The 7 Top Personal Loans For Average Credit

Money from hand to you,Close-up of Person hand giving money To other hand

If you are like me, the thought of taking on more debt scares you. Honestly, it should. Taking on debt is not something you should do casually. You should carefully consider all of your options. The only real way to do that is to gather all the information you can about loans, credit, and personal loans for average credit.

There are some tidbits you should know about personal loans for average credit before we jump right into the good stuff. I know, I know, we all want to get right to the good stuff. Some background is always a good place to start so you can have a full picture of what you want.

All The Personal Loan Information

Personal loans are money that a lender allows you to borrow. You promise to pay all the money, and then some, back to the lender within a certain period of time by making regular monthly payments. The payment amounts are decided before you sign the paperwork. The amount that you ask to borrow is called the principal. The lender adds interest to that amount. The interest is a fee for letting you borrow the money and how the lender really profits. Let’s be real, lenders want to make money and they do so by charging you interest.

Now, the amount of interest you pay is based mostly on your credit score. The lower your credit score is, the higher your interest will be. This also means that at the end of it all, you have paid more money to borrow money than you would if you had a better credit score. The loan terms differ from lender to lender and why it is important to shop around for loans. There are many types of personal loans, so you should decide which one is right for you.

Top Personal Loans For Average Credit

There is a ton of information available to you online, but you have to scour through it. Do not get me wrong, there is a lot of good information to be found about personal loans, but you have to go through all of it to get to the good stuff. I have condensed much of it here for you, including the top 7 personal loan options for average credit. So, let’s get to it.

Top Loan Option – Avant

Avent LoansAvant is the first lender you should look into when considering personal loans for average credit. They are a popular lender and their customers are generally happy with their interactions. They are willing to give you a loan even if your credit score is as low as 580. Their requirements are more flexible than others. They have little to low income requirements, so if you do not earn much, that should not stand in your way of getting a loan from them. The amount they are willing to lend ranges from $2,000 to $35,000. Repayment terms are flexible, too, as they range from 2, 3, 4, and 5 year increments. They have origination fees that can be as high as 4.75 percent of your original loan amount. Their interest rates start around 9.95 percent and go up to 35.99 percent.

They do not have any prepayment fees, so you can pay off your loan early. They do offer refinancing options so if you get a high-interest rate at first, after you have shown them you are not a risk, they may be willing to offer you a lower interest rate for your loan.

Loan Option #2 – OneMain Financial

OneMain financia logoOneMain Financial is another great choice for personal loans for average credit. They provide many different types of loans with secured and unsecured options. They will allow you to use your car as collateral for a secured loan. This lender is also a great option for debt consolidation. OneMain does not require you to have a specific credit score to qualify for a loan with them. The average credit score of their borrowers is between 600 and 650. Their loan amounts vary from $1,000 to $20,000. It may seem obvious, but the better your credit score then the more money they are willing to lend you. They tend to hold higher amounts for those with better credit. All the more reason why you should work to improve your credit score.

Interest rates from OneMain Financial range from 16 percent all the way to 35.99 percent. They have flexible repayment periods, which range from 2, 3, 4, or 5 years. They provide you a maximum amount of time to repay the loan. One unique item about OneMain Financial is they have branch offices. You are able to walk into any of their 1600 locations to get help in person. You also have the option to do everything online. This is a great option if you want the ability to talk to a person as needed, but remain online most of the time.

Loan Option #3 – Personify Financial

Personify Personal LoansWhen considering personal loans for average credit, you should keep Personify Financial in mind. They take a holistic approach to looking at your situation and often can fund people other can’t or won’t. They claim to get started all you need is a source of income, a checking account and few additional details. They’ve done over a 140,000 loans and have a TrustPilot rating of 4.5 stars. They also offer a Free FICO score to their customer, which a unique addition to their loan process.

You can use Personify loans for any purpose and they generally have a quick turnaround time. They offer loans that range in amounts from $500 to $10,000.  You can expect a decision in 24 hours and the money in your bank account just as fast. If you need money fast, this may be the right lender for you. The interest rates vary from 35% percent all the way up to rates in the hundreds depending on various factors such as state and the borrowers particular situation. The repayment terms have a wide range. They are available in about 30 states.

You must review the offer carefully and make sure you are comfortable with all the terms. The terms of each offer will be different.

Loan Option #4 – Upstart

Upstart LoansUpstart is another great personal loan for average credit options. You do need a credit score of 580, but they prefer you to be around the 620 area, so you have to be in the middle of the average credit range. They also require you to have $12,000 in annual income. The income requirement is fairly low, so that should not stand in your way of getting approved through Upstart. They do want you to have 45 percent or less of a debt to income ratio. They even are willing to lend money to those who do not have a long credit history. This is a good place to start if you want to build a credit history.

They offer loan amounts that range from $1,000 to $50,000. They offer interest rates ranging from 7.69 percent to 35.99 percent. Obviously, the lower your credit score the closer you will be to the 35.99 percent interest rate. Their loan repayment terms are 3 or 5 years. They do have an origination fee that is somewhere between 1 to 6 percent, but can be up to 8 percent. That is on the higher end, so be aware of that. They do charge you late fees if you are late making a payment. You really want to avoid making late payments anyway. When you are approved for a loan with Upstart, you receive the money in your bank account quickly.

Loan Option #5 – Lending Club

Lendingclub loansWhen considering personal loans for average credit, be sure to consider Lending Club as one of your options. They give you the option to apply online and then your application is submitted to several different lenders that fit your type of borrower. When you receive your offers, you must review them and make a selection. All of the offers may be a little different, so you must be sure to read all the details. You make sure you understand the fine print of your offers. Once you select an offer, the money is deposited directly into your bank account. It may take up to 7 days for the money to go into your account.

Lending Club offers unsecured loans, which means they do not require collateral. The loan amount can go as high as $40,000 for those who qualify. The interest rates are fixed and can be anywhere from 6.95 percent to 35.99 percent. Lending Club does charge an origination fee of anywhere between 1 percent to 6 percent. They do not charge you a penalty if you pay off your loan early.

Loan Option #6 – Rise

Another lender for personal loans for average credit that you should consider is Rise. This type of loan is specifically for those who have bad credit. They do not have a minimum credit score, so just about anyone can be approved for this loan. The loans amounts range from $500 to $5,000. The interest rates start fairly low at 5.99 percent but can get pretty high, as much as 200 percent. They do offer a rate reduction for borrowers that prove they can be responsible by making regular monthly payments for a specific period of time. If you start with a really high interest-rate, then you have the ability to lower it.

Your repayment terms can be as long as 26 months. Rise gives you the option to return all of the money you borrowed without any additional fees, as long as you do so within five days of receiving the money. Rise also provides ways for you to improve your credit. They have an entire library of tools and helpful videos so you can learn to manage your money and build positive credit.

Last But Not Least #7 – OppLoans Personal Loans

opploans logoThere is one last lender that you should consider for personal loans for average credit before you make your choice. Just because this lender is listed last does not mean they should be the last lender to consider. OppLoans Personal Loans has no minimum credit score, so just about anyone can be approved. They do have a few requirements of which you should be aware.

You must have an active bank account that has been active for at least 40 days and you must get your paycheck deposited automatically to your bank account. You must have a minimum gross income from either a job or some type of benefits. They will not consider applicants that are self-employed. The loan amounts they offer range from $500 to $5,000. Their interest rate can be really high ranging from 59 percent to 199 percent. Even though the interest rates are high but they have flexible loan requirements, that some must overlook the interest rate because they have less strict restrictions. They are one of the most preferred lenders because of their willingness to loan money to many borrowers.

For a quick and easy way to find a suitable lender, use Loanry. We use the information you provide us below to get you personalized offers i.e. offers from lenders that may be willing to lend you money. No more wasting time searching yourself or applying where you don’t have a chance. If you get approved, you may have the money in your account by tomorrow.

What Is Average, Anyway?

No one really wants to hear that they are average, right? Well, the same is true for your credit score. You really do not want an average credit score. The Average is another term for fair credit. Really, it means that your credit score is so so. It is surely not great, but it is not the worst, either. However, it hovers just above bad credit, so you want to work on improving that. For now, because you want to know about personal loans for average credit, we focused on that.

