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Personal Loans

Using a Cosigner to Get a Personal Loan

Editorial Note: The editorial content on this page is not provided or commissioned by any financial institution. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and may not have been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities prior to publication.

personal loan cosigner

Life can get expensive, whether it’s paying for a child’s wedding or unexpectedly buying a new furnace when yours breaks in the middle of winter. Personal loans can be a quick and easy way to borrow the money you need — if you have good credit — as you can get a lump sum in a variety of amounts that you can use at your discretion.

Some borrowers, however, may have trouble qualifying for a personal loan. This often happens due to a low credit score, past bankruptcies or the lack of a credit history. In these cases, one way to increase your chances of qualifying for a personal loan is to persuade a friend or family member with good credit to serve as your cosigner.

What is a cosigned loan?

When lenders assess loan applications, they are looking at applicants’ financial histories to determine how likely they are to repay what they borrow. Lenders may turn down applicants who have a poor credit score, lack a steady income or don’t have much of a credit history. To a financial institution, people with those attributes may pose too great a risk.

But a cosigner gives applicants a way around these circumstances.

A personal loan cosigner is someone who agrees to assume equal responsibility for the loan, which means that if you can’t make the payments, the cosigner must. Typically, a cosigner for a personal loan has a good credit score and and the ability to repay the loan, based on his or her income and other debt obligations.

You can benefit from a cosigner in two ways. First, a cosigner’s good credit score and financial history may help you — an otherwise unqualified borrower — get a personal loan. Secondly, a cosigner can assist you in receiving a significantly lower interest rate.

Pros and cons of a cosigned loan

Pros:

  • A cosigner can help you qualify for a personal loan or get a lower interest rate you wouldn’t otherwise get because of poor or thin credit or insufficient income. A cosigner also can increase the number of loan offers you receive, according to a spokesperson for LendingClub, an online lender.
  • A personal loan with a cosigner can provide you with much-needed cash, whether it’s to pay off high-interest debt or fund home repair.
  • If you’re determined to improve your credit, you can use a cosigned personal loan to build your credit rating by making regular, on-time payments until the loan is paid off.

Cons:

  • The account will show up on your credit report, but also on the cosigner’s. If you miss a payment, both you and your cosigner will see your credit suffer.
  • If the cosigner applies for a mortgage or other loan, the cosigned personal loan could show up on his/her credit report as a monthly obligation and lower that person’s debt-to-income ratio — even though the cosigner is not making the payments on the personal loan.

Cosigner versus coborrower

The person who agrees to apply for a personal loan can take on one of two roles in the process: cosigner or coborrower. Both roles require taking full responsibility for the loan if the you default on payments.

Coborrower: A coborrower, also called a joint applicant, acts like a partner in the transaction, accepting equal responsibility for paying off the loan and allowing his/her income and assets to be considered on the loan application. The coborrower’s name will appear on loan documents.

Coborrowers are entitled to a share of the loan’s proceeds and share in the obligation to repay the loan.

Cosigner: A cosigner’s name also appears on loan documentation, but rather than sharing ownership in the loan, the cosigner agrees to repay the loan if you cannot make the payments. The cosigner serves as a guarantor of the loan and is only liable if the applicant fails to make payments.

How to get a cosigned personal loan

Income requirements

Most lenders will look at an applicant’s work history and current employment when determining whether he/she is likely to repay the loan. While a lender may not require a minimum income, the applicant will need to demonstrate that there will be a secure income over the life of the debt.

Credit requirements

Because the personal loan market has grown more competitive, lenders offer a range of interest rates based on the amount and length of the loan and the borrower’s credit history. Most lenders only will consider good or excellent credit, although there are options for people with bad credit. Here are the best personal loan rates available now, for a variety of credit levels.

How to get the best personal loan rate

One advantage of personal loans is that they are simple financial products, which means borrowers only need to compare loans’ interest rate and fees. Personal loans are approved for a certain amount, which the borrower receives upon loan approval. The borrower then makes fixed payments at a fixed interest rate until the load is repaid.

If you want to get the best rate possible or want to get a loan without a cosigner, there are several actions you can take to improve your financial standing.

Improve your debt-to-income (DTI) ratio

Lenders use DTI to figure out what percentage of your income is spent on paying debts. It’s determined by dividing your monthly debt payments, including credit cards, vehicle loans and student loans, by your gross monthly income (income before taxes). Lenders look for a low DTI, which indicates better financial health.

Lenders often look favorably on applicants with DTIs in the 30s. For example, Wells Fargo lists on its site that a DTI of 35 percent or less shows that the borrower likely has money to save after paying bills. A DTI between 36 and 49 percent indicates that the borrower may struggle to handle unforeseen expenses, and lenders may look at other eligibility criteria for borrowers in this range, according to Wells Fargo.

A DTI of 50 percent or higher shows that most of a borrower’s income is going toward paying off debts, leaving little or no money for unexpected expenses. Lenders may be unlikely to consider applicants in this category.

If your DTI is too high, with time and financial discipline you can improve the picture. You’ll need to reduce your total monthly debt payments, which you can do by paying off loans or refinancing or consolidating loans for a lower interest rate and/or monthly payment.

Increase your credit score

According a November 2017 analysis of personal loan offers aggregated by MagnifyMoney, lenders require credit scores ranging from minimums in the mid-500s to 720. A higher credit score will typically result in a lower interest rate on a personal loan.

Here are the best ways to increase your credit score, according to credit scoring giant FICO:

  • Pay your bills on time.
  • Reduce the amount of debt you owe, which you can do by make extra payments toward your debts and curbing your spending to keep your credit card balances low.
  • Check your credit report for errors that could be hurting your score.

Shop around for rates

A number of lenders have entered the personal loan market, and it’s worthwhile to check offers online. LendingTree, our parent company, is a good place to start comparing personal loan offers.

Be sure to examine each loan’s repayment terms and rates, as they could differ — even from the same lender. Additional charges can include personal loan origination fees that can range from 0.99 to 8 percent of the amount of the loan (although some lenders don’t charge this fee), late payment fees, check processing fees and penalties for paying off the loan early.

Lenders that allow cosigned personal loans

Here are three lenders from our list of best personal loan rates that offer loans with cosigners.

Lightstream:LightStream is the online lender of SunTrust, and if offers a streamlined application process that can result in funding in one business day. For a $10,000, 36-month personal loan, Lightstream offers an interest rate of 3.24 percent for applicants with excellent credit and rates up to 7.34 percent for applicants with credit as low as the minimum score of 660. Lightstream does not require an origination fee, but it does adjust its terms based on the intended use of the personal loan. The online lender rates well for its transparency with its terms, and it does not charge additional fees.

LendingClub:LendingClub offers an easy online application process that will provide you with a table of loan options based different amounts, lengths of the loans and interest rates. The lender will offer loans as high as $40,000 for 36 or 60 months, and interest rates are determined by LendingClub’s internal scoring system. Scoring is based on the applicant’s DTI ratio (it should not be above 50 percent excluding mortgage payments), a credit report with few hard inquiries, a credit score of at least 600, and evidence of some credit history. LendingClub charges an origination fee of 1.00% - 6.00% of the amount of the loan.

Note that LendingClub does not offer loans to residents of Iowa and West Virginia.

OneMain: While OneMain Financial will offer personal loans to applicants with credit scores of 600 and same-day financing, the tradeoff is high interest rates and stricter personal requirements. Applicants must have a job and verifiable income, no bankruptcy filings and some credit history. Interest rates will range between 16.05% and 35.99%, and OneMain offers personal loans up to $30,000. The lender does not offer loans for tuition or businesses expenses. OneMain does not charge an origination fee, but lenders likely will try to sell you unemployment, life or disability insurance when you apply for a loan.

Finding a cosigner

Approaching a trusted friend or relative about cosigning a personal loan can be touchy; you are asking them to risk their credit and finances for you to borrow money.

Most importantly, your cosigner should be financially stable and have enough money to repay the loan should you be unable to do so. A spokesperson for LendingClub said many borrowers asking about loans often bring up the idea of asking a close friend or family member to cosign. “Be sure your cosigner has a solid financial history and a strong credit profile,” the spokesperson said. These factors will play a significant role in the rates and offers you’ll get for a personal loan.

Even with all of those factors in place, be prepared for everyone you ask to say no. Cosigning a loan presents a significant risk that some people — no matter how much they like you — won’t be willing to take.

When it comes to repayment, it is vital that you make every monthly payment on time. Missed payments will show up on your cosigner’s credit report, which will hurt that person’s credit as well as yours. If someone trusts you enough to risk his or her good financial standing, rise to the occasion and do whatever it takes to pay off your cosigned personal loan responsibly and on time.

If you’re the one considering cosigning a loan, the Federal Trade Commission recommends you ask the creditor to notify you if the borrower misses a payment — get the agreement in writing. The FTC also encourages you to get copies of all documents pertaining to the loan and keep them for your records.

Can I remove my cosigner from the personal loan in the future?

