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Personal Loans

Axos Bank Personal Loan Review

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.

Axos Bank
APR

6.49%
To
29.99%

Credit Req.

680

Terms

12 to 60

months

Origination Fee

0.00% - 2.00%

APPLY NOW Secured

on Axos Bank’s secure website

Axos Bank personal loan details
 

Fees and penalties

  • Terms: 12 to 60 months
  • APR range: 6.49% and up
  • Loan amounts: $5,000 to $35,000
  • Time to Funding: 2 days
  • Hard pull/soft pull: Prequalify with a soft pull and formally apply with a hard pull
  • Origination fee: 0.00% - 2.00%
  • Prepayment fee: $0
  • Late payment fee: $15
  • Other fees: Insufficient funds fee: $25

Eligibility requirements

  • Minimum credit score: 680
  • Minimum credit history: Not specified.
  • Maximum debt-to-income ratio: Not specified.

Information on specific eligibility requirements for an Axos Bank personal loan is not readily available on the lender website.

Applying for a personal loan from Axos Bank

Applying for a personal loan from Axos Bank is simple, and the process can be completed fairly quickly. You can get the ball rolling by answering a few questions to see if you prequalify for a loan; you’ll need to provide your income, credit history and score, employment history, basic contact information and Social Security number.

After answering these questions and a soft pull, which won’t affect your credit score, a loan offer will be provided if you prequalify. This offer can help you decide if you want to complete the application. Should you decide to apply, the information you provided will be verified.

If Axos Bank offers you a loan following verification, you have the opportunity to review it before accepting. The final loan offer may differ from what you were initially offered because of what was found during the verification process. Once you accept the offer, funds are deposited into your bank account within two days.

Pros and cons of a Axos Bank personal loan

Pros:

Cons:

  • No collateral: A personal loan with Axos Bank is unsecured, so it does not require collateral.
  • No prepayment fees: You won’t be charged an additional fee if you pay off your Axos Bank loan early.
  • Quick application: The application process for an Axos Bank personal loan is quick. You can expect to spend no more than 15 minutes on prequalification and the application.
  • Pre-qualification: You can avoid a drop in your credit score by seeing if you prequalify for a loan before applying. This is a soft pull, and it allows the bank to determine if you are likely to be approved for a loan.
  • Funding time: It can take up to two days for funds be received. This could be a problem if you have expenses that need immediate attention and require instant or same-day funding.
  • Loan terms: Although Axos Bank offers flexible loan terms, some options may not be available depending on your loan request.
  • Origination fee: 0.00% - 2.00%.

Who’s the best fit for an Axos Bank personal loan

A personal loan with Axos Bank is unsecured, so while no collateral is required, there are specific criteria you must meet if you wish to secure a loan. Axos will use multiple factors to determine if you are a good fit for a loan, including your credit profile, though those with bad credit may still be approved, since the bank looks at a picture that includes more than a credit score.

Still, a personal loan with Axos Bank may not be the right fit for all. For example, the 2-day funding time may be another factor that could affect whether this loan is fit for a borrower. If you need to receive funds the same day you apply, this is not possible and you won’t benefit from applying for a loan with this lender. However, if you don’t have an immediate need for funds, you may find an Axos Bank personal loan to be a great option.

Axos Bank consumer reviews

Axos Bank has a B+ rating with the Better Business Bureau, but its reviewers on LendingTree (Disclaimer: MagnifyMoney is owned by LendingTree) scored it even higher — a remarkable 99% of those reviewers recommend the company. Axos Bank also has a rating of 4.9 out of 5 stars across based on 174 reviews, as of June 2019; many reviewers use words like “easy,” “quick,” “simple,” “straightforward” and “pleasant.”

“The entire process was easy and fast,” wrote Daniel from Houston, Texas. “I got exactly what I needed without difficulties. There was no surprise, everything was clear and straightforward. The employee answered all my questions, I’m very satisfied.”

Axos Bank FAQ

Along with personal loans, Axos offers mortgages, auto refinancing, and loans for commercial real estate.

Axos offers unsecured personal loans from $5,000 to $35,000.

If you are not approved for a loan, you will be given information about why your application was declined.