You are considered to have fair (average) credit if your credit score ranges from 580 to 669. That seems low, doesn’t it? If it does not, it should. I will be honest, while the top end of that number is ok, the bottom is pretty bad and you are going to have to search a little more for loans when you start getting into those low numbers. You may want to consider looking for personal loans online. They usually have more options for those with not the best credit. Do not let the numbers get you down, there are still some decent options available to you. Even though there are options for average credit, I want to encourage you to work on improving your credit score.

Credit Score Have an Effect on your Personal Loan Interest Rate

You are going to have a harder time getting loans, cars, insurance, and jobs with a low credit score. You are going to pay more money because your credit score determining the personal loan interest rate. But, you can work to improve it. Obtaining a loan might be a way for you to improve your credit score, as long as you make your payments on time each month. You can also work hard to reduce the debt you have and decrease your debt to income ratio. It will take hard work and consistent effort but you can get your credit score above average.

Conclusion

When you want personal loans for average credit, you should make sure you have all of the information you need before you make the decision. In addition to understanding all of the difference between the loan types, you should understand the details of each loan. Each loan has interest rates, origination fees, and loan terms and you should make sure that you understand each of those items. Once you understand them, you can have enough information to make a smart choice. When you are considering personal loans for average credit, one minor detail that you should not overlook is can you afford a loan. When you borrow money, you have to remember you are borrowing it. That means you must repay the loan and that you must be able to repay the loan.

Before you agree to accept the loan, you should take a look at your budget and determine what you can afford to pay. If you cannot repay your loan, then you are putting yourself in a dangerous position. You are setting yourself up to be in default of your loan and negatively impact your credit. If you cannot afford to make regular monthly payments, then you should stop here and consider options other than a personal loan. Make sure you think through all of your options.

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How to Find A Prime Interest Rate Loan?

We all have busy lives and we spend much of them trying to keep up. We are trying to keep up with the chores at home, trying to keep up with all the crazy schedules, and trying to keep up with the bills. Sometimes, we all have moments where any one or all of those things become challenging. Life just happens, and rarely does it happen the way you plan it. You may find yourself in a place where you just cannot keep up with the bills, or there is unexpected expense.

No matter the reason, you might need a personal loan. If you are already feeling behind, needing a loan could potentially be stressful for you. It is helpful when you find out as much as you can about loans, the process and even interest rates. It may even be possible to get a prime interest rate loan, but what does that even mean? Continue reading to find out.

What Is A Personal Loan?

I am going to start with some basic information here. This can be a confusing topic, so I want to make sure that everyone understands the terms and the process. When you understand, that makes it easier for you to make an informed decision. It may not change the outcome, but at least you will know why. A personal loan is when a lender agree to let you borrow money. You then agree to pay it back in regular payment. That is the most simple definition of a personal loan. Let me explain more of the details, because they are important.

A lender can truly be anyone letting you borrow money. It can be a bank, a credit union, an online lender, or simply a friend or member of the family. The lender agrees to allow you to borrow a set amount of money and adds interest to it as a fee for giving you the money. The interest rate depends on your credit score. It is possible to obtain a prime interest rate loan. I will talk more about that a little later. You agree to pay back the money by making regular payments, usually monthly, but they can be any agreed upon interval. You and the lender agree to all the terms, including how long you have to repay the money and both of you sign a loan agreement.

The lender may have some requirements. For example, if it is a bank, the bank may require you to have a bank account with them. Most lenders require you to pay them electronically so they can take the money directly from your bank account at each interval. Lenders vary on what they consider to be default. When you default on a loan, you do not pay the loan. Some lenders feel even one missed payment is considered default and they begin to take action. Other lenders, give you a six month grace period. It is important that you find out all of those details as well as their fee structure before you sign the loan agreement.

What Is Interest Rate?

Here is where it can get somewhat confusing, but I will try to keep it simple. When you borrow money from a lender, you ask for a certain amount. Let us say that amount if $5,000. That $5,000 is the principal of the loan. The lender adds the interest rate to that. It is a percentage, such as 7 percent, of the principal amount. This is how a lender makes money from letting you borrow money. When you repay the loan, you are paying on both the principal and the interest. If you do not pay enough each month to pay the interest, then your debt will not go down.

I mentioned early (and I will mention it again) the interest a lender charges you is based on your credit score. The more of a risk that the lender thinks you are means the higher your interest rate will be. Each lender sets their own interest rate, so rate shopping works to your advantage. There are many lenders available to you, so you do not have to take the first offer you find.

So, there are a few different types of interest rates. There is a fixed rate loan, a variable rate loan, and a prime interest rate loan. A fixed interest rate loan means that your interest rate remains the same the entire time you have the loan. Your early payments are mostly paying the interest of the loan. As you pay more of the loan, you start attacking the principal. If you make any extra payments, that amount goes to the principal. This helps you pay off the loan faster.

A variable interest rate loan is well, variable, and it changes. It changes based on the prime rate. The interest rate changes which changes your payment amount. Often these loans have a locked in rate for a set period of time. After that periods ends, your interest rate can change based upon the prime rate and your payment amount changes. Often these types of loans get people into trouble because the interest rate can increase so much that the payment amount is no longer affordable. These loans are attractive because the interest rate starts lower than a fixed rate loan. Beware, they also rise quickly.

What Is The Prime Interest Rate?

So, what is all this business about the prime rate and what does it mean for you? It means more than you realize. This is why it is important for you to have a basic understanding of the prime interest rate and a prime interest rate loan. I believe there is some confusion around the prime interest rate. Many think it is set by the Federal Government. While there is a slight bit of truth to that, it is not completely accurate.

It breaks down like this…the Federal fund rate is set by the Federal Government. This is considered a benchmark interest rate and it is controlled by the Federal Government. The central bank changes the federal rate and the big name banks follow the direction of the federal rate by setting the prime rate. They are usually in line with each other, but sometimes the prime rate is .25 percent higher than the federal fund rate.

Why does the federal fund rate change? The powers that be at the Federal Reserve keep their eyes on the economy and inflation. Believe it or not, they try to control our spending by changing the federal fund rate. The more money people spend means the economy grows, but so can inflation. The central bank wants to control inflation, so they increase the federal fund rate to try to prevent people from buying items. If the economy is not doing so well, the officials reduce the federal fund rate to encourage more people to spend money. Bet you did not realize how much control the government can have over spending, did you?

Can I Get A Prime Interest Rate?

Yes, it is possible to get a prime interest rate loan, however, it can be difficult. Typically, banks reserve loans with a prime interest rate for their customers with next to perfect credit scores. Remember, this is how a bank makes money off of your loan, by charging you interest. Also, banks determine how much risk that are taking by allowing you to borrow money. If they feel you are a higher risk then they will give you a higher interest rate. This way they can make more money up front in the event you do not pay back the entire loan.

While the Federal Government sets the federal rate to encourage spending, or not, banks set interest rates to protect themselves against your potential risk. When a bank is determining how much interest to attach to your loan, the use their prime interest rate as the base rate. The percentage of the interest rate goes up depending on your credit score.

Consider this, if you have excellent credit, you might be able to get a prime rate loan, which depending on the rates could be anywhere between 5 percent to 8 percent. If you have fair credit, your interest rate could go up to 17 percent to 19 percent. If you have bad credit, your interest rate could climb as high as 28 to 30 percent. It does not take much before that interest rate increases.

How Is Interest Determined?

The interest rate for a loan usually has a few determining factors. Your credit score is only one factor. It is a large factor but there still are some other items to consider. The lender matters. Some lenders are more willing to loan money to those who are not in the best credit score shape. Online lenders and credit unions tend to fall into this category. If you have a long standing relationship with a specific bank, they may be more willing to loan you money because they know you. While you may not be able to get a prime interest rate loan, it is still helpful to do personal loan shopping so that you can find the best loan terms for you.

Another factor that makes a difference in the interest rate you receive are the amount of money you want to borrow. The more money you want to borrow makes you more of a risky proposition for the bank. It is more money they are giving you that you have to repay. The length of time that you are going to take to repay the money also makes a difference in your interest rate. If you take longer to repay, the interest rate may be higher. Your payment may still be lower even with a higher interest rate, so that is something you need to determine.

What Does My Credit Score Have To Do With It?

