LightStream auto loans review 2018 | finder.com

LightStream auto loans review

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Quick car loans from $5,000 to $10,000 with Competitive rates for borrowers with strong credit.

Need financing for a new car on a tight deadline? LightStream could offer what you’re looking for. Eligible applicants with good to excellent credit can get funding as fast as the same day. But you’ll need to fill out a full application to see what rates and terms you qualify for — LightStream doesn’t offer a preapproval form.
Product NameLightStream Auto Loans
Min Loan Amount$5,000
Max. Loan Amount$10,000
APRCompetitive
Interest Rate TypeFixed
RequirementsGood or excellent credit, enough income or assets to afford a new loan, US citizen or permanent resident, 18+ years old
  • Have good to excellent credit
  • Have enough income or assets to cover your current debt obligations and a new loan
  • Be over 18 years old
  • Be a US citizen or permanent resident

First, do I qualify?

To meet LightStream’s most basic eligibility requirements, you must:

  • Have good to excellent credit
  • Have enough income or assets to cover your current debt obligations and a new loan
  • Be over 18 years old
  • Be a US citizen or permanent resident

What makes LightStream auto loans unique?

LightStream has one of the fastest turnaround times out there when it comes to car loans, making it a great choice if you need funding fast.

Borrowers who can afford to spend a little more time shopping around can also benefit. LightStream will beat any rate offer by 0.1% as long as the other lender’s APR meets its terms and conditions.§

What’s a LightStream car loan?

LightStream new car loans are fixed-rate loans from $5,000 to $10,000. You can apply to finance up to 100% of your vehicle’s value with flexible terms and competitive rates. LightStream looks at your loan term, amount, creditworthiness and payment method when determining your interest rate. You won’t face any application, origination or prepayment penalties.

Its unsecured new car loans have no restrictions on your vehicle’s year, make or model. However, these are only open to borrowers with the strongest credit. Others might only qualify for a secured loan, which is limited to cars, SUVs, light-duty trucks and passenger or conversion vans.

Other types of auto financing available through LightStream

  • Used auto purchase from a dealer. A fixed-rate loan for buying a used car directly through a dealership.
  • Used auto purchase from an individual. Don’t want to go through a dealer? LightStream can also finance a car purchase from a friend, family member or even Dan from Craigslist.
  • Auto lease buyout. When you’ve grown attached to the car you were leasing, LightStream can help make that large buyout payment more affordable.
  • Auto loan refinance. Apply to swap your current car loan for more favorable rates and terms by refinancing with LightStream.
  • Motorcycle purchase or refinance. LightStream also offers special financing options for buying a motorcycle or refinancing an existing motorcycle loan.

What are the benefits of a LightStream auto loan?

  • Same-day funding. LightStream has one of the quickest turnaround times for a car loan out there.
  • Up to 100% financing. LightStream doesn’t require you to make a down payment on your vehicle.
  • Secured and unsecured options. If you don’t have strong enough credit for an unsecured loan, you can back your loan with your new vehicle — though additional requirements apply.
  • Rate beat program.§ Have a more competitive offer from another lender? LightStream can beat it by 0.1%, as long as the competitor’s APR meets certain terms and conditions.
  • Competitive rates. LighStream auto loans come with some of the most favorable rates out there. Plus, you can shave 0.5% off your loan’s APR by signing up for autopay during the application process.

What to watch out for

  • Restrictions on secured loans. If you can’t qualify for an unsecured loan, you can only use your loan to purchase a lien-free car, SUV, light-duty truck or passenger or conversion van. You also must purchase and own it in one of the 50 states or Washington, DC.
  • No preapproval option. LightStream doesn’t allow you to apply for a personalized rate quote before you start your application.
  • Good or excellent credit required. This lender isn’t for you if your credit history is brand new or has taken a hit.