The option to release a cosigner varies by lender. Some lenders, such as LendingClub, will not allow you to remove a cosigner from a loan at any point, while others may allow you to release a cosigner after the primary borrower has made a certain number of on-time payments. Before you commit to a loan, ask if removing a cosigner is an option and, if so, how to go about it when the time comes.

Personal loans with cosigners can greatly benefit borrowers, but it’s important to keep in mind that cosigners are putting their finances on the line to help you. Borrowers can best protect their cosigners by making sure they are vigilant about keeping a steady income, making payments — and yes, using the loan responsibly.

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.

Marty Minchin
Marty Minchin |

Marty Minchin is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Marty here

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Personal Loans

Personal Loans in Richmond, Virginia

Editorial Note: The editorial content on this page is not provided or commissioned by any financial institution. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and may not have been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities prior to publication.

Company
APR Range
Minimum Credit Requirement
Terms
Fees
LendingTree

5.99% - 35.99%

Minimum 500 FICO

24 to 60

months

Origination fee

Varies

SEE OFFERS Secured

on LendingTree’s secure website

LendingTree is our parent company. LendingTree is unique in that you may be able to compare up to five personal loan offers within minutes. Everything is done online and you may be pre-qualified by lenders without impacting your credit score. LendingTree is not a lender.

Partners Financial Federal Credit Union

7.19%

Varies

5

months

Origination fee

None

Apply Now Secured

on Partners Financial Federal Credit Union’s secure website

Connects Federal Credit Union

6.25% - 18.00%

Varies

60

months

Origination fee

None

Apply Now Secured

on Connects Federal Credit Union’s secure website

RiverTrace Federal Credit Union

7.50% - 15.99%

Not available

24 to 48

months

Origination fee

Not available

Apply Now Secured

on RiverTrace Federal Credit Union’s secure website

Virginia Credit Union

8.99%

Varies

Not Available

Origination fee

None

Apply Now Secured

on Virginia Credit Union’s secure website

Virginia Credit Union

Virginia Credit Union has 18 branches throughout the state, offers surcharge-free ATM access and is part of the CO-OP Network®. Any U.S. citizen or resident alien can join the credit union if you reside within Richmond or the cities and counties listed on their site. You can also join if you work for for any of their approved list of companies or are currently a student at a Virginia state funded college.

To join, all you need to do is pay a $5 membership deposit and a valid credit or debit card if you want to open any accounts. You can then apply for a personal loan as low as $100. Virginia Credit Union claims to have an easy and fast application process, which you can complete online.

Partners Financial Federal Credit Union

Founded in 1958, Partners Financial Federal Credit Union has four branches, including two in Richmond. There are no origination or prepayments with the loan, meaning you can pay it off any at time without penalty. While there is no minimum loan amount, you can only apply for a maximum of $15,000 and up to 5 years. Once you apply for a loan, you’ll get your exact APR, and the typical time to approval is 45 minutes.

To see if you’re eligible to become a member, you’ll need to contact the credit union and speak to an associate.

Connects Federal Credit Union

Connects Federal Credit Union serves customers that reside in the Greater Richmond area. Anyone that lives, works or goes to school in the city of Richmond or in Chesterfield, Hanover and Henrico counties is eligible to join; this includes immediate family members of current credit union members. You need to make an initial $5 deposit when joining.

With their personal loans, you can either use it as a line of credit or with set terms. Once approved, you’ll be presented with your payment schedule with a minimum payment of at least $25 a month. Members are also eligible for a 0.25% rate discount if you make automatic payments or if you have a Connects credit card in good standing; if a borrower has both qualifications, they can obtain both discounts.

RiverTrace Federal Credit Union

RiverTrace Federal Credit Union serves customers in the Greater Richmond area. To join, you need to either work, live or attend school in the city of Richmond, or in local Chesterfield, Hanover or Henrico counties. You’ll also need to complete a member and signature card application and open a regular share account. The membership fee is $1; you will need to keep a minimum of $5 in your share account.

Their personal loans range from $1,000 to $10,000 and offer fixed rates depending on your creditworthiness. There are no prepayment fees, meaning you can pay off your loan at any time with incurring any fees.

Compare Personal Loans Online

Shopping around for a personal loan online is a great way to see more options, ones that have more competitive rates and that suits your needs. However, you may be limited in options if you’re only looking for personal loans at your local Richmond branches.

Online lenders tend to be trustworthy and many customers have written reviews outlining great customer service and rates. Many places even offer loans to those who may not have a great credit history or might need secured loans. However, even though there are many reputable online companies, some may not be as trustworthy. As with any loan, do your research and ask questions to make sure you understand what you’re getting into. In other words, only borrow from a company you can trust. If you’re unsure, you can read reviews at places like the Better Business Bureau to check on their reputation. It also goes without saying, but read all the fine print before signing off on a personal loan.

Going with an online lender has numerous benefits. For one, it’s convenient — you can apply and get approval all within the comfort of your own home. You don’t need to spend a lot of time going to your local branch to get a personal loan. Secondly, shopping around online gives you more options and, by extension, lower rates. Many of these companies don’t have to pay for much overhead such as physical offices, so they pass on those savings to their customers. If you don’t have a good credit score, you can also search for secured loans or find companies online that deal with bad credit loans.

An efficient way to find personal loans is through an online lending marketplace. Websites like LendingTree, the parent company of MagnifyMoney, can help guide you through the loan request process. LendingTree isn’t a lender, but their site may be able to connect customers up to five different lenders at once so they can compare and save on loans. All you need to do is fill out a short online form.

Once you do so, there’ll be a soft pull on your credit, meaning that your credit score won’t be affected at this point. You may then be presented with multiple offers, listing the name of the lender, approximate APR and terms. You can contact any of these companies to ask further questions if you want, or just go ahead and submit an application to that specific lender. LendingTree doesn’t handle this part of the process; rather, it directs you to the lender’s site so you can complete the application there. The lender will do a hard pull on your credit when you officially apply.

When your loan is approved, you’ll need to complete the closing process with your lender, which typically involves you signing an agreement and letting the lender know where to send the funds. The money will then be deposited into your account within a few business days.

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.

Sarah Li Cain
Sarah Li Cain |

Sarah Li Cain is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Sarah Li here

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Personal Loans

Personal Loans in Portland, Oregon

Editorial Note: The editorial content on this page is not provided or commissioned by any financial institution. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and may not have been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities prior to publication.

Company
APR Range
Minimum Credit Requirement
Terms
Fees
 Advantis Credit Union

9.40% - 17.40%

No Minimum FICO Score

60

months

Origination fee

No fees

Apply Now Secured

on Advantis Credit Union’s secure website

Unitus Community Credit Union

7.99% - 16.99%

No Minimum FICO Score

60

months

Origination fee

No fees

Apply Now Secured

on Unitus Community Credit Union’s secure website

OnPoint Community Credit Union

10.00% - 16.00%

No Minimum FICO Score

60

months

Origination fee

No fees

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on OnPoint Community Credit Union’s secure website

Oregon Community Credit Union

9.75% - 24.49%

No Minimum FICO Score

60

months

Origination fee

No fees

Apply Now Secured

on Oregon Community Credit Union’s secure website

LendingTree

5.99% - 35.99%

Minimum 500 FICO

24 to 60

months

Origination fee

Varies

SEE OFFERS Secured

on LendingTree’s secure website

LendingTree is our parent company. LendingTree is unique in that you may be able to compare up to five personal loan offers within minutes. Everything is done online and you may be pre-qualified by lenders without impacting your credit score. LendingTree is not a lender.

Here’s a roundup of places where you can get personal loans in Portland, Ore.

Advantis Credit Union

The Advantis Credit Union offers an online application process and quick funding. You can use personal loans for many reasons: paying wedding expenses, paying medical bills, covering a tax bill and more. Loans have fixed interest rates and there are no origination, application, or annual fees. There’s also no prepayment penalty.

Advantis Credit Union is a not-for-profit that has served Portland since 1928. The credit union has more than 73,000 members. Membership is open to residents of Portland and several counties of central and western Oregon, plus people who live, work, worship, or attend school in the state of Washington.

Unitus Community Credit Union

Unitus Community Credit Union offers personal loans with fixed rates to borrowers. One perk of this credit union is that it clearly lays out what credit score you need to qualify for certain interest rates (although other conditions may apply). For example, a credit score of 740 or higher may get you a 7.99% APR interest rate, the very lowest available. Getting approved for a personal loan qualifies you for free FICO® score monitoring from Equifax; scores are updated monthly.

Unitus Community Credit Union has around 90,000 members. You can join the credit union if you live or work in certain Oregon counties or the state of Washington.

OnPoint Community Credit Union

OnPoint Community Credit Union lets you borrow up to $25,000. Interest rates are fixed and you can apply for the loan online. Onpoint has more than 345,000 members and has served its members for almost 90 years. Membership to OnPoint Community Credit Union is open to people who work or live in specific cities and counties within Oregon and Washington state.

Oregon Community Credit Union

The Oregon Community Credit Union offers a personal credit line of up to $50,000 to borrowers who qualify. There’s a key difference between a personal line of credit and a personal loan.