I have mentioned a few times in this article that your credit score drives the interest rate you receive. It also drives many other things, as well. And it can impact your ability to get a car or a home. It can impact your ability to get insurance, and in some cases, a job. Your interest rate follows you in just about everything you do, It is important that you take care of it. Life can be challenging and it is easy to get over your head in bills. It is important to pay attention to the signs and get in control of it before you lose control. This often means making compromises and decreasing spending. The good news is it only has to be for a short term while you work on improving your financial picture.

Since your credit score is important and you need to take care of it, you should know what it is. You are entitled to one free copy of your credit report per year. You should pull it and review it. Your credit report contains your credit score and a ton of other information. It has your credit history and all of your missed or late payments. Sometimes the information it contains is wrong. When that happens, you want to correct it as soon as possible. You can improve your credit score by making sure the information is correct on your credit report.

While this improvement may not get you a prime interest rate loan, it can certainly get you a better interest rate. Any improvements you can make to your credit score are helpful to you in your everyday life. It takes consistent work to maintain a good credit score, but only one or two late payments cause that number to drop.

Are There Other Kinds Of Loans?

In addition to understanding the details of interest rates, so you can know what a prime interest rate loan, there are various types of personal loans. There are secured and unsecured loans. Depending on which one you choose, it impacts your interest rate. Most personal loans are unsecured loans. This means that there is nothing to back them and the lender takes on a complete risk by lending you money. All they have is your contractural promise to repay the loan. These loans have a higher interest rate because of their risk. Few lenders are willing to give you an unsecured loan at prime if your credit is less than perfect.

Then there are secured loans. This type of loan is less risky for the lender because it has collateral behind it. The most common of these is a mortgage where you and the bank own the home until you pay it off completely. An auto loan is also a secured loan because the vehicle you are purchasing is considered collateral. The lender has a deeper sense of security when it comes to secured loans and often give lower interest rates. There is one important fact to keep in mind with a secured loan. If you default on the loan, the bank will take your collateral. They will take your house or your car.

Should I Get A Personal Loan?

You are the only person that can answer this question. I can help you by telling you the factors that determine is a loan is a smart move for you. I cannot be the one to tell you if you should get a loan. If you cannot afford a loan, you should not obtain one. It does not matter if you are able to get a prime interest rate loan, or not. The key is can you afford to make monthly payments?

A loan is not free money. You have to repay it every month. It is incredibly important to understand how the monthly payment is going to impact you. Often times, we only think about the immediate need, which is the money. We fail to look at the bigger picture, which is I have to pay back this money. There are loan calculators online that you can use to determine if you can afford the loan payment.

These calculators allow you to enter the amount you want to borrow, the interest rate and the term of the loan to give you an estimated monthly payment amount. You can play around by changing any of those factors to see how it impacts your repayment amount. This can guide you when looking for a loan that meets your needs. Not only can you ensure you are borrowing the amount you need, but also verifying that you can repay it.

Where Can I Find A Personal Loan?

There are a number of places where you can find personal loans. Although you may not be able to get a prime interest rate loan from all lenders. Typically, if you are interested in getting a prime rate loan, you need to go to a traditional lender. You should go into an actual bank and talk directly to the lender, if that is the type of loan you want. Or, let Loanry try to help you make sure you’re on the right path.

If you know that your credit is not the best and is going to impact your interest rate, you might want to look into other lenders. You can obtain personal loans online fairly quickly and easily. There was a time when online loans where for those with less than perfect credit, that really is not the case anymore. Online loans have made the process much more attractive to people. You can apply for a loan from the privacy of your own home. It only take minutes and you can upload all documents in the same place. You receive an answer in less than 24 hours and if approved, your money is your bank account in less than 24 hours from approval.

What Else Should I Know About Personal Loans?

One last thing that I would like to note is payday or fast cash loans. These are not a prime interest rate loan at all. These types of loans have high interest rates and high fees. These types of loans must be used carefully. They are not usually the loan of choice, but there are instances where they are helpful. It is all in how you use these types of loans. These loans are for low amounts and must be repaid quickly. If you know that you are able to repay the loan in the short turnaround time, then they may be useful to you.

However, if you are not going to be able to pay back this loan timely, do not take on one of these loans. You will get yourself in a worse position if you obtain one of these types of loans but cannot pay it back. And you will be hit with high fees and penalties. You should think carefully before you opt to take out a payday or fast cash loan.

Budgets Scare Me

If we are being honest, budgets scare most people. If you are the type of person who sees a budget as some form of control over you, then it might be challenging. However, if you change your perception about a budget, it should be easier for you to manage. A budget is a way for you to understand the money you have. If helps you gain a clear picture of your expenses, income, and how they relate to one another. The easiest way for you to gain control of your budget is to use a website to help you put it together.

These sites give you forms where you fill in the necessary figures to list out all of your expenses. You can see how much you are spending and where. You also can see how much you are spending compared to what you earn. I know that is the scary part for most of us, but it is also helpful. If you do not see where you are spending money, you can never get in control of it. Once you get your budget set, you can focus on reducing your debt which may make it easier for you to obtain a prime interest rate loan.

I Do Not Save Enough Money

Once you see your spending in black and white, it becomes clear fairly quickly how much money you spend. I am willing to bet it will surprise you. When you just spend money without any controls in place, your spending can be rampant. Once you see it, you quickly want to get it in check. It may also become clear to you that you do not save enough money.

If you are interested in gaining control of your credit score so you can be eligible for a prime interest rate loan, this is where you start. You must reduce your spending and take that money and apply it to your debt. This helps you decrease your debt, decrease your debt to income ratio and increase your chances of getting a prime interest rate loan.

The first step is to remove anything you spend money on that you do not use. Gym membership anyone? How many of us have them and do not use them? I hate to admit that I am one of those people. I know I need to cancel it, I just have not yet. Do not be like me…cancel that membership. Once you do that, take a look at all subscription service that you have. Do you really need them? If so, do you need them as often as you are receiving them? Can you take control and manually have items sent instead of it being automatic? All of these things can help you control your spending. Remember every dollar you save, you can use towards paying down your debt.

Those are easy changes to make and once you make those, it is time to look at the more difficult changes. The next place to look when trying to cut spending is when you spend money on eating out. This includes all types of eating out, not just dinner. When you look at the money you are spending out, be sure to look at coffee shops, snacks and the like. You should try to reduce your spending on eating out by half. Once you see the savings, you may be more willing to cut spending.

Conclusion

I have given a lot of information all centered on a prime interest rate loan. The truth of it is that a prime interest rate loan is difficult to obtain, even for those with the best credit. Your goal should be to decrease your spending, decrease your debt so that you can focus on improving your credit score. When you have improved your credit score, in the event you want or need a personal loan, you can get the best interest rate possible, even if it is not a prime interest loan.

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Personal Loan Cost: Breaking Down Interest Rates with an Example

Sometimes in life, you just need a little extra money. When you do not have time to earn it with a job, you might turn to your credit cards. If that does not cover it, you take out a personal loan.

But, wait. A personal loan? Aren’t those tough to get?

Yes and no.

It can be hard to qualify for a personal loan if you have little to no credit. It also makes it tough if you have bad credit.

That does not mean that you cannot qualify for a loan. It does mean that you will need to look a little harder and apply for a few more loans than someone with excellent credit.

Even those with bad credit can obtain a loan. Okay, not a prime loan, but a loan.

What does it mean for a loan to be prime?

Prime refers to the interest rate of the loan. A prime interest rate refers to the lower, very desirable interest rates.

These interest rates go to prime borrowers. The term prime borrower refers an individual with excellent or very good credit. Their credit score is in the high 700s or low to mid 800s.

Individuals with scores beneath that level receive sub-prime interest rates.

The term sub-prime interest rates refers to the higher interest rates that go to individuals with good, fair and poor credit. Those individuals typically have a credit score of 719 or less.

Determining Personal Loan Cost

Typically, the average annual percentage rate ranges between 10 and 28 percent. These rates change each year. The above rates are for 2019. In some years, they drop as low as five percent. On the other hand, some years they rise all the way to 36 percent.

Other stuff goes into which interest rate you get. It is more than how creditworthy you are. Your credit score does mean a lot, but these other items also go into the formula used to determine your interest rate:

  • the length of the loan,
  • how much money you are asking for,
  • the lending institution.

