to understand that Monevo is not a lender. They are a loan marketplace, and their job is to act as a matchmaker between borrowers and lenders.

Therefore, any loan that you find through Monevo like student loan refinancing or debt consolidation of high-interest credit cards will require an additional formal application outside of Monevo.

Monevo’s lending network consists of companies that agree to share some of the profit they make through the marketplace with Monevo.

Through affiliate marketing, lenders are given access to Monevo’s user information, which allows them to compete with other lenders. This is similar to other loan marketplaces, such as LendingTree.

Borrowers are asked to submit basic contact information like your date of birth, education level, and phone number through a lending request so that Monevo can compare loan offers and present them with the best options.

The results are automatically sorted by the lowest APR, but borrowers can filter the results based on the loan amount, loan term, individual lenders, and more.

These basic loan offers are based on a soft pull that Monevo does to verify your identity and confirm your credit score. It will not negatively affect your credit score.

If you choose to move forward with any of the loan offers, this will require a hard inquiry by the lender, which will impact your score.

Monevo Personal Loan Details

FEES

Because Monevo is paid by their lending partners, it is completely free for borrowers to use.

In other words, Monevo doesn’t set origination fees and no late monthly payment schedules.

This is a great sign, and it means that there is virtually no reason not to give them a shot.

LOAN AMOUNTS

As far as loans go, Monevo allows borrowers to search for offers ranging from $1,000 to high loan amounts of $100,000.

APR

As of 1/13/21, APRs generally range from 1.99% to 35.99% and repayment terms can be anywhere from three months to 12 years. This is a wider range than most marketplaces offer.

Again, it’s important to understand that Monevo is the marketplace, and all loan details are ultimately determined by the individual lender.

Signing Up

Signing up with Monevo is as basic as it gets, but you need to initially qualify for a personal loan before you get started.

Monevo personal loans are open to anyone who is at least 18 years of age, an American citizen, and has a bank account.

UK, Australian, and Polish citizens have a separate site that they can go through.

Once you make sure that you meet all the requirements, you can head to the homepage to fill out the lending request.

First, they will ask you to state your desired loan amount, loan purpose, and estimated credit score. The purpose of your loan may affect your APR slightly. This is because personal loans are unsecured loans, which means you don’t have to put anything up for collateral to close on a loan, resulting in a higher interest rate.

Next, they will ask you to provide a series of personal information questions to match you with a lender. This includes information such as:

  • Name
  • Address
  • Monthly housing payment (rent or mortgage)
  • Date of birth
  • Email
  • Social Security number
  • Vehicle ownership status
  • Level of education
  • Employment status
  • Household income before taxes

Once you provide this information, Monevo will check with their lending partners behind the scenes to see what loan offers they can get you. This will include running a soft check on your credit and checking your debt-to-income ratio as well.

Ideally, your DTI should be below 45% for your household.

Monevo will return with all of your loan offers sorted by APR. You also have the option to sort and filter the loan offers based on a variety of criteria listed on the dashboard. At this point, you are able to review and compare loan offers at your discretion.

Once you decide on a specific loan, you will be redirected to complete a formal application through the lender’s site. Depending on the lender, you may need to provide additional documentation such as a government-issued ID, bank statements, or pay stubs.

The lender will perform a hard credit inquiry and finalize your loan after you submit your formal application, making sure you meet the minimum credit score requirements. From there, the lender will transfer the funds into your bank account, which can take as little as next business day.

After the loan has closed, Monevo’s role in the personal loan process is complete. All future correspondence regarding your loan will go through the lender directly.

Compare Rates with Monevo

Customer Support

Even though you are ultimately going to be dealing with the lender, Monevo’s team can still help you out.

You can access Monevo’s customer support team through email (support@monevo.com) or phone (numbers available by country on their website.)

Unfortunately, Monevo does not have an FAQ page to assist with common inquiries. In all, their customer service offerings are pretty bare bones.

As a reminder, Monevo simply connects you with potential lenders. If you would like to learn more about APRs, terms, or loan amounts, you should contact the lender directly.

Security

Sharing sensitive info online needs to be done carefully. You never know who might have access to your personal data. Fortunately, Monevo takes your privacy very seriously.

All information is stored on secure servers, and all transmissions are protected with 256-bit SSL encryptions. They even have an SSL-encryption certificate from GeoTrust, a reputable data security company.

Any information you provide is shared only with potential lenders. This helps them provide you with the most accurate loan estimates out there. Unfortunately, it also means they can use it to add you to any and all sales efforts.

Beyond data security, Monevo actively tries to protect its users from being scammed. They have a built-in “scam alert” to let users know when they think a potential lender is being shady. This can help you choose a lender that will treat you fairly even if you are a first-time borrower.

Pros and Cons

Because Monevo is a loan marketplace and not an actual lender, it can seem like a no-brainer to use their services. They are a BBB accredited organization earning an A and generally receive positive customer reviews. But are there any reasons why using Monevo might not be a good idea? Let’s weigh the pros and cons to find out.

Pros

  • Quick application: Clocking in at 60 seconds, Monevo’s application completion time is among the fastest out there. That time is used to check rates with lending partners so that you are spared from having to fill out individual applications. Overall, that is an enormous plus in the loan shopping process.
  • Accurate rates: Moveno’s biggest strength is that they are one of the only loan marketplaces able to provide real-time loan offers to their users. Because of the technology they use to communicate with underwriters, Monevo is able to give you the most accurate pre-qualifying loan rate out there.
  • Wide loan amount range: Monevo allows you to search for loans that range from $1,000 to $100,000. You can also set loan terms from three months to 12 years. This gives you an incredible amount of options when it comes to how much you would like and how long you would like to pay it back.

Cons

  • Does not represent every lender: Even though Monevo has an impressive lender network, it does not represent every loan offer out there. You will still want to shop around and check with local credit unions to ensure you have checked all your options.
  • Lender solicitation: When you submit a lending request through Monevo, your information is shared with all of their lending partners. While this is necessary for getting pre-qualified loan offers, it also means that lenders now have your personal information and can harass you for business. This is unfortunately true with most loan marketplaces, so keep this in mind as you go into the loan process.
  • Best for personal loans: Monevo is best used to search for personal loan offers. Because Monevo assumes that you are looking for a personal loan, the APRs are set at a much higher rate than for other types of loans. If you’re looking to consolidate student loans, buy a house, or take out any other specific loan, you’re better off looking for loans through another platform.

Is a Monevo Personal Loan For You?

As a personal loan marketplace, Monevo is best used for those seeking – you guessed it – a personal loan. It is not ideal for those seeking a loan for higher education, a home, or anything that would fall outside of the personal loan spectrum.

In case you aren’t familiar, a personal loan can be used for things like home improvement, debt consolidation, vacation funding, and a variety of other things.

If you are looking for a personal loan offer that is quick and accurate, Monevo is a great tool. There is no harm in using Monevo to help you shop for a personal loan, so it’s worth a shot to check all of your options.

Fiona Personal Loan Review

Whether you’re making a big purchase or just refinancing some existing debt, a personal loan could help.

But comparing loan options could take days — unless you use an online marketplace like Fiona which lets you compare personal loan offers side by side within minutes.

Like all lending marketplaces, Fiona has advantages and disadvantages. Let’s take a close look to see whether Fiona should help with your personal loan shopping.

Table of Contents:

  • What is Fiona?
  • How Fiona Loans Work
  • Other Financial Products from Fiona
  • Fiona Loan Fees
  • Getting Started
  • Is Fiona Safe?
  • Customer Support
  • Pros & Cons

What is Fiona?

Based in New York City, Fiona is an online lending marketplace and loan comparison tool. In 2019 alone, Fiona originated more than $600 million in personal loans.

The site uses built-in algorithms to offer you real-time, pre-qualified personal loan rates from about a dozen different lenders. Since it connects you with multiple loan offers simultaneously, Fiona could save you time and money.

Even Financial, a leading search and comparison engine for financial companies, launched Fiona back in 2015 to help consumers find the right financial products.

Because of its relationship to Even Financial, Fiona has several major lending partners, including Marcus by Goldman Sachs, Prosper, SoFi, LendingClub, Rise, Avant, LightStream, and Vouch.

Overall, Fiona has received praise from the likes of The Wall Street Journal, Dow Jones, and Crowdfund Insider.

Compare Rates with Fiona Loans

Fiona at a Glance

Founded 2015
Owned By Even Financial
Purpose Connecting Borrowers with Personal Loans
Maximum Loan Amount $100,000
APRs 6.79% – 149% depending on your credit and the lender you choose
Loan Terms 24 – 84 months
Minimum Credit Score 620 for best results
Cost to Use None
Other Products Life Insurance, Student Loan Refi, Credit Card Comparisons

(Rates updated as of 1/12/21)

How Does A Fiona Loan Work?

Fiona works as an aggregator for personal loan lenders; it does not actually fund any personal loans itself. Instead, it connects people looking for personal loans with lenders that can offer the best deals.

To review your personal loan options, you’ll need to submit only one online form. From there, Fiona will use its matching technology to compare loan offers, behind the scenes, and pair you with excellent options.

After you receive your loan offers, you can compare them and decide which is best for you. Once you choose an offer, you’ll follow up with the actual lender to close on the loan. At any point you can back out if you decide you’d rather not borrow after all.

Formally applying and closing on your loan happens with the actual lender, not with Fiona. Your monthly payments will also go to your lender and not Fiona. Fiona only connects you with lenders and then backs out of the process.