There are many reasons why your application may not meet the bank’s bar for lending. For example, you’re like to get a thumbs-down if you left your application is incomplete or if the bank can’t verify your identity. You may receive a negative answer if you’ve had trouble with credit in the past and are carrying excessive debt. If your credit history provides cause for concern, Axos may decide not to extend a loan offer. This information can help you improve in the areas where you fell short, and know what you would need to apply again in the future.

No. We require you to submit a full application after you get a rate quote and it is the info in that application that allows the bank to determine whether or not an applicant is qualified.

Your funds should arrive in your bank account within two business days.

Payments are due each month on the same day of the month that you were approved for and accepted the terms of your loan; Axos Bank automatically withdrawals the money from your account on that day.

If your payment doesn’t go through, you are charged a $25 insufficient funds fee, and if you blow past the grace period for payment, you’ll see a late fee of $15.

Alternative personal loan options

LendingClub

APR

6.95%
To
35.89%

Credit Req.

Not Specified

Terms

36 or 60

months

Origination Fee

1.00% - 6.00%

SEE OFFERS Secured

on LendingTree’s secure website

LendingClub is a great tool for borrowers that can offer competitive interest rates and approvals for people with credit scores as low as 0.... Read More

Securing a personal loan between $1,000 and $40,000 with LendingClub can be done in a matter of minutes. To ensure you’re a good fit for a loan through this lending marketplace, you can check rates prior to filling out an application. If a loan through LendingClub seems like an option, you can review the available offers and then move forward with the application by verifying the information you provided. If you’re approved after the review of the application, funds will be deposited into your account within about seven days. When comparing this lender with Axos Bank, the prequalification and application processes are similar, but you may be able to take out a personal loan with a lower APR and a lower origination fee with LendingClub.

Marcus by Goldman Sachs®

Marcus by Goldman Sachs®
APR

6.99%
To
28.99%

Credit Req.

Not specified

Terms

36 to 72

months

Origination Fee

No origination fee

SEE OFFERS Secured

on LendingTree’s secure website

Advertiser Disclosure

Marcus by Goldman Sachs® offers personal loans for up to $40,000 for debt consolidation and credit consolidation. ... Read More


Your loan terms are not guaranteed and are subject to our verification of your identity and credit information. To obtain a loan, you must submit additional documentation including an application that may affect your credit score. Rates will vary based on many factors, such as your creditworthiness (for example, credit score and credit history) and the length of your loan (for example, rates for 36 month loans are generally lower than rates for 72 month loans).Your maximum loan amount may vary depending on your loan purpose, income and creditworthiness. Your verifiable income must support your ability to repay your loan. Marcus by Goldman Sachs is a brand of Goldman Sachs Bank USA and all loans are issued by Goldman Sachs Bank USA, Salt Lake City Branch. Applications are subject to additional terms and conditions. For New York residents, rates range from 6.99% to 24.99% APR.

If you have at least fair credit, you have the option to apply for a personal loan with Marcus by Goldman Sachs®. When choosing this specific lender, you have access to between $3,500 and $40,000, more than what’s offered by Axos Bank. In addition to access to higher funds, Marcus by Goldman Sachs offers loan terms from 36 to 72 months, giving you plenty of time to pay back your loan. Should you choose to pay the loan off early, there are no prepayment fees that will be tacked onto your final payment, making this loan ideal if you want to avoid paying extra fees.

Upgrade

Upgrade
APR

6.98%
To
35.89%

Credit Req.

620

Minimum Credit Score

Terms

36 or 60

months

Origination Fee

1.50% - 6.00%

SEE OFFERS Secured

on LendingTree’s secure website

Advertiser Disclosure

Upgrade is an online lender that offers fairly priced personal loans for a term of either 36 or 60 months.... Read More.


Personal loans made through Upgrade feature APRs of 6.98%-35.89%. All personal loans have a 1.5% to 6% origination fee, which is deducted from the loan proceeds. Lowest rates require Autopay and paying off a portion of existing debt directly. For example, if you receive a $10,000 loan with a 36-month term and a 17.98% APR (which includes a 14.32% yearly interest rate and a 5% one-time origination fee), you would receive $9,500 in your account and would have a required monthly payment of $343.33. Over the life of the loan, your payments would total $12,359.97. The APR on your loan may be higher or lower and your loan offers may not have multiple term lengths available. Actual rate depends on credit score, credit usage history, loan term, and other factors. Late payments or subsequent charges and fees may increase the cost of your fixed rate loan. There is no fee or penalty for repaying a loan early. Personal loans issued by WebBank, Member FDIC.