The greater the amount of money you need, the higher your APR will be. The same is true of requesting a long loan term. That translates to higher risk for the bank because more people typically default on larger loans and those that take a long period of time to repay.

Typical Loan Interest Rates

With really terrific credit and the right loan length plus loan amount, you could currently land a rate as low as 2.9 percent from Backed. You can do almost as well with LightStream which offers a 3.99 percent interest rate when you set up auto pay for your monthly payments. Those rates aren’t typical. You should not expect to land a rate like that. Personal loan cost varies widely.

EXAMPLES

If you have really great credit and the stars are in alignment, you can score an interest rate of 5.99 percent or 6.99 percent. Best Egg, FreedomPlus, Marcus, Payoff, Peerform, PersonalLoans.com, PNC Bank and Upgrade all offer the 5.99 percent interest rate to their best applicants. The 6.99 percent rate you’ll find at Discover Personal Loans, Earnest, Santander Bank and TD Bank.

While many banks and credit unions offer competitive interest rates, you will typically receive the lowest interest rates at online lenders. Online lenders also typically prove more amenable to applicants with lower credit scores. Some will loan to people with scores as low as 580 though the personal loan cost will be higher.

Apply to credit unions that offer alternative lending programs. These typically offer low interest rates to individuals with poor credit scores. As I mentioned in a previous article, these credit unions leverage their not-for-profit status to charge lower interest rates than banks. Next to online lenders, credit unions are the most likely institution to loan you money.

You can put it all on a credit card, if you happen to have an amazing credit score. This could land you a zero percent balance transfer credit card. So long as you can make the payments, you can save money on the interest while the introductory rate remains good.

The Importance of Your Credit Score

I cannot overemphasize how vital your healthy credit score is to you obtaining a good interest rate. While a great score can get you an interest rate in the low, single digits, people with those awesome scores are pretty rare. Most people have fair to poor credit. That’s because as a country, the US has become addicted to credit cards. Our habits, like our blue jeans, have traveled to other countries and now, people the world over struggle with credit burdens.

Since most people have fair to poor credit, they will qualify for the higher interest rate loans. Typically, the interest rates they get fall between 18 percent to 36 percent.

Some lending institutions will turn down applicants with no credit history or a credit score of less than 580 for a conventional personal loan. If this happens, turn to a local credit union or a nonprofit financial assistance organization. Skip the loan sharks and the payday loans. The APR for both borders on ridiculous. Avoid accepting a loan with an interest rate that you cannot afford to pay back.

Personal Loan Cost: Interest Rates by Credit Score
Credit Description Credit Score Interest Rate Range
Excellent 720 – 850 10.3 – 12.5%
Good 680 – 719 13.5 – 15.5%
Average/Fair 640 – 679 17.8 – 19.9%
Poor 300 – 639 28.5 – 32.0%

Personal Loan Costs: Determining What You Can Afford

The smart way to apply for personal loans is to know exactly what you can afford first. That means developing a budget, if you do not already have one and sticking to it. Your budget lets you see what you have on a monthly basis to repay the loan. It has to be enough to cover both the interest payments and the principal every month, ideally with a small cushion. The great thing is that you can actually raise your credit score by taking out the personal loan you need, then repaying it in a timely fashion.

When you apply for personal loans, you have to know how the interest rates affect the amount you pay back overall and on a monthly basis. If you apply and only receive interest rates that are too high for you to make the payments, you need to consider other options. You may have to wait to take out a loan or you may need to acquire it from a private source.

How Do You Know How Much Loan You Can Afford?

Since it is to banks’ and credit unions’ advantage when you repay your loan on time, they provide free tools to help you plan for taking out a loan. These include loan calculators. These vary in complexity and detail. While you might begin your planning phase of your loan search with an easy to use calculator that uses basic information, it is to your advantage to then move on to the complex, more detailed calculator after the fact.

Personal Loan Calculator – Easy to Use

BankRate’s APR Calculator: You need only three simple numbers for this calculator. You can quickly broad brush a few loan scenarios.

Personal Loan Calculator – Complex

Finder’s Personal Loan Cost Calculator: Finder’s much more complex calculator requires between seven and 10 inputs, but it provides you very exact information that lets you build an accurate picture of what you can afford. After using it, you will know what interest rates and loan terms you can accept and still expect to pay them off on time. Taking out too large a loan places you in jeopardy of not being able to repay it.

Lower Your Personal Loan Cost

You can increase your likelihood of loan acceptance and obtain a better interest rate with a few techniques. Some involve your loan search while others involve agreements with the financial lender.

  • Use a co-signer. Backed offers extremely affordable personal loan interest rates, but it requires the borrowers to use a co-signer to qualify for them.
  • Use comparison shopping tools to ease your loan search.
  • Take a second job or side gig. Use the pay stubs from the job to enhance your loan application.
  • Pay down your credit cards while you search for your loan. The less credit you have out, the more likely you are to obtain a favorable set of loan terms.

I talk as if your loan search will take some time. It probably will. Only the tiny percentage of people with exemplary credit can typically qualify for the loan they need on the first try. You should expect to shop around for a loan for at least a few weeks. That includes your creation of a budget, research into interest rates you can afford, the actual loan applications and the loan approval process.

Sure, there are online loans you can obtain and they advertise they will deposit the loan amount directly into your bank account within 24 hours. Some say 48 hours. Those loans prove some of the most costly. They have extremely high interest rates.

Your goal should be to obtain a personal loan that costs a reasonable amount with a loan term that makes it comfortable for you to pay back. Certainly, if you have to have the money, you may have to take what you can get, but you should make the concerted effort to obtain a conventional loan first.

Meeting with a Loan Officer to Reduce Personal Loan Cost

If you have made your loan applications and the interest rates your potential financial lenders provided turn out to be more than you can afford, you still have some more options to reduce your personal loan cost.

Ask for a meeting with a loan officer. During this meeting, the officer will consider your employment status, history and proof of income. They will also consider the employment type: full-time, part-time or self-employment. You will need to submit proof of these income streams in the form of pay stubs or W2s. Typically, they want to see at least six months. You will also need to provide your last tax return.

Some lenders require a minimum household annual income. If you do not meet this criteria, there is no reason to apply. It will only hurt your credit score by creating a hard hit to your credit report, officially referred to as a “credit inquiry.” Depending on the lender, the minimum ranges between $20,000 to $40,000. While credit card applications often take your word for it or reference your credit report, the same is not true of financial lenders for personal loans. Meeting the income minimum does not lower your personal loan cost. It just means you can apply for the loan. You will need to submit proof of your annual income to the lender.

Reducing Personal Loan Cost: Finding the Best Rates

You can use websites called loan malls to make finding viable lenders easier. Two of these are Loanry.com and Cashry.com. Neither site makes loans. Neither site is a financial lender. Both sites simply work like a shopping mall for loans, helping you find personal loans online easily.

Each site lists lenders that make personal loans. Loanry essentially may connect you with lenders that offer more traditional, conventional loans. Cashry focuses  more closely on lenders which make cash loans with a quick turnaround. Which site you use depends upon the type of loan you need.

Loanry works better for finding loans in larger amounts. Cashry specializes in small cash loans and fast loans. Both are effective for personal loan shopping.

At both, you will complete a short, succinct form that requests very basic financial and identity information. This creates a soft inquiry to your credit report. It does not “ding” your credit, so there is no effect on your score. We also partnered with Fiona to make sure we connect you only to reputable lenders.

And now what?

From this information, the company searches the lenders in its database for those that match your needs. These lenders offer you the closest match to your needs. If you meet the lenders requirements you may get the loan you need. While Loanry and Cashry do not make loans and they do not promise you will get a loan from a lender at their mall, they can make the loan shopping process much easier.

It not only saves you time to use these loan malls, it saves your credit score. The soft inquiry that the loan mall makes does not appear on your credit report nor does it affect your score. It does draw enough information to determine which lenders would be most likely to extend a loan to you.

Using these items to find potential lenders can help reduce personal loan cost. It makes sense to use every Internet tool available and all the credit score enhancing techniques possible to reduce your personal loan cost. Why pay more? It makes no sense. As with anything in life, common sense tells you to look around and find the best deal. This is especially true for finding a personal loan.