Other Financial Products From Fiona

Along with its personal loan program, Fiona can help you find a variety of other financial products.

Here are some of the other types of borrowing you can search and compare through Fiona.

Credit Cards

If you’re looking for a new credit card, Fiona can help you find the right one.

Using the same technology it uses for personal loan shopping, Fiona can show you credit cards you’d pre-qualify for and then help you compare interest rates.

You can also search by annual fees or by rewards programs such as cash back or airline miles. There are even secured cards available for people with poor credit.

Student Loan Refinancing

Fiona can also help users find better rates for their student loans.

To begin, enter the amount you still owe on your student loans. Fiona will give you an estimated monthly payment and provide loan refinancing offers.

You can compare terms and interest rates to find the best refinancing loans to help manage your student loan debt.

Side Note: If you have public student loans right now, refinancing with one of Fiona’s lending partners would turn your debt into private student loan debt.

This means you could lose government-sponsored features like income-driven repayment plans and forbearance options.

High-Yield Savings Accounts

Everyone needs to learn how to save money, and Fiona wants to help you find the best savings accounts.

The name of the game with savings accounts is an annual percent yield or APY. The higher the APY, the more you will earn in interest on your savings.

Fiona can help you find the savings accounts with the highest APYs so that you can earn the most from your savings.

It will also show you things like fees so you can weigh the pros and cons of these accounts. Overall, this feature helps you find the best savings account for your circumstances.

Life Insurance Policies

Now, Fiona can even help you compare life insurance policies from leading insurers like Lincoln Financial, Prudential, Protective, Pacific Life, and Banner Life.

The insurance quotes come from Leaplife, another Even Financial partner.

You’ll just answer a dozen or so questions about your age, health, and financial life in order to see a variety of life insurance quotes.

Fiona Loan Fees

With a service as convenient as Fiona’s, you may be wondering how much it will cost you. Believe it or not, Fiona won’t cost you a penny.

Fiona earns money from its lending partners, who pay Fiona for access to customers like you and me. This means Fiona’s services are entirely free for you to use.

You might argue that Fiona’s lending partners would just pass the fee along to borrowers in the form of a higher interest rate. But in a marketplace as competitive as personal loans, lenders can’t afford to offer inflated rates.

In fact, the rates and terms you’ll get through Fiona will most likely match the rates and terms you’d get if you worked with a direct lender.

So you really can use Fiona — and most other lending platforms — free of charge.

Rates and Fees from Lending Partners

The fees and interest you pay on your loan will go to the actual lender and not to Fiona. Partner lenders offer loan amounts ranging from $1,000 to $100,000.

All these personal loans are unsecured which means you don’t have to put up collateral. Because they aren’t secured by property that can be seized and sold, unsecured loans tend to have higher interest rates compared with auto loans or mortgages.

APRs for loans available on Fiona can range anywhere from 6.79% to 149%, and repayment terms range from two to seven years. Your rate and terms will depend on which lender you choose. Your credit score will also have a huge impact on your ability to borrow with competitive rates and terms.

Depending on your lender, you may have to pay an origination fee, late fees, or ACH/check refund fees. Origination fees can be anywhere between 1% to 6% of the overall loan amount.

On a $10,000 loan, a 6% origination fee would cost you $600.

Fiona’s Application Process

Fiona’s personal loan process is straightforward and takes only a few minutes.

To get started, you’ll need to be at least 21 years old, a US citizen or permanent resident, and have good to excellent credit. If you meet all these requirements, you can proceed with a lending request.

The application process begins on Fiona’s homepage. You will need to complete a form with personal information so the platform can check with its lending partners for pre-qualified rates.

In the application form, you will need to provide the following data:

  • Name
  • Email
  • Date of birth
  • Your estimated credit score
  • Address
  • Phone number
  • Employment status
  • Whether you rent or own
  • Annual income before taxes
  • Loan purpose (debt consolidation, home improvement, large purchase, or credit card refinance)
  • Desired loan amount

Customer reviews report Fiona’s form feels cluttered compared to other loan marketplaces. Other loan marketplaces use an interview-style questionnaire rather than a single-page format. But some users may prefer Fiona’s more direct approach.

At this point, Fiona will conduct a soft credit pull to confirm your identity and your credit score. This credit pull will not lower your score, but it will still allow the platform to show you accurate rates on loan offers.

Fiona will then show your qualifying offers, sorted by APR. You can filter and sort the offers by a number of factors such as additional fees or loan terms.

If Fiona does not return with any loan offers, check with the platform’s customer service representatives about a possible system error. It’s also possible your credit profile did not qualify you for a loan with any of Fiona’s loan providers. If you don’t have a minimum credit score of 580 this is likely the problem.

When you choose a loan offer, just click “continue” to move forward with the borrowing process. You will be directed to the actual lender’s website to continue the application and close on the loan.

Expect to submit your Social Security number and consent to a hard credit pull before closing.

Compare Rates with Fiona Loans

Is Fiona Safe?

Fiona recognizes the importance of data security. The platform has measures in place to protect your privacy from hackers and other cyber criminals.

Financial Security Measures

The service uses a 256-bit encryption to protect your data.

Fiona takes security a step farther with its Programmatic Compliance tool, which is a unique feature. This tool scans partner sites’ web pages to find security problems that may raise red flags.

For example, this tool may detect information that conflicts with state and federal regulations, which would put your data at risk. It will flag the issue and trigger a Fiona staff member to make a judgment call on what it means in the big picture. This could help you avoid closing a loan with an untrustworthy lender.

Fiona’s lending partners are top-notch loan companies providing the best personal loans in the industry. They’ll also protect your financial data.

Sharing Application Data

You should know that lending marketplaces, by their nature, share your data with a number of different lenders. That’s the whole point of the service: You fill out one application and the data goes to a variety of financial services companies.

Fiona says it will not share your data with third-party companies, and it lives up to this promise. But Fiona doesn’t consider its lending partners third party loan companies.

Bottom line: Your application on Fiona could lead to dozens of phone calls from a variety of financial institutions who know you’re in the market for a personal loan. These calls won’t go on forever. You can just say you’re not interested and move on with your life.

But this wouldn’t be a legitimate review if we didn’t point out this tendency. If you have an alternate phone number, like a landline you seldom answer, I’d list that number on the application instead of your primary cell number.

Customer Support

If you are having trouble finding the right loan with Fiona, you’ll find a customer support team in place to help you get answers.

You can reach the team through email (help@hifiona.com) or phone (800-614-7505.) Fiona’s team can help you with any issues with the site, trouble filling out information, or any questions you have about finding a personal loan.

Once your loan is closed, Fiona does not provide any further support. You will be required to go through your lender for any assistance with your loan.

There is also an FAQ section and an educational blog on Fiona’s site. The blog is a unique feature that can explain personal loan details and inform you about the process behind the scenes.

Fiona’s customer support does more than guide you through the platform. The staff wants you to feel more informed as you go through the loan shopping process.

Fiona Personal Loans Pros and Cons

There are plenty of online loan marketplaces out there, so it’s important to know what each one has going for and against them.

Let’s review some of the pros and cons of using Fiona to shop for a personal loan.

Pros

  • Easy-to-navigate website: True to its slogan “Finance made friendly,” Fiona has created a user-friendly and intuitive site. You need to fill out only one form to get pre-qualified loan rates. You can also search by different factors such as loan purpose, loan amount, and credit score.
  • Doesn’t affect credit score: Fiona utilizes a soft credit pull to verify your information, which doesn’t affect your credit score. This is great for people who are shopping around and want to see what Fiona offers. If you’re flirting with the idea of taking out a personal loan and want to check interest rates, you won’t take a credit hit by using Fiona.
  • Other products available: Many online marketplaces are unilateral, but Fiona isn’t. You can search for more than just personal loan rates through this site. You can also browse credit cards, student loan refinancing products, and high-yield savings accounts.

Cons

  • Origination fees: You won’t pay Fiona any fees, but depending on the lender, you may have to pay additional fees to borrow. Some Fiona lenders may charge origination fees, late fees, or processing fees to cover a lower APR. Keep this in mind as you browse loan offers.
  • Need to be 21: Most loan marketplaces are open to shoppers 18 years old and older, but Fiona requires that you be at least 21. This can be limiting for some younger borrowers looking to take out a personal loan.
  • Telemarketing calls: Because information is shared with Fiona’s lender network, you may have to field spam calls and emails for a while. Lenders seeking your business may even keep calling after you’ve closed a loan with a different lender.

Is Fiona For You?

Fiona is an excellent tool for people who want to compare multiple personal loan offers quickly.

It is available to people with any credit score, but it is best for people with credit scores above 620.

It is possible to borrow with a score as low as 580, but you may get only one offer.

If you’d like a loan for debt consolidation, home improvements, or to make a large purchase, Fiona can help you search for the best rates and terms.

Lending club personal loans logo

LendingClub Personal Loan Review

Personal loan shoppers now have more options than just banks and credit unions.

Peer-to-peer lending lets you ask ordinary people for a loan.

When you apply, online investors can decide whether to invest in your loan.

LendingClub helped pioneer peer-to-peer lending (P2P).

Since 2007, LendingClub has been matching borrowers with the funding they need.

In this review, I’ll focus specifically on LendingClub’s personal loans.

Table of Contents:

  • What is LendingClub?
  • How LendingClub Personal Loans Work
  • Interest Rates
  • Application Process
  • Customer Support
  • Pros & Cons

What is LendingClub?

