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Best Personal Loan Companies

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A personal loan is a loan you can get from a bank or credit union that can help you with everything from a large purchase to home improvement projects to debt consolidation. To pick the best lender for you, you’ll want to compare features, including annual percentage rate (APR), repayment terms, fees and loan amounts.

The best personal loans have flexible repayment terms and low rates and are available to borrowers with a variety of credit scores.

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To select our top picks, we looked at 24 loan companies and compared their APRs, terms, fees and customer reviews. Our picks may be Authorized Partners who compensate us. This does not affect our recommendations or evaluations but may impact the order in which companies appear.

Best Egg logoBest EggUpgrade logoUpgradeProsper logoProsperMarcus by Goldman Sachs logoMarcus by Goldman SachsLendingClub logoLendingClubOneMain Financial logoOneMain FinancialUpstart logoUpstartLendingPoint logoLendingPoint
Rating4.84.84.03.94.04.10.00.0
# of reviews1,81456862273063,12920
Minimum credit score 600 560 640 660 600 Varies 300 580
Loan amount range $2,000-$50,000 $1,000 - $50,000 $2,000 - $50,000 $3,500 - $40,000 $1,000 - $40,000 $1,500 - $20,000 $1,000 - $50,000 $2,000 - $36,500
Repayment terms 36-60 months 24 to 84 months 36-60 months 36-72 months 24 - 60 months 24 - 60 months 36 to 60 months 24 to 72 months
Read Reviews Read Reviews Read Reviews Read Reviews Read Reviews Read Reviews Read Reviews Read Reviews
All information accurate as of time of publication.

Compare our top 8 choices for best personal loans

Before picking a lender, make sure you review all the loan features to decide what’s best for you. Once you’ve evaluated your options, the next step is to start the application process. While lenders' processes may vary slightly, the steps to get a personal loan are typically the same.

Best for simple online process Best Egg
  • Loan amounts: $2,000 to $50,000
  • Term lengths: 36 or 60 months
  • Minimum credit score: 600

Best Egg is an online lender that offers personal loans ranging from $2,000 to $50,000. Select borrowers may have two open loans at a time, although the combined loan amount cannot exceed $50,000.

Best Egg is one of our top picks because it has relatively low starting APRs and it only takes a few minutes to check your rate. You’ll need your email address and phone number to get started. Most approved borrowers get funding within one to three days. It also has an easy, online-only application.

For approval, you’ll need a 600 credit score, and you also need a debt-to-income (DTI) ratio below 30%, verifiable income and a valid address. Some states have different minimum loan amounts ($5,000 in New Mexico and Ohio, $6,500 in Massachusetts and $3,000 in Georgia). Best Egg does charge origination fees ranging from 0.99% to 8.99%, but there are no prepayment penalties.

  • Loans available for a variety of purposes
  • Fast funding for most borrowers
  • Lower required minimum credit score than many competitors
  • Different loan minimums depending on state
  • Only two repayment term options (36 or 60 months)
  • Charges an origination fee
Reviewers state that getting a loan with Best Egg is a simple, easy and fast process, and loans come with comparable rates and acceptable terms. “From the first click on my laptop — to the requested cash amount being deposited into my bank account. All completed within about 24 hours,” said a reviewer in Tennessee.

Be aware, though, that some reviewers expressed concern with the preapproval process.

Best for flexible repayment terms Upgrade
  • Loan amounts: $1,000 to $50,000
  • Term lengths: 24 to 84 months
  • Minimum credit score: 560

Upgrade is an online lending platform that partners with several banks and financial institutions to originate loans. It does a soft credit pull to estimate your rate. Once you’re officially approved, Upgrade deposits funds into your bank account in about a day.

Upgrade stands out for its wide range of repayment terms, which are between two and seven years. Most of our other top picks only offer terms from three to five years. Plus, there is no application fee, and you’ll only need a credit score of 560 to qualify. Upgrade also offers a smaller minimum loan amount than many other lenders.

If you’re self-employed, you’ll need additional documentation, including two years of recent tax returns and forms and bank statements to verify your income. Upgrade may verify receipt of your taxes using Form 4506-T, which can delay the process up to a week.

  • Fast approvals for most borrowers
  • No prepayment penalty
  • Can borrow up to $50,000
  • Can take two weeks for funds to creditors to clear
  • Late fees starting at $10
  • Origination fee up to 8.99%
Many ConsumerAffairs readers report being pleased with Upgrade’s customer service and easy application process, which they say helped them find the right loan for their needs. “Customer service is helpful, knowledgeable and professional,” according to a reviewer in Nevada.

