Find out how to use your credit score to get approval for a loan without putting collateral on the line.
If you have a decent credit score and want to get your hands on some fast cash, then you may be able to qualify for a large unsecured personal loan.
These loans rely entirely on your credit score for approval, so you won’t need to secure your payments against an asset to qualify. Just keep in mind that you may have to pay more in interest and fees.
How do unsecured personal loans work?
Unsecured personal loans are loans that are issued based on your credit score. This means they don’t require you to secure your payments against an asset (like your home or vehicle).
To process your application, your lender will do a credit check to make sure that you have a history of paying off your debt on time (including loans and credit cards). They may also ask for proof of income or employment. So long as you have a credit score that sits above 650 and a steady job, you should be able to qualify.
Borrowers with a good credit score can typically take out large amounts at decent rates while those with excellent credit scores (720 and up) may qualify for even better rates and flexible repayment terms. You can use this money to finance large purchases, consolidate debts or cover emergency expenses (like car repairs or home renovations).
Compare unsecured personal loans
How can I get a large unsecured personal loan?
You can get a large unsecured personal loan by applying with a bank, credit union or private lender. To give out unsecured funds, most lenders will require a good to excellent credit rating (650 and above) as well as proof of income.
Once you’re approved, you will typically need to repay an unsecured personal loan by making monthly installments over a set period of time. Since your loan won’t be secured by collateral, it may have higher interest rates and less flexible repayment terms than secured personal loans.
What if I have bad credit?
You may have trouble applying for a large unsecured personal loan if you have bad credit. This is because your lender will use your credit score as an indication of how likely you are to pay back your loan.
If your credit score is lower than 650, it means you have a history of missing payments or not paying loans or credit cards back on time. If this is the case, you’re better off applying for a no credit check loan.
How to compare large unsecured personal loans
If you’ve looked at the criteria and think you meet the requirements for an unsecured loan, then it’s time to compare lenders. You should look at a couple of factors to find the best fit.
- Interest rates. Interest rates will likely be higher on an unsecured loan. Look for the shortest term with the lowest rates to save money in the long run.
- Fees. Watch out for hidden fees and charges in your contract so that you’ll know what extras you’ll need to pay.
- Term. Look for the shortest loan possible with payments that you can still afford. This way, you’ll save money on interest but won’t risk defaulting on your loan.
- Repayment conditions. Aim for a lender that will work with you to renegotiate repayment if your financial situation takes a turn for the worse.
- Customer service. Find a lender that has good customer ratings and a reputation for responding quickly to customer issues and concerns.
How to apply for an unsecured personal loan
Once you settle on the right lender, it’s time to apply for your loan. To do so, you should follow some basic steps:
- Check your credit score. Get started by checking your credit score. You can do this by applying through credit bureaus like Equifax or TransUnion.
- Compare lenders. If you have a score above 650, you can begin by comparing lenders to find the best interest rates and terms for your loan. If your credit score is lower, you might like to check into a bad credit loan.
- Fill out your application. When you pick the lender you want to go with, you can apply by filling out an application online or in person.
- Verify your identity and income. You’ll usually need to give a piece of ID to prove your identity, along with pay stubs or tax forms to prove your employment status or income.
What to watch out for
- High interest rates. Since collateral isn’t required, unsecured loans tend to have higher interest rates than loans that require you to secure your payments with an asset.
- Origination fees. Private lenders may charge an administrative fee to process your loan, which can sit anywhere between 1% and 5% of the total amount you borrow.
- Prepayment penalties. Some lenders will actually charge you for paying your loan off early. It’s best to avoid loans with this kind of fee.
- Damage to credit score. If you don’t make payments on time, your credit score will take a big hit – which could affect your ability to borrow in the future.
Other borrowing options for those with good credit
If you have good credit but you don’t think an unsecured personal loan is the right fit for you, it might be time to look into other options.
- Secured loans. You may be able to get approved for a larger loan with lower interest rates if you put an asset on the line to secure your payments.
- Peer-to-peer loans. Peer-to-peer loans offer lower rates, more flexibility, quicker turnaround and fewer fees than many traditional banks.
- Business loans. These can be a good low-interest option if you’re taking out money to fund business expenses.
- Payday loans. If you need a small amount to tide you over between paychecks, you could compare payday loans for easy approval.
- Borrowing from friends or family. If you can pay your loan back quickly, you could ask your family or friends to give you an interest-free loan.
If you don’t want to put collateral up to secure your loan and you have a good credit score, you can apply for an unsecured loan. Find out whether you’re eligible and compare lenders to get a loan that meets your needs.