What Goes Into Your Credit Score?

Credit score basicsYour credit score and your monthly income comprise the two largest contributing factors to whether and which loan you obtain. While financial institutions examine a number of data points when deciding whether to loan you money, your credit score carries the most weight.

So, what goes into those three little digits that make or break your ability to take out a loan?

The credit reporting agencies look at your credit history, typically going back seven years, your employment status, your income, your extended credit, the number of credit inquires to your account, your payments schedules and whether or not you paid on time. All of that feeds into a formula that spits out a three digit number that defines you as a person to every financial institution.

You aren’t a nice, hardworking individual with three kids and a mortgage. You are 785. To them, that says you do pretty well paying your bills on time. You probably are not late with your payments. And, you might not have made the 800s because you and your spouse took out quite a few credit cards and maxed a few, maybe most, out. You always make the payments though even if you only make the minimums. The bank looks at the credit score, your employment and your debt-to-income ratio.

There’s a classic rock song by Bob Seger that says, “I’m not a number.” Ah, but you are to the banks. You are 785 or you are 665 or 540. Those three digits say so much to the loan officer who sees them. They know what goes into the formula calculations, so they know what is up when they see the number.

They also know that the credit reporting agencies update the number every month. Every month, each credit card or financial institution with whom you have a loan reports to them if you made your payment, how much you paid and when you paid it. They know if you are late by even a day. They are kind of like Santa Claus or God in that sense.

Improve Your Credit Score Fast

7 tips to increase your credit score

That is the bad news and the good news. Just as the bank knows that your credit score reflects an accurate and timely picture of your finances, you can alter the score quickly with a few steps.

Do Not Be Late with Your Payments

First, make your payments on time. Seriously, that’s it. Poof. Your score goes up. Every month you do this, your score goes up. In six months of this, you can increase your credit score by 30 to 50 points.

Check Your Credit Report Regularly

Second, check your credit report. The score plugs into bank formulas for easy calculation. The financial institution also gets a lengthy report that shows exactly which lenders have extended you money and how much and when you paid late or on time.

You can get this same report for free. You read it very carefully and make sure that all the information on it is absolutely correct. Anything that looks hinky or incorrect, you report to the agency. This requires filling out a rather lengthy form online, signing it in blood and providing proof you are really you. I am kidding about the blood. It does take a while to complete, but it is worth it because once you report the inaccuracy the agency investigates. If the information is genuinely wrong, the agency removes it from your report. That typically increases your score.

What kind of things should you question? Definitely any accounts you see that you do not recognize. Yes. This actually happens. Identity theft occurs frequently. You should check your score at least every six months to ensure that your report remains accurate.

Also, check your payment history on each credit card. You might see a report of a late payment that you can prove was made on time. A few years ago, one of the major credit card banks got into major trouble because it was reporting consumers as late because they made a telephone or online payment after 5 pm in the time zone of the main office of the bank. This did not go over well with the government and that bank has since paid reparations of late fees it charged its customers who did, indeed, make their payments on the day they were due. The way the bank was caught was consumers like you reporting to credit reporting agencies the incorrect information which threw up a red flag.

Consolidate

Third, consolidate those accounts. You can pay them off much more quickly if you consolidate using either a consolidation loan or a non-profit agency that offers bundling of your credit accounts in exchange for making the payments through them.

Dave Ramsey quote

Explaining the Debt-to-Income (DTI) Ratio

Your debt-to-income (DTI) ratio also contributes to your personal loan cost. Financial lenders use this to evaluate applicants. The DTI ratio refers to the amount of debt you carry compared to your pre-tax monthly income. This includes all debt, so your house payment or rent counts. Lenders like individuals with a DTI of less than 45 percent. That lets them know that you have plenty of disposable income.

Let’s say you have a monthly pre-tax income of $4,000. Housing, plus your other loans and credit cards comprise a monthly total debt payment of $1,200. Divide your debt payment by your pre-tax income to get your DTI.

1200.00/4000.00 = .30 or 30 percent

Final Thoughts

Whatever the reason you need the loan, whether it is an emergency medical procedure, a vehicle purchase, your wedding or something else entirely, bringing down your personal loan cost makes good financial sense. With a little work, you can obtain the funds you need at a loan term and interest rate you can easily repay. Start by creating your budget, then conducting research on interest rates you can afford. Finally, use Cashry or Loanry to find potential lenders, then apply. You might need to request a meeting with a local loan officer, but this can help you get a better interest rate and that, ultimately, creates a more amenable personal loan cost.

 

Loanry

What Are Personal Loans for Fertility Treatments?

Only 15 states in the country require insurers to offer some coverage for an infertility diagnosis and treatment. The average cost of a single fertility treatment cycle can be over $10,000. With this information, having children can seem financially out of reach. In order to make dreams of having children a reality, many couples will consider taking out personal cash loans in order to cover the cost. Since a personal loan can be used for just about anything, with little restrictions on how you use the money, you can use one to pay for treatment.

Cost of Fertility Treatment

One of the most common fertility treatments is IVF. The average cost for a single IVF treatment can run between $12,000 and $14,0000. Not everyone gets pregnant through the first treatment cycle or at all. Those who go ahead with IVF treatment should plan to pay for at least two cycles but there is no way to predict how many cycles any one woman may need.

The price of a cycle can range. There are also additional costs that not everyone will think about. If you add in the cost of lab work and medicine, one cycle can also easily add up to $20,000. The medicine cost can give many patients sticker shock. The issue is further exacerbated by the fact that the type of medicine you may need is unpredictable and can be dependent on your age or the treatment option your provider selects. Many patients shop for medications on their own and the price can range from $2,000 to $6,000 per treatment cycle and vary from one pharmacy to the next.

If a patient is lucky enough to have some insurance coverage for fertility costs then the cost of the medicines alone can sometimes meet the policy maximums for treatment. There may also be the cost of genetic testing, which can cost an additional $5,000 to $7,000. Many people want to do genetic testing to see if the embryos are healthy and to give the highest chance of success. When pricing out an IVF cycle, don’t forget to take all the costs into consideration, which include the price of medicines and whether or not you will need genetic testing.

What Is a Personal Loan?

A personal loan is when a lender lends you money that you must pay back monthly for a set period of time. The lender can be any type of lender. There are certain qualifications that you must meet and you will need to provide some documentation. When you take out a fixed-rate personal loan, you will have the same payment throughout the life of the loan. If you take out a loan with a variable interest rate then it has a lower starting interest rate that could increase over time.

Should You Get Personal Loans for Fertility Treatments?

If you aren’t covered for fertility treatments under your insurance then getting a personal loan can seem like a good option. It’s always a good idea for potential borrowers to weigh the costs associated with getting a loan and consider all their financial options. Some loans can carry high interest rates, especially if your credit isn’t that great. You will need to ask yourself if you are able to afford the monthly payments along with the cost of pregnancy, childbirth, and a newborn.

Ideally, you should try to pay for some of your treatment with your own savings but it can be hard to foot the entire bill. If you are going to search for personal loans to pay for fertility treatment, you should search for the lowest rates. It’s also advisable to look for treatment and prescription discounts to help offset the cost of treatment so if you do have to take out a loan, it’s not for as much.

Where to Get Personal Loans for Fertility Treatments

You may be able to get a loan directly through your healthcare provider. If that’s not the case, you can go to banks and online lenders for a traditional personal loan.

At the Medical Provider’s Office

There are some finance companies that will work directly with medial providers to have in-house lending solutions for patients. This lets you apply directly at the doctor’s office for financing. Some of these companies provide loans for a variety of healthcare needs, while others focus solely on fertility treatments. The loans will act the same way as a traditional personal loan and you will have monthly payments over the course of the loan. There can be prepayment penalties associated with the loan so check with the provider.

Personal Loans Online

If your healthcare provider doesn’t work with a financing company, there are plenty of options for personal loans online. You can find fertility loans online but you can also apply for traditional personal loans. If you have excellent credit, it’s possible that you can qualify for a single-digit interest rate. Fertility loans function in the same way as personal loans but can only be used for fertility treatments. Most personal loan providers will allow you to check your rate online without a negative impact to your credit score so you can shop around for the best rate.