However, there were customers who described issues with the payment process and not receiving promotional bonus offers.

Best for peer-to-peer lending Prosper
  • Loan amounts: $2,000 to $40,000
  • Term lengths: 36 or 60 months
  • Minimum credit score: 640

Prosper is a peer-to-peer lender, which is slightly different from most other lenders on our list. The loans are funded by individual investors and institutions instead of the company itself. Prosper does not fund any part of the loan. However, because it uses a different model from traditional lenders, approval times can be longer (sometimes up to five days or longer).

You can check your rate instantly online with no impact to your credit score. You can get funding in as little as one day after final approval. And like traditional personal loans, you can use these loans for any purpose, including debt consolidation, home improvements and auto loans. Prosper also offers home equity lines of credit (HELOCs).

Borrowers will need to pay an origination fee, but it’s lower than at many competitors, ranging from 2.41% to 5%. Interest rates on personal loans are comparable, and as with other lenders, those with better credit scores will receive lower rates.

  • Unsecured loans
  • No prepayment penalty
  • Check your rate for free
  • Application review process can take up to five days
  • Minimum credit score of 640
  • High origination fees
Many reviewers commented on the Prosper application process being very simple and the helpful customer service. A reviewer in Illinois said, “It's a great way to get money without all the intrusive stuff you have to go through with a bank or standard loan company.”

However, some reviewers felt that Prosper’s identity verification process is too strict. One reviewer in Florida said it was difficult to prove they were a “person,” even after they were preapproved.

Best for competitive rates and no fees Marcus by Goldman Sachs
  • Loan amounts: $3,500 to $40,000
  • Term lengths: 36 to 72 months
  • Minimum credit score: 660

Marcus by Goldman Sachs offers no-fee personal loans with terms up to 72 months. Loan perks include customizable payment due dates and on-time payment rewards. There are no origination, prepayment or late fees, and qualified borrowers in all 50 states can get a loan.

You can apply online. Once you’re approved, the company will verify your bank account and deposit funds within about four days. You’ll get a 0.25% discount on the APR for enrolling in automatic payments.

Marcus by Goldman Sachs accepts applications from people older than 18 in most states (19 in Alabama and 21 in Mississippi). You need a valid U.S. bank account and Social Security or individual taxpayer identification number. It currently only accepts individual loan applications (no joint applications).

  • No sign-up or prepayment fees
  • APR discounts with autopay
  • Customized monthly payment
  • No co-signer option
  • Minimum credit score of 660
  • No physical locations
Few ConsumerAffairs readers have reported on their experience with personal loans from Marcus by Goldman Sachs. However, one reviewer in New York who got a loan to consolidate high-interest credit card debt said the company has “excellent client services.” The loan paid off three accounts in full, and they said keeping up with the one monthly payment has helped boost their credit score “from good to excellent in seven months.”
Best for flexible credit score requirements LendingClub
  • Loan amounts: $1,000 to $40,000
  • Term lengths: 24 to 60 months
  • Minimum credit score: 600
LendingClub Logo Compare Offers on ConsumerAffairs

LendingClub is an online lending marketplace. In addition to personal loans, it also offers business loans (up to $500,000) and auto loan refinancing.

Most applicants get approval within 24 hours and receive funds within two days, according to the company’s website. It offers the convenient option to make automatic payments. There is no application fee or prepayment penalty. We like that LendingClub extends a 15-day grace period on late payments before charging late fees.

To qualify, you have to be at least 18 years old and have a verifiable bank account. You also need a minimum credit score of 600 to get a personal loan with LendingClub, which means it’s available to borrowers with less-than-stellar credit. And you can apply with a co-signer; it may increase your odds of approval if you have bad credit.

  • Can add a co-signer
  • No prepayment penalty
  • Fast funding
  • High late fees
  • Origination fee
  • High minimum APR
Many ConsumerAffairs readers praise LendingClub for its quality customer service, quick and simple application process and upfront and transparent terms. A satisfied reviewer in Florida highlighted LendingClub’s ”fast service” and “easy application process,” adding that paying off the loan helped to increase their credit score “considerably.”

Note, however, that some reviewers report that the rates are high and borrowers should shop elsewhere if they have excellent credit.