Lending club personal loans logo

So, what, exactly, is LendingClub?

LendingClub is an online, peer-to-peer lending marketplace that can help borrowers whose loan may not be approved by a traditional financial institution.

When you apply for a personal loan on this platform, LendingClub’s members can join together to provide the funding you’re asking for.

When you repay your personal loan, with interest, the profits from your loan go back to these individual LendingClub members rather than to a bank.

LendingClub offers quick and flexible loans for borrowers and an investment opportunity for personal lenders.

Is LendingClub Legit?

Because it’s a peer-to-peer platform, LendingClub cannot guarantee every lender on its platform is legitimate.

But LendingClub has a page designed to fight scam artists who may try to reach you through the marketplace.

You can see safety guidelines that share red flags to look for if you’re suspicious of a new loan offer.

This can help you choose a reputable lender when you do eventually close on a personal loan.

How Do LendingClub Personal Loans Work?

You could use a personal loan for a variety of things. Some common uses are consolidating debt, credit card debt refinancing, funding a big purchase, or paying off medical bills.

Whether you get your personal loan from a bank or through a platform like LendingClub, your goal will be the same: to borrow a lump sum of money and then repay the loan gradually.

Your experience with LendingClub will resemble working with an online bank. You’ll still get a credit check, wait for approval, receive funds, and then pay off the loan according to its repayment terms.

What’s different from a peer-to-peer lender is what happens behind the scenes. When you apply for borrowing, you aren’t completely at the mercy of one or two staff members at a bank.

Instead, a variety of investors can decide whether to fund part of your loan application.

LendingClub encourages people of any credit background to check their prequalified rates. The platform recommends borrowers have a minimum credit score of 600, but you could still apply with any credit score.

As with any kind of borrowing, a shaky credit history will require loans with higher annual percentage rates and, as a result, higher monthly payments.

Compare Rates with Lending Club

LendingClub Personal Loans Interest Rates

With a personal loan through LendingClub, you can expect APR ranges from 10.68 to 35.89 percent and loan terms ranging from three to five years.

Borrowers can apply for fixed-rate loans as small as $1,000 and as large as $40,000.

LendingClub transfers your loan proceeds in as little as four days, but it could take a full week to receive your loan.

While LendingClub does not charge a prepayment penalty, it does add on a number of other fees.

  • LendingClub charges an origination fee ranging from 2 to 6 percent on all loans.
  • You’ll also see a $15 fee if you don’t have enough money in your bank account to cover your monthly payment when it gets automatically withdrawn.
  • LendingClub charges a late fee of 5 percent or $15, whichever is more. But you do have a 15-day grace period before getting hit with the late fee.

LendingClub ultimately charges more in fees than other personal loan lenders.

LendingClub Personal Loan Application Process

The peer-to-peer lending process is different than traditional lending, so it’s important to understand the application process before you begin.

To apply for any kind of borrowing on LendingClub you must:

  • be at least 18 years old
  • be a US citizen, permanent resident, or long-term visa holder
  • have a bank account
  • have at least 36 months of credit history.

LendingClub does not operate in Iowa, West Virginia, or any US territories.

Qualifying to Apply

If you meet the above criteria, you are ready to get started, but meeting the criteria doesn’t guarantee you’ll get a loan; it just means you’re qualified to apply.

On LendingClub’s personal loan home page, you will see a button that says, “Check my rate.” Clicking that will take you to the initial loan application.

For the first form, you will need to provide:

  • Name
  • Date of Birth
  • Address
  • Email
  • Total income before taxes
  • Loan amount
  • Loan purpose

Joint Applications

If you are worried about your credit report, you can apply with a co-borrower. Your co-borrower would have to provide the same personal information.

Your co-borrowers debt-to-income ratio must be less than 35 percent. (The primary borrower’s debt-to-income ratio can be as high as 40 percent.)

Assessing Loan Options

With this information, LendingClub will estimate loan rates for you. These estimates include fixed-rate APR ranges, monthly payments, and loan terms.

If you decide to move forward with a loan offer, you will need to provide additional information for the formal application.

Formal Application will include:

  • Social Security number
  • Phone number
  • Employment situation
  • Employer’s name and address
  • Whether you rent or own

Rating You as a Borrower

At this time, LendingClub will perform a soft credit check. Based on its results, you and your loan are assigned a rating between A (best) and G (worst.)

You won’t see your application’s rating but potential loan investors will.

The potential investors can also review your lending request as they decide whether or not to invest in your loan by providing part of the funding you need.

LendingClub members deciding whether to fund your loan can also see your credit score and credit history, your debt-to-income ratio, and the amount you owe in other debt such as student loans, business loans, or mortgages.

Fair Credit Borrowers May Get Approved

Riskier loans have high-interest rates which means an investor could make more money — assuming you repaid the loan as agreed.

So having fair credit doesn’t mean there’s no chance you’ll get your loan funding.

If enough members decide to accept your loan, you can either close on the loan or you can still back out.

If you choose to move forward with your application, the lender will conduct a hard credit inquiry and close the loan.

Fund Disbursement

After loan closure, you will see the funds deposited into your account in about four business days.

It may take as long as a week to transfer the funds.

Then it’s time to check your repayment schedule so you don’t miss the first installment and get charged a late payment penalty.

Customer Support

LendingClub’s support team can help if you run into problems applying or accepting a loan offer.

LendingClub also has a thorough FAQ page which can provide answers to a lot of problems.

And you can always call 1-888-596-3157 to speak with a customer service rep.

Unlike some LendingClub products, this platform’s personal loans do not have a dedicated account manager.

This means that if you cannot get your question answered by LendingClub’s customer service team, you will need to contact the lender directly.

Pros and Cons

LendingClub.com has grown into a big player in the personal loan space, but how does it actually stack up against its competition.

We’ll discuss some of the pros and cons of LendingClub personal loans below.

Pros

  • Direct payment to creditors: Debt consolidation is a great reason to get a personal loan. If you’re consolidating several different accounts into one, LendingClub can do a lot of the legwork by paying those creditors directly. In fact, the platform will pay off up to 12 separate creditors — a nice shortcut when it’s time for these balance transfers.
  • Joint applications: Not all personal loan platforms allow co-borrowers. If you don’t have a full three years of credit history, you’ll need help from a co-signer. A joint application could get you better loan rates and it also gives you a chance to develop your own credit history.
  • No prepayment penalty: You may think paying off a loan early is a good thing, but lenders don’t always see it that way. Some lenders still charge a fee if you pay off your loan early. LendingClub does not charge prepayment penalties.

Cons

  • Requires good credit: To qualify for a loan with LendingClub, you will need to have fair to excellent credit. While you can still technically get a loan through LendingClub with poor credit, this will result in high-interest rates. If you have poor credit, your chances of getting approved will be slim.
  • Potentially high origination fees: A 1 percent loan origination fee charged to the borrower upfront is common. But LendingClub charges origination fees that could reach as high as 6 percent of your loan amount. On a $2,000 loan, 6 percent is $120. On a $20,000 loan, 6 percent would cost you $1,200, due upfront. You can get this fee deducted from your loan proceeds if you can’t pay it out of pocket.
  • FICO 8: LendingClub still uses the FICO 8 scoring model. Most lenders do still use this model. The new FICO 9 model places less emphasis on medical debt which means some borrowers will have better credit scores based on FICO 9.
  • Potentially high-interest rates: The best personal loan for you should have a low-interest rate. LendingClub’s rates can surpass credit card rates for some borrowers. Chances are you’ll find the lowest rates on personal loans elsewhere.

Is LendingClub For You?

If you’re searching for a personal loan, you’ve probably come across LendingClub. This is a big name with more than a decade of online presence.

LendingClub has written more than $11 billion worth of loans since 2007.

But LendingClub can’t provide the best personal loan for every applicant.

Because of its strict criteria, additional fees, and potentially high-interest rates, some borrowers may be put off by LendingClub.

They prefer an option like Prosper or LightStream which has a more traditional underwriting process.

But other borrowers will get just what they need with LendingClub.

Specifically, borrowers with good credit and low debt who still can’t get financing through a traditional bank or credit union because the bank doesn’t approve of the loan’s purpose.

If you need to file a joint application or have good credit, LendingClub can assist you where many other lenders may not be able to.

SoFi Personal Loan Review

All lenders offer upfront cash in exchange for your monthly payments over time, but this doesn’t mean all lenders are the same.

The right lender can save you money in interest and fees and help build your credit as you make the loan payments.

Social Finance, or SoFi for short, offers personal loans, mortgages, student loan refinance loans, and even banking and investing services.

Is a SoFi personal loan right for you? This post will explore SoFi’s personal loan products to help you find out for sure.

Table of Contents:

  • About SoFi
  • How SoFi Works
  • SoFi Personal Loan Details
  • Getting Started
  • Is SoFi Safe?
  • Customer Support
  • Pros and Cons

What is SoFi?

SoFi is a lender that is known for having no fees and tons of benefits for its members.

A Stanford alumnus started SoFi back in 2011 to help young grads refinance student loan debt. Since then, this company has expanded to offer a variety of financial products.

SoFi offers lending, investments, banking, and insurance products. You can get approved for a personal loan, open up a basic checking or savings account, or invest in stocks and ETFs. They even help with investments in cryptocurrency.

SoFi works best for people with high credit and high income. Because of its highly selective application process, SoFi can offer lower interest rates to borrowers who do qualify.

