Navy Federal Credit Union personal loans review June 2018

Navy Federal Credit Union personal loans review

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If you’re a military member, veteran or DoD employee, you could get a personal loan with interest rates capped at 18%.

Navy Federal Credit Union offers competitive personal loan rates and terms to members of the military, veterans and those who work for the Department of Defense — extending membership to immediate family.

If you’re planning your next home improvement project, well-deserved vacation or want to consolidate debt, a personal loan from NFCU could help you fund it.

Product NameNavy Federal Credit Union Personal Loans
Min Loan AmountVaries
Max. Loan Amount$50,000
Interest Rate TypeFixed
Maximum Loan Term15 years
Application FeeNone
  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Have an active NFCU checking or savings account
  • Have a regular source of income

What is a personal loan from Navy Federal Credit Union?

Founded in 1933, Navy Federal Credit Union (NFCU) is the largest credit union in the United States, offering its members large loan amounts and long repayment terms. Like all credit unions, NFCU is owned by its members rather than corporate shareholders, which allows it to offer stronger rates with relaxed criteria for lending.

NFCU considers your personal circumstances when evaluating your application, but you’ll still need a good credit score.

Here’s what you need to know about credit union personal loans

What are the benefits of a Navy Federal Credit Union personal loan?

  • Discount for active duty or retired military. If you’re currently on active duty or retired from the military, you’re eligible for a 0.50% discount on your interest rate.
  • 18% interest rate cap. If you’re approved for a loan, 18% is the highest interest you’ll pay — even on loans with terms of up to 180 months. That’s competitive compared to other lenders with maximum APRs as high 35.99%.
  • Many branch locations. While many credit unions stay local to its communities, Navy Federal Credit Union has branch locations in 30 states, DC and Guam.

What are the drawbacks?

  • Membership required. To qualify for a personal loan from NFCU, you must be a member — common for credit unions, but the application is rigorous for NFCU.
  • Minimum loans for longer terms. Repayment over a longer term requires a minimum borrowing amounts. For example, loan terms of 85 months require you to borrow at least $30,000.
  • Mixed reviews. Depending on where you look, you’ll find both negative and positive reviews on NFCU. Be sure to understand how borrowing from a credit union works before you apply.

What do customers say about Navy Federal Credit Union?

Navy Federal Credit Union doesn’t have the best online reviews. It gets an A- rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB), which it isn’t accredited with. As of June 2018, over 90% of its 44 customer reviews are negative and nearly 600 customers have filed a complaint against the business. It does slightly better on Trustpilot, scoring an 8.5 out of 10 based on seven reviews.

One of the top complaints was that NFCU was not equipped to handle the unique needs of servicemembers and veterans. Complaints ranged from refusing to acknowledge the power of attorney given to a spouse while the customer was deployed to not honoring SCRA benefits that require lenders to reimburse interest over 6% while borrowers are deployed. Its customer service gets mixed reviews — it appears to be excellent until something goes wrong.

Government action against Navy Federal Credit Union

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) filed a consent order against Navy Federal Credit Union over its debt collection practices in 2016. The CFPB alleged that Navy Federal Credit Union threatened to take delinquent borrowers to court or garnish their wages if they couldn’t pay back the loan. It also alleged that delinquent had restricted access to their accounts.

Navy Federal Credit Union paid a $23 million in customer compensation and a $5 million fine.

Compare more personal loan options

Rates last updated June 20th, 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 Minimum Credit Score Max. Loan Amount APR
Best Egg Personal Loans
A prime lender with multiple repayment methods.
5.99%–29.99% (fixed)
Upgrade Personal Loans*
Affordable loans with two simple repayment terms and no prepayment penalties.
5.96%–35.97% (fixed)
LendingPoint Personal Loans
Get a personal loan with reasonable rates even if you have a fair credit score in the 600s.
15.49%–34.99% (fixed)
Even Financial Personal Loans
Get connected to competitive loan offers instantly from top online consumer lenders.
4.99%–35.99% (fixed)
SoFi Personal Loan Fixed Rate (with Autopay)
No fees. Multiple member perks such as community events and career coaching.
6.199%-15.365% (fixed)
Monevo Personal Loans
Quickly compare multiple online lenders with competitive rates depending on your credit score.
3.09%–35.99% (fixed)
Borrow only what you need for debt consolidation, home improvements and more — with APRs based on overall creditworthiness.
6.95%–35.99% (fixed)
Laurel Road Personal Loans
Get a personal loan with no application or origination fees and a rate discount for autopay.
5.5%–11.74% (fixed)
FreedomPlus Personal Loans
Consolidate debt and more with these low-interest loans. Cosigners welcome.
4.99%–29.99% (fixed)
LendingClub Personal Loan
A peer-to-peer lender offering fair rates based on your credit score.
5.98%–35.89% (fixed)
CompareFirst Personal Loans
An easy-to-use loan connection service geared toward introducing first-time borrowers to affordable personal loans.
2.99%–36% (fixed)
OneMain Financial Personal and Auto Loans
An established online and in-store lender with quick turnaround times. Poor credit is OK.
16.05%–35.99%* (fixed)
NetCredit Personal Loan
Check eligibility in minutes and get a personalized quote without affecting your credit score.
34%–155% (fixed)

Compare up to 4 providers

Am I eligible for a loan?

To get the best APR on a personal loan, good to excellent credit is recommended. NFCU also allows cosigners to aid individuals with less-than-perfect credit. You can even apply for a secured loan to help you build your score.

To apply, you must:

  • Be at least 18 years old.
  • Have an active NFCU checking or savings account.
  • Have a regular source of income.

How can I become a member of Navy Federal Credit Union?

Membership for Navy Federal Credit Union is open to current and former members of the military, employees of the Department of Defense (DoD) and immediate family member of those who are eligible to join.

Here’s how NFCU defines servicemembers, civilians and immediate family members:


  • Active-duty members of any branch of the US military
  • Army or Air Force National Guards
  • DoD officer candidates, members of an ROTC program or members of the Reserves
  • Veterans and retirees

  • DoD civilian employees
  • US government employees assigned to DoD installations
  • DoD contractors
  • DoD civilians and retirees
Immediate family members

  • Spouses
  • Parents and grandparents
  • Children and grandchildren
  • Siblings
  • Household members

How do I apply?

If you’re a member of the Navy Federal Credit Union, you can apply for a personal loan with NFCU in four easy steps.

  1. Go the NFCU’s website and visit the personal loan page.
  2. Click Apply Now.
  3. Sign in to your account
  4. Enter your personal information, including income and employment details.

If you’re not yet a member of NFCU, join online or call the membership number found on its website.

I got the loan. Now what?

Once you have your NFCU personal loan, keep up with monthly payments to avoid paying unnecessary fees. Missing even one payment can damage your credit score. Check out our budgeting guide if you want to learn how to budget your money and ensure your bills are paid on time.

Bottom line

If you qualify for membership, NFCU can offer loan options suitable to a variety of financial situation. Whether it’s for home improvement, a big wedding or any other cost, it’s likely you’ll find what you need.

Before you decide, be sure to compare your other personal loan options.

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