Compare more car loan providers

Rates last updated November 19th, 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 Term of Loan Requirements
car.Loan.com Car Loans
Apply with a simple online application to get paired with a local auto lender. No credit and bad credit accepted.
300
Varies by lender
Must be a US citizen with a current US address and employed full-time or have guaranteed fixed income.
Auto Credit Express Car Loans
Get connected with an auto lender near you, even if you have bad credit.
300
Typically 3 to 6 years
Must be employed full-time or have guaranteed fixed income of at least $1,500/month and be a current resident of the US or Canada.
LightStream Auto Loans
Quick car loans from $5,000 to $100,000 with competitive rates for borrowers with strong credit.
Good to excellent credit
Flexible terms
Good or excellent credit, enough income or assets to afford a new loan, US citizen or permanent resident, 18+ years old
RateGenius Auto Loan Refinance
Connect with a network of over 150 lenders to refinance your car loan.
510
Varies
Income of $2,000+/month, vehicle has less than 150,000 miles, no older than 10 model years, loan balance is at least $10,000, debt-to-income ratio: less than 50%.
LendingClub Auto Refinancing
Lower your monthly car payments and save on interest through a fast and easy online application process.
Fair or better credit
Minimum of 2 years
Car must be less than 10 years old with fewer than 120,000 miles. Current loan must have a balance between $5,000 and $55,000 and at least 24 months left in its term.
MotoRefi Car Loan Refinancing
A car loan connection service for borrowers looking to refinance.
525
1–6 years
Must have an income of at least $2,000/month and have a vehicle with less than 100,000 miles.
LendingTree Auto Loans
Compare multiple financing options for auto refinance, new car purchase, used car purchase and lease buy out.
Good to excellent credit
Typically 1 to 7 years
Must be a US citizen and 18+ years old. Must have good to excellent credit.

Compare up to 4 providers

How do I apply?

  1. Click the Go to Site button on this page.
  2. Follow the steps to complete the car loan application.
  3. Review your loan offer and e-sign your loan documents.
  4. Wait for your funds to be disbursed to your bank account.

What do I need to apply?

To apply for a LightStream auto loan, you typically need to provide the following documents and information:

  • Name, birthday and Social Security number
  • Driver’s license
  • Information about your job and salary
  • Information about other assets and income
  • Details about your monthly debt obligations

I got the LightStream auto loan. Now what?

Once you have your LightStream auto loan, you’re free to use the funds to buy your new vehicle. You’ll also be on the hook for monthly repayments using the repayment method you selected in the application.

Autopay repayments are automatically deducted from your bank account. Otherwise, LightStream will send you an invoice by email each month with instructions on how to pay off your loan.

Keep an eye on your bank account and loan balance. If you have any questions or concerns, reach out to customer service as soon as possible.

Bottom line

LightStream’s auto loans have a fast turnaround time and competitive rates. But you may have a hard time qualifying if you don’t have a strong credit score or the income to support another loan.

Check out our car loans guide to compare other lenders and learn more about how auto loans work.

Frequently asked questions

Your loan terms, including APR, may differ based on loan purpose, amount, term length, and your credit profile. Rate is quoted with AutoPay discount. AutoPay discount is only available prior to loan funding. Rates without AutoPay are 0.50% higher. If your application is approved, your credit profile will determine whether your loan will be unsecured or secured. Subject to credit approval. Conditions and limitations apply. Advertised rates and terms are subject to change without notice.
Payment example: Monthly payments for a $10,000 loan at 3.34% APR with a term of 3 years would result in 36 monthly payments of $292.31. Maximum APR for a LightStream loan is 16.99%.
You can fund your loan today if today is a banking business day, your application is approved, and you complete the following steps by 2:30 p.m. Eastern time: (1) review and electronically sign your loan agreement; (2) provide us with your funding preferences and relevant banking information; and (3) complete the final verification process.
§ After receiving your loan from LightStream, if you are not completely satisfied with your experience, please contact them. They will email you a questionnaire so they can improve their services. When they receive your completed questionnaire, they will send you $100. LightStream’s guarantee expires 30 days after you receive your loan.
LightStream reserves the right to change or discontinue their guarantee at any time. Limited to one $100 payment per funded loan. LightStream and SunTrust teammates do not qualify for the Loan Experience Guarantee.

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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