Upgrade is an alternative if you have fair credit and need between $1,000 and $50,000. Before applying, you can use the prequalification process to determine your chances of being approved for a loan without taking a hit to your credit score. Following prequalification, the application can be filled out. If approved for a loan, it can take up to four days for funds to be received. There is an origination fee, so take this into consideration before you begin the process of securing a loan with Upgrade.

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which MagnifyMoney receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). MagnifyMoney does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

Katherine Gustafson
Katherine Gustafson |

Katherine Gustafson is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Katherine here

Kristina Byas
Kristina Byas |

Kristina Byas is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Kristina here

Get Personal Loan Offers
Up to $50,000

$

Won’t impact your credit score

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Banking

Where to Exchange Currency Without Paying Unnecessary Fees

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.

Where to exchange currency without paying unnecessary fees
iStock

You’re packed and almost ready for your big trip. But there’s one thing missing: A stash of local currency you can use at your destination. Who is going to give you the best currency exchange without high fees? Let’s break it down.

Exchanging currency

There are many reasons you may need to exchange currency. Maybe you’re taking a vacation overseas, traveling for work or exploring ports of call on a cruise. You may be visiting family in another country, taking a quick jaunt to Canada or Mexico or attending a conference in a foreign capital.

There are various ways to get the type of currency you need for the countries you’re visiting. Before you go, research current currency exchange rates before jumping into any of the options for exchange. The Federal Reserve lists the latest rates, and currency websites like XE.com allow you to calculate how U.S. currency translates into foreign currencies.

3 ways to skip big fees when you need to exchange currency

All currency exchange options are not created equal — some methods come with very high fees, while there are ways to get the money you need for free. Changing money at the “currency exchange” booth in the airport is guaranteed to cost you a lot while using cards and “buying” foreign currency online ahead of time are cheaper options.

#1 Order currency from your local bank or credit union

Your local bank or credit union at home may provide currency exchange services that you can avail yourself of before you leave for your trip. You might have to visit the local office, or you may be able to order the currency you need over the phone or online.

This may be one of the best ways to skip larger fees. However, watch the currency exchange rate your bank is offering; the rate may well be higher than what you will get when taking money out of an ATM at your destination.

One key question to ask is how your bank handles extra currency that you end up returning with. Will the bank take it back in exchange for U.S. dollars, or will you need to do this elsewhere?

#2 Use a credit card with low or no fees

Using a card to make purchases or get money from an ATM can be an excellent option for accessing your funds affordably on your travels. Most credit companies and card issuers charge various fees when you do this, however, so make sure you’re aware of the specifics associated with your card. Some issuers charge a 1-3% fee on foreign transactions. Some card issuers also charge a currency exchange fee of 1-3%.

If you’re going on a long trip, it may be worth getting a new card without these fees specifically for your travels. There are a number of credit cards out there with no foreign transaction or currency exchange fees. At MagnifyMoney, we keep a running list of the best credit cards for travel, which include cards that carry no foreign exchange fees and also offer rewards for your spending.

Even if your financial institution doesn’t charge a fee for using an ATM or charging your card, the foreign company whose ATM you’re using may well do so. Some banks will reimburse those fees, whether for any ATM or for ATMs within a specific network. Charles Schwab, for example, offers unlimited reimbursements for fees for cash withdrawals worldwide from any ATM. Capital One and Varo, on the other hand, offer reimbursement for fees within their respective networks. All of these cards charge no foreign transaction fees and are popular options for travelers going abroad.

When you’re buying things abroad using your credit card, the card reader machine may ask where you want the transaction to be processed in U.S. dollars or local currency. Having your transaction processed in U.S. dollars when you’re in a country that uses another currency is called “dynamic currency conversion.” Always choose local currency; choosing U.S. dollars will ensure you get a fee tacked onto your bill and/or a poor currency exchange rate for the transaction. You are simply wasting money by asking the transaction to be processed in your home currency.

