Personal Loan Finder

Compare top lenders and rates while exploring every step of the personal loan process.

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A personal loan can be used for a variety of expenses or to consolidate debt. Before you apply, learn more about every phase of the process — from choosing the best lender to getting an edge on low rates.

Compare personal loans

Use this table to compare the interest rates, loan amounts and eligibility requirements of top lenders.

Updated April 6th, 2020
Name Product Filter Values APR Min. Credit Score Max. Loan Amount
Credible Personal Loans
3.99% to 35.99%
Fair to excellent credit
Get personalized rates in minutes and then choose an offer from a selection of top online lenders.
Fiona Personal Loans
4.99% to 35.99%
Good to excellent credit
Get loan offers from multiple lenders at once without affecting your credit score.
Monevo Personal Loans
3.49% to 35.99%
Quickly compare multiple online lenders with competitive rates depending on your credit.
Even Financial Personal Loans
4.99% to 35.99%
Get connected to competitive loan offers instantly from top online consumer lenders.
NetCredit Personal Loans
36% to 38% (Varies by state)
No minimum
Check eligibility in minutes and get a personalized quote without affecting your credit score.
Upgrade Personal Loans
7.99% to 35.97%
Affordable loans with two simple repayment terms and no prepayment penalties.
PenFed Credit Union Personal Loans
6.49% to 17.99%
With over 80 years of lending experience, this credit union offers personal loans for a variety of expenses.
SoFi Personal Loans
5.99% to 18.64%
A highly-rated lender with competitive rates, high loan amounts and no fees.
LightStream Personal Loans
Good to excellent credit
Borrow up to $100,000 with low rates and no fees.
6.53% to 35.99%
580 or 620
This service looks beyond your credit score to get you a competitive-rate personal loan.
6.95% to 35.99%
Borrow only what you need for debt consolidation, home improvements and more — with APRs based on overall creditworthiness.

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Personal loans reviewed


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Personal loan experts

Based on extensive research, ongoing product updates and market analysis, we present an unbiased comparison of personal loans. At Finder, our goal is to make finding the right personal loan easy.

How top online personal loan providers stack up

Max loan amountAPR rangesBest for…
LendingClub$40,000 6.95% to 35.89% Finding multiple types of financing.Read review
SoFi$100,000 5.99% to 18.64% Refinancing, especially student loans.Read review
Prosper$40,000 6.95% to 35.99% Finding a low-cost loan.Read review
Upstart$50,000 6.53% to 35.99% Getting a loan with limited or poor credit.Read review

How much do personal loans cost?

Three main factors contribute your loan’s cost:

  • Interest rate. This is what the lender charges you to borrow money. It’s a percentage of the loan amount that typically ranges from 5% to 36%. Lenders can’t charge over 36% APR.
  • Fees. It’s common to see origination fees up to 5% of the loan amount. Other common personal loan fees include prepayment penalties if you plan to pay your loan off early. Lenders may also charge for late or missed payments and unsuccessful or failed payments.
  • Loan term. Your loan term is how long you have to pay off a loan. Most lenders offer terms between 3 and 7 years. The longer your loan term, the more you pay in interest. But while you’ll pay less with a shorter term, your monthly payments could be much higher.

Your annual percentage rate (APR) is an expression of your interest rate and fees as a percentage. APR can give you an idea of how much it will cost each year you take to pay back your loan. It doesn’t include late fees, nonsufficient funds fees (NSF) or prepayment penalties.

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Personal loan rates by credit score

Personal loan APRs can range from 5% to 36% and vary widely by lender. And while having excellent credit can lower your rate, it can be quite difficult to qualify for the lowest possible number advertised.

Here’s what rate you might expect based on your credit score:

Credit typeScore rangeYou might get an APR around…
Excellent800 or higher10%
Very good740 to 79912%
Good670 to 73915%
Fair580 to 66928%
Poor579 and underNot likely to get approved

So who gets the lowest rate? People with long and impeccable credit histories, high salaries and almost no debt. Some lenders also don’t allow borrowers to qualify for the lowest rates unless they apply to borrow over a certain limit.

Rates can also vary based on factors like income, your debt-to-income ratio (DTI) and even your state. And even the best unsecured personal loan might have a higher rate than a loan backed by collateral.

