You may be ready to consolidate all your debt into more affordable payments, or maybe you have a large project coming up that you need financing for. Whatever your needs, deciding to take out a $50,000 loan is a massive decision.
Knowing how to compare your options and apply for a loan can help you choose the right lender and potentially save hundreds, if not thousands of dollars over the course of the loan. Learn more about the loan process and how to compare loans and lenders in our guide below.
With that kind of money at stake, being careful with your application is more important than ever. Follow these steps before and during your application to make sure you choose the lender that works best for you.
Know your credit score. You can receive a copy of your credit report from one of the two credit bureaus or find a legitimate website online that offers free credit reports. Having this on hand can help you get a more exact estimate of rates when you preapply with lenders — or even when browsing reviews.
Make sure you meet the requirements. Some lenders have additional eligibility requirements for larger loans — such as owning a home. Even if you have excellent credit and make six figures, you may want to reach out to the lender to double check the eligibility requirements before applying.
Know your priorities. Do you need money fast or would you prefer a lower rate? Are you looking to pay the loan back quickly or over a period of time? Having a clear list of your priorities can help you narrow down lenders faster and help you choose the best lender for you.
Do your research. Compare rates, read reviews and look into customer comments before narrowing down your options. Try to find a loan that meets your priorities and you can qualify for. Rule out any lenders that you have a bad feeling about.
Get preapproved if you can. Many lenders offer a quick preapproval application that gives you a more accurate idea of your potential rates and terms based on a soft credit pull and other aspects of your personal finances. You won’t want to do this with every lender — it takes some time — but it could help tip the scales once you’ve narrowed it down to a handful.
Get your documents together. Having the required documents and information on hand before you apply can help you speed up the application process.
Ask questions while you apply. Mistakes are a surprisingly common reason that borrowers get rejected for a loan. One way to avoid this is to ask questions if you’re unsure of how to answer a question. Most lenders have customer service lines that operate during normal business hours, sometimes even longer.
What lenders look for in a borrower
Excellent credit score. When it comes to loans in the $50,000 range, lenders generally prefer to work with borrowers who have a high credit score, which usually means 800+. They may also consider those with a credit score in the “good” to “very good” range, which would be 650+ usually.
Strong credit history. On top of having a high credit score, lenders also prefer to work with borrowers who have a long history of paying back debts on time. You’ll generally need to have at least a few years of history on your credit report.
High income. Generally lenders don’t like to give out loans worth more than a fraction of your income. You’ll typically need to be in the $100,000 range at least to qualify for a $50,000 loan. Lenders must be sure that you can pay your loan back over time.
There are two main costs you need to worry about when it comes to personal loans: Interest rates and fees.
An interest rate is a percentage of your loan principal — what you borrow — that lenders charge you each month. Lenders either charge a fixed interest rate that stays the same, or a variable rate that changes over time depending on the market.
Fees are a fixed amount that is usually paid once throughout the term of the loan. The most common fee on a personal loan is an origination fee, which is typically a percentage of the amount you borrow that the lender deducts from your $50,000 before you get it. If you need the full $50,000, make sure the lender doesn’t deduct the fees from your total.
Most lenders express these two costs as one — in the form of a percentage, known as your APR, or annual percentage rate. Instead of comparing rates and fees on different loans, compare APRs with the same term to understand how much each loan will cost.
Choosing the right loan term
Your loan term, or the amount of time you have to pay off your debt, is one of the most important factors in your loan’s monthly cost — it will affect the total cost of your loan. Shorter-term loans mean your total loan cost will be lower, but your immediate costs, or monthly repayments, will be higher. Longer-term loans come with lower monthly repayments, but you’ll pay more in interest over the longer period of time. Try to find a happy medium by going for the shortest term you can afford.
3 tips to get the most competitive offer
Your credit score is one of the most important factors in qualifying for a loan. Here are some quick tips to help you make sure your score is as high as it could be before you apply.