#3 Order currency online before you go

One way of getting a hold of foreign currency before you travel is to order cash online. This option is relatively expensive, but the cost can be worth it for those who like the reassurance of having local currency on hand upon arrival at your destination.

Be careful when ordering online and make sure the site you buy from is reputable. Travelex is one of the most prominent providers of foreign currency and will ship the money to your home. The company provides free next-day delivery for orders of over $1,000 worth of currency. There are no additional fees aside from shipping fees for orders below $1,000.

However, these companies trade money at exchange rates that make them a profit, which means you’ll still be paying more than you would for getting cash in other ways. For example, if the market exchange rate for $1 is 0.880 euros, the Travelex rate will be something more like 0.819 euros, meaning a $100 exchange from dollars to euros will cost a customer an extra $61, not factoring the delivery fee.

What to watch out for

There are various places where you are likely to pay higher fees or get very poor currency exchange rates. And other options are simply inconvenient in this day and age of digital banking.

Avoid exchanging money at airport kiosks

These are very convenient and can be a relief to frazzled travelers arriving at their destination. But they are not your best option; they are one of the most expensive ways of getting local cash. They often charge high fees and/or may present a less-than-ideal currency exchange rate.

The best use for these types of operations is to get a small amount of immediate cash needed to get to a place where the rates are better. For example, if you can’t find an ATM in the airport, use the kiosk to get enough cash to take a taxi to your hotel, where you can inquire about a nearby ATM from which to withdraw a large amount of cash.

Skip currency exchange stores and hotels

You’ll often find stores or booths in foreign cities that tourists frequent where you can easily change your money from home to the local currency. These operations usually have either very poor currency exchange rates or charge astronomical fees. It’s best to think ahead about your currency needs to avoid these places, but they can be worth the extra money if you have a particular need for some local cash from a convenient location. These stores are often downstairs from popular hotels.

Your hotel’s concierge may be able to change U.S. dollars into local currency for you, but this option often comes with the same problem presented by the money-changing shops: poor rates and/or high fees.

Traveler’s checks aren’t your best bet

Traveler’s checks, once the go-to method of bringing cash safely abroad, no longer offer the same convenience that they once did. Many shops and sites no longer accept these as currency, so you’ll need to take the extra time to visit a bank to sign the check over and receive cash in exchange. Banks in some countries may charge a commission for this service while it’s free in others. Considering that it is easy and safe to rely on ATMs for your cash needs while you’re abroad, traveler’s checks are generally more trouble than they’re worth.

Bottom line

There are various good options for on-the-go travelers who need to access local cash affordably.

Using ATMs at your destination is quite likely your best option, but make sure to notify your bank of your travels so your money remains accessible. Watch out for options that are “too convenient,” since you’ll pay the price for the ease of use, and stay away from inconvenient traveler’s checks.

Now that you know where to exchange currency, you can have a great trip with one less headache.

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which MagnifyMoney receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). MagnifyMoney does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

Katherine Gustafson
Katherine Gustafson |

Katherine Gustafson is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Katherine here

Advertiser Disclosure

Small Business

A Quick Guide to Understanding SBA Loans in 2019

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.

SBA loan rates
iStock

SBA loans are attractive financing options for small businesses — they come with relatively low rates and are available to borrowers who aren’t able to get funding elsewhere. SBA loans tend to be focused on leveling the playing field in small business lending so underserved communities can gain access to capital and get the benefit of business growth in their neighborhoods.

What is the SBA?

The U.S. Small Business Administration is a government agency that assists small businesses throughout the country with business financing, education and technical assistance, federal procurement and advocacy.

A core aspect of its mission is providing small businesses — especially those that find it difficult to borrow elsewhere — with financing options to grow and improve. SBA approves partner institutions to administer loans from $500 to $5.5 million with agency backing to enable businesses to get access to working capital, purchase fixed assets and satisfy many other business needs. The SBA guarantees up to 85 percent of loans, so there is a reduced risk to the lender.

Loans offered through the SBA

There are three main SBA loan programs: the 7(a) loan program, the CDC/504 loan program, and the microloan program.