Don’t have good credit? Consider applying with a creditworthy cosigner to get more favorable rates and terms.

How to compare personal loans

  • Eligibility criteria. Don’t waste time researching a loan if you don’t meet the approval criteria.
  • Loan amounts. Will you be able to take out the exact amount you need and can you afford to pay it back? Typically, good and excellent credit scores have higher borrowing limits.
  • Interest rate. Look at the rate itself but also consider whether it’s fixed or variable — variable interest rates are subject to change.
  • Fees. Some lenders charge origination, prepayment and late fees.
  • Repayment term. Aim for a loan term that gives you monthly repayments you can afford without being too long. Otherwise, you could wind up paying a lot in interest in the long run.
  • Restrictions on how you use the funds. You can use a personal loan for almost any purpose, but some lenders have spending restrictions. For example, many don’t allow you to use the funds to pay for education costs or investments.
  • Collateral required. Secured personal loans require you to put up something you own as collateral — a car, a home or even a bank account. Unsecured personal loans do not.
  • Security of online application. If there’s an online application, check to make sure your internet connection is private and secure. Read the privacy policy to learn how it share your personal information and what you can opt out of.

How to apply for a personal loan

After you figure out how much you plan to borrow, you can begin the application process. Here’s what to expect:

  1. Choose a loan type. Decide if you want a secured or unsecured loan and if you want a fixed or variable interest rate.
  2. Shop around. The first lender you come across may not have the best deal. Compare factors like APR, fees, turnaround time and term of the loan.
  3. Prequalify. Prequalifying can give you an estimated offer based on a soft credit pull that gives your lender your estimated credit score. That way, you can compare your potential loan offers.
  4. Submit the full application. The loan application will require your contact details, proof of identity and proof of income. You’ll get a chance to specify your loan amount and choose repayment terms.

After your application is approved, you’ll sign a loan agreement. This contract outlines all the loan terms. Most lenders give you a period of time to sign, so you can ensure you’re comfortable with the full agreement.

Read our full guide on applying for a personal loan

VIDEO: 5 tips to get the best rate on a loan

How can personal loans affect my credit score?

If you make all of your payments on time and according to schedule, taking out a personal loan can help you build your credit. In fact, some lenders offer small-dollar, short-term loans with low interest rates that are designed to help borrowers build credit.

However, borrowing a personal loan can damage your credit if you fall behind on your repayments. Your ability to make your payments on time is the most heavily weighted factor credit bureaus consider when calculating your score.

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Where can I get a personal loan?

You have a variety of personal loan providers to pick from. However, you’ll typically more loan options if you have stronger credit. Depending on the type of provider you choose, you can apply for a personal loan in person, online or over the phone.

Direct online lenders

Online lenders have more flexible lending criteria and offer a straightforward application process. If approved, your loan amount can be deposited into your bank account as soon as the next business day — but it may take up to a week.

Brokers and connection services

Brokers and connection services work slightly differently but have the same goal: to pair you with a lender that will approve you. Brokers have you fill out a preliminary application and often charge a fee for their service. Connection services are automated and don’t make lending decisions themselves.


Getting a loan from a bank might be the tradition choice, but it’s not the fastest. Banks tend to have stricter approval criteria and longer turnaround time. The benefit of borrowing with your bank is that some banks offer discounts to people who have an existing account.

Credit unions

If familiarity is important to you, consider taking out a personal loan at a credit union. Credit unions tend to evaluate your financial history with the institution, adding a layer of flexibility to approval. Similar to banks, credit unions tend to have longer approval and turnaround times than online lenders.

Peer-to-peer lenders

Relatively new to the financial market, peer-to-peer lenders operate as marketplaces that bring borrowers and investors together. A peer-to-peer loan is funded by a pool of individual investors online. Although the process of applying is a lot like that of a traditional loan, the turnaround time is often much longer.