Credit Union or Bank

Your credit union or bank will have personal loan options. You may even get a rate discount if you are paying back the loan through a qualified savings or checking account. Some banks offer secured loans, which will use something as collateral. Secured loans can come with longer terms, larger loan amounts, and lower interest rates. Credit unions and banks may have some restrictions on how to use the funds from a loan so you need to see if fertility treatment is eligible. Most will have online applications to help speed up the process.

Other Options to Pay for Fertility Treatments

While personal loans can be a good option for fertility treatment for many couples, there may be other options for medical financing.

Health Savings Account

An HSA is a savings account with tax advatanges that will allow you to contribute pre-tax dollars to a fund that you can use to pay for out-of-pocket medical expenses. If you have a high-deductible health insurance plan, you should definitely have an HSA. If you have saved up enough funds in your account, you can pay for treatment. There are limits on how much you can contribute each year but it can still be a good option. Flexible spending accounts, or FSAs, can also be used.

Advantages of HSA for fertility treatment

Home Equity Loan

If you have a home and there is some decent equity built up then you can get a home equity loan or a home equity line of credit to pay for treatments. There are some risks involved. If you aren’t able to repay the loan then you are putting your homeownership in danger. You should only take out this loan if you know you are able to repay it without any problems.

Credit Card

Paying for fertility treatments on a credit card may not be the best option due to high interest rates. If you are able to get a 0% interest credit card and pay for the charges before the promotion period ends then using a credit card can be a good choice. You will need to pay off the balance before the promotional period ends in order to make it worth it.

Fertility Grants

Foundations and organizations to help with fertility treatments can offer fertility grants. Some of the grants come in set amounts that you can use toward your treatment, while others cover the full cost of a procedure, such as an IVF cycle. Even if grants don’t cover the full cost of the procedure, they don’t have to be repaid, which can help you supplement your other financing options. In order to do this, you need to fill out an application and likely pay an application fee. The organization reviews the application and may perform a background check to let you know if you get the funds. Each program will have its own guidelines and rules so do your research before applying for any grants.

Payment Plan with a Provider

Instead of taking out a loan to pay for treatment, you can work out a plan with your medical provider. This may be able to help you save on interest costs and you can have some recourse if there are billing or clerical errors for treatment, which can be common. You may also get a discount if you pay with cash. Each medical provider will have different options so be sure to check what is available.

Borrowing from Family

Borrowing from family members can be the best decision or the worst decision. It will depend on your relationship with the family member you are getting the money from and your ability to pay them back on time. If you miss a payment to a family member then you won’t ruin your credit score or lose your house but the tension can lead to bickering and bitterness. It can cost you the relationship. However, if you have a good relationship with the family member and he or she has the cash to lend then it could be an option.

Medical Loans

Medical loans can be personal loans or credit cards, which are specially marketed for health care. You can use some medical credit cards and loans only at certain providers, while others are less restrictive. They can be offered to pay for a variety of different medical needs, including fertility treatments. You cannot use every medical loan for fertility treatment so you shouldn’t waste time applying for one you can’t use. Medical loans may offer a 0% interest rate for a set period. Another advantage of medical loans is you aren’t going to be tempted to use the money for other expenses. You need to read the fine print on these loans. What happens if you are late on a payment? What happens if you take longer to repay the loan than the period you have for zero interest?

Borrowing from a Retirement Fund

Borrowing from a 401k or IRA may be possible with a hardship withdrawal. Whether this is possible will have to do with your particular plan, your ability to pay it off, and your assumed job security. You may also need to prove you have a need, which may require sharing your medical bills with HR and you may not want to disclose you have infertility issues to your employer.

Other disadvantages of borrowing from a retirement fund can include getting hit with penalties, having to pay taxes on the borrowed funds, and the risk of losing your job before you pay back the loan. It can be possible to borrow the money without paying penalties or fees but navigating the rules can be tricky. Your expenses usually need to occur in the same year you borrow the money. If you borrow money in 2019 to pay off credit card debt you got from fertility treatments in 2018, you could end up being penalized.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Different Financing Options for Fertility Treatment

With so many different financing options for fertility treatment, it helps to know the advantages and disadvantages of each one so you can make the right decision.

Personal Loans

Since personal loans come with fixed interest rates and a monthly payment that is predictable many think it is the best option to cover fertility treatment. When you have a personal loan, you will know exactly how much interest you have throughout the life of the loan and when you will pay off the loan. Another advantage is that you may also qualify for a lower interest rate depending on your creditworthiness. However, some loans will charge origination fees and you may need a good or excellent credit score to qualify. You will also have to borrow a fixed amount of money, which means you may borrow more or less than you need. Since the cost of each treatment cycle varies, this can be a big disadvantage.

Home Line of Credit

With a home line of credit, you can borrow exactly what you need to cover the expenses as you go and these come with low APRs since your home is used as collateral. However, you may not know your exactly monthly payment until you are done borrowing money, which can make it harder to budget. You are also putting up your home as collateral so you need to make sure you can repay the loan. Some lines of credit may come with adjustable interest rates, which can mean it’s harder to calculate the monthly payment and the interest cost.

Credit Cards

Credit cards do come with some advantages since you only borrow what you need as you go. They can be convenient to use and some will give you rewards for every dollar you spend. They also don’t charge an origination fee like personal loans, but there can be some that charge annual fees. Credit cards can come with high interest rates that make borrowing more costly than other options. You may not have a predictable monthly payment since the balance will change as you charge more during your treatment. Credit cards can often tempt people to rack up more debt.

How to Borrow Responsibly and Get the Best Rate for Fertility Treatment

Before you borrow money for fertility treatments, you need to prepare your finances and know the ins and outs in order to get the best deal.

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Check Your Credit Score

Generally speaking, if you want to qualify for personal loans, you will need a good or excellent credit score. Some lenders can give personal loans to those who have a credit score as low as 600 but the lower the credit score, the higher interest rate you will have to pay. The first step should be finding out where your credit score stands and if there are quick ways to improve it.

Set a Treatment Budget

You should speak with your fertility clinic to find out all the different costs you will need to pay. Get an itemized list and add up your total. While you may not be able to get an estimate of everything, try your best to get as close as possible to the final total. You should then figure out how much you can pay yourself and how much you will need to borrow. The best way to save on fertility treatment is to only borrow what you need and not any more.

Apply for Loans Online

The fastest way to find the best deal and to compare different loan options is online. Personal loan shopping online can be quick and easy and you are able to compare several different offers in one place.

Read All the Fine Print

No matter what type of funding you go with, you need to do your due diligence. For example, if you are taking out a personal loan then you need to read all the fine print and understand the terms and conditions before you sign. This can include understanding your payment terms, your interest rate, the fees associated with the loan, and if there is a prepayment penalty.

Set Up a Realistic Payment Plan

Before you sign, you need to make sure you are able to afford the amount without jeopardizing your financial life. If your fertility treatment is successful, you will be juggling these payments along with the cost of having a newborn. The best way to set yourself up for financial success is to only borrow what you need and get the lowest interest rate possible. If you want to have a lower monthly payment then it can be worth it to choose a loan that has a longer repayment timeline. With this option, you will pay more interest in the long run but your monthly payments can be easier to afford.

What to Watch Out for When Getting Personal Loans

As part of doing your research for personal loans to know you are getting the best rate and the best option for you, it helps to know what to look out for. One main thing you should pay attention to is an excessive fee. Many lenders can charge an application fee but the fees can add up. They may also offer you loan insurance, which would cover your personal loan payment if something happens to you or in the event of death. While insurance may help with peace of mind that you aren’t leaving family members in a bind, it can also come at a cost. Always make sure that the lender is legitimate and is a licensed business in your state.

What Do You Do if You Have Bad Credit?

Those who have bad credit may not qualify for personal loans and often will opt for fast loans. However, these loans will usually have very high interest rates. These loans can often be seen as predatory because of the high interest and the terms. If you do take out these types of loans, it’s best to pay them off as soon as possible. If you’re looking for personal loans for fertility treatments but aren’t able to qualify, you may want to spend some time working on your credit before applying in order to get the best rate.