The 7(a) program provides loans up to $5 million for almost any business purpose, including purchasing equipment, supplies or real estate; refinancing existing debt; and buying or expanding an existing business. These loans come with various fees, including guarantee fees and prepayment penalties under certain conditions, so research the details before applying. Subprograms of the 7(a) loan program are focused on funding specific groups, such as exporters, underserved communities, military veterans and their families; and small businesses owners looking for cyclical working capital.

The CDC/504 program helps businesses buy fixed assets to enable expansion or modernization as a way to assist in community development. Administered by Certified Development Companies (CDCs), these long-term fixed-rate loans are geared toward helping business owners buy fixed assets such as buildings, land, facilities and machinery; or refinance debt in connection with an expansion.

The microloan program provides small loans up to $50,000 and are designed to help small businesses start up and expand. Averaging around $13,000, SBA microloans are targeted to female, low-income, veteran and minority borrowers and are most often used for working capital.

Who sets the interest rate for SBA loans?

The SBA sets permissible interest rates by regulation, as defined in its standard operating procedures and noted in the Federal Register. Lenders in turn decide what rates to charge their borrowers based on the SBA’s parameters. Lenders cannot exceed maximum rates approved by the SBA.

Fixed vs. variable SBA loan rates

It’s important to understand the difference between fixed and variable rates when investigating your loan options.

Fixed rates do not change over the course of a loan — you pay the same amount every month until the loan is fully repaid. From the beginning you know the total interest you’ll end up paying.

Variable rates, also called floating rates, on the other hand, go up and down over the life of a loan as prevailing interest rates fluctuate. The interest rate at the start of the loan may be lower than with a fixed rate, but there’s no guarantee that it will stay that way. These loans usually come with a cap on the interest rate, but that cap is extremely high in relation to typical fixed rates.

The SBA provides fixed and variable rate options. SBA 7(a) loans can have fixed or variable rates, while fixed rates are required on the 504 loan program. Generally, the 504 rate is lower than the 7(a) rate, according to the SBA.

How the SBA loan process works

The SBA does not actually lend money — it works with approved partner lenders, which administer the loans following the parameters set out by the SBA. Because the SBA guarantees a large portion of each loan, its partner lenders are more inclined to take risks on borrowers who may be underserved by commercial lending institutions.

The SBA has specific eligibility requirements for its loans: Borrowers must be a for-profit small business not larger than a certain size. They must do business within the United States, and the business owner must have invested some amount of their own money and/or time into starting and growing the business. The borrower must also have exhausted their options for financing from commercial lenders.

Eligible borrowers approach SBA’s lending partners directly to seek a loan, and the lenders instruct the business owners on what documents and SBA forms are needed to apply. The borrower gets the funding from the partner and pays the money back to the partner on the agreed-upon schedule.

How to apply for an SBA loan

Applying for an SBA-backed loan is similar to applying for any other commercial loan — private lenders who are approved by the SBA set the application requirements and administer the loans. The application process is different from any other commercial loan process in that borrowers must certify that they meet specific eligibility requirements stipulated by the SBA, such as the size of the business and history of unsuccessful attempts to borrow.

The first step in applying for one of these loans is finding a lender approved by the SBA. A good strategy is to consult with your local SBA District Office for referrals and advice. Approach the lender with answers to the following questions:

  • What will the loan be used for?
  • How much money do you need?
  • When do you need the funding?
  • How and when will you repay the money?
  • What collateral can you offer?
  • Can you provide a personal guarantee?

Most SBA loan applications will have to include a statement of purpose, a business plan and several financial statements: a cash flow statement, an income statement, a balance sheet and a personal financial statement. Other documentation will probably be required, including official SBA forms that are required for each loan type. For example, all SBA borrowers will need to submit SBA Form 1919, which provides borrower information for each proprietor, general partner, officer, director and managing member of an LLC. Your lender will be able to tell you exactly what to submit.

The bottom line

SBA loans can be a very good option for business owners who have found it difficult to gain financial support from regular commercial lenders that don’t have the backing of the SBA. Those in communities particularly targeted by SBA loans — such as minorities, women and the military community — may want to look into the possibility of getting funding through one of the SBA programs. Those who do gain SBA-backed funding will enjoy low interest rates to help their businesses grow.

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which MagnifyMoney receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). MagnifyMoney does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

Katherine Gustafson
Katherine Gustafson |

Katherine Gustafson is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Katherine here