Sofi typically does not accept borrowers that have a credit score lower than 680 and an annual income less than $50,000. In fact, the average household income of a SoFi borrower is over $100,000.

SoFi Personal Loans At a Glance

  • Loan Amounts: $5,000 to $100,000
  • Availability: 49 states (not Mississippi)
  • Loan Terms: 2 years to 7 years
  • Credit Score: 680 or above
  • Income Requirement: $50,000 per year; borrowers average $100,000 a year
  • Co-Signer? Not allowed; co-applicant is OK
  • Interest Rates: 5.99% – 25.05% APR (with autopay, as of 12/31/20)
  • Discounts: 0.25% off the interest rate for autopay

Compare Rates with SoFi

How Does SoFi Work?

Most personal loan lenders let you borrow money for just about any purpose — from paying for a root canal to restoring a vintage car.

SoFi is more selective. It limits personal loan uses to individual, family, or household needs. You could borrow to pay for a move, debt consolidation, medical expenses, or home improvements.

But you couldn’t use SoFi personal loans to finance a business, to generate cash for investing, to pay for post-secondary education, or to buy real estate.

SoFi is more selective about its borrowers, too, compared to most personal loan providers.

When applying for a loan through SoFi, you will need to provide a good bit of personal information. This date helps SoFi determine your eligibility to borrow based on its underwriting guidelines.

If SoFi decides you are an eligible borrower and you close on a loan, you become a member of SoFi. This is unique among personal loan providers.

As a SoFi member, you’d get exclusive perks and be invited to member-only events, such as happy hours and local networking events designed to build connections — hence the name Social Finance.

SoFi Personal Loan Details

SoFi borrowers become SoFi members. Is this extra hurdle worth it? It can be — if this lender’s rates and terms match your needs.

How Much Will SoFi Lend?

SoFi allows borrowers to access large amounts of cash at low-interest rates. Borrowers can apply for any amount from $5,000 to $100,000.

This minimum of $5,000 (and the maximum of $100,000) is on the higher side for personal loans.

Minimum loan amounts through SoFi can vary by state but across the board they tend to be higher than other lenders who offer $1,000 or $2,000 loans.

SoFi Personal Loan Terms

Repayment terms range from two to seven years with a SoFi personal loan. This is pretty standard compared to other loan companies.

SoFi tends to be slow about distributing funds. More and more lenders offer same-day or next-day loan funding, but SoFi still needs a few days to transfer the loan amount into your account.

SoFi Personal Loan Rates

SoFi offers fixed-rate personal loans. You’ll get a lower APR if you set up automatic payments which are becoming more and more common in the industry.

SoFi typically lowers your rate by 0.25% if you enroll in autopay.

Fixed rates run anywhere from 5.99% to 18.28% with autopay.

*Rates current as of 11/2/2020*

SoFi Personal Loan Fees

One of the biggest selling points for SoFi is its lack of fees or penalties. This means no origination fees, no-prepayment penalties, and no late fees.

Unemployment Protection

SoFi offers unemployment protection in case you unexpectedly lose your job.

If you lost your job because of company-wide layoffs, budget cuts, or something else that wasn’t your fault, SoFi will allow you to apply for loan forbearance.

This means you can postpone monthly payments on your loan for up to 12 months.

Interest will continue to accrue on your loan, but this feature could help you maintain good credit while you recover from the sudden change in your personal finances.

Getting Started

SoFi lends money online which makes signing up and applying for a loan relatively simple.

To qualify for a SoFi personal loan, you must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, at least 18 years old, and have some form of regular income.

Ideally, SoFi would like you to be employed or have proof that you will be beginning a job in 90 days. As stated before, the minimum income is around $50,000.

Once you prove your eligibility, you’ll need to create an account. This will require a username, email, and password.

You can browse prequalification rates and begin a personal loan application after you create your SoFi account. For this, SoFi requires the following information:

  • Name
  • Address
  • Social Security number
  • Annual income before taxes
  • Employer information
  • Amount borrowed
  • Desired repayment terms

To see whether you pre-qualify, SoFi will do a soft credit check which won’t affect your credit score.

If you decide to move forward with your loan based on qualification rates, SoFi will perform a hard credit check which sets your final interest rate.

If SoFi rejects your loan application, ask for clarification. The lender could have made a processing mistake. If not, you should get a copy of your credit report to see what, if any, negative marks are pulling down your score.

SoFi allows co-applicants on personal loans, but it does not allow co-signers or co-borrowers. What’s the difference? A co-applicant benefits from the loan proceeds; a co-signer does not.

Compare Rates with SoFi

Is SoFi Safe?

SoFi has top-notch security measures in place to prevent your data from falling into the wrong hands.

All information you submit to SoFi is stored on servers and in facilities that can be accessed only by SoFi personnel.

This lending club also encrypts all of its data using Transport Layer Security (TSL) to deter hackers.

No lender can guarantee 100 percent data security, but SoFi maintains industry standards when it comes to cyber and data security.

SoFi Customer Support

SoFi has a solid customer support team if you have questions about applying for a loan or repaying your loan. You can contact customer support at (855) 456-7634 during the following hours:

  • Monday through Thursday, 4 am to 9 pm Pacific (7 am to 6 pm Eastern)
  • Friday through Sunday, 4 am to 5 pm Pacific (7 am to 8 pm Eastern)

SoFi customer support team does more than solve technical glitches or recover lost passwords. This team of specialists can help plan your financial future.

SoFi also has career coaches to help with your resume and LinkedIn profile so you can maximize your professional skills. The team can also help with your networking skills.

Pros and Cons of a SoFi Personal Loan

With no fees, low rates, and a holistic approach to customer service, SoFi may sound like a dream come true. But SoFi has drawbacks that prevent this lender from being a good fit for everyone.

Here is a summary of the lender’s advantages and disadvantages:

Pros

  • No fees: SoFi does not charge origination fees, prepayment fees, or late fees on any of their personal loans. This is a huge bonus because it frees up money for you to invest or put back on your loan’s principal.
  • Completely online experience: SoFi lets you complete the entire borrowing process on your computer or smartphone. You can apply for a loan, close on a loan, check your balance, and make payments online.
  • Excellent support: SoFi offers its members incredible resources that go way beyond the traditional role of customer service reps. SoFi financial advisors can help you with your overall finances, and the career coaches can help show you a path to more financial freedom. Traditional lenders don’t offer such benefits to personal loan borrowers.
  • Flexible repayment options: Even though you don’t get charged for late payments, you may still want to change your loan’s due date from time to time. SoFi offers this option once a year on its fixed loans.
  • Unemployment protection: I mentioned this above. A 12-month forbearance could be super helpful if you lost your job — especially if you’d borrowed a large amount on a short loan term.

Cons

  • No direct payment to creditors: If you’re borrowing to consolidate debt, know that SoFi won’t pay off your other creditors directly. Instead, you’ll need to receive the loan funds and then pay off your old credit cards or other debts separately.
  • High minimum loan: If you just need $1,000 or $2,000, SoFi isn’t for you. SoFi’s minimum is $5,000 in most states and even higher in some states.
  • Excellent credit required: Creditworthiness is key with SoFi. You’ll need a minimum credit score of 680. This rigid underwriting requirement is what keeps their APRs so low, but it also prevents a large pool of potential borrowers from qualifying for loans.

Is SoFi Legit?

Yes, with a responsible financial history that spans almost a decade, SoFi is definitely legit and here to stay.

Every year the lender offers more loan options; well-qualified buyers can access loan offers with the lowest rates on the market for unsecured personal loans.

People who qualify with SoFi have the credit history and household income to borrow from just about anyone. SoFi knows this, so its methodology stresses the benefits of SoFi membership.

As a SoFi member you’ll get access to lower interest rates on a variety of loan products such as student loan refinancing, mortgage financing, and even investment and bank accounts.

But you’d also get access to financial planning, networking opportunities, and other social gatherings with people you may have things in common with.

Who Shouldn’t Apply for SoFi Personal Loans?

If you don’t have excellent credit — a FICO of at least 680 and preferably in the 700s — you won’t get approved for a SoFi personal loan.

If you earn less than $50,000 a year, you probably won’t be eligible either.

If you live in Mississippi, SoFi doesn’t lend money to your state.

But this doesn’t mean you can’t find a quality loan elsewhere. Whether you’re trying to reduce your credit card debt or pay for home improvements, personal loans can provide the money you need.

Some personal loan lenders consider a variety of factors that opens the door to borrowers with FICO scores in the 600s or possibly as low as 580.

To protect your credit history from further damage, be sure you pre-qualify with a soft credit check before a hard check reveals your actual rate — especially as you compare rates from a variety of different lenders.

Companies like Avant or OneMain Financial can accommodate lower credit scores and can help you secure a loan.

Full disclosure: Your borrowing rates will be higher, but by sticking to the loan terms you can improve your credit history which can open new doors in the future.

credible personal loan

Credible Personal Loan Review

A personal loan can help you achieve your financial goals. But how do you know which company is the best lender for you?

Meet Credible, a loan marketplace that presents you with various pre-qualified loan offers in as little as two minutes.

Credible can speed up your loan shopping process. Is this online marketplace as trustworthy as its name implies? Let’s find out.

Table of Contents:

  • About Credible
  • Hows Credible Works
  • Rates
  • Getting Started
  • Security
  • Customer Support
  • Pros and Cons

What is Credible?

credible personal loan

Headquartered in San Francisco, Credible has been connecting people with personal and student loans lenders since 2012.