A personal line of credit gives you an amount you can use and pay back when you need it almost like a credit card. Each month you have a minimum payment that’s due. Alternately, a personal loan usually has a fixed interest rate for a fixed term and you make the same payment each month. This credit union does have an option where you can choose to make a portion of your credit line a fixed interest rate for a fixed term.

Membership to the Oregon Community Credit Union is open to residents of 28 counties in Oregon, state employees, employees or members of local retailer Bi-Mart, students or employees of the University of Oregon, and relatives of current members.

Comparing personal loans online

The personal loans in Portland, Ore., to make our list are ones to consider if you’re looking for a lender in the neighborhood — but you also have many more options than solely credit unions, banks, or finance companies in your surrounding area.

Borrowing money online may give you access to better interest rates and more flexible loan terms than you’ll find at a local loan company in Portland. You can check out some of the best personal loans available online here in our roundup.

Another thing to mention is that the Portland-based loans featured in this post are all from credit unions. These credit unions have membership requirements even if you’re applying online. With most online lenders, you won’t have to jump through the hoop of applying to become a member.

The online application process

Borrowing money from online lenders is usually simple and convenient. Many online lenders let you fill out a prequalification form to check interest rates with only a soft inquiry. You can head to this page to compare loan products directly on MagnifyMoney.

The stages of the online application are pretty standard across the board. You fill out a form with your personal information, choose between offers, and then you go through credit review. At this point, lenders may ask for verification documents, such as pay stubs or W-2s, to prove you have sufficient income. Once approved, funds will likely be deposited into a bank account of your choosing. Funding can happen within just a few business days or even sooner depending on the online lender you select.

If you’re worried about safety, online lenders usually have privacy policies you can dig through to see what actions they take to protect your personal information. You should also research any lender you do business with through third-party reviews and customer reviews to make sure they’re trustworthy.

Benefits of shopping online for a personal loan

Besides the perk of quick applications, online personal loans offer products for various credit profiles. Good to excellent credit will get you the best personal loans at the best price. Having less-than-stellar credit doesn’t mean you can’t get in on the action. Online is somewhere you may be able to get approved for a loan if you can’t find bad credit loans in Portland.

An easy way to compare personal loans online

LendingTree, which owns MagnifyMoney, is an online loan marketplace that helps consumers compare loan products. You complete one free application to get personalized offers from multiple lenders. There’s no credit check required to submit the form.

Get started shopping for your next loan with LendingTree here.

SEE OFFERS Secured

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LendingTree is our parent company

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.

Taylor Gordon
Taylor Gordon |

Taylor Gordon is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Taylor here

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Personal Loans

Personal Loans in Roanoke, Virginia

Editorial Note: The editorial content on this page is not provided or commissioned by any financial institution. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and may not have been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities prior to publication.

Company
APR Range
Minimum Credit Requirement
Terms
Fees
Freedom First Credit Union

4.50%

None

Not Available

Origination fee

No fees

Apply Now Secured

on Freedom First Credit Union’s secure website

Roanoke Valley Community Credit Union

3.50% - 18.00%

Subject to credit approval

24 to 60

months

Origination fee

No fees

Apply Now Secured

on Roanoke Valley Community Credit Union’s secure website

HomeTown Bank

11.00%

Varies

36

months

Origination fee

No fees

Apply Now Secured

on HomeTown Bank’s secure website

Member One FCU

8.24% - 17.99%

Rates vary based on creditworthiness

60

months

Origination fee

No fees

Apply Now Secured

on Member One FCU ’s secure website

LendingTree

5.99% - 35.99%

Minimum 500 FICO

24 to 60

months

Origination fee

Varies

SEE OFFERS Secured

on LendingTree’s secure website

LendingTree is our parent company. LendingTree is unique in that you may be able to compare up to five personal loan offers within minutes. Everything is done online and you may be pre-qualified by lenders without impacting your credit score. LendingTree is not a lender.

Freedom First Credit Union

Freedom First Credit Union provides a wide range of services with branch locations in Roanoke and New River Valleys. In order to become a member of Freedom First, you’ll need to live, work, worship, go to school, or own a business in one of the nine cities and counties that they have a footprint in. You are also eligible if you are part of an association in seven of these same areas (Montgomery County and the city of Radford do not apply), or have a family member who is already a member of the credit union. You must open a savings account with a minimum balance of $5 in order to join.

Roanoke Valley Community Credit Union

Roanoke Valley Community Credit Union was started in 1947 by a group of local teachers, under the name Roanoke City Teachers Credit Union. Since then, they’ve added more school systems and merged with the Roanoke County School Employees FCU and the Roanoke Virginia Firemen’s FCU. In order to join Roanoke Valley Community Credit Union, you need to live, work, go to school or worship in Roanoke City/County, Salem, Vinton, or Botetourt County and deposit at least $5 into a savings account.

HomeTown Bank

HomeTown Bank was founded in 2005 and now has six branches in Roanoke, Salem, Smith Mountain Lake and New River Valley. HomeTown Bank offers personal banking, business banking, private banking, investments, and mortgages. They offer both secured and unsecured lines of credit and personal loans. The nice thing about their offerings is that they offer a fixed APR for their loans. However, you’ll likely need good credit in order to qualify for their loan, especially if you do not have a previous relationship with the bank.

Member One Federal Credit Union

Member One FCU has 14 branches in Roanoke Valley, Lynchburg, New River Valley, and Franklin County. In order to become a member, you must live, work, worship, or attend school in a select number of counties, be employed by or retired from a large number of different area companies, or be a relative of an existing member of Member One FCU.

LendingTree

LendingTree, the parent company of MagnifyMoney, is an online loan-comparison marketplace. It does not issue loans directly but, rather, helps borrowers compare offers from multiple lenders online. After you fill out a form, LendingTree may present you with personal loan offers that suit the personal and financial information you provided, and you can compare the offers then and there, all in one place. Filling out LendingTree’s form to request loan offers results in a soft inquiry on your credit report, meaning it won’t hurt your credit score. If you then apply for a loan, the lender will perform a hard inquiry, which may have a small, negative affect your credit.

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How to compare and shop for personal loans online

Shopping online for a personal loan gives you the ability to quickly find available lenders in your community, compare their rates and terms with those of national and online lenders to get the best loan in the shortest amount of time, and make the best decision about what’s right for you.

When you’re applying for a loan, you’ll need to provide the lender with your basic personal information — name, address, birth date, Social Security number, contact information, etc. — as well as information about your income and its sources and a description of your assets and liabilities. If you have a co-borrower or cosigner, that person will need to provide this information too.

You’ll also be required to answer questions to help the bank evaluate your financial situation, such as whether you have a bankruptcy or foreclosure in the past seven years, whether you have any outstanding lawsuits or judgments against you and whether you have ongoing financial obligations, like alimony or child support. Keep in mind that some of this information is available on your credit report, so it’s best to be honest.

Lenders will ask whether you are on active duty with the armed forces or the dependent of an active duty member (special legal protections apply in this case). Federal law also requires lenders to ask demographic questions about race, ethnicity and sex, though these questions are optional.

Along with your application, you may be asked to provide supporting documentation for the information you have provided, like pay stubs or tax returns; if you are using property as collateral for a secured loan (such as a house or vehicle), you’ll also be asked to provide documentation of the value of the collateral, as well as proof of insurance.

Once you submit your application, a loan officer will review your information, contact you for any additional documents required and give you the details of what they can offer you.

Depending on the lender, you may be able to complete an application online and upload supporting documents, or you may have to print out an application and mail it in or deliver it to a branch.

Once you have received several offers from lenders, you’ll want to compare the interest rate, terms, and fees — typically, longer repayment terms means lower monthly payments but a higher overall cost, so you’ll need to decide what best fits your needs.

How you receive money will depend on the lender providing the funds – if you have a bank account with the lending institution, you’ll likely have the option to have funds deposited directly into your account; otherwise, you can expect to receive a cashier’s check or an electronic funds transfer into your account at another financial institution. This varies by institution.

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.

Caroline Lupini
Caroline Lupini |

Caroline Lupini is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Caroline here

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Personal Loans

Personal Loans in Chicago, Illinois

Editorial Note: The editorial content on this page is not provided or commissioned by any financial institution. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and may not have been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities prior to publication.

Business man with coins in handbank
Company
APR Range
Minimum Credit Requirement
Terms
Fees
Parkway Bank & Trust

2.50%

Varies

Not Available

Origination fee

Possible origination fee

Apply Now Secured

on Parkway Bank & Trust’s secure website

Illinois Lending Corporation

99.00%

No requirement

9

months

Origination fee

No fees other than returned payment fee of $25

Apply Now Secured

on Illinois Lending Corporation’s secure website

Amalgamated Bank of Chicago

5.00% - 7.00%

None

24 to 60

months

Origination fee

$35 credit report fee, any fees depending on the collateral used for secured loans

Apply Now Secured

on Amalgamated Bank Of Chicago’s secure website

U.S. Employees Credit Union

9.40%

Varies

60

months

Origination fee

None

Apply Now Secured

on U.S. Employees Credit Union’s secure website

LendingTree

5.99% - 35.99%

Minimum 500 FICO

24 to 60

months

Origination fee

Varies

SEE OFFERS Secured

on LendingTree’s secure website

LendingTree is our parent company. LendingTree is unique in that you may be able to compare up to five personal loan offers within minutes. Everything is done online and you may be pre-qualified by lenders without impacting your credit score. LendingTree is not a lender.