Best for secured and unsecured loans OneMain Financial
  • Loan amounts: $1,500 to $20,000
  • Term lengths: 24 to 60 months
  • Minimum credit score: Varies

OneMain Financial offers loans ranging from $1,500 to $20,000, so it’s good for borrowers looking for smaller loans. Some states, though, have different minimum loan amounts:

  • $2,100 in Alabama
  • $3,000 in California
  • $3,100 in Georgia
  • $2,000 in North Dakota and Ohio
  • $2,600 in Virginia

Borrowers in North Carolina can only access up to $7,500 on unsecured loans.

Unlike many other personal loan companies, OneMain Financial offers both unsecured and secured options. The type you’re offered depends on the size of the loan, your credit score and your income. Forms of collateral OneMain Financial accepts include cars, trucks, motorcycles, boats, campers and RVs.

OneMain Financial does not disclose a minimum credit score for borrowers, which means it may be an option for borrowers with bad credit — but you can expect to pay higher fees than you would with other lenders.

  • No minimum credit score
  • Secured and unsecured loans
  • Emergency loans available
  • Different loan minimums from state to state
  • Higher fees than competitors
  • $20,000 max loan amount
ConsumerAffairs readers who’ve used OneMain Financial appreciate that the company will work with borrowers who have bad credit, the simple application process and the personable customer service. “The process of applying and getting the funding is pretty easy with OneMain,” said a reviewer in Alabama. “All their fees and the process are upfront. They have very high interest rates, but keep in mind that they finance the high-risk group.”

Many reviewers do caution that they’ve experienced payment issues with OneMain Financial and that interest rates are high.

Best for low credit score Upstart
  • Loan amounts: $1,000 to $50,000
  • Term lengths: 36 or 60 months
  • Minimum credit score: 300

Upstart specializes in personal loans for debt consolidation and paying off credit cards. Its lending platform uses artificial intelligence, and two-thirds of loans are fully automated, with no human involvement from the initial rate request through final funding.

It’s a good choice for those with low credit scores — you can apply no matter how low your score is — or if you don’t have enough of a credit history to have a score. If approved, you can expect to receive funds within one to two business days.

Loans typically range from $1,000 to $50,000, but the minimum loan amount varies by state: $7,000 in Massachusetts, $6,000 in Ohio, $5,100 in New Mexico and $2,100 in Hawaii. There are only two repayment options, 36 or 60 months, and loans do come with an origination fee of up to 8%.

To be eligible, you must be at least 18 (19 in some states); have a verifiable name, birthday and Social Security number; provide a valid email address; have a regular income source and meet several other requirements.

  • Poor credit scores accepted
  • Funds as soon as the next day
  • No prepayment penalty
  • High APRs
  • High origination fee
  • No co-signers allowed
There are currently no reviews from ConsumerAffairs readers.
Best for fast approval LendingPoint
  • Loan amounts: $2,000 to $36,500
  • Term lengths: 24 to 72 months
  • Minimum credit score: 580

LendingPoint specializes in unsecured personal loans for people across the credit score spectrum. Borrowers only need a minimum credit score of 580 to qualify for personal loans.

The company uses a proprietary scoring and underwriting system to evaluate each applicant, including their DTI ratio, payment-to-income ratio and other factors. Same-day approvals are eligible for funding as soon as the next business day.

How much you can borrow varies based on your credit profile and other financial information. Loans can range from $2,000 to $36,500. You can expect to pay an origination fee of up to 7% (although some borrowers might have it waived), but there is no late or prepayment fee. Repayment terms go up to 72 months.

Currently, joint and co-signed loans are not available.

  • No prepayment penalty
  • Next-day deposits
  • Flexible repayment terms
  • High APR
  • Loan maximum is $36,500, which is lower than many competitors
  • No co-signers allowed
There are currently no reviews from ConsumerAffairs readers.

Compare Reviews for Top Personal Loan Companies

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Check Your Personal Loan Rates

It's free and won't impact your credit score

    What is a personal loan?

    A personal loan is a type of consumer loan. Personal loans are also sometimes called installment loans because you get a lump sum of money upfront and pay it back in regular installments over a predetermined period. Repayment terms can be anywhere from a few months to over five years.

    You can get a personal loan from a bank, credit union, online lender or other financial institution. Some lenders only work with borrowers if they have a good credit score. Others have more flexible requirements — but they charge higher interest rates, like payday lenders. The added costs mean you end up paying more over time. Read about the different types of personal loans to learn more.

    Most personal loans are unsecured, which means you don’t need collateral.

    What can you use a personal loan for?

    Personal loans can be used for a wide range of purchases as well as things like debt consolidation. Some lenders restrict personal loan usage, usually not allowing loans to be used for college tuition or a mortgage down payment.