Founder Stephen Dash originally intended to help borrowers relieve their student loan debt. Now, Credible offers personal loans for people who want to start a business or do home improvements.

If you have a lot of credit card debt a debt consolidation loan through Credible could save you a lot in interest charges each month.

If you’re not happy with your current personal loan’s interest rate, a refinance loan could lower your rate. Refinancing could save hundreds or thousands of dollars over the life of a loan.

In 2016, Credible partnered with Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion — the three major credit bureaus. Through this partnership, Credible can give you interest rate quotes without a hard credit check. (Too many hard inquiries can hurt your credit score.)

Credible’s platform helps you compare loan offers from up to 10 personal loan lenders in just a few minutes. Loan shoppers in all 50 states can use Credible.

How Does Credible Work?

What exactly can a personal loan be used for? Credible allows you to use your loan to fund the following projects:

  • Credit Card Debt Consolidation
  • Starting a Business
  • Home Improvement
  • Buying a Home
  • Medical Expenses
  • Wedding Expenses
  • Moving
  • Vacation
  • Major Purchase

Credible does not allow personal loan borrowing for taxes or education.

Credible Itself Doesn’t Lend Money

First things first: Borrowers should know Credible does not underwrite or back any loans itself. Credible is not a lender.

Instead, this platform acts as an online comparison marketplace so you can see multiple loan offers from companies that do offer personal loans.

Credible simplifies your process of loan shopping by helping you compare loan options from multiple lenders on one screen.

You’ll see loan offers from Credible partner lenders such as Lending Club, Prosper, Best Egg, Marcus, Avant, Upstart, FreedomPlus, and Payoff.

You’ll fill out a two-minute loan application and then see a list of loan options. Filling out one form will lead you to a variety of loan offers without a single hard inquiry until you actually apply for a loan.

Once you decide on a lender, you will need to complete a full application through the actual lender’s site. Then, you’d undergo the hard credit check to finalize your actual interest rate.

Tools Include a Personal Loan Calculator

Credible’s personal loan calculator lets you anticipate monthly payments depending on a variety of loan terms.

You can use the calculator to see how loan amounts, repayment terms, and even whether or not you have a cosigner can affect your monthly payments.

This can help you budget your borrowing costs ahead of time and avoid loans you can’t afford to repay.

Once you close a loan through the lender, you can receive the funds in your account in as little as one business day.

At this point, Credible’s role in the loan process is complete. Everything regarding your loan going forward will be between you and the lender.

Credible Personal Loan Rates

The Credible platform includes loans with loan amounts ranging from $600 to $100,000. Fixed rates on these loans can range from 4.99 percent to 35.99 percent depending on your credit score.

You can find repayment terms ranging from two to seven years. Spreading the loan across a longer repayment term should lower your monthly payments but could result in more interest paid over time.

Since Credible, itself, isn’t a lender, the interest on your loan would be paid to the lender Credible connects you with.

Credible makes its money from the lenders who pay for visibility through this online marketplace. When Credible connects you with a lender, the lender pays Credible for your business.

So as a loan shopper, you’d be using Credible’s loan-finding service for free.

Signing Up for Credible

Getting started on Credible is relatively quick and easy.

To apply for a loan through Credible, you must be a U.S. citizen or a permanent resident. You must be 18 years old and have a valid checking account in your name.

Your credit score should be at least 620, but borrowers with higher credit scores see the best loan offers. Once again, since Credible itself isn’t a lender, it doesn’t set these terms.

To begin your loan shopping process, create an account with Credible. Creating a Credible account is easy — about the same as starting a new social media account. You’ll just need an email address and a password.

After you create your account, you’ll see a variety of borrowing choices such as student loan refinancing, mortgage refinancing, private student loans, and even credit cards.

Choose “personal loan” from this list to compare personal loan rates. From there, Credible will ask that you provide some basic information such as:

  • Name
  • Birthdate
  • Social Security number
  • Estimated credit score
  • Employment information
  • Annual income before taxes
  • Borrow amount
  • Monthly household expenses
  • Purpose for loan
  • Education information
  • Debt-to-income ratio

With this information, Credible can estimate loan rates for you with its partner lenders. Credible will also run a soft credit check to confirm your information.

Then you should see a list of potential lenders and qualifying rates.

Selecting the Best Loan Offer

The beauty of Credible is its ability to help you compare loan offers without running a credit inquiry on dozens of different lender’s sites.

You can choose the best personal loan for your needs using Credible.com as an aggregator. Borrowers with good credit will have the most choices.

Compare each loan offer’s rates, but also look at origination fees, late payment fees, and other potential costs to borrow money.

Each financial institution that partners with Credible can set its own borrowing terms and charge its own fees.

Working With the Partner Lender

Once you select a loan offer, Credible will redirect you to that partner lender’s site to complete a formal loan application and confirm eligibility.

Only the formal application with its hard credit check can confirm eligibility and lock in your actual interest rate. Rates you see on Credible are estimates based on your soft credit check.

You’re under no obligation to accept the loan. If, for some reason, your actual interest rate came in higher than the quoted rate, you could pull the plug on the application.

After closing on a loan, you will work with the lender moving forward. Any payments or issues regarding your loan will go directly through the loan company and not through Credible.

Is Credible Safe?

Shopping for loans from multiple lenders simultaneously is super convenient. But can you be sure every loan offer is legitimate?

With Credible, you can. The platform vets each partner lender carefully. You can tell by the lineup of partners which includes reputable names like Upstart, SoFI, LightStream, and Lending Club.

Of course, a smart consumer will do his or her own research into the partner lender. But you can rest assured Credible won’t connect you with a low quality lender.

Security also matters when you’re sharing your personal finance data. So Credible uses 256-bit encryption and secure socket layer (SSL) technology to make sure your sensitive personal information is safe.

This is what you’d expect from a reputable fintech company.

Credible Customer Support

Unlike some online marketplaces, Credible has a customer support team to walk you through the loan application process from start to finish.

Credible offers customer care through phone, email, and online chat support.

Pros and Cons of Credible Personal Loans

Credible is a great tool for comparing personal loan rates, but it is not a perfect system. Let’s dive into the good and the bad of Credible.

Pros

  • Best Loan Rate Guarantee: Credible offers a best rate guarantee unlike anything else in the market. If you find and close on a personal loan through another marketplace with a better rate, Credible will give you $200. You will obviously have to show some proof, but it’s definitely a show of confidence on Credible’s part.
  • Excellent Customer Service: Credible wants to make the loan process simple, so it has a solid customer support team unlike some aggregators who simply direct you to their partner lenders’ customer support programs. Credible’s customer service team can answer questions throughout the personal loan application process.
  • Accurate Rate Comparison: There is nothing worse than finding a great rate through a loan marketplace only to find out through the lender application that the actual offer is much higher. Credible’s system uses a soft check of your credit report, giving consistent loan estimates that shouldn’t fluctuate too much from the estimate to the actual offer.

Cons

  • Lender fees may apply: While Credible doesn’t charge fees for its services, the lender you choose will likely have some built-in fees, especially if your credit report limits you to a handful of loan offers. The lender may charge origination fees, processing fees, late payment fees, or prepayment penalties, for example. And, the actual lender’s quoted interest rate may be based on an autopay discount. Read the fine print before you close a loan with any lender and consider these fees as you compare loan offers.
  • Limited Lender Network: With any online loan marketplace you see only a portion of the market. So there’s no guarantee that comparison platforms like Credible.com can always show your very best personal loan option. Keep this in mind as you compare loan offers, especially if you’re not happy with many of the choices you see and think you can find lower interest rates elsewhere. That said, Credible’s network offers a good representation of the broader market.

Is a Credible Personal Loan For You?

Credible lives up to its name. It has an A+ rating from the BBB and a 5-star rating on Trustpilot. Overall, users agree this is a legitimate online loan marketplace.

It cannot help everyone, though. If you have bad credit, Credible may not be the best option for you. Lenders like iLoan and OneMain Financial accept borrowers that may not qualify for loans on Credible.com or elsewhere.

If you have fair to excellent credit, Credible will likely be able to offer you great personal loan rates.

As always, be sure to shop around outside of their network to make certain that you are getting the best rate.

lendingtree personal loans

LendingTree Personal Loans Review

Personal loans are great for people that need a more flexible type of loans. Whether it’s for a vacation, debt consolidation, a wedding, or a home improvement venture, personal loans can be used for just about anything in regard to your personal finances.

These loan products can even help you improve your credit score and overall credit history if you pay them off on time.

Despite this, there is still a lot of confusion surrounding the personal loan process. People often don’t know what their budget is, what loan providers are ideal, and what they should take into account when considering loan options.

Luckily, LendingTree is there to help. LendingTree is an online marketplace and educational resource for loan shopping.

They can help you find and compare lenders so that you walk away with lower interest rates and the best deal possible. But is LendingTree really as good as it seems or just a well-bred scam? We’ll discuss our LendingTree review below.

Table of Contents:

  • About Lending Tree
  • How LendingTree Personal Loans Work
  • Rates
  • Qualifications
  • Safety
  • Customer Service
  • Pros & Cons

What is Lending Tree?

lendingtree personal loans

LendingTree is a loan marketplace based in North Carolina that helps match you with the best lender for your needs.

They are a publicly-traded company and have facilitated more than 55 million loan requests.

LendingTree’s founder, Doug Lebda, was inspired to start LendingTree while he was mortgage hunting for his first house.

