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Getting a personal loan in your 30s: What you need to know

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How borrowing wisely can help you build a better future.

While you may not have everything figured out yet by your 30s, adulthood probably doesn’t feel like a distant memory anymore. And since taking on more responsibilities can sometimes be expensive, a personal loan is a solid option in some cases.

Credible Personal Loans

Our top pick: Credible

Quickly get personal loan offers from top online lenders.

  • Minimum Loan Amount: $1,000
  • Maximum Loan Amount: $100,000
  • Loan Terms: 2 to 7 years
  • One simple form
  • Must have good to excellent credit

    4 ways to make the most of a personal loan in your 30s

    If you’ve been making on-time debt payments, it’s likely that you have a good or excellent credit score and solid credit history. The average credit score for 30-somethings is 671 — good enough to qualify for a loan with most lenders. Put that score to use by making beneficial purchases.

    1. Refinancing and consolidating your debt

    If your credit score has improved or you’ve paid off debt since you last took out a loan, consider refinancing. This works by taking out a loan with more favorable rates and terms to pay off your current loan.

    Racked up a lot of credit card debt in your 20s? Consider a debt consolidation loan. It’s similar to personal loan refinancing, but instead of paying off a lender, you pay off your credit card balances. You can also consolidate other types of debt — like personal loans — with a debt consolidation loan.

    2. Investing in your health and career

    Sometimes you need to spend money to save money. When you’re in a strong financial position and can handle a little debt, an investment in personal care could help you cut down on long-term personal expenses.

    For example, if you spend hundreds on contacts and glasses each year, taking out a personal loan to pay for LASIK surgery can save you in the long run. Need dental work that your insurance doesn’t cover? A personal loan to fix the problem now could help you avoid more costly procedures in the future.

    It doesn’t have to just be about health. If you’re thinking of switching careers or need more training to get that big promotion, consider taking a training or certificate course. A personal loan can help with those upfront costs.

    3. Renovating your home

    If you buy a house in your 30s, taking out a home improvement loan not only gets you that deck you’ve always dreamed of, but it can increase the value of your property. And if you choose to use the funds to install solar panels or other eco-friendly devices, you could save in utilities for years to come.

    A personal loan can also help you cover the cost of urgent fixes like a moldy kitchen or leaky roof, which makes your home more livable and valuable.

    4. Starting a family

    Having kids is expensive. While you might not want to take on a lot of debt before taking on the huge cost of having a child, a personal loan can help you make it over several hurdles:

    • Unpaid maternity leave. A personal loan can help you cover household bills and other expenses when you don’t have money coming in.
    • Egg and sperm freezing. Maybe you don’t want to have a baby now — but you also don’t want to write it off. A personal loan can help cover the cost of freezing your eggs or sperm banking so you’re not beholden to your biological clock.
    • Infertility treatment. Procedures like in vitro fertilization (IVF) can set you back more than $10,000 — and insurance doesn’t cover it in most states. If you can’t afford to pay for everything out of pocket, a personal loan can help.
    • Adoption and surrogacy. Both adoption and surrogacy can cost tens of thousands of dollars. A personal loan might not cover all of that, but it can help with at least part of the expense.

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    Rates last updated December 11th, 2018

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    Unfortunately, none of the personal loan providers offer loans for that credit score. If you are in urgent need of a small loan, you might want to consider a short term loan.
    Name Product Product Description Min. Credit Score Max. Loan Amount APR
    Even Financial Personal Loans
    Get connected to competitive loan offers instantly from top online consumer lenders.
    550
    $100,000
    3.84% to 35.99% (fixed)
    Credible Personal Loans
    Get personalized rates in minutes and then choose a loan offer from several top online lenders.
    Good to excellent credit
    $100,000
    4.99% to 36% (fixed)
    LendingClub Personal Loan
    A peer-to-peer lender offering fair rates based on your credit score.
    660
    $40,000
    6.95% to 35.89% (fixed)
    Monevo Personal Loans
    Quickly compare multiple online lenders with competitive rates depending on your credit score.
    550
    $100,000
    3.34% to 35.99% (fixed)
    NetCredit Personal Loan
    Check eligibility in minutes and get a personalized quote without affecting your credit score.
    550
    $10,000
    34% to 155% (Varies by state) (fixed)
    SoFi Personal Loan Fixed Rate (with Autopay)
    No fees. Multiple member perks such as community events and career coaching.
    680
    $100,000
    7.24% to 15.24% (fixed)
    Marcus by Goldman Sachs Personal Loans
    Consolidate your debt or pay off large expenses with competitive rates and no fees.
    Good to excellent credit
    $40,000
    6.99% to 24.99% (fixed)
    OneMain Financial Personal and Auto Loans
    An established online and in-store lender with quick turnaround times. Poor credit is OK.
    Varies
    $30,000
    16.05%–35.99%* (fixed)
    Avant
    Conveniently check your loan options without affecting your credit score.
    580
    $35,000
    9.95% to 35.99% (fixed)

    Compare up to 4 providers

    Don't have good credit? Build up your score before applying for a personal loan

    Your credit score is one of the most important factors lenders look at when you apply for a loan. Learn how you can up your rating by reading our 13 tips to improve your credit score.

    When to avoid taking out a personal loan

    Taking on more debt isn’t always the right choice in your 30s — especially if you’re in one of these situations:

    • You’re struggling to save for retirement. Contributing to your 401(k) to meet your long-term goals — especially if your company matches what you put away — should come first.
    • You’re planning on buying a house. Hold off on taking out a loan so you can qualify for the lowest mortgage rates.
    • You’re worried about layoffs. Wait until your employment is on more stable ground to ensure you’re able to afford repayments.

    3 tips for strengthening your finances in your 30s

    1. Open an IRA. You might already have a 401(k) through your employer. But to maximize your retirement savings, consider opening a Roth IRA to help you save even more.
    2. Consider disability and life insurance. If you think you might want life insurance, consider getting a policy while you’re in your 30s. That’s because rates increase the older you get. Disability insurance can also cover you if you get injured or sick and can’t work.
    3. Decide if buying a home makes sense. If you move around a lot, renting might be a more financially reasonable option for you. If buying a home is in your plan, take steps to save up for the down payment on a mortgage. Using a budgeting app like Mint can help you reach your goals with minimal work.

    Bottom line

    If you borrow wisely, a personal loan can help you build the life and family you’ve always wanted while helping you save in the long run. But taking on debt at the wrong time can also get in the way of reaching your personal goals. Before you take out a loan, make sure you know what you’re getting into by checking out our guide to personal loans.

    Frequently asked questions

    Anna Serio

    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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    US Personal Loans Offers

    Important Information*
    Credible Personal Loans

    Get personalized rates in minutes and then choose a loan offer from several top online lenders.

    Monevo Personal Loans

    Quickly compare multiple online lenders with competitive rates depending on your credit score.

    LendingClub Personal Loan

    A peer-to-peer lender offering fair rates based on your credit score.

    SoFi Personal Loan Fixed Rate (with Autopay)

    No fees. Multiple member perks such as community events and career coaching.

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    US Personal Loans Offers

    Important Information*
    Credible Personal Loans

    Get personalized rates in minutes and then choose a loan offer from several top online lenders.

    Monevo Personal Loans

    Quickly compare multiple online lenders with competitive rates depending on your credit score.

    LendingClub Personal Loan

    A peer-to-peer lender offering fair rates based on your credit score.

    SoFi Personal Loan Fixed Rate (with Autopay)

    No fees. Multiple member perks such as community events and career coaching.

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