    However, most lenders will allow personal loans to be used for the following:

    • Consolidating debt
    • Wedding expenses
    • Vacation costs
    • Medical expenses
    • Home repairs or remodeling
    • Moving costs
    • Financing motorcycles, RVs or boats
    • Other large purchases

    How to find the best personal loan

    Before you apply for a personal loan, check your credit score. The better your score is, the more likely you are to qualify for a lower rate. It might save you money to fix your credit before taking out a personal loan, though this is not a fast process.

    Once you know which lenders you qualify for, shop around and compare loan offers. Here are five tips for comparing different lenders to help you get the best rate and terms.

    1. Research the lender

    Remember that if an offer sounds too good to be true, it likely is. Before you apply for a loan, make sure the company is legitimate by verifying that it’s licensed in your state and reviewing its rate and fee disclosure. You’ll also want to find out if the lender allows you to check your rate with a soft or hard credit check.

    Typically, origination fees range between 2% and 6% on a personal loan, but some companies charge up to 10%. We suggest avoiding lenders that charge prepayment fees that make it difficult to pay off your loan early.

    2. Read recent reviews

    Reading different lender reviews will give you a sense of what to expect from different lenders.

    Keep an eye out for multiple reviews that mention high-pressure sales tactics and unexpected charges or fees. Keep in mind that you will also likely find negative reviews by people who are simply annoyed that they were denied. This information may not be relevant to you.

    3. Compare loan offers

    The rate you get depends on how the lender evaluates your creditworthiness. That’s why applicants with bad credit rarely get the lowest rate advertised.

    Generally, the interest rate on your loan depends on your:

    • Credit history and score
    • DTI ratio
    • Income and employment information
    • Lender
    • Size of the loan
    • Length of repayment term

    You want to consider the total cost of the loan; to do that, look at the APR, which includes fees. Also, check the options for term lengths and the monthly payment amount to make sure it fits in your budget.

    4. Apply for the loan

    You can apply for a personal loan at your local financial institution or through an online lender; most lenders have online loan applications to make the process faster. The application will ask you questions about yourself, your finances and what you plan to do with the loan. Have these documents ready when you apply:

    • Government-issued ID
    • Social Security number
    • Income verification (pay stubs, W-2s or bank statements)
    • Proof of residence (utility bill, rental agreement, mortgage statement)
    • Bank account information (routing number, account number)
    • Creditor information (for debt consolidation)

    Once you submit your application, expect a hard pull on your credit, which can temporarily decrease your credit score. Once your application is approved, you will have a chance to view and approve your rate and repayment terms.

    FAQ

    What is a good interest rate on a personal loan?

    When it comes to interest rates, lower is better. The lowest rates lenders advertise are for the ideal borrower – one with excellent credit, high income and low debt. A good interest rate will be one near a lender’s advertised rate; avoid APRs higher than 20%, if possible.

    Can you refinance a personal loan?

    You can refinance a personal loan, similarly to how you can refinance a car loan, student loan or home loan. Refinancing allows you to replace your current loan with one that has more favorable terms.

    How many personal loans can you have at once?

    It’s possible to have multiple loans from the same lender or across different lenders. A lender might require you to wait several months before applying for a new loan. Having an existing personal loan can affect your eligibility for another loan.

    What is the difference between secured and unsecured loans?

    The majority of personal loans are unsecured, which means they’re not backed by collateral. This is why creditworthiness is a determining factor for approval. Secured personal loans are backed by collateral that the lender can repossess if you default, like your car or savings.

    How fast can I get a loan?

    How long the application process takes varies by lender. Most lenders make it easy to get started online, showing your pre-qualification rate in minutes. Some lenders approve borrowers and distribute funds on the same day, while others can take multiple days.

    Methodology

    The ConsumerAffairs Research Team chose top picks by comparing 24 personal loan companies on online reputation, rate transparency and availability.

    • Online reputation: We compared ratings and reviews on our site and across the internet, including on Trustpilot and Bankrate. We also checked in with the Better Business Bureau to look for current alerts and government actions within the last three years.
    • Rates and fees: We only chose lenders that cap APRs at 35.99%, and we gave preference to lenders with lower rate ranges, lower origination fees and no prepayment penalties. We also gave preference to companies with clear rates and plenty of easy-to-access information about fees.
    • Availability: We eliminated lead generators and companies that are only licensed in a few states. All of our top picks serve residents in most states.

    Not sure how to choose?

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