Parkway Bank & Trust

Parkway Bank & Trust was first opened in 1964 and has now expanded to 32 branches across both Illinois and Arizona. They offer a few standout services like Kasasa, which includes free checking and savings as well as ATM refunds, customized lending to help you reach your goals, time-saving account management tools and a variety of educational resources available to all customers. Parkway Bank & Trust offers personal loans to cover a wide variety of needs including family vacation, education expenses, personal projects and start-ups, debt consolidation, taxes, emergency fund and more.

Illinois Lending Corporation

Illinois Lending Corporation started with the mission to meet the needs of the borrowing community with access to fairly priced, easy to obtain installment loans. They have high APRs compared with traditional lenders, but they may be a better alternative to very high cost short-term borrowing options like a payday loan. Definitely get quotes from other banks in case you are able to secure a better rate elsewhere.

Illinois Lending Corp currently has six locations in the greater Chicago area. It’s possible to get a loan with Illinois Lending Corporation if you’re not a resident of Illinois, but you’ll still have to come into a branch to apply. Illinois Lending Corporation offers both Checkbook Loans and Installment Loans. Checkbook Loans are offered for nine months and payments are automatically withdrawn from your checking account every pay period. ILC’s Installment Loans are also nine-month loans where payments are deducted every pay period from your paycheck.

Amalgamated Bank of Chicago

Amalgamated Bank of Chicago has been around for nearly 100 years and they meet a wide variety of personal and business banking needs including loans, checking and savings accounts, credit cards, cash management and trust services. The Amalgamated Bank of Chicago was originally founded as the Amalgamated Clothing Workers Union, and still has a significant union ownership. The bank offers home equity lines of credit and automobile loans in addition to secured personal loans.

U.S. Employees Credit Union

The U.S. Employees Credit Union was founded in 1953 and currently has three branches in the Chicago area. Those that choose to bank with U.S. Employees Credit Union also have access to tens of thousands of surcharge-free ATMs. Being a credit union, you do have to be a member of USECU if you want to do business with them. In order to join, you must be an employee or retiree of the U.S. federal government or be an immediate family member of a government employee who is an existing member of USECU. USECU offers home equity loans, flex lines of credit and credit rebuilder loans.

LendingTree

LendingTree is an online loan-comparison marketplace. After you fill out a form, LendingTree may present you with personal loan offers that suit the personal and financial information you provided, and you can compare the offers then and there, all in one place. Filling out LendingTree’s form to request loan offers results in a soft inquiry on your credit report, meaning it won’t hurt your credit score. If you then apply for a loan, the lender will perform a hard inquiry, which may have a small, negative effect on your credit.

SEE OFFERS Secured

on LendingTree’s secure website

LendingTree is our parent company

Shopping for personal loans online

If you are looking for a loan, there’s a good chance that it will be easier and faster for you to shop for a loan online rather than shopping around at brick-and-mortar banks.

Shopping online for loans gives consumers the ability to find available lenders in their community, and quickly compare rates and terms to find the best loan.
You might be wondering where to start. There are a few well-established loan marketplaces to consider looking first. For example, LendingTree helps match borrowers with options for a variety of different products including personal loans, home mortgages, business loans and auto loans.

Your needs will determine where you should go to shop for an online loan. Firstly though, you should be aware of any fees associated with your loan options. There can be a 0.5%-8% origination fee for processing a new loan application. This is based on the total amount of the loan. Average origination fees are between 0.5% and 1%. You can compare origination fees for personal loans through MagnifyMoney’s personal loan marketplace.

You should also keep in mind that your FICO score will likely determine your interest rate. Many lenders will do a soft pull of your credit score in order to estimate your loan terms based on just a few pieces of personal information. Asking for quotes is a great way to compare rates between multiple lenders.

Once you have your loan, you’ll have a fixed time period to repay it. Sometimes, you can pay your loan off early and save yourself some interest, but some lenders have prepayment penalties too, so if this is something you think you might want to do, you should make sure you won’t be penalized!

Once you have decided on your loan and know about fees and rates, you can submit your application with your supporting documents. When your loan is approved, you can expect to receive funds either by a cashier’s check or direct deposit into your bank account. This varies by institution, and should be outlined in your contract.

The bottom line: Using online marketplaces to compare and contrast different lenders is a fast and convenient way to make the best decision for your financial needs.

Disclaimer: This article may contain links to MagnifyMoney, which is a subsidiary of LendingTree.

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.

Caroline Lupini
Caroline Lupini |

Caroline Lupini is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Caroline here

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Personal Loans

Getting Loans from Someone Other than a Bank

Editorial Note: The editorial content on this page is not provided or commissioned by any financial institution. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and may not have been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities prior to publication.

Disclosure : By clicking “See Offers” you’ll be directed to our parent company, LendingTree. You may or may not be matched with the specific lender you clicked on, but up to five different lenders based on your creditworthiness.

Getting Loans from Other Bank

Updated October 12, 2018

Personal loans allow borrowers to have access to a fixed amount of money at a fixed interest rate, with a fixed monthly payment and you know when you’ll have completely paid off the loan. They are a great resource for someone looking to refinance debt and can’t use a balance transfer. If you need cash, personal loans are usually the best way to borrow. Personal loans tend to be much cheaper and simpler than a credit card.

How to get a personal loan?

Step 1: Check and see if you can get a loan with an Internet-only lender.

Ideally, you should start your shopping with a site like LendingTree, which lets you shop at dozens of lenders with just one simple online form (described below).

Step 2: Go to your local credit union and see if they can match or beat your P2P loan

Step 3: Take the loan with the lower interest rate

If you aren’t eligible for a P2P loan from an Internet-only lender then try your local credit union.

Internet-only lenders

The rise of technology allowed a new wave of lenders to offer an alternative to traditional bank loans. Peer-to-Peer lending (or P2P for short) allows borrowers to receive loans from “peers” often in the form of individual investors or hedge funds, endowments and pension funds.

Peer-to-peer loans are interesting because they were developed specifically for the digital environment. This makes them accessible with a few clicks on a computer and a relatively simple application process. Companies like Prosper, LendingClub and Upstart facilitate matching borrowers with investors. There is no need to visit a bank branch. The aim of P2P lending is to give a borrower lower interest rates while giving investors higher returns.

Interestingly, some big banks have acquired or built their own online lenders which are offering consumers even better rates. SunTrust has done that with the acquisition of LightStream, and Goldman Sachs Bank USA has recently invested in building Marcus.

Step 1: Shop Online for a Personal Loan (without hurting your score)

At LendingTree, you can shop for a loan at dozens of lenders with just one online form (that takes less than 5 minutes to complete). LendingTree will perform a soft credit pull (with no impact to your score), and you can get real offers – including how much you can borrow and the interest rate. We think this is one of the best places to start your personal loan shopping journey.

LendingTree
APR

5.99%
To
35.99%

Credit Req.

Minimum 500 FICO

Minimum Credit Score

Terms

24 to 60

months

Origination Fee

Varies

SEE OFFERS Secured

on LendingTree’s secure website

LendingTree is our parent company

LendingTree is our parent company. LendingTree is unique in that you may be able to compare up to five personal loan offers within minutes. Everything is done online and you may be pre-qualified by lenders without impacting your credit score. LendingTree is not a lender.

Opploans

Pro:

  • Opploans doesn’t just take into account your credit score when reviewing your loan application, allowing for people with lower scores to possibly be considered if they otherwise demonstrate financial responsibility.
  • There are no prepayment penalties.
  • Applying for a loan through Opploans will not affect your FICO credit score
  • No collateral is needed to get a loan and your on-time payments can help to build your credit score.

Con:

  • Opploans’s personal loans have an APR that ranges from 99.00% to 199.00%, which is much higher than many other lenders.
  • The maximum loan amount is $4,000.
  • Opploans doesn’t operate in every state and is not available to active duty service members or dependents of members of the military.
APR

99.00%
To
199.00%

Credit Req.

550

Minimum Credit Score

Terms

6 to 36

months

Origination Fee

None

SEE OFFERS Secured

on LendingTree’s secure website

 

LendingClub

Pro

  • Their interest rates are most likely lower than other loans with an APR range of 6.95% to 35.89%.
  • You can find out your interest rate without a hard inquiry on your credit score. Prosper uses a “soft pull” so there will be no point reductions on your credit score, nor an inquiry left on your report for finding out the interest rate.
  • There is no pre-payment penalty(fine if you pay off the loan early), but they won’t refund your loan fee.

Con:

  • You must have a high credit score (600 or higher) to be eligible to get a personal loan from LendingClub.
  • You probably won’t be accepted if you have a history of missed payments.
  • There is an upfront fee, but your APR will include the fee. Be sure to compare the APR and not just the interest rate when you’re shopping around.
APR

6.95%
To
35.89%

Credit Req.