Final Thoughts

Personal loans for fertility treatments can help with the high costs of treatments and IVF. There are plenty of benefits of getting personal loans and you may be able to get these loans from different locations. Whether or not personal loans for fertility treatments work for you will depend on your unique situation and your other options for financing your treatment. There are different ways to finance treatment but they also come with their own advantages and disadvantages. If you do decide to get a personal loan to help with the cost, you need to make sure that you are able to work it into your monthly budget and having a monthly budget before you apply is a must. There are certain things to look out for, including high fees.

Loanry

9 Popular Lenders Offering Personal Installment Loans

Loans can be an extremely helpful tool to change your financial situation. That is, if you choose a good loan and handle it responsibly. Otherwise, the loan can make your financial situation even worse, and that is not what anyone wants. Personal installment loans are often one of the best loan options to choose if you meet the requirements. They can do a lot for you without breaking the bank. In this article, we are going to learn how they can help you, how they can hurt you, what you might need to apply, 9 popular personal loan lenders, and more so you can make an educated choice.

What is a Personal Installment Loan?

A personal installment loan is pretty simple to understand. In fact, they might be the most straightforward type of loan available. You likely know that the word installment means doing something in multiple steps or phases. That is how a personal installment loan works.

If you are approved, the lender will give you the full amount of the loan upfront, minus any fees. Then, you repay the loan in multiple payments, or installments. The payments are set, scheduled payments that are determined by calculating the interest, adding it to the total, then spreading it over the length of the repayment term.

In another words a $1,000 loan with a 10% interest rate would cost the borrower a total of $1,100 ($1,000 loan + $100 interest). If the repayment term is 12 months, payments would come out to $91.67 per month. After your 12th payment, the loan, any fees, and interest is repaid.

9 Popular Personal Loan Lenders

There are many lenders that exist, and they are from all over the place. If it would be possible to line up every lender that exists, it would appear never-ending. That is because there are numerous people who need loans and numerous people willing to make those loans. This can be a great thing for borrowers as they have so many options.

On the flip side, too many options can be terribly overwhelming. Have you ever stood on one aisle in a retail store trying to choose which cereal, crackers, pizza, deodorant, or any other item they sell? I have, and I can say that it is not enjoyable. Overstimulation can cause the brain to shut down.

We want to help you prevent that. So we put together a list of nine popular personal loan lenders for you to consider. They offer personal loans online to make it simpler to apply. There are options here for different credit scores and types.

Lending Club
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Lending Club is a peer-to-peer lending service and is a favorite among many. The requirements are a bit difficult for a lot of people, though, as the minimum credit score is 600. The trouble is that at any given point in time, between 1/3 and ½ of American citizens have credit scores lower than that. You also need a credit history of at least 3 years and a debt to income ratio of 40% or less.

They do have loan amounts that range from $1,000 to $40,000 with interest rates ranging widely between 6.95% – $35.89%, and repayment terms run 3 to 5 years. There is usually a loan origination fee that is 1% – 6% of the loan total. If you happen to run into some trouble paying your loan due to some extenuating circumstances, you might qualify for their hardship plan. Overall, if you qualify for Lending Club, it is a good loan option.

Prosperprosper

Prosper is another peer-to-peer lending service that requires a pretty good credit score- 640 or higher. They also require that there be less that seven credit inquiries for the last six months, and a debt to income ratio of 50% or less. You can borrow between $2,000 and $35,000 with interest rates from 5.99% to 35.99%, and repayment terms of up to five years. There are no prepayment fees, but there is a origination fee of up to 4.95%. If approved, it takes some time to receive the money so it is not a good option for an emergency loan.

Kwikcash

Kwikcash is another highly ranked option for our selection of the 9 popular personal loan lenders. They have very limited requirements for credit score and offer a wide spectrum of personal loan products. Loan amounts range from $500 to $3500 depending on your state of residence. The lowest rates and higher loan amounts are reserved for customers with excellent credit. On the other hand, they also have an available hardship plan, and receiving your loan is a fast process. Kwikcash is known for their integrity and have been ranked with 4.5 stars by trust pilot. 

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Avant’s qualification requirements are a little less stringent. They accept credit scores as low as 580, and they require that you have at least $20,000 in gross income. The loan amount options range from $2,000 – $35,000 with interest rates ranging from 9.95% to 35.99%. The repayment terms range between 2 and 5 years. There is an administrative fee of 4.75%. However, there are no prepayment fees and they offer a refinancing option.

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OneMain Financial is less stringent when it comes to approvals. There is no stated minimum credit score, minimum credit history, or minimum annual income requirements. It seems to be based on case by case. The loans range from $1,500 to $20,000. A huge downside is the interest rates that start at 18% and go up to 35.99%.

There may be an origination fee according to your state, and available repayment terms are 2 – 5 years. It earns its place as one of the popular personal loan lender. It is because it provides fast funding and gives some who have no alternative a chance. Additionally, they are online and have physical locations.

OppLoans Personal LoansРезултат слика за opp loans

OppLoans has no specified minimum credit score required. They do require that you have a bank account that has been active at least 40 days, a minimum monthly gross income from employment or benefits, and have your pay on direct deposit. If you are self-employed, they will not consider you.
Available loan amounts range from $500 to $5,000. The APR is ridiculously high, ranging between 59% and 199%. However, as there requirements are not quite so stringent, they make loans more attainable. That fact keeps them as on of the popular personal loan lenders.

SoFiРезултат слика за sofi loans

SoFi is the next lender on the list, but it is definitely for those with higher credit score. Applicants need a score of at least 680, though I was not able to find any income requirements. Loans amounts range from $5,000 to $100,000 with APR from 5.99% to 16.99%. Repayment terms range from 24 – 84 months. The interest rates are great for those who qualify.

UpstartРезултат слика за upstart loans

If you have a credit score of at least 620, an annual income of at least $12,000, and less than 45% debt to income ratio, Upstart might approve you. In fact, they consider borrowers that are completely new to credit. They offer loans ranging from $1,000 – $50,000, APR from 7.69% to 35.99%,  and repayment terms from three to five years. There is a possible origination fee of up to 8% and a late fee if you miss your payment date. Once approved, funding goes through rather quickly.

RISE Personal LoansРезултат слика за RISE personal loans

If the other popular personal loan lenders do not work out, you might consider a RISE personal loan. They are for those with bad credit. So there really is no set minimum credit score, at least not that is shared. I was also not able to find any minimum income requirements. However, the loan amounts range from $500 to $5,000 with an APR of 5.99% to 16.99%, and repayment terms up to 26 months.

If you’re thinking about finding a credible, trustworthy lender, Loanry can help you. Put in your information below and see if you will get any offers from potential lenders.

What Popular Personal Loan Lenders Want to See

What does it take to get approved for a personal installment loan? The truth is that there is no formula to use that will let you know if you will get approved, and that is a good thing. Every person is unique and so is their financial situation. You do not want to be judged for someone else’s financial mishaps.

At the same time, though, it can be a little frustrating to have no straight answers here. I remember a time that we wanted to get approved for a mortgage loan, but the lender said that they could not approve us at that time. The representative said, “If you could just open a couple of accounts, wait a few months, get some payments going, then maybe we can approve you.”

Maybe? Some? A couple? A few?  When I asked the loan representative for some more information, she said, “Well, I can’t really give you specifics, but if you work on those things, you’ll probably get approved.” Thanks for the clarity. Without specifics, though, you might still be able to get a basic idea of whether you will be approved. There are a few common factors that lenders look at to determine if you are too risky to loan money to. These are the following:

-Credit Score/FICO Score

Different popular personal loan lenders require different credit scores. I can say that the lowest accepted credit score I have seen is about 530, but that does not mean that some popular personal loan lenders will not work with less. Do not let a low score keep you from applying for loans because you really never know what will happen until you try.

FICO Score Factors

-Credit History

In order for a person to get a good feeling of your propensity to repay, they will popular personal loan lenders will analyze your credit history. They pay attention to how much you have borrowed in the past and how much of that you have repaid so far. Getting a loan with good credit is not as problematic as when your credit history is not great. The type of debt that makes up your credit mix is also important.

One way to help you keep an eye on your credit and determine what needs to be changed, you might use a free service such as Credit Karma. The company alerts you of any changes to your credit. They also tell you what steps you need to improve it.

-Debt to Income Ratio

Popular personal loan lenders want to know that you have enough money coming in to make your payment, so they check your debt to income ratio. This is basically a comparison of how much you have coming in, to how much you have going out.