He realized that the application process of getting and comparing personal loans was a nightmare.

You would have to visit potential lenders, fill out multiple paper applications, wait weeks for a proposed rate, and compare them at length on your own. He realized that there had to be a better way.

Founded in Charlotte, NC in 1996, LendingTree was born out of a desire to make the lending process better for both the borrower and the lender.

Borrowers from all over the country can compare tons of loan offers at once, while lenders can set underwriting guidelines and automatically offer or decline loans.

Overall, it encourages more people to embark on taking out loans like home equity loans or auto loans to name a few.

LendingTree’s motto is ‘when banks compete, you win.’ The underlying sentiment is that loan competition allows the borrower to get the best possible rate while allowing smaller lenders to get in the game.

Loans originate from a variety of different places including individual investors, small companies, and traditional lenders.

How Do LendingTree Personal Loans Work?

Personal loans can be used for a variety of purposes. You may take out a personal loan to fund your wedding, add an addition to your house, or consolidate credit card debt.

They are also generally unsecured, which means that you don’t have to put any of your personal property up as collateral. Outside of paying for education or taxes, you can pretty much use a personal loan for anything.

LendingTree works by using the information you provide to compare loan rates across hundreds of different lenders. They search for the best rates and terms and match you with several lenders based on your credit score and loan needs.

LendingTree’s dashboard lets you review lenders by APR, loan terms, and other deciding factors (like bad or good credit.) You can even read customer reviews of each of LendingTree’s partners to get an idea of what your loan experience would be like with each company. This makes it easy to see how loan offers stack up against one another.

LendingTree has a calculator that helps you figure out what your monthly payment would be with a certain lender. It will calculate the payment based on the term, down payment, loan amount, and any fees that apply.

Many people are concerned that shopping for a loan will hurt their FICO credit score. If you are simply seeing how lenders compare through LendingTree, you should be fine.

They will perform a soft credit check to verify your information. This soft check goes through Vantage Score 3, which is a partnership of the three major credit bureaus. You won’t get a hard credit check or hard pull which will impact your credit report until you formally apply.

LendingTree Personal Loan Rates

As of 1/4/21, LendingTree offers interest rates that range from 2.49% to 35.79%, but that will be determinant on your credit score and lender.

They offer a personal loan calculator on their site, helping you figure out your eligibility based on your debt to income ratio.

As far as loan limits, you can take out a personal loan from $1,000 to $50,000. Some lenders may allow for same-day funding, but it may take as many as seven business days before it reaches your bank account.

Because LendingTree is not a lender, they will not charge you any origination fees. However, your lender may charge you certain fees.

For example, if you choose to refinance your mortgage, refinancing closing costs will run between 3%-6% of your loan. Be sure to speak with the loan officer assigned to your loan to find out the specifics.

Depending on which lender you close with, you may have to pay origination, late, or prepayment penalty fees. Make sure you read your loan terms to see what kind of fees may apply.

LendingTree Personal Loans Qualifications

So, you’ve decided to take out a personal loan and would like to use LendingTree to shop for one. How do you get started?

In order to qualify for a LendingTree loan, you need to be at least 18 years old, have a credit score of at least 560, and to be a US citizen or a permanent resident. Unfortunately, if you are looking for a personal loan and have bad credit, LendingTree may not be the best option.

Starting the loan process with LendingTree requires a lot of information. This is so that they can check with all of their loan partners and return with pre-qualified loan offers.

LendingTree will ask you to provide a variety of personal information including:

  • Name
  • Birthdate
  • Address
  • Phone Number
  • Email Address
  • Last four digits of your Social Security number
  • Income before taxes
  • Employment status
  • Resident status
  • Desired loan amount
  • Estimated credit score
  • Recent pay stubs
  • Proof of citizenship or resident status

They may also inquire into your debt-to-income ratio to determine if you are able to take on a loan payment. Generally, it should be less than 40% for individual applicants and less than 35% for joint applicants.

After you input all of this information, LendingTree will check with its lending partners to see what kind of rates and terms they can offer you. They will then return with all of the pre-qualified offers, which will be displayed on your dashboard.

It is important to remember that these are pre-approval rates and are not final. These are typically accurate, but they may be subject to change when you submit a formal application.

Finally, you can apply for a loan. Once you decide on a lender, you will apply formally through their loan application. At this point, the lender will perform a hard credit check, which could impact your score. Keep in mind that this process will happen on LendingTree’s website, and the lender will follow up with you to finalize loan details.

Is LendingTree Safe For Personal Loans?

When you are submitting personal information like your Social Security number on the internet, you want to know that the site is safe and secure.

LendingTree, like other fintech companies, uses encryption on all their webpages. This means that your data is stored safely on their databases.

The one privacy red flag that arises from LendingTree is the selling of customer data to third parties. This often results in unwanted calls and spam emails from loan companies, banks, and other financial institutions.

There is not a sure-fire way to unsubscribe from solicitation calls through LendingTree.

However, you can go to www.donotcall.gov to register your number on a do-not-call list. This will prevent telemarketers from harassing you in the future.

LendingTree Customer Service

The process of getting a loan can be confusing, and it’s best to have someone that you can turn to if you have questions.

LendingTree has a dedicated customer support team that is available by phone (1-800-813-4620) or through an online submission form. They are also active on Facebook and Twitter if you are interested in reaching out in that way.

They are not available at all hours of the day and night, so you must keep their service hours in mind. This is when the LendingTree customer support team can be reached:

  • Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. EST
  • Friday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. EST
  • Saturday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. EST

Outside of their in-person support, LendingTree has an impressive collection of educational material to guide you through the loan process.

LendingTree puts an emphasis on education because they want you to become knowledgeable in the loan process.

They do not have an FAQ section, but most users don’t have an issue getting their questions answered.

Pros and Cons

When considering taking out a loan of any kind, it’s best to consider the good, the bad, and the ugly. LendingTree is a terrific resource, but it has its flaws.

Let’s examine the pros and cons of finding a personal loan lender through LendingTree.

Pros

  • Large lender network: LendingTree has one of the largest lender networks of any loan marketplace out there. They have over 300 partners, which means that you have plenty of options when it comes to personal loan rates and terms.
  • Free platform: What’s better than free? Because LendingTree receives its revenue entirely from its lending partners, you don’t have to pay anything in order to use them. There’s no reason not to try out LendingTree’s lender-matching services when it doesn’t cost you a dime.
  • Comprehensive product offerings: LendingTree doesn’t stop at just personal loans. You can shop for a variety of different financial products through LendingTree. Between student loans, auto loans, business loans, and mortgages, there is little that you can’t shop for through LendingTree.

Cons

  • Market lead generator: If you read the fine print of LendingTree’s privacy policy, you may read that they identify themselves as a market lead generator. This means that selling your information to third parties is part of their revenue model. Because of this, you may experience an uptick in phone calls and spam emails from lenders trying to win your business. This can continue even after you close on a loan.
  • Extensive information required: Many loan marketplace sites only require four or five key pieces of information to match you with lenders. After all, you will complete a full application with the lender you choose anyways. Unfortunately, LendingTree requires a ton of information to return pre-qualified rates. This may mean that the rates are more accurate, but it is definitely frustrating if you’re just looking.
  • Higher rates than most: Those who shop for loans through LendingTree should expect slightly higher rates. This is because LendingTree does not have a defined minimum credit score and tends to accept even risky borrowers. This can negatively impact the rates of those with excellent credit scores.

Is LendingTree For You?

LendingTree is an excellent place to shop for loans of any kind. They offer plenty of resources to help educate and move you through the loan process.

Having been in business for over 20 years, LendingTree has an excellent reputation in the industry.

However, they don’t represent every lender, so you will still have to do some shopping around. You should check with your local credit unions as they are unlikely to be represented by LendingTree.

Ultimately, LendingTree is a useful tool to compare lenders and help you reach your financial goals.

different types of personal loans

What Is a Personal Loan?

Life is filled with unanticipated expenses, and when you least expect it, you could be hit with a financial need that extends beyond your paycheck and your savings.

Each year, tens of millions of Americans facing similar situations turn to personal loans to help ease the financial burden.

With low interest for borrowers with strong credit scores, fixed rates, and a variety of lending sources to choose from, it’s easy to see why personal loans are so enticing.

On the other hand, a personal loan might not always be the best solution to your money problems.

Read on to learn how these loans work and decide whether or not you should apply for a personal loan today with one of our top 8 best personal loan companies.

Table of Contents:

  • What Are Personal Loans?
  • Reasons To Get A Personal Loan
  • How Personal Loans Work
  • Rates & Fees
  • Where to Shop for Personal Loans
  • How Personal Loans Affect Your Credit Score
  • Personal Loan Alternatives
  • Should You Get a Personal Loan?

What Are Personal Loans?

different types of personal loansPersonal loans are installment loans offered by a bank, credit union, or other financial institution to an individual borrower.

Everything about personal loans is fixed from day one: the length of the loan, the interest rate, and the amount you borrow, meaning the terms of your loan are set in stone.

Personal loans can be either secured or unsecured. The former uses collateral, commonly in the form of your vehicle title, to secure repayment of the loan.

The far more appealing choice, the unsecured personal loan, does not require any collateral.

Unsecured loans warrant a much closer look at your credit report and income, though. The better your credit score and debt-to-income ratio are, the higher your chances of approval and access to the best interest rates are.