600

Minimum Credit Score

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 600.... Read More

Upstart

People with minimal credit history can turn to Upstart for an opportunity to be eligible for a personal loan.

Upstart evaluates where you went to school, your area of study, your grades and employment history to determine your eligibility for a loan and your interest rate.

APR

8.16%
To
35.99%

Credit Req.

640

Minimum Credit Score

Terms

36 & 60

months

Origination Fee

0.00% - 8.00%

SEE OFFERS Secured

on LendingTree’s secure website

Upstart is an online lender created by ex-Googlers.... Read More

Step 2: Credit Unions

Credit unions are not-for-profit organizations that offer alternatives to traditional banks. They have more of an emphasis on serving their community than worrying about a corporation’s bottom line. Unlike banks, credit union members own the credit unions.

Credit unions do offer loans, but first you must become a member of the credit union. Some credit unions are closed. But others (like PenFed) will let you join if you make a $15 donation to a charity.

Pros

  • Loans from a credit union usually have lower interest rates than a bank, and possibly the lowest you can find.

Cons

  • You will need to join a credit union, and may not qualify for a loan so you could be out the cost to join.

PenFed offers an APR starting at 6.49% with no upfront fee for a term of 60 months. However, you will need to have a 700+ credit score to be competitive for this personal loan.

Non-bank lenders

OneMain is a non-bank lender owned by Citigroup. You will have to physically visit a branch to get approved. But, the process usually takes less than 30 minutes. Borrowers with high credit scores should first explore the P2P space and credit unions before turning to OneMain, because it will be a more expensive form of borrowing.

Pros:

  • If having face-to-face contact is important to you, then you can visit physical branches.
  • OneMain will approve people with credit scores as low as 550, so it is possible to get a loan when other reject you. Although expensive, OneMain will be much less expensive than payday loans or title loans.

Cons:

  • You have to visit a branch, even if you’re preapproved online. If you don’t have a branch near you, this could be a serious hassle.
  • There will be a hard inquiry on your credit report
  • Likely higher interests rates (APRs) than a loan from P2P lenders like Prosper or LendingClub
  • A few complex terms and conditions

Warning:

  • Don’t bother with the insurance products they’ll try to sell you.
APR

16.05%
To
35.99%

Credit Req.

Varies

Minimum Credit Score

Terms

24 to 60

months

Origination Fee

Varies

SEE OFFERS Secured

on LendingTree’s secure website

Advertiser Disclosure

If you have a credit score below 600, OneMain Financial is one of the few lenders that you can use to get a personal loan.... Read More


Loan approval and actual loan terms depend on your ability to meet our standard credit criteria (including credit history, income and debts) and the availability of collateral. Loan amounts subject to state specific minimum or maximum size restrictions. Collateral offered must meet our criteria. Active duty military, their spouse or dependents covered by the Military Lending Act may not pledge any vehicle as collateral. CA minimum loan amount is $3,000. GA minimum loan amount is $1,500 for present customers and $3,100 for others.

Step 3: Take the Lowest Interest Rate

Personal loans can be valuable tools to help pay down debt, reduce interest rates and save you hundreds to thousands of dollars. But remember; don’t rush into a personal loan just because it seems like a good deal. Take the time to do your research, shop around and ensure your getting the absolute best interest rate you can. Even the difference of .01 can make a difference in the long run.

Read where to find the best personal loan rates online here.

promo-personalloan-wide

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.

Erin Lowry
Erin Lowry |

Erin Lowry is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Erin at erin@magnifymoney.com

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Personal Loans

Personal Line of Credit vs. Credit Card: Which Is Best for You?

Editorial Note: The editorial content on this page is not provided or commissioned by any financial institution. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and may not have been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities prior to publication.

Credit cards and lines of credit are revolving credit accounts. Your account will have a credit limit — the most you can borrow at a time — that the issuer or lender will assign you based on your creditworthiness.

Unlike an installment loan, which you must repay in predetermined fixed payments over a specific term, a revolving account allows you to borrow against your credit line, repay the loan and borrow against it again without having to apply for a new loan. You may also be able to make small monthly payments, and your total repayment period can vary depending on how much you choose to pay.

Although they share some similar characteristics, credit cards and credit lines may be best used in different circumstances. See the key aspects of both in this chart and then dive in below to learn how personal lines of credit and credit cards work.

 Personal Line of CreditCredit Card

Type of Account

A secured or unsecured revolving credit line

A secured or unsecured revolving credit line

Generally Issued By

Banks, credit unions and online lenders

Banks, credit unions and credit card issuers

Interest Rate

A variable or fixed rate

The rate often ranges from around 4% for secured lines to over 20% with unsecured lines.

Generally a variable rate

Cards may have different rates for purchases, balance transfers and cash advances Purchase rates are around 15.5% on average


Potential Fees

  • Annual fee

  • Late payment fees

  • Cash advance or draw fee

  • Origination fee

  • Closing costs (for HELOCS)

  • Annual fee

  • Late payment fees

  • Cash advance fees

  • Balance transfer fees


Credit Line

Issuers may have a preset potential range, but your credit limit can depend on your creditworthiness. Secured credit line limits may depend on the value of the collateral

Unsecured lines could be for hundreds of thousands, and there are secured lines with several million dollar limits

The credit limit can vary depending on your creditworthiness and the credit card. The limit generally won’t be as high as what’s offered on credit lines

Minimum Draw Amount

There could be a minimum draw amount, such as $500 per draw

No minimum

May Be Best For

When you expect to take out a series of small loans or want an emergency loan option

Managing daily or monthly expenses, or when you can leverage a promotional interest rate offer or rewards program

How a line of credit works

A personal line of credit gives you the ability, but not obligation, to borrow money as needed. Your credit limit can depend on your creditworthiness and the lender, but you can take out smaller loans against your total limit.

You may only have to pay interest on the amount you borrow, although that interest could start to accumulate right away. You may also have to pay an annual fee, often around $25 to $50, to keep your account open, even if you don’t use the account.

Depending on the account, you may be able to make a draw as a cash withdrawal, bank transfer or with a check linked to the account. Some accounts charge a fee on your withdrawals — or draws, as they’re called — depending on how you get the money.

Once you’ve taken a draw, you may only have to make minimum monthly payments on your loan, although paying more than the minimum could limit how much interest accrues. Or, each of your loans may have a fixed repayment period and set monthly payments.

Some personal credit lines may have an initial draw period — a several-year period when you can take draws against your credit line. You may need to make at least minimum payments during the draw period, and once it ends and your repayment period starts your monthly payments may increase.

Personal credit lines may be unsecured or secured. Secured lines of credit require you to put up collateral, such as funds in a certificate of deposit account or your home (for a home equity line of credit or HELOC) that the creditor can take if you don’t repay your loan. A secured line of credit may have additional fees, such as closing costs on a HELOC, but you may be able to get a much larger credit line. Unsecured credit lines are offered to borrowers based on their creditworthiness and promise to repay the loan.

When to use a line of credit (and when not to)

Opening a line of credit could be a good idea if have a series of upcoming purchases to make. Say, for example, that you’re renovating a room in your home and will make progress payments to a contractor before purchasing new appliances or furniture later. Rather than taking out one large loan and paying interest the entire time, you can take out several smaller loans from your credit line and minimize how much interest accrues.

You may also be able to find a line of credit that doesn’t require any annual fees. Keeping a personal credit line open could be an OK option as an emergency fund. Although ideally, you can save up enough cash to build an emergency fund, a credit line could help you get cash at a predetermined (and hopefully low) interest rate.

A credit line isn’t likely the best option for regular expenses, as you’ll end up taking out, managing and paying interest on multiple draws. If you find yourself frequently short on money, focusing on decreasing your expenses or increasing your income should be a top priority.

Additionally, if you need to take out a single loan for a specific purpose, you may want to use a personal loan rather than a line of credit. Personal loans are installment loans that can be secured or unsecured, and you may be able to qualify for a lower fixed or variable rate than you could get with a credit line.

How credit cards work

A credit card also gives you access to a revolving credit line. Your card will have a credit limit — the highest your balance can go before the card issuer starts declining your transactions.

During your billing period, purchases, balance transfers, fees, interest charges and other transactions can increase your balance. When your billing period ends, the card issuer will send your credit card statement with a summary of your transactions, your current balance and your required minimum payment. Your next billing period will begin right away, although the bill you just received generally won’t be due for another 21 to 25 days.

If you continually pay the entire balance on your credit card statement and your card has a grace period (as many do), then you won’t have to pay any interest on your purchases.

However, you can pay less than your entire balance, all the way down to a minimum payment — which may be just $15 to $30 depending on your card and balance. If you pay less than the full amount, then the unpaid portion will be carried over to the next month and start to accrue interest. Additionally, any new purchases will begin to accrue interest immediately.

When to use a credit card (and when not to)

A credit card could be a good option for making regular purchases. You may have over 50 days from the start of your billing period to your bill’s due date, which gives you some flexibility to manage your cash flow. You also won’t pay interest on your purchases if you can pay your bill in full each month. You could even earn rewards with your purchases, such as cash back or points in travel loyalty programs.

