Ridgewood Savings Bank personal loans review August 2018

Ridgewood Savings Bank personal loans review

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Loans of up to $10,000 at a flat rate for every borrower, but there’s no online application form.

This mutual savings banks is great for New York residents who value supporting their community and crave the personal touch of going to a bank. It has an impressive number of locations for a local institution and makes a point of giving back to New York City and its surrounding area.

It offers the same rate for every borrower, though the rates aren’t always as low as some other local lenders. Read on to find out what to expect if you decide to borrow from Ridgewood Savings Bank.

Product NameRidgewood Savings Bank Personal Loan
Min Loan Amount$500
Max. Loan Amount$10,000
APR4.5%–13.5%
Interest Rate TypeFixed
Minimum Loan Term1 year
Maximum Loan Term3 years
  • Live in New York City or the surrounding area

What makes Ridgewood Savings Bank personal loans unique?

Everyone gets the same interest rate when they borrow from Ridgewood Savings Bank. That’s right. While it might not be a great deal for someone with excellent credit, someone who’s consistently approved for rates higher than 13% might want to look closely at this option. It offers a relatively substantial 0.5% discount on interest if you sign up for automatic payments from a Ridgewood Savings Bank checking account.

What types of personal loans does Ridgewood Savings Bank offer?

Ridgewood Savings Bank personal loans are fixed-rate term loans. As in, everyone who qualifies gets the same rate. It offers three different types of personal loans:

  • Personal loans. An unsecured fixed-term loan. You can borrow from $500 to $10,000 and repay it over a term of 36 months with a 13.5% interest rate.
  • Passbook loans. A secured fixed-term loan that allows you to borrow against your savings account balance. Ridgewood places a hold on your account equivalent to your loan amount so that you can continue to gain interest. You’ll pay 4.5% interest on a six- to 12-month loan, 5% on a 12- to 24-month loan and 6% on a 24- to 36-month loan.
  • Personal savings loan. Similar to checking overdraft. If you want to withdraw more than your Ridgewood Savings Bank checking account balance allows, you can use a passbook loan to borrow those funds from your savings at the same rates and terms as a passbook loan.

Ridgewood Savings Bank also offers other types of loans including business loans, student loans and mortgages.

Why get a personal loan from Ridgewood Savings Bank?

  • One rate for everyone. Everyone gets the same rate on their loan, regardless of credit score. While its personal loan rates are a bit high for borrowers with excellent credit, it could be the best deal around if your credit score is low.
  • Autopay discount. You can knock 0.5% off of your interest rate if you sign up for autopay with a Ridgewood Savings Bank checking account.
  • Small amounts available. You can borrow as little as $500 with the standard personal loan.
  • Brick-and-mortar locations. Those who prefer doing financial transactions in person can do everything in one of Ridgewood Savings Bank’s branches. Bonus points if you live in Brooklyn, Queens or the Bronx — that’s where you’ll find the most locations.
  • Supporting a local institution. Taking out a loan with Ridgewood Savings Bank is a great way to support your community, not only by putting money in a local business, but supporting the free workshops and other charity events that it sponsors.

What to watch out for

  • Low maximum amount. You can only borrow up to $10,000, which isn’t much help if you have a large personal expense.
  • Lacking customer service. You might have trouble getting information out of Ridgewood Savings Bank without going in person. When we called the loans department number listed on Ridgewood Savings Bank’s website, we weren’t able to get in touch with someone who could give us straight answers to basic questions like eligibility requirements.
  • Not much information online. Information about eligibility requirements or even how to apply is not readily available on its personal loans page.
  • Long turnover time. The main complaint against Ridgewood Savings Bank is how difficult it is to get anything done. Hitches in the process are not uncommon.
  • You’ll have to go in person. There’s really no way around it: Ridgewood Savings Bank prioritizes foot traffic above all else. While it’s possible to fill out an application online, we had to call and ask how. And customer service lines aren’t always very helpful. If talking face to face is your jam, you’ll love this bank. If you want quick answers, you might want to look at other lenders.

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Rates last updated August 20th, 2018

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What do other customers say about Ridgewood Savings Bank?

Since Ridgewood Savings Bank is so small, it’s no surprise that there isn’t much online about it. It gets an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB), which it’s been accredited with since 1988. It has no reviews on that site, however, and seven resolved customer complaints filed with the BBB.

It has no Trustpilot page at all, but you can find some customer reviews on Yelp, where it earned three out of five stars. Some reviewers were happy with the customer service at Ridgewood Savings Bank and the community workshops it offers. Others complained about inefficient application processes and its out-of-date online banking.

Am I eligible?

While Ridgewood Savings Bank doesn’t have any hard eligibility requirements, applicants with strong credit and a low debt-to-income ratio under 43% might have better luck getting accepted.

To be eligible for a passbook or personal savings loan, you must have a savings account with Ridgewood Savings Bank. Otherwise, if you’re looking to take out a personal loan with Ridgewood, your best bet would be to go into a physical branch and tell them a bit about your financial situation to see if you’re eligible.

How do I apply?

Ridgewood Savings Bank doesn’t have an online application, so you’ll have to apply in person. You can find a branch near you by going to its website and clicking on Find ATM/Branch in the upper right-hand corner. Then enter your ZIP code or city and click Search.

I got the loan. Now what?

Get ready for repayments by setting up autopay with your bank account. You won’t get the 0.5% discount if you don’t have a checking account with Ridgewoood, but even if you don’t, you won’t have to worry about making manual repayments every month. Its online banking doesn’t have a strong reputation, so the less you have to use it, the better.

Keep track of your bank account and loan balance. If you notice something odd, contact its customer service line or visit a branch in person.

More company info about Ridgewood Savings Bank

Ridgewood Savings Bank is the largest mutual savings bank in New York City and the surrounding area. Mutual savings banks are similar to credit unions in that they don’t have publicly listed stock. They’re often community-oriented and don’t have a wide reach.

While one of the largest mutual savings banks in the area, Ridgewood Savings Bank is still small. It has 33 branches across the five boroughs, Westchester and Long Island. Its focus has been on helping build the local community since it opened in 1921 in Ridgewood, Queens. It’s the kind of bank you’ll want to visit in person to get the best service — its website doesn’t tell you much and its customer services lines aren’t that helpful.

Bottom line

If you’re craving a personal borrowing experience that strengthens your connection to your community, Ridgewood Savings Bank could be for you. Its loans are simple and easy to understand, and customer service is personable and professional — though not very informed. Its one-rate-for-all perk could be good for borrowers with less-than-perfect credit. Speed and efficiency, however, are not its strong points.

Not sure it’s right for you? Want to know more about other options? Use our personal loans guide as a starting point.

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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