A personal loan can be as small as a couple thousand dollars to help pay for a wedding to $100,000 for emergency medical expenses.

While terms vary from lender to lender, personal loans are usually repaid over the span of 12 to 84 months.

Reasons to Get a Personal Loan

Whereas other loans like business or student loans are created for a specific use, you can decide how to use a personal loan.

While the reasons to get a personal loan could extend beyond this list, here are a few of the most common reasons people take out personal loans.

Consolidating Debt

Personal loans can help with debt consolidation. Consolidating your credit card debt with a personal loan, for instance, can score you a lower interest rate. And faithfully making payments can quickly boost your credit score.

Medical Expenses

When health insurance falls short, a personal loan can help you manage the cost of an unexpected medical bill or a pricey procedure. You can also use these loans for vet bills, which could be a literal lifesaver if your furry friend suffers from an unexpected illness or accident.

Life Events

When you’re planning a wedding, honeymoon, or comparably expensive milestone moment, you might consider applying for a small personal loan to help foot the bill. Just be sure it’s actually worth the cost and not a frivolous whim.

Home Repairs

When your home is in serious need of repair or a costly new appliance, a personal loan could be a viable option for funding updates to your home.

These are just a few popular uses for personal loans. Taking out a loan to fund these types of events may not always be wise, though. Think carefully through the financial repercussions before you do.

How Personal Loans Work

The personal loan process starts with the application, which can be completed online with most lenders.

When you apply for a personal loan, you’ll be asked to provide the lender with information on your financial status to help them determine how creditworthy you are.

The lender will then run a credit check and probably require you to submit proof of income in the form of your pay stubs or tax returns.

When you submit your application, you and the lender will also agree upon the terms of the loan, including the amount of money you will be borrowing and the length of the loan.

With some lenders, you could get approved and receive the money in as little as one day; however, other lenders might take over a week.

Personal Loan Rates and Fees

The interest rate on your loan will be determined by a number of factors. Lenders will look at your credit report and income to assess your ability to repay your loan.

If you have a good credit score, you can expect to find low interest rates. Conversely, if you have a poor credit score and manage to get approved, you’ll have significantly higher interest rates.

A cosigner can help you get lower rates, but the best way to get excellent rates is to improve your credit score before applying for a loan.

Interest isn’t the only cost you need to be aware of with personal loans. When you apply for personal loans, you also need to be on the lookout for fees.

A lot of personal loans come with origination fees, which take out a small percentage or flat amount from the grand total of the loan, often 1% to cover processing expenses. Before locking into a personal loan, read the fine print and make sure to factor in this fee if it applies.

The other fee you should look out for is a prepayment fee, which penalizes you for paying off your loan early.

Numbers of lenders don’t charge a prepayment penalty, so you should have no trouble finding a fee-free option with a little research.

Where to Shop for Personal Loans

The key to getting a great personal loan with low rates is to shop around. 

Instead of accepting the first personal loan you get approved for, you should carefully compare all of your options, weighing the pros and cons of each.

You can take the traditional route, checking with banks and credit unions to see what they have to offer. But you can also opt to apply for funding with an online platform that specializes in loans.

To get started, use a service like Lending Tree to get access to several personal loans you’re eligible for, without the negative effects of a hard credit check. Lending Club can give you an idea of the rates you can get from top lenders, making comparison shopping a breeze.

From there, you can apply for the loan of your choice. If you decide to branch out and seek out lenders individually, just make sure you do your homework and partner with a credible BBB-accredited company.

How a Personal Loan Affects Your Credit Score

While comparing quotes online won’t necessarily damage your credit score, applying for a personal loan will. When you submit your application, the lender will run a hard credit inquiry.

So how much does a hard inquiry hurt your score?

A hard credit check lowers your score by a few points, and you can expect it to remain on your report for two years.

As you do your preliminary rate shopping, look for lenders who do soft credit checks so your scores aren’t impacted until you’re ready to apply.

Once you have a personal loan, the way you handle payments will play a major role in your credit report.

To maximize the positive impact on your credit score, keep the balance you owe low, pay at least the minimum, and do whatever it takes to make your payments on time.

Alternatives to Personal Loans

Depending on your credit and other financial factors, a personal loan could be the most advantageous lending source.

However, there are times when you could benefit more from borrowing elsewhere.

Here are a couple of alternatives and scenarios where they might make more sense than a personal loan.

Balance Transfer Credit Card

If you’re facing steep interest rates and looking to consolidate your credit card debt, you might want to look into this type of card.

Banks like Chase, who does not offer personal loans, tend to have good policies on these types of cards.

This option is more beneficial than a personal loan if you have good enough credit to get a 0% introductory APR. If you can pay off your credit card debt during that period, you’ll save money going this route.

If not, you could accrue tens of thousands of dollars in interest as the rates escalate over time.

HELOC

A home equity line of credit has a lot of advantages, like competitive interest rates, low closing costs, and flexible terms.

This type of revolving credit is valuable, but it does require you to put your home up as collateral, something to keep in mind as you decide how much to borrow. HELOCs come with far longer loan lengths, but the turnaround time for getting funds is quicker with personal loans.

Personal Line of Credit

Unsecured personal lines of credit function a lot like credit cards. This source of credit can be beneficial to self-employed individuals whose income fluctuates, as you don’t set a loan amount or repayment schedule upfront.

Instead, you can continually borrow without reapplying. A personal line of credit can be difficult to qualify for with a low income or credit score, though, and a lot of lenders charge fees each time you borrow.

Should You Get a Personal Loan?

Depending on your circumstances, a personal loan could be a good option when you find yourself in need of additional funds, especially if you partner with a reputable lender offering competitive rates.

But like any other type of loan or line of credit, a personal loan comes with its fair share of pros and cons.

Before you take on a personal loan or any other form of debt, consider the consequences it will have on your credit and your financial standing.

Make sure you get a loan with payments and terms you can feasibly manage a few months, or years, down the line.

Best Personal Loan Companies

A personal loan could let you access cash for any purpose. They’re great for credit card debt consolidation, home improvement projects, major car repairs, or any other cash heavy project.

The best personal loans charge low fees and low fixed interest rates, have flexible loan amounts and terms, and have no prepayment penalties.

Since personal loans are unsecured, you’ll need an excellent credit score to get the best deal. But even borrowers with average credit can get approved for some loans.

In this post we’ve compiled the best of the best personal loan companies. Read on to see how they compare and make an informed decision as you shop for personal loans.

12 Best Personal Loans of 2020

Here are the 12 best personal loan companies you can check out today:

  1. Lending Tree
  2. Credible
  3. LightStream
  4. Marcus by Goldman Sachs
  5. SoFi
  6. Lending Club
  7. Fiona
  8. Monevo
  9. Federal Trust
  10. Prosper
  11. Upstart
  12. Discover

1. LendingTree

LendingTree is one of the market’s premier lending platforms with a full array of financial tools and resources.

Instead of funding loans, LendingTree connects borrowers with lenders through its online marketplace. Shoppers can find private student loans, auto loans, business loans, mortgages, and personal loans.

At LendingTree’s website, you’ll select the type of loan and loan purpose. Then you’ll click through an interactive application process that asks basic questions.

Based on your answers, you’ll be matched with up to five of the best personal loan offers your credit history qualifies you for — all in a span of minutes.

LendingTree offers a great place to start your personal loan search, so I’ve listed it first on this list.

And as a bonus, when you sign up for a free LendingTree account, you get access to your credit report and pointers to improve your score. After working on your credit score for a few months you may qualify for personal loans with lower interest rates and monthly payments.

Learn More: Read our full LendingTree Personal Loans Review.

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2. Credible

Credible is basically a search engine for loans. This platform boasts prequalification for top loan offers in two minutes’ time.

Credible also offers a Best Rate Guarantee, which promises (within terms and conditions) to pay you $200 if you find a better rate elsewhere. This shows Credible is confident its platform will include the best offer for good credit borrowers.

Credible clearly features its partners across its website, including Prosper and Lending Club, both of which are featured in my best-of list below.

Like LendingTree, Credible is free to use and won’t harm your credit score. It also comes with resources like a savings calculator that show you how much money you could be saving by consolidating your credit card debt with a personal loan.

And if you’re in the market to take out or refinance a student loan, Credible could be your one-stop-shop for comparing student loan and personal loan rates.

Learn More: Read our full Credible Personal Loan Review.

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3. LightStream

LightStream is fast becoming a go-to option for personal loans of all types, especially for borrowers with an excellent credit history who need a large loan amount.

A subsidiary of SunTrust Bank (now known as Truist), LightStream brings the stability of traditional banking to online lending.

You could borrow as much as $100,000 with loan terms stretching out to seven years. The most qualified borrowers could get an interest rate as low as 3%.

LightStream does not have a pre-approval process so if you’re not sure whether your credit score qualifies you for a loan, don’t apply. The application process will create a hard credit inquiry which could lower your credit score.

If you can qualify, you can get competitive rates and repayment terms with a fast turnaround. You can also borrow for just about any purpose: education, home improvement, debt consolidation, recreation, and even secured auto loans.

With all-online applying and underwriting, you’d likely have your funds within a couple business days.

4. Marcus by Goldman Sachs

Here’s another legacy name in the personal finance arena that now offers personal loans. Like LightStream, Marcus by Goldman Sachs also works best if you have no credit problems.

But unlike LightStream, Marcus by Goldman Sachs has eliminated its lender’s fees. Most other lenders charge an upfront loan origination fee of at least 1% of the loan amount. Marcus has waived this fee, along with late fees and prepayment fees.