Compare places to get a personal loan

Top personal loan guides

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What lenders look for in a personal loan applicant

Lenders take on risk when they lend large amounts of money to borrowers. That’s why they require applicants to meet certain eligibility criteria. Here are some common qualifications that the best loan companies look for:

  • Good to excellent credit. Most personal loan providers rely on credit scores. If you have poor or no credit, check out our guide to bad credit loans to see your options.
  • Low DTI. You can calculate your DTI by dividing your monthly debt payments by your monthly income. Lenders can rely on this number as much as your credit score and normally don’t accept anyone with a DTI above 43%. A good DTI is anything below 36%, though under 20% is ideal.
  • Employment. Most lenders require you to be steadily employed. Some lenders have minimum income requirements as well that can include wages, alimony, pensions or any other form of funds coming in on a regular basis.
  • US citizen or permanent resident. If you’re a US citizen or permanent resident, you’re able to apply for personal loans. Temporary residents are only eligible to apply with certain lenders but may need to build up a credit history. They may also need a US citizen to cosign the loan. You may be able to get one as a non-US resident if you have full-time employment and a US Social Security number.
  • 18 or older. Since the age of majority varies by state, the minimum age for lenders varies as well and is usually between 18 and 21.

Am I eligible for a personal loan?

Personal loan application checklist

The application process differs between lenders, but they’ll generally ask for the following:

  • Proof of your identity, like a government-issued ID, US passport or military ID
  • Your Social Security number and date of birth
  • Pay stubs, tax returns and other income details
  • Banking details for disbursing your funds and elective automatic repayments
  • Utility bill in your name or other proof of residence

Ask yourself the following questions to determine if borrowing a personal loan is a good choice for you:

  1. How much do I need? Personal loans are generally better for larger one-time expenses since they come in a lump sum and most lenders have a minimum loan amount of $2,000.
  2. Do I have the time? Personal loans also require some planning since the application and funding process could take some time — typically at least a couple business days.
  3. Can I meet the employment requirements? Personal loans can be difficult to qualify for if you’re self-employed or unemployed — you’ll need to prove you’re able to pay it off to be approved.
  4. Do I have the credit score? You could have a hard time getting approved if you have a history of making late payments or have never taken on debt before.

Can’t I just use my credit card?

You could, but personal loans typically have lower interest rates than credit cards. In fact, people often take out personal loans to help them pay off their credit card debt at a more competitive rate.

But if you need cash right away or only want to make a small purchase, using credit card can be a better choice. It can take weeks to get your funds with some personal loans. You can also use credit cards for a wider variety of expenses, including education costs.
Find out when a personal loan or a credit card makes more sense

Paying off a personal loan

So you’ve been approved and the money is in your bank account. You’re done, right? Not quite. Now you have to pay it back according to the payment plan in your contract.

What can I use a personal loan for?

You can use a personal loan to cover a variety of purposes. In general, a personal loan can be used in place of your savings. So whatever you can pay for with cash — like a car, vacation or wedding — you can pay for with a personal loan. However, there are a few exceptions: Some lenders won’t let you use your loan funds to pay for college expenses or fund your business.

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Frequently asked questions about personal loans

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6 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    TheresaJune 11, 2019

    Are there fees you must pay before you get a loan? My partner is approved for a loan, but he must send $259.00 dollars before he can get the loan. Is this correct?

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JhezJune 12, 2019Staff

      Hello Theresa,

      Thank you for your comment.

      If a lender asks you to provide an upfront fee for any reason, then you must put the brakes on your application. There is no legitimate lender that will ask you to provide money at any point before it processes your application. Some lenders charge an origination fee for their loans, but these fees are typically deducted from your total loan amount. You may read our article about personal loan scams here.


  2. Default Gravatar
    KortneyOctober 17, 2017

    Can I use my car title as collateral. For a short term loan

    • Default Gravatar
      GruOctober 17, 2017

      Hello Kortney,

      Thank you for your interest in applying for a short term loan.

      Yes, you may use your car title as collateral.
      You may read more on the types of collateral used for loans here.

      Hope this helps.


  3. Default Gravatar
    DeannaFebruary 14, 2017

    Is there any possible way of getting a personal loan if you are expecting payment from back pay from SSI and can prove the amount going to you from SSI

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      AdrienneFebruary 15, 2017Staff

      Hi Deanna,

      It may be dependent on each individual lender and their requirements. Your best bet is to compare your options and find a lender you’d like to apply with, and then give them a call to make sure this is possible.



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