There are also promotional rate and balance transfer credit cards that offer a temporary 0% interest rate on new purchases or balances that you transfer to the card. Using one of these offers could help you finance a large purchase interest-free, or transfer and pay down debts without accruing interest.

However, getting the most out of credit cards require financial and personal discipline, and might not be possible for someone who is struggling to stay on top of monthly bills.

Falling behind and making a less-than-full payment can lead to your balance accruing daily interest at a potentially high-interest rate. Even the promotional rates can eventually turn into a high rate, and if you’re unable to follow through with a plan to pay off the balance you could be left with a large high-interest debt.

For those who tend to make impulse purchases, even the best-intentioned plans could come crashing down. If you have several credit cards with a balance and then transfer the balances onto a zero-interest balance transfer card, you’ll now have multiple cards with an available credit limit. Max those out and you could be faced with even more credit card debt than you had at the beginning.

Bottom line

Credit cards and lines of credit are both revolving accounts, but they may be best used in different circumstances.

A credit card can be best for day-to-day purchases if you can afford to pay the bill in full each month. Additionally, using promotional rates and offers could sometimes save you money. However, credit cards’ high-interest rates can make paying off credit card debt difficult once you start revolving a balance.

A line of credit could be helpful if you have a series of upcoming expenses to finance, or if you want to open an account that you can tap during emergencies. But beware of minimum and maximum draw amounts and your overall cost if you don’t have a fixed repayment term for your draw.

No matter which type of account you want to open, always compare your options first. Both credit cards and personal lines of credit may offer different interest rates, terms and fees depending on the creditor, and you want to find the best fit possible.

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.

Louis DeNicola
Louis DeNicola |

Louis DeNicola is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Louis at louis@magnifymoney.com

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Personal Loans

The Pitfalls of Buying Furniture With In-Store Financing

Editorial Note: The editorial content on this page is not provided or commissioned by any financial institution. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and may not have been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities prior to publication.

Disclosure : By clicking “See Offers” you’ll be directed to our parent company, LendingTree. You may or may not be matched with the specific lender you clicked on, but up to five different lenders based on your creditworthiness.

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Buying furniture is a complex endeavor. There’s much to consider before you finalize your decision: the size, the color, the style — and the cost.

Couches, beds, and tables can be quite expensive, and it may be tricky for just anyone to come up with a large amount of cash to cover these expenses. Many furniture stores offer “interest-free” in-store financing that makes such major purchases seem like an easy-peasy process for customers. But if you fail to repay the balance during the interest-free period, you end up paying more than you thought you would.

In this post, we will walk you through the pros and cons of in-store furniture financing. We also offer alternatives that may help you buy the furniture you want.

How 0% in-store furniture financing works

Many large retail stores that sell furniture have a deferred-interest financing program that allows consumers to open up a store credit card in which there may not even be a required minimum purchase.

The store may let you finance the piece of furniture you buy for a 0% interest rate for a period. The interest-free window could be one to six years, depending on the creditor. After that point, the APR could jump to 20% to 25%, or even higher.

Ashley HomeStore, for example, has a store card with a 29.99% APR and it offers interest-free financing for up to 72 months. Rooms To Go’s store credit card has the same APR, and it offers 0% interest from September 2018 through February 2023.

The key thing to understand is the deferred interest clause that can come with these types of cards. This means that if you don’t repay the entire principal amount before the promotional window closes, the credit card company will retroactively charge all the interest it would have charged.

“They might have 0% interest for 24 months, but if you don’t pay it all off in 24 months, your interest is calculated back from day one and added to your balance,” said Jude Boudreaux, a certified financial planner and founder of New Orleans-based Upperline Financial Planning. “It’s a tremendous penalty.”

Let’s say the store offers to sell you a couch for $3,000, interest-free for 12 months. You will have no problem if you pay the $3,000 off in month 12. But if you leave even $1 on the credit card after that 12-month period is over, you might owe $750 in interest if the regular interest rate is 25%. Ouch.

– Read why rent to own furniture specials is a bad idea!

Advantages of financing your furniture in-store

Enjoy an interest-free loan — if you meet the promo requirements

In-store financing could be a good deal as long as the buyer pays off the money borrowed within the 0% interest rate period.

For someone who doesn’t have enough savings to cover the furniture, instead of cashing their emergency fund, taking a 0% interest rate loan is a better, safer choice. But make sure you pay it off before the term is up to avoid retrospectively accrued interest.

Get new furniture right away

With a financing offer, you can go in and buy the items that you’ve been eyeing right away even if you don’t have all the cash on hand to purchase them.

The trick here is to stop yourself from going overboard to the point where you’re left with unaffordable monthly payments or you aren’t able to pay the card off before the promotional period ends.

“Be very careful because it’s easy to overspend when you have the ability to borrow like that,” Boudreaux said.

Help build your credit

Those who don’t have a stellar credit score may also have an opportunity to build credit with a store card. Often, the furniture sellers work with a financial institution that issues those store credit cards, and sometimes the credit company reports to one or all three credit bureaus. Check with the retailer before you apply for the card to see if it reports your payments to credit bureaus.

And, keep in mind, this can work against you as well. If you miss payments, it will hurt your score. Simply applying for new credit can temporarily ding your credit score. For that reason, ask the store if it offers a soft pull prequalification. You can get a good idea of whether you’ll get approved for financing without having to agree to a hard credit pull.

Disadvantages of financing your furniture

You may have to make a large interest payment

Zero-interest financing deals can be a great idea if you can pay off the money borrowed within the promotion period. But, in real life, many may not be able to do so. The big caveat here is that if you don’t repay the entire principal amount on time, you may be on the hook for interest.

On top of owing deferred interest going back to the beginning of the date of purchase, the credit card company will continue to charge interest until you repay the full amount owed. Remember, those cards carry pretty high-interest rates — higher than a typical credit card’s interest — so once the regular APR kicks in and you’re hit with all the deferred interest charges, it gets very expensive very quickly.

“They know that there’s a percentage of people that won’t pay the balance within the promotion time,” said Juan Guevara, a certified financial planner based in Colorado. “That’s how they make their money.”

Alternatives to in-store financing

Save up cash

Some people may not realize that if you want to buy furniture, you’re going to be making a payment no matter what. Instead of getting a loan, you might as well save up cash to pay for it. This strategy will keep you from the risk of having to pay high interest retrospectively if you can’t repay the loan within the promo period.

If you are disciplined enough to save up for a piece of furniture, the chances of you splurging are slimmer than someone who borrows money with a loan or credit card.

Offer to pay cash upfront and ask for a discount

Another advantage of purchasing furniture with upfront cash is a potential discount you might be offered.

As we discussed earlier, offering financing options costs money for the retailer. You are in a disadvantaged position to negotiate with the retailer for a discount if you take the financing deal. But if you offer to pay for furniture with cash in full, then you have the bargaining power.

Use a 0% intro purchase credit card

Before you accept a retailer’s in-store financing, even if it has a 0% intro APR, consider bringing your own financing to the table. There are some good 0% intro purchase APR cards on the market. And regular credit cards usually carry a lower interest rate than retail store cards, which can save you a bundle if you’re left making payments after the promo period ends.
If you’ve got a credit card that will offer you a 0% percent introductory rate on purchases,
compare its regular interest rate with that of the furniture store credit card. Choose the lower-cost option in case you cannot pay off the balance by the time the promotional 0% interest period is up.

Complete a balance transfer

If you sign up for in-store financing (a credit card) but can’t pay the balance off before the interest-free period ends, you’re at risk of getting hit with deferred interest charges.

To buy yourself more time, consider using a balance transfer credit card.

With a balance transfer, you can possibly roll over your debt from the store credit card to the new card that has an introductory interest-free period. The promotional 0% interest period typically lasts from 12 to 21 months. You usually have to pay a one-time balance transfer fee, which is often 3% of the amount of the transfer.

You’ll need good credit to qualify for the best balance transfer offers. And, keep in mind, you cannot transfer balances between credit cards issued by the same company.

Use a home equity line of credit

Another way to rustle up some extra funds is by using a home equity line of credit (HELOC). A HELOC is a revolving credit line. It’s secured by your house. You can apply for a HELOC, leave it open and draw funds from it as needed. Draw periods usually last for up to 10 years. As you pay off the principal, your credit gets replenished and you can use it again. You only pay interest on what you borrow.

The HELOC likely carries a lower interest rate than other unsecured financing options such as a credit card or personal loan. If you’re uncertain whether you can pay off the balance of in-store financing, and you fear you’ll get hit with a penalty or deferred interest charges, it can be a safer bet. You can avoid the possible penalties that come with the in-store financing offer.

Take out a personal loan

An increasing number of people have taken out personal loans to buy furniture. According to data from the Federal Reserve, the average personal interest loan rate was 10.31% in the second quarter of 2018. Financial experts generally don’t recommend this option. Although it’s lower than a typical credit card interest rate, it’s higher than your HELOC interest rate, if you have one. Your earning potential could offset the higher interest rates. Compare multiple lenders at once with our comparison tool below!

