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Digital Federal Credit Union (DCU) personal loans review

Last updated:  

Open-ended financing tailored to your needs with discounts for some members.

finder.com’s rating: 4.5 / 5.0

★★★★★

  • Best for parents looking to use some of the funds to pay for their kid’s college tuition.
  • Pick something else if you don't want to open a DCU checking account.

$100,000

Max. Loan Amount

5.99% to 18%

APR

Not stated

Min. Credit Score

Details

Product NameDCU personal loans
Min. Loan Amount$200
Max. Loan Amount$100,000
APR5.99% to 18%
Interest Rate TypeFixed
Min. Credit ScoreNot stated
Loan TermUp to 5 years
Turnaround Time1 to 2 business days

Expert review

Anna Serio

Review by


Anna Serio is a trusted lending expert and certified Commercial Loan Officer who's published more than 950 articles on Finder to help Americans strengthen their financial literacy. A former editor of a newspaper in Beirut, Anna writes about personal, student, business and car loans. Today, digital publications like Business Insider, CNBC and the Simple Dollar feature her professional commentary, and she earned an Expert Contributor in Finance badge from review site Best Company in 2020.

Expert review

Digital Federal Credit Union is ideal for parents looking to take out a personal loan for their own needs, as well as to help cover the cost of school for their child. It’s one of the only personal loan providers that allows you to use the funds for college expenses.

Plus, it offers an extremely wide range of loan amounts — from just $200 all the way up to $100,000. And it doesn’t charge any origination fees.

But rates start relatively high. And you’ll need to become a member of the credit union after you apply if you decide to take out the loan.

Don’t think DCU is right for you? Compare your other options below.

How much will this loan cost me?

DCU personal loans come with rates that run from 5.99% to 18% APR. There’s no origination fee, but you might have to pay a fee of $25 to $35 if you miss a repayment.

You can borrow between $200 and $100,000 with terms as long as five years. Use the calculator below to see how much a DCU personal loan might cost you, based different loan amounts, terms and rates.

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How does it work?

Not everyone can qualify for a 5.99% to 18% or $100,000 loan. The minimum rate includes a 0.5% APR discount that’s only available to Plus or Relationship Checking members who sign up for autopay.

Even if you qualify for the rate discount, you need near-perfect credit and a low debt-to-income ratio to qualify for the lowest rate and highest loan amounts.

DCU now offering deferment on new loans

DCU has started offering the option to defer payments for up to 60 days on all loans made after March 25, 2020. This option was announced in response to the coronavirus outbreak and is available until further notice.

However, interest still adds up as soon as your loan is disbursed, so make payments if you can. Otherwise you’ll end up with higher monthly payments and a larger loan amount than you originally signed up for.

What do I need to qualify?

DCU doesn’t have many hard eligibility requirements to apply for a personal loan. You just need to live in the US and join DCU before or after you apply. To be eligible for membership, you must meet one of the three following criteria:

  • Work or have worked for a company that’s listed as a participating employer
  • Member of a participating organization, community or condo association
  • Related to an existing member

You can find a list of eligible employers, organizations, communities and condo associations on DCU’s website.

What information do I need to apply?

You will need a few basic pieces of information to complete a personal loan application:

  • Social Security number
  • Date of birth
  • Member number (optional)

You may need to submit proof of income, employment or residence after DCU processes your initial application.

Pros

  • Funds can be used for college
  • No origination fee
  • Wide range of loan amounts
  • Live chat on website

Cons

  • Not much information available online
  • Lowest rates only available to Plus and Relationship members
  • Must become a DCU member to borrow

See other personal loan providers

Data indicated here is updated regularly
Name Product Filter Values APR Min. Credit Score Max. Loan Amount
Credible personal loans
4.99% to 35.99%
Fair to excellent credit
$100,000
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SoFi personal loans
5.99% to 18.53%
680
$100,000
A highly-rated lender with competitive rates, high loan amounts and no fees.
Upstart personal loans
8.69% to 35.99%
580 or 600 depending on state of residence
$50,000
This service looks beyond your credit score to get you a competitive-rate personal loan.
LendingTree personal loans
Starting from 3.99%
Good to excellent credit
$50,000
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NetCredit personal loans
34% to 155%
No minimum
$10,500
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Is DCU legit?

Yes, DCU is a federal credit union, meaning that it has to meet standards set by the National Credit Union Association (NCUA) — like charging no more than 18% interest on loan products.

It uses SSL encryption to protect any information you send through its website. And it doesn’t share your information with other companies for anything other than everyday business purposes.

What do customers say about DCU personal loans?

BBB accreditedNo
BBB ratingA
BBB customer reviews1.4 out of 5 stars, based on 25 customer reviews
Trustpilot score3.7 out of 5 stars, based on 1 customer reviews
Customer reviews verified as of05 May 2020

DCU only has a handful of online reviews and most are complaints about its poor customer service. However this doesn’t mean you’ll necessarily have a bad experience. Most customers write reviews when they’re extremely pleased with or angry with a company.

How do I apply?

You can apply online, over the phone or in person at your local branch. Here’s how to start your online application:

  1. Go to the DCU website and navigate to the Personal loans page. Click Apply now.
  2. Follow the directions to complete the online form with your personal information, including Social Security number.
  3. Select either Continue with coapplicant or Continue without coapplicant.
  4. Review and submit your application.

What happens after I apply?

DCU will reach out to you with an offer and request documentation, typically within 24 hours. After you submit your documents and any additional information — and are approved — you will be able to review and sign your loan documents.

How do repayments work with DCU personal loan?

You can repay your loan several ways but you might want to consider signing up for automatic repayments so you don’t have to take the time to pay off your loan each month. If you have a Plus or Relationship Checking Account signing up for autopay can get you a hefty 0.5% discount off your APR.

If you notice any mistakes in your account or have any questions, reach out to DCU customer service by calling 800-328-8797. And if you won’t be able to make a repayment, get in contact as soon as possible. Otherwise, you may have to pay a late or returned payment fee of $25 to $35.

Want to learn about more lenders? Check out our credit union loans guide or visit our personal loans page to learn more about how borrowing works in general.

Frequently asked questions

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