Cover a large expense, buy a car, pay for school or save on your student loans with this credit union.
Sometimes it’s just easier to keep all of your finances in one place. Alliant Credit Union can give you just that, covering all the basics — buying a car, paying for school or covering any other personal cost that you can’t fund right away. Its rates are generally competitive, though its personal loan APR starts a bit high with a range of 6.49% to 10.49%. Read on to learn if getting a loan from Alliant Credit Union makes sense for you.
What types of loans does Alliant Credit Union offer?
Alliant credit offers several different types of loans, including personal loans, car loans, RV loans, student loans and student loan refinancing. Here’s a snapshot of what you can expect:
|Loan type||What it’s for||Loan amounts||Loan terms|
|Personal loan (unsecured)||Any legitimate personal expense||$1,000–$50,000||1 month to 5 years||Read review|
|Car and RV loans||Buying a car or a recreational vehicle||$5,000–$1,000,000||up to 84 months for car loans, 120 months for RV loans||Read review|
|Student loan||To pay for an undergraduate or graduate degree||Up to $15,000 a year for undergraduates, $30,000 for graduates||12 year(s)||Read review|
|Private student loan||Smaller expenses that federal student loans might not cover.||$3,000–$60,000||12-year term||Read review|
|Student loan refinancing||Replacing your current student debt with a new loan that has more favorable rates or terms||$10,000–$100,000||5–20 years||Read review|
Although its site advertises business loans, Alliant no longer offers this product.
Why should I consider taking out a loan with Alliant Credit Union?
Here are some other reasons why you might want to consider borrowing with Alliant:
- Competitive rates. For the most part, Alliant offers lower rates. While its personal loan rates start a bit high, they’re capped at a much lower rate than other lenders.
- Easy to join. All you have to do is make a $10 donation to a nonprofit that works with kids who have been through the foster care system to be eligible for membership.
- Rate discounts. Nearly all of Alliant’s loans come with a discount for signing up for automatic payments. Its car loans also come with an 0.5% rate discount if you use Alliant’s car buying service.
- Customer service. Our experience with Alliant’s customer service team was top-notch. Representatives were eager to answer any questions and even gave us their personal extensions so we could call back if we had any more questions.
- All of your financial services in one place. If you’re the kind of person that doesn’t like crossing between banks or is worried about giving out your information to different companies, Alliant can provide various financial services.
How much will it cost me to borrow?
Alliant Credit Union doesn’t charge any fees related to applying for a loan — no application or origination fees. The main cost you need to worry about is the interest rate.
|Personal loan||Fixed rates from 6.49% to 10.49%|
|Car and RV loans||Fixed rates 2.99%(as low as)|
|Student loan||Variable rates starting at 4.56%|
|Student loan refinancing||Variable rates starting from 3.50%–6.50% (Varies by loan term)|
Alliant charges a late fee of 5% of the amount owed on personal loans and a $35 late fee on car loans. If a payment bounces, you’ll pay a returned check fee of $25 on its personal loans.
Is Alliant Credit Union safe to borrow from?
Generally, yes. While some if its web pages don’t have an SSL-encrypted connection, all applications and forms where you might enter your personal information do. And after it has your information, Alliant restricts access to employees who’ve received confidentiality training and absolutely need it for business purposes.
If you choose to use your Alliant account as your main account, your funds are federally insured for up to $250,000 by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA). This means that if anything goes wrong — say Alliant folds — you’ll be eligible to get up to $250,000 of your funds back.
What customers say about Alliant Credit Union
There aren’t enough online reviews to get a good sense of customer experiences, though the few that are out there are not great. As of this writing, all but one of the 12 comments on its Better Business Bureau (BBB) page are negative. However, Alliant gets an A+ rating based on factors like advertising and transparency. It also has over 25 customer complaints filed against it.
Most negative reviews involved issues with its car loan — specifically involving gap insurance. Customers either had trouble getting approved because of the gap insurance or had trouble filing a claim. Others had trouble figuring out how to make repayments. To Alliant’s credit, its customer service team wrote personal responses to all BBB reviews trying to resolve the issues.
How to apply for a loan with Alliant Credit Union
You can apply for any Alliant Credit Union online or by visiting one of its physical locations. While the application process differs on the type of loan you want, you can apply for all of them online.
To get started on any loan application, go to Alliant’s website, click or hover over Borrow and select which type of loan you’d like from the drop-down menu. Then, click the green and white Apply Now button.
Alliant handles its personal and car loans applications on its own. If you aren’t a member, you’ll have an option to join before starting the application. You can reach out to Alliant’s customer service to help you with your application at any time.
For student loans and student loan refinancing, Alliant uses loan processor cuLearn to handle its applications. You’ll need to set up a cuLearn profile before you can continue with your application. If you have any questions, you’ll be put in touch with a cuLearn representative.
Step-by-step application with screenshots
Eligibility requirements differ depending on the type of loan you need. However, you’ll generally need to meet the following criteria to qualify for an Alliant Credit Union loan:
- Be an Alliant Credit Union member
- Have a strong personal credit score
- Have a debt-to-income ratio (DTI) of 50% or lower
- Be a US citizen or permanent resident
- Be over 18 years old
For student loans and student loan refinancing, Alliant allows borrowers to apply with a cosigner to help them meet income and credit requirements.
To become an Alliant Credit Union member you must:
- Be employees of companies that partner with Alliant
- Be members of organizations that partner with Alliant
- Live in a neighborhood near Alliant’s corporate headquarters in Chicago
- Be immediate family members of an Alliant member
- Makes a $10 donation to Forster Care to Success, a nonprofit that helps foster children transition to independent adulthood
Pros and cons
- Competitive rates. Alliant’s highest rates are generally lower than what you’d find with competition.
- No fees. Alliant doesn’t charge any application, origination or prepayment fees.
- Debt protection plans. You can purchase insurance to protect you against unemployment or temporary disability on its personal and car loans. Its student loans also come with forbearance options.
- Autopay discount. Alliant offers rate discounts of 0.4% for signing up for automatic payments.
- You have to join. Like with any credit union, you have to become an Alliant member before you can apply.
- Low amounts. Alliant might not be the best choice if you need to borrow more than $50,000 for a personal loan or cover your entire school expenses.
- Doesn’t service all loans. If you want to take out a student loan, you’ll end up dealing with three different companies, rather than just one.
Compare other lenders to Alliant Credit Union
More about Alliant Credit Union
Alliant Credit Union is one of the largest credit unions in the country. As a credit union, it’s a nonprofit financial institution that’s owned by its members. A group of United Airlines employees founded it in 1935 with the aim of creating a safe place for other employees to get a fair deal on interest rates — its original name was United Airlines Employees’ Credit Union.
Alliant’s been recognized at national conferences for consistently offering competitive rates to its members.
Today it boasts over 335,000 members, has $9.3 billion in assets and has funded a total of $5 billion in loans.
If you’re looking for a credit union to handle all of your financial needs, Alliant might be the one you’re looking for. Through Alliant, you can have your bank account, personal loans, student loans and car loans all with one company. Rates are generally competitive and straightforward — there’s only a 0.5% difference between the lowest and highest personal loan rate.