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Rent-to-own

Some stores offer rent-to-own programs that allow customers to take the furniture home and make installment payments. Renters can potentially own the furniture after they pay the total cost. But take note: These plans can be significantly more expensive than outright purchases. It’s technically not a loan, so there’s no disclosed interest, but the extra renting costs are usually calculated into the installments.

“By the time you own it, you may have paid triple the amount (of the regular price), so in essence, your interest rate could have been a lot higher,” said Chris Dlugozima, a financial wellness expert at GreenPath, a nonprofit debt and consumer credit counseling.

Bottom line

In-store furniture financing can be to your advantage as long as you stay within your budget when you buy and pay the debt off on time. But if you can’t be sure that you can repay the entire balance during the 0% interest rate period, think twice before you open that store credit card. At the end of the day, the expense has to come out of your cash flow. Compare your options, look at your financial situation and choose the one that comes with fewer risks and less potential cost.

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.

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Shen Lu is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Shen Lu at shenlu@magnifymoney.com

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Why Rent-To-Own Furniture Deals Are Usually A Bad Idea

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If you don’t have the funds to furnish a space or buy a new appliance outright, rent-to-own furniture can seem like a sweet deal. You make small payments over several months (or years), get repairs or replacements over the term and, in the end, you own a “new” couch or dishwasher!

But … renting to own furniture can be costly. Although the payment you’ll fork over each month is small compared to the full cost of the furniture, renting to own often translates into paying a lot more than you would if you’d simply bought the couch.

What does it mean to ‘rent-to-own’ furniture?

A rent-to-own furniture agreement, also known as lease to own or a lease purchase, is a payment plan in which you agree to make installment payments for new — or gently used — furniture. You can exit the contract anytime by either returning the item or purchasing the furniture for a lump-sum payment. After the agreed-upon number of payments are made, you own the furniture.

Generally, the rental company doesn’t run a credit check for a rent-to-own plan. Instead, a prospective renter may need to provide proof of income and an address — as well as submit personal references — to enter a rent-to-own agreement.

The risks of rent-to-own deals

The risk with these agreements is that the monthly payments required often add up to much more than the sales price of the furniture.

On top of the base payments, a rent-to-own agreement may include mandatory and optional fees that increase your cost of purchasing the item. A few examples of these fees would be:

  • Processing fee
  • Delivery and pickup fee (if not included)
  • Setup/installation fee (if not included)
  • In-home collection fee (if they send someone to your home to collect a payment)
  • Excessive damage fee (if you break the item or the item is returned with damage)
  • Reinstatement fee (to continue renting if you miss a payment or make a late payment)
  • Loss and/or damage waiver fee
  • Membership fees
  • Late payment fee

Let’s say, for example, you enter into a rent-to-own contract with one of the largest and most popular rent-to-own retailers in the U.S., Rent-A-Center. As of this writing, Rent-A-Center advertised an Ashley Furniture dining set on sale for 14 monthly payments of $104. After 14 months, you will have paid a whopping $1,382.69, excluding taxes and applicable optional fees, to become the owner of a now year-old dining set.

The same dining set is on sale at Target for roughly $590, excluding tax. In this case, the rent-to-own agreement costs nearly 2.5 times more, essentially the same as paying a 200% APR.

The high rate is similar to rates charged on expensive borrowing products infamous for trapping consumers in debt such as payday, pawn shop and auto title loans.

“Overall, rent-to-own programs often charge high rates that leave consumers paying significantly more than the furniture they are buying. That’s not worth it for any consumer,” said Adam Garber, of the U.S. Public Interest Research Group (PIRG). “You should think long and hard before entering any such deal and explore alternatives.”

On top of the payments, mandatory rental fees and applicable taxes, you may be encouraged to tack on optional fees such as, for example, a membership fee for the Rent-A-Center Benefits Plus program. The program comes with extra product protections, coupons and discounts with some other retailers for an additional $3 a week, or $13 a month.

Rent to own isn’t limited to furniture. The plans can also apply to consumer electronics, appliances or even car tires.

Take, for example, the popular Nintendo Switch gaming console. After 12 monthly payments of $115 to the other big-box renter in the U.S., Aaron’s, you’ll have paid $1,379.88, excluding taxes and applicable fees, to own the console. Meanwhile, you could buy a new version of the same console from Best Buy for $299, excluding tax.

Getting out of a rent-to-own contract

Most contracts allow you to exit the contract anytime, by either returning or buying the furniture. You are not obligated to continue the contract into the next period or to purchase the item. Most plans give you the option to buy the furniture by making an early, lump-sum payment equal to some or all of the remaining rental payments. Some companies also let you upgrade the item to a newer version anytime, which may mean entering a new agreement with a different monthly payment.

But if you choose to return the item, you will not be reimbursed for any of the money you’ve paid into the agreement.

If you fail to make the required payments, the company will likely repossess the item and may charge a late fee and/or other related fees. If you catch up on payments and want to continue the agreement, you may be charged another fee to reinstate the plan. If the company determines you have damaged the piece, you may be required to pay an excessive damage fee or buy the item.

Questions to ask before you sign a rent-to-own agreement

Garber does not recommend using a rent-to-own plan in any circumstance. But, he said, a consumer who is considering entering a rent-to-own agreement “should do everything in [their] power to make sure that the contract protects [them] from additional charges down the road.”

If you do choose to go with a rent-to-own agreement, Garber recommends asking the following before you agree to a plan:

  • Will you be charged any additional fees outside of the monthly payment?
  • What happens if you miss a payment?
  • What’s the full cost of the rent-to-own plan, including fees?
  • Will you be charged for services such as cleaning, repairs or replacements?
  • Will you be charged a return fee?
  • What are the service fees? In some contracts, the company may charge a fee for services such as repairs and replacements for the duration of the deal.

Are rent-to-own plans regulated?

Depending on how the deal is structured, a rent-to-own plan may not be covered by federal lending laws, which require certain disclosures and provide consumer protections. But the plan may be covered by state laws regulating rent-to-own transactions. The protections vary depending on the state in which you live. You can check with your state’s attorney general to learn if your state has enacted protections, and to see what those protections entail.

Other ways to finance furniture

Even if you don’t have much cash on hand at the moment, it may be worth it to you to explore all possible alternatives before deciding to use rent-to-own financing. In some cases, it may even be cheaper in the long run to borrow using a credit card or a personal loan.

In-store financing

When you use in-store financing to buy furniture, the retailer will typically issue you a loan or a store credit card you can use to cover the purchase. You are required to pay the amount back over time just as you would pay off a loan or credit card. Some retailers offer promotional low or 0% interest financing options, so you may be able to avoid paying interest on the loan if you can pay it off within the promotional period. If you don’t pay off the full amount during the promotion, however, you may be charged interest retroactively on the full purchase amount, so be sure to read the fine print. Once the promo period ends, the interest rates can be incredibly high — 25% and up.

Pay in cash

If you can stand to wait a while to furnish your space, saving up and paying for the item in cash is always the best option. Read up on these savings strategies to get started. One strategy you could use: Pay yourself what you would pay for the item in the rent-to-own agreement. You can set up an automatic transfer to a savings account to simplify the process. You’ll have saved the full cost of the item in a significantly shorter time frame than it would take to own the item in a rent-to-own agreement.

‘Same-as-cash’ financing

Some rental companies offer what’s called “same-as-cash” financing. If you use same as cash, you’ll make larger monthly payments over a shorter term. The resulting total amount paid is the advertised “cash” selling price, plus taxes and any applicable fees.

For example, Rent-A-Center lets renters pay off an item over 90 days using the same-as-cash financing, while Aaron’s allows customers with rental agreements longer than six months to pay off an item at its “cash price” within 120 days.

Same-as-cash deals may cost less than entering a rent-to-own deal for a longer term, but the cash price calculated by the company may still be significantly higher.

We observe this difference in our previous example of the Nintendo Switch from Aaron’s. Aaron’s prices the Switch at $825.99, versus the Best Buy price of $299, excluding tax. Even if same-as-cash prices are equal to retail prices, after fees are applied you may still pay significantly more than you would pay if you’d bought the item from a retailer or used an alternative form of financing.

Layaway

Layaway programs such as those offered by retailers Sears and Kmart allow borrowers to put an item on hold as they pay it off over a specified period. When the item is paid off, the customer owns it and can generally either pick it up from a store or have it delivered.

Enrolling in a layaway program may cost a service fee between $3 to $15. If you fail to complete the program, you may be charged a restocking fee of about $10. All fees associated with layaway programs vary by retailer.

Use a 0% intro purchase APR credit card

If you have a good credit score or better, you may be able to qualify for a credit card that won’t charge you interest as you pay off the furniture for a certain period. The key is to find a card with a 0% intro APR for new purchases and pay it off before the promo period ends.

CompareCards, another LendingTree-owned site, has compiled a list of the best 0% purchase APR credit cards >.

During the promo period, you won’t be charged any interest on purchases made with the card. But at the end of the period, you may see the rate climb significantly. For some cards, you may be charged deferred interest on the charges you haven’t paid off by the end of the promo period.