Marcus can also run a soft inquiry to check your creditworthiness before you apply. So if you’re not sure whether you’d get approved, you could find out without hurting your credit.

Marcus by Goldman Sachs does not offer the wide array of loan products LightStream can boast, and its largest loans cap at $40,000 with 72 months to repay compared to LighStream’s $100,000 maximum.

And, the most qualified borrowers with excellent credit could probably get a better rate with LightStream. Borrowers with good credit could save with Marcus’s fee-free loans.

If you have fair credit or bad credit, Marcus won’t approve your application even with a co-signer.

5. SoFi

Much like Credible, SoFi’s roots are in the student loan industry. This online lender now provides mortgages, personal loans with large loan amounts, and wealth management services as well.

SoFi offers personal loan amounts ranging from $5,000 all the way up to $100,000 with terms between 3 and 7 years.

These loans have low-interest rates, offering both fixed and variable rates. When you enroll in autopay, you can get rates as low as 5.99%

Like Marcus, SoFi is also completely fee-free, with no origination fees, pre-payment penalties, or late payment fees.

But SoFi stands out most for its job loss protection. If you lose your job during the life of your loan, SoFi will press pause on your payments and even help with the job search.

Consider partnering with SoFi as your personal loan lender if you’re a young borrower looking for student loan resources in addition to competitive personal loans with unique perks.

Learn More: Read our full SoFi Personal Loan Review.

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6. Lending Club

Lending Club takes a different approach to personal loans than the companies above. The top-notch personal loan platform is a peer-to-peer marketplace.

Instead of getting your funds directly from Lending Club, the loan is funded by individual investors. Lending Club can offer relatively competitive interest rates, depending on your credit score, for loan amounts up to $40,000.

Lending Club is a good option for borrowers with lower credit scores who wouldn’t qualify elsewhere, with some loans for applicants with a FICO score of 600.

While you may face an origination fee up to 6% of the total amount of the loan, you can get approved with a lower credit score — assuming Lending Club members decide to fund your loan.

Lending Club is quick, too, giving you access to funds in as little as three business days after your application is submitted.

Learn More: Read our full LendingClub Personal Loans Review.

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7. Fiona

If you want to be sure you’re getting the best loan available to you without having to compare quotes yourself, you’ll love Fiona.

Fiona has re-imagined the personal loan marketplace concept we’ve all become familiar with over the past decade.

Like Credible, Lending Tree, and other platforms, Fiona combs through top lenders’ offers to see what interest rates and loan terms you qualify for.

But instead of giving you several options to choose from, Fiona narrows your choices down to one, pinpointing the single best loan for your needs.

Fiona could match you with loans up to $100,000 with APR as low as 3.84%. This is a great option if you want to take the guesswork out of personal loan shopping.

Learn More: Read our full Fiona Loan Review.

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8. Monevo

A division of the FinTech company Quint Group, Monevo is yet another marketplace that lets you compare your best personal loan options.

Like its competitors, Monevo brings you quick rates from top lenders after you provide a few personal details. The website claims to give you quotes in 60 seconds.

Your credit score won’t be harmed by the initial application, and you’ll get offers from lenders like Lending Club, Prosper, and SoFi.

Monevo is an excellent tool, especially for borrowers with poor or average credit scores who might struggle to find loans on their own.

Though it’s a newer platform, Monevo is BBB-accredited with an A rating and positive customer reviews.

Learn More: Read our full Monevo Personal Loans Review.

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9. Federal Trust

Federal Trust is another comparison platform that could help applicants get unsecured personal loans even if they don’t have stellar credit.

Federal Trust curates loan options with amounts between $1,000 and $100,000 and terms ranging from 24 to 48 months. Borrowers with the best credit eligibility can get competitive interest rates.

Like its competitors, Federal Trust requires you to fill out a quick form online to gain access to offers you’re eligible for.

Federal Trust is less upfront on its website about its partner lenders and their minimum credit scores. This is something to keep in mind as you shop.

However, the site is secure, and so is your information. Federal Trust is a great marketplace to add to the list as you shop for rates, with no harm done to your credit.

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10. Prosper

Most of what you read about Lending Club above applies to Prosper. Another peer-to-peer marketplace, Prosper comes with comparable rates, fees, and terms.

When you apply, you’ll undergo a soft credit check, which won’t harm your credit score like a traditional loan application could.

Prosper’s loan limits are slightly lower than Lending Club’s, topping off at $35,000, but so are its fees

Prosper’s loan origination fees could reach 5% compared to Lending Club’s 6% max. While 1 percentage point might seem insignificant, it adds up on a five-year, $35,000 loan.

Be sure to factor both the fees and the rates in as you decide on a loan. In some cases, borrowers with excellent credit can get the loan fee reduced to less than 1%, making Prosper a great alternative to a traditionally funded personal loan.

11. Upstart

This blog is about improving your credit so I have to include a way for credit-challenged borrowers to build a better credit history.

Upstart, as its name implies, can help, even if your FICO score is as low as 580.

Of course, you’ll have fewer loan options. Loan terms won’t exceed 60 months, and this lender sets limits at $50,000.

But you could get your loan funded within one business day, and Upstart reports to all three credit bureaus which means your credit score can start climbing if you make regular, on-time payments.

Speaking of on-time payments, Upstart’s fees for late-payments and missed payments are higher than most, so make sure you stay on schedule. Also, Upstart doesn’t offer an autopay discount.

Of course, you’ll also pay higher interest rates with Upstart. Annual percentage rates could reach as high as 36%. This is far from ideal for well-qualified borrowers.

But credit builders can use Upstart to find a much-needed loan approval and access to loan funds on the same or the next business day.

By paying this loan off on time, you could qualify for a lower APR next time you need an unsecured personal loan.

And, it’s a better option than storefront lenders like OneMain Financial. If you like Upstart, check out Avant Personal Loans, too. Avant can also approve fair credit borrowers for short-term personal loans.

12. Discover

Discover Personal Loans, provided by the same financial institution that backs Discover credit cards, offers a great loan for people who want to pay off high-interest credit card debt.

You’d need a FICO score of 660 to apply, but Discover charges no origination fee and it can pay off your credit cards directly — saving you this extra step after you close your debt consolidation loan.

Discover doesn’t offer loans larger than $35,000, but you’ll find a wide range of repayment periods ranging from 12 to 72 months.

You could save a lot on loan payments by spreading out your repayment over the full 72 months. However, you’d also pay more interest over the life of the loan.

Discover charges only one fee — a $39 late payment fee — so if you make on-time payments you can save on fees compared to most other lenders.

Which Personal Loan Company Works Best For You?

There’s a personal lender out there for everyone, but not every lender is right for you.

A lender might be known for offering awesome personal loans, but they may not have the best personal loan interest rates you’re eligible for.

Before you sign the dotted line, take the time to shop around so you can rest assured that the loan you get offers the lowest rate you can qualify for.

Starting with the list of lenders and comparison tools above, you can be sure you’re getting the best terms possible on your personal loan.

In the next five minutes, you could be looking at personal loan offers tailored to meet your needs. You’re only a few clicks away!

Online Lenders vs In-Person Lenders

Online lenders like the 12 I’ve listed above can save most borrowers money on personal loan interest rates.

This is true because online lenders do not have brick-and-mortar bank branches to maintain.

However, your shopping process should also include local banks and credit unions in your area.

Credit unions, especially, can compete with online lenders because they don’t earn a profit. Instead, profits go back to the credit union’s members.

Getting a personal loan from the same place where you already have a bank account can also offer some extra convenience.

However, for most borrowers, online lenders offer the best rates on personal loans.

Loan Purpose Can Make a Difference

When a lender asks about your loan’s purpose, your answer could help determine how much you pay in interest.

A loan for home improvement projects or to consolidate medical bills tends to have a lower APR than a loan you’re getting for a vacation or a used car.

That being said, if you can get a secured loan for an automobile, you’ll save a lot in interest charges.

A secured loan uses the vehicle (or boat or other property) as collateral which means the bank takes less risk.

Always tell the truth about your loan purpose, even if you think it will increase your APR.

Qualifying for the Best Personal Loans

Since they’re unsecured loans, personal loans tend to have higher interest rates unless you have excellent credit.

When you apply, your lender will ask for your Social Security number. This allows the lender to check your credit and determine your eligibility and interest rates.

Borrowers with the best credit scores pay less interest and qualify for bigger loans. They pay lower monthly payments and lower upfront fees.

To boost your credit score in the months before you apply for an unsecured personal loan, follow these steps:

  • Make sure you’re monitoring your credit score. Credit reporting errors can lower your score in the short-term which raises borrowing costs throughout the life of the loan. You can check your credit reports at no charge by visiting annualcreditreport.com. If you see inaccuracies, dispute them immediately.
  • Make on-time payments on all your loans since payment history makes up 35% of your FICO score.
  • Pay down your other loans and credit cards. This will lower your credit utilization ratio which comprises 30% of your FICO score. It will also lower your debt-to-income ratio which some lenders check by measuring your debt against your monthly or annual income.
  • Look for COVID-19 relief options on your lender’s website if you’re struggling to make monthly payments during the pandemic. Covid relief measures are typically easy to qualify for, and they can preserve your credit history during a rough stretch.

This post has been about the best personal loans in the marketplace today. If you’d like to see my post about the best personal loans for borrowers with bad credit, check it out here.