Check your credit report. Sometimes creditors make mistakes and sometimes credit bureaus make mistakes. Checking your credit report can help you catch any mistakes that could hurt your score before you apply for a loan. Reach out to both your creditors and the credit bureaus if you find anything that doesn’t look right.
Pay off small debts. Doing anything you can to pay off your debts quickly can not only lower your credit score, but it can also lower your DTI, making you an even more attractive candidate for a loan.
Don’t cancel credit cards. You might think that cancelling a credit card you don’t use can help, but it’s actually the opposite. Your credit score will be higher if you have access to a lot more credit than you’re using. Getting rid of a credit card lowers the amount of credit you have access to, so hold off until after you’re approved.
Long-term tips for getting a competitive rate
Don’t need the loan right away? Here are two ways to make your credit even stronger in the long run— and help you qualify for even lower rates.
Diversify your debts. In the short-term, taking on more debt will damage your credit because it involves a hard credit inquiry. However, in the long run, taking on other forms of financing increases your diversity, which makes up a fair portion of your credit score.
Keep your credit card bill low. Your credit utilization score is calculated by the amount of debt you owe in comparison to your limits. A great way to lower it is by simply not using your credit card any more than you have to.
What can I use a $50,000 loan for?
A $50,000 loan can be used for just about any legitimate purpose. Think we’re kidding? These are just some of the costs your $50,000 loan can cover.
Consolidate debt.If you have debt spread across multiple credit cards and loans, you can use your personal loan to consolidate the debt into one single place. If you secure a lower interest rate, not only will your loan be cheaper in the long run, it will also be easier to manage since you only need to make one monthly payment.
Weddings expenses. The cost of a wedding is more than just paying for the big day. There’s venues to rent, airplane tickets to be bought, dresses to pay for, engagement rings — and the list goes on. A $50,000 loan can help you cover the bulk of your wedding-related costs.
Buying a boat. If you’re not happy with the financing offered by the manufacturer, you can always take out a personal loan to pay for your new boat.
Paying for IVF. Although coverage for IVF varies greatly across the different provinces and territories, you will likely still have to pay for some of the expenses. A $50,000 loan can help you cover the bulk of your treatments.
What happens after I get my loan?
Once you’ve received your funds, you now have to focus on paying them back. You might want to consider setting up automatic payments so you don’t have to take the time to manually pay each month. Some lenders even offer a small discount on interest to borrowers who pay automatically. Want to save even more on interest? One easy way is to pay off your loan early. But before you do this, check with your lender to make sure they don’t charge any early repayment penalties. To make extra payments without thinking about it, consider rounding up your payments to the nearest $50 or $100, or set up automatic repayments every two weeks instead of once a month.
You’re a mover, a shaker, an innovator — and you’ve got a plan that needs setting into action. Don’t let that plan get compromised by a lack of financing. You can compare your options to find a $50,000 loan with competitive rate and terms. Especially with larger loan amounts, it’s important that you have good to excellent credit in order to qualify. Applying only for a loan you’re eligible for can save you time by increasing your chances of approval so you don’t have to apply for other loans after being denied. It can also save your credit score, since a lender will do a hard pull on your score, knocking a few points off each time an inquiry is made.
Frequently asked questions
Depending on the provider, you may be able to apply with a cosigner. Doing so could even lower your overall loan costs, since you may be able to score a lower interest rate and better terms.
You can’t — there is no such thing as a guaranteed loan. The most you can do to increase your chances is meet the eligibility criteria, have excellent credit and provide proof that you have the income to support all of your expenses — including the loan repayments. If a lender guarantees approval, it’s likely a scam.
No. Legitimate lenders typically only offer large amounts to borrowers with good to excellent credit and other strong personal financials. This means they will more than likely do a credit check, and if they don’t, you might want to consider their legitimacy.
Anna Serio is a staff writer untangling everything you need to know about personal loans, including student, car and business loans. She spent five years living in Beirut, where she was a news editor for The Daily Star and hung out with a lot of cats. She loves to eat, travel and save money.
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