Use a personal loan

A personal loan is an installment loan paid back in equal payments over a set period at a fixed rate. A personal loan could be a good option, especially if you have good credit and can qualify for a loan at a lower rate than the cost of a rent-to-own arrangement. But you’ll need to watch out for fees that may increase the cost of borrowing, such as origination fees. You can compare your top personal loan offers from multiple lenders with our parent company LendingTree without harming your credit score.

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5.99%
To
35.99%

Credit Req.

Minimum 500 FICO

Minimum Credit Score

Terms

24 to 60

months

Origination Fee

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SEE OFFERS Secured

on LendingTree’s secure website

LendingTree is our parent company

LendingTree is our parent company. LendingTree is unique in that you may be able to compare up to five personal loan offers within minutes. Everything is done online and you may be pre-qualified by lenders without impacting your credit score. LendingTree is not a lender.

Subscription services

If you’re a millennial, shedding the burden of ownership and having the ability to get rid of something that’s no longer serving you whenever you feel like it may seem like a dream. But rent-to-own furniture is very different from — and a lot more expensive than — trading an auto loan for Uber rides in a big city. If that’s the kind of noncommitment for which you’re looking, companies such as Feather, based in New York City, offer furniture subscription services.

Buy used furniture

If you’re only going to live somewhere for a few months and don’t want to spend the money on furniture you’ll need to get rid of fairly soon, consider finding cheap deals on Craigslist or other online marketplaces.

Because you risk charges for damage or paying for the entire cost of furniture, Garber recommends those in a temporary living situation attempt to find low-cost furniture on resale sites such as Craigslist or at a thrift or discount store before considering a rent-to-own agreement.

In conclusion

Rent to own is usually a bad deal. Those who use rent-to-own financing often pay double or more than what they would pay if they had saved for and purchased the item. If you are considering using rent-to-own financing to buy furniture, it’s recommended you explore all other available options, including using in-store financing or borrowing with a personal loan, before entering a rent-to-own agreement.

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.

Brittney Laryea
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Brittney Laryea is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Brittney at brittney@magnifymoney.com

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What You Need to Qualify for Peer-to-Peer Loans

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If you want to take out a personal loan, turning to a peer-to-peer (P2P) lender could be a good option. These lending platforms help connect borrowers who need a loan with investors who want to lend out their money and earn interest.

When you apply and are approved for a loan with a P2P lender, your loan is listed on the lender’s website. Investors, which can range from individuals to companies, can then put up money to fund part or all of your loan. Technically, the money from investors isn’t sent directly to the borrowers. But investors will receive payments (minus the P2P lender’s fees) as you repay your loan.

Before you can get your loan listed, you’ll submit an application to determine if you’re eligible for funds and for what terms.

Here are a few tips that could help you qualify for a P2P loan, along with a discussion of the general pros and cons of P2P lenders.

5 tips to help you qualify for a peer-to-peer loan

1. Make sure you meet the minimum eligibility requirements

Each lending platform sets its minimum eligibility requirements for applicants. Generally, you can expect the following factors to be considered as you apply:

  • Your credit history and credit score
  • Your income and outstanding debts
  • Your history with the P2P lender
  • Whether you’re at least 18 years old
  • If you live in a state where the lender operates
  • If you have a bank account

To qualify for funds on Prosper, for instance, you must have a debt-to-income ratio that’s below 50 percent, at least some income and fewer than five credit inquiries during the past six months. You must also have a FICO credit score of 640 or higher, according to one Prosper representative.

Alternatively, Peerform and LendingClub look for minimum FICO scores of 600 and maximum debt-to-income ratios of 40 percent, which may make it a better option for some borrowers.

Meeting the minimum qualification requirements doesn’t guarantee that you’ll get approved for a loan. But knowing what the qualifications are upfront lets you avoid applying when you don’t have a chance of getting approved.

2. Try to get a preapproval with a soft credit pull

Some P2P lenders offer loan preapproval with a soft credit check. Unlike a hard credit check, a soft pull won’t impact your credit score.

Although getting preapproved doesn’t guarantee that you will get approved for a loan with the same rate and terms, it could be a quick and easy way to see if you meet the basic credit requirements.

3. Consider how much you need to borrow

Most P2P lenders set minimum and maximum loan amounts. For example, Prosper offers loans from $2,000 to $40,000, while LendingClub offers loans from $1,000 to $40,000. Even if you meet the P2P lender’s requirements, you may only qualify for a lesser amount depending on your creditworthiness.

Before applying, make sure your desired loan amount falls within the lender’s range. If you need to borrow more than the lender allows, you may want to turn to a different lender or type of loan. For example, you could apply for a personal loan for up to $100,000. Or you may find that it’s easier to get approved for a large secured loan, such as a home equity loan.

4. Prepare your paperwork and verification documents

P2P lenders may require a variety of verification documents to complete a loan request. Having these on hand when you apply could help you quickly get through the application process.

The specifics can vary by lender, but needed documents may include:

  • Recent pay stubs, bank statements and tax returns
  • A copy of your driver’s license or other government-issued ID
  • Proof of your current address from a recent utility or telecom bill

5. Look for ways to improve your credit score

If you don’t meet the lender’s minimum credit score requirement or think you may be able to get a lower rate with a better credit score, you could try to improve your credit before applying for a loan.

Improving your credit takes time, but if you can find and dispute errors on your credit report, that could lead to a quick change. Another option is to pay down your revolving debt, such as what you owe on credit cards.

Some P2P lenders may also allow joint applications. You can get approved for a loan by applying with a creditworthy cosigner. But both borrowers would be legally responsible for repaying the debt.

P2P lending: Pros and cons

Pros of using a P2P lender

Online P2P lenders may have straightforward application and verification processes. Working with a P2P lender could be easier and quicker than having to go into a credit union or bank branch to complete a loan application.

Although your interest rate will vary depending on your creditworthiness and the P2P lender, you may be able to find lower rates with a P2P lender than from other financial institutions. That’s not guaranteed, though, so you should shop around before taking out any loan.

While P2P lenders generally require a credit score of 600 or higher, that’s a lower cutoff point than some other online lenders. A low score may mean you don’t get the most favorable rates, but at least you may still be able to qualify for a loan.

Many P2P lenders only offer fixed-rate installment loans. With a fixed-rate loan, you’ll know exactly how much your monthly payments will be and when your loan will be paid off. Using a P2P loan to pay off higher-interest revolving debt, such as credit card debt, could help you save money and stick to a set repayment schedule.

While P2P lenders may ask you why you want to take out a loan, you can legally use the money for almost anything. There may be some exceptions, though. For instance, you may not be able to use the funds for investments, illegal activity or to make higher education-related purchases.

Cons of using a P2P lender

You may have to pay an origination fee when you receive a loan from a P2P lender. The fee amount is often a percentage (such as 1 to 6 percent) of your loan amount and may vary depending on your creditworthiness. Origination fees are taken out of your loan and you’ll receive the rest of the money but need to repay the full amount. You should take this into account when you’re considering how much money you want to borrow.

A P2P lender may not be the best option if you need money right away. With other lenders, once your application is approved and your information is verified, the lender can send you the money. With a P2P platform, you’ll need to wait until investors fund your loan. This doesn’t necessarily take a long time — LendingClub says the entire application and funding process typically takes about seven days — but it’s something to consider before applying.

Even if you get approved for a loan, there’s no guarantee that investors will decide to invest in and fully fund your loan. Depending on the P2P platform, you may be able to accept a smaller loan for the amount that was funded. Or you may have to reapply and have your loan request relisted.

Don’t overlook these loan details

As with any contract, you’ll want to carefully review the loan documents before signing. There are a few fine-print items that you may want to pay particularly close attention to with peer-to-peer loans. Some of these you may be able to research ahead of time and then double-check when you receive an official loan offer.

  • Loan rate: The annual percentage rate (APR) on your loan takes origination fees, compounding interest and your loan’s terms into account to show your true cost of borrowing. You should compare the APR you’re offered by different lenders when considering which loan offer to accept.
  • Loan fees: P2P loans may have an origination fee, late payment fee, check processing fee, insufficient funds fee or other types of charges. Read over the loan’s terms carefully so you’ll know when and why you’ll have to pay a fee, and how to avoid paying them. If your loan has a prepayment penalty or pre-computed interest, you may want to look for a personal loan from a different lender.
  • What happens if your loan isn’t fully funded: Because P2P lenders may treat partially funded loans differently, know what could happen before you decide which lender to work with to try to get a loan. If you have a short deadline for when you need the loan, you may want to consider a non-P2P lender.

Where to compare P2P lenders

You can compare P2P lenders and other lenders that offer similar types of loans by visiting each financial institution’s website. But you could also use our personal loan marketplace to review each lender’s loan terms, rates, fees and minimum credit score requirements.

Using our marketplace, you can input your credit score, desired loan amount and ZIP code to view lenders that suit your needs.

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.

Louis DeNicola
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Louis DeNicola is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Louis at louis@magnifymoney.com

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