If they are too close to one another, you will likely be denied for the loan. You can calculate yours by adding together all of your debt and monthly bills, then divide it by your gross monthly income (before deductions). A good debt to income ratio is about 35% or less.

-Income

I am going to go ahead and say that if you do not have some sort of income coming in, lenders probably will not loan you any money. If you are out of work injured or sick for a short time, or some other extenuating factors occur, they may still consider your application. However, if there is no money coming in now or in the near future, it is safe to assume that you probably will not get approved. Lenders loan you money with the intention of getting it back. Someone with no income is too much of a risk to a personal loan finance company.

-Collateral

If it is a secured loan, they will want to assess your collateral. As it is intended to be used to recoup losses in case you do not pay, lenders want to know that the collateral you are offering is valuable enough. If you have multiple assets that are valuable enough to use as collateral, try using the one that would affect your life the least if it is gone. You need to do all that you can to repay your loan, but if something goes wrong, you do not want to lose your most valuable asset. Bottom line is it can help those with collateral but prevent others from getting approved.

Pros and Cons

Pretty much everything in life has ups and downs. The key is in finding things in which the good outweighs the bed. Depending on your individual financial state, a personal installment loan can help you in many ways, but you have to understand the downsides before you jump in head first.

The Pros of Personal Installment Loans

It can definitely help you improve your credit if you are responsible with the loan. By making your payments on time, your score will increase – barring other negative things hitting your credit at the same time. Additionally, opening a loan should improve your credit mix.

You typically get much lower interest rates than you do with any other loan. While other loan types come with really high interest rates, you can find personal installment loans with interest as low as 3.99%. The lower your interest on a loan, the easier it will be for you to pay it off- which is the end goal.

The interest is fixed and added to your payments. With a personal loan payment, the interest is typically calculated at the beginning of the loan, added into the loan payment, and spread out over the entire payment term. There is no paying separate interest because the loan payment you make each month includes the interest.

You know what you owe every month and how long you must pay. With personal lines of credit, credit cards, and any loans with variable interest or interest that are calculated monthly, you do not know for sure what you will be paying that month until you get your bill. That makes it extremely hard to add into the budget.

With a personal installment loan, however, you know exactly what is due each month. When you first get the loan, you will know what your monthly payments will be. Generally, it will be stated in your contract. Since you know what your monthly payments are, you can much more easily make a plan for repaying it.

The Cons of Personal Installment Loans

It can destroy your credit if you are not responsible about it. As much as a personal installment loan can improve your credit, it can just as easily destroy it. Actually, it can probably destroy it much more easily. Diligence, persistence, and a sense of responsibility can play a huge role in getting your loan payments paid, but you cannot control everything.

If an external force, i.e. job loss, eradicates your ability to make your loan payments, you might find your credit torn to pieces. If a situation such as this occurs, immediately call your lender and explain the situation. Often times, they will try to work with you so you can stay on track. They would much rather you pay than to have to chase you down or sell your collateral. All of that is extra work on them, and it is not free. Also, they want to keep you as a customer. The more you borrow, the more interest you pay. If you do not repay your loan, they lose a customer, so working with you is in their best interest and yours.

The earlier you call them, the better. Waiting until five minutes before they close on your payment due date when you lost your job three weeks ago is not going to look very good. If the lender does work with you, do not take advantage of it. Be grateful and make your payment as soon as you can. Eventually, they will be forced to take action.

They are often harder to get approved for. Other loan types can usually be approved much more quickly than any other. Personal installment loans often have requirements that many people cannot meet. The first ones are obviously credit scores and credit history. However, there are also income requirements, debt to income ratios to meet, and, sometimes, free cash flow minimums.

It is tempting to take more than you need. If you need $1,000 for car repairs but find out that you can get up to $5,000 with your credit score, what would you do? Those with really strong will power might be able to say, “No, thanks. I just need the $1,000.” Many others would be tempted to go for the higher loan. I know that my mind would immediately start calculating how much that $5,000 could do for my family, and I would have a hard time turning it down.

That might be okay if you can use it to put yourself in a better financial state, i.e. consolidate your debt so you owe less monthly. It is not okay if you take the full amount out, blow it all, then not be able to make your rent or mortgage payment next month. If you are going to take the full amount, be sure that you use it to help you and that you can afford the payments.

There are sometimes fees attached to them. With many of the popular personal loan lenders, you can expect fees. The most common ones are origination fees, late fees and returned payment fees. Some charge prepayment fees, so be sure you check on that before accepting a loan.

You may need some form of collateral. Depending on your credit, a lender might require some form of collateral from you. This is called a secured loan. Collateral might be a car title, property deed, or any number of things. The idea is that if you happen not to pay the loan back, the lender can recoup some of the losses with your collateral. It makes you less of a risky investment. And sometimes it will help you get a little more on your loan.

If you are asking how any of this is a con of a personal installment loan, I’ll tell you: not everyone has collateral. Secured loans are okay for people who have available assets, but not for those who do not. What about the people making car payments or renting their home? Some lenders may accept other forms of collateral, such as music equipment or electronics, but not all.

When Should You Get a Personal Installment Loan?

How do you decide when to get a personal installment loan instead of any other loan or using your credit card? It is actually pretty simple. Personal installment loans give you larger amounts and longer repayment terms than most others. As stated previously, your total amount is spread out and interest is added into those payments. Additionally, interest is calculated once, not monthly.

Credit cards, on the other hand, calculate interest monthly and continually add it to your bill. Getting out of credit card debt can be an excruciating process because of this never-ending interest. Quick-term loans, payday loans, title loans, and other high-interest options are the same. So if you need large amounts of money or a long time to pay, you should get a personal installment loan.

In my personal opinion, if you qualify for a personal installment loan, I would always go for that. Most popular personal loan lenders start with loans as low as $500, but I have gotten them for as low as $100 in the past. This is beneficial because you do not have to take large amounts out.

Some people, though, prefer (or it is their only option) to go through much more expensive lenders for small loan amounts because they can repay them so quickly. Others think that they could never get a better loan, so they immediately go to high-interest lenders for title loans, payday loans, and so on. Before you make that decision, understand that going through a company like that is not helpful if you cannot pay it off in that first month. After that, the interest will begin costing more than the loan and you will find that you have paid out hundreds in interest for a measly $100 loan.

If we are referring to large amounts, you should really aim first for a personal installment loan. It may seem like you cannot qualify for a loan with decent rates, but do not write yourself off just yet. If you can work patiently and diligently, you should be able to find a personal installment loan to help you cover your needs.

 

Where to Get a Personal Loan with Bad Credit

The beauty is that there is a loan out there for almost every credit score and financial situation. But it can be difficult to figure out where to get a personal loan with bad credit. The trouble is that lower credit scores tend to produce higher interest rates. It does seem to be easier to find a lender online if you have bad credit.

Whether applying online or in person, do not take the first offer you receive. I know that you probably just want to get over with the whole thing, but not shopping around can be a big mistake. There is often a loan with better terms out there. At least get two or three offers before deciding. By that point, you should have an idea of the types of terms your credit can get you.

Handle the Loan Responsibly

After receiving your loan, you need to be responsible with it. Use it for the purpose you got it or you might put yourself into a worse position. For instance, if you intended to use the loan to consolidate your debts but you decide to go shopping or buy a new car instead, you have done nothing more than added a new debt onto yourself.

Some of you may be asking who would do something like that but believe me when I say it happens. Think about it: Imagine a person struggling for a long time and gets a loan to help himself or herself. Suddenly, there is money in their hands. It is not unusual that the temptation is too strong to ignore. Really, it is not as crazy as it seems.

It is also important to add your loan payment to your budget immediately. Do not put it off until later because later rarely comes. Add it to your budget as quickly as you can so that you don’t find yourself without your payment money on your due date. Otherwise, you might find yourself back in the hole you just dug yourself out of. Creating a budget means including everything in it, so don’t skip this step.

Conclusion

Personal installment loans are a great loan option, and most people can find a lender if they are diligent in their search. Searching for personal loans online tend to be the easiest method, unless you are a community credit union member. Credit unions love helping their members and community, so always check in with them as well. Otherwise, settle down with a cup of coffee and enjoy the ease of applying online for a personal installment loan.

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