We value our editorial independence, basing our comparison results, content and reviews on objective analysis without bias. But we may receive compensation when you click links on our site. Learn more about how we make money from our partners.

Sallie Mae personal loans review

Last updated:  

Invitation-only financing for consolidating credit card debt and more.

Sallie Mae might be known for its student loans, but it also provides personal loans for debt consolidation and other major expenses. You need to receive an offer to be eligible, though. And you can’t use it to pay for college, refinance student loans, buy real estate or invest.


Max. Loan Amount

6.99% to 24.99%



Product NameSallie Mae personal loan
Min. Loan Amount$3,000
Max. Loan Amount$35,000
APR6.99% to 24.99%
Interest Rate TypeFixed
Minimum Loan Term3 years
Maximum Loan Term5 years

What makes Sallie Mae personal loans unique?

Sallie Mae personal loans are simple, even for an online loan. You don’t have to fill out any forms to prequalify — Sallie Mae contacts you if you’re eligible. The application only takes around 10 minutes to complete and involves minimal documentation. And its loans start at just $3,000 — slightly lower than other personal loan providers.

What is a Sallie Mae personal loan?

A Sallie Mae personal loan is an unsecured term loan from $3,000 to $35,000 that you can repay over 3 years or 5 years. APRs range from 6.99% to 24.99% , with lower rates going to three-year loans.

Its relatively low loan amounts make it ideal for smaller personal expenses — such as contributing to a wedding fund or refinancing personal debt. However, you can’t use it to pay for college, buy securities or invest in real estate.

What are the benefits of a Sallie Mae personal loan?

From its simple application to its minimal fees, there are a few perks of taking out a personal loan through Sallie Mae:

  • Low minimum amount. You can borrow as little as $3,000 through Sallie Mae — many online lenders start at $5,000.
  • Don’t need to prequalify. You’ll receive a letter or email from Sallie Mae letting you know you’ve prequalified for its personal loan.
  • No fees to apply. Sallie Mae doesn’t charge any application or origination fees.
  • Simple application. You can apply online or over the phone in as little as 10 minutes.
  • No prepayment penalty. While there are only two terms to choose from, you can repay your loan early to save on interest with no extra charge.

What to watch out for

Just because you received an invitation doesn’t mean you’ll get approved for a personal loan from Sallie Mae. Consider these drawbacks before you apply:

  • By invitation only. Even if you have the strongest personal finances out there, you can’t apply for a Sallie Mae personal loan unless you receive an invitation in the mail or by email.
  • Low maximum amount. You can only borrow up to $35,000 through Sallie Mae — other providers cap amounts at $50,000 or even $100,000.
  • Restricted uses. The Sallie Mae personal loan is no substitute for a student loan, student loan refinancing or a mortgage. And you can’t use it to invest, either.
  • Invitation doesn’t guarantee approval. Sallie Mae bases its invitations on a soft credit pull. When you apply, it conducts a hard credit check and considers factors like your income and monthly debt obligations, which could get you rejected.

Compare more personal loan providers

Updated December 6th, 2019
Name Product Filter Values APR Min. Credit Score Max. Loan Amount
5.95% to 35.99%
Fair to excellent credit
Get personalized rates in minutes and then choose an offer from a selection of top online lenders.
3.84% to 35.99%
Good to excellent credit
Get loan offers from multiple lenders at once without affecting your credit score.
6.98% to 35.89%
Affordable loans with two simple repayment terms and no prepayment penalties.
3.84% to 35.99%
Get connected to competitive loan offers instantly from top online consumer lenders.
34% to 155% (Varies by state)
No minimum
Check eligibility in minutes and get a personalized quote without affecting your credit score.
3.99% to 35.99%
Quickly compare multiple online lenders with competitive rates depending on your credit.
6.49% to 17.99%
With over 80 years of lending experience, this credit union offers personal loans for a variety of expenses.
6.95% to 35.89%
A peer-to-peer lender offering fair rates based on your credit score.
5.99% to 17.88%
A highly-rated lender with competitive rates, high loan amounts and no fees.

Compare up to 4 providers

Am I eligible?

To apply for a personal loan from Sallie Mae, you need to meet the following eligibility requirements:

  • Have an offer code. You can’t apply for a Sallie Mae personal loan unless you’ve received an offer code in the mail or through email.
  • Have a valid checking account. Sallie Mae transfers the funds directly to your account if you’re approved.
  • Be a US citizen or permanent resident. Noncitizens likely won’t receive an offer to apply for a Sallie Mae personal loan.
  • Be the age of majority in your state. This is 18 in most states, 19 in Alabama and Nebraska, and 21 in Mississippi.

Prequalification is primarily based on your credit score. However, factors like your income and debt-to-income (DTI) ratio affect whether or not you get approved. There is no minimum income requirement.

How do I apply?

You can apply for a Sallie Mae personal loan online or over the phone. Typically, you need to have your most recent W-2 form and your two most recent pay stubs on hand when you apply. Follow these steps to begin the process online:

  1. Go to the Sallie Mae website and click Banking in the top navigation bar.
  2. Scroll down and click Learn more under Sallie Mae Personal Loan.
  3. Click I have a personal offer code at the top of the page.
  4. Enter your offer code and click Start application.
  5. Follow the directions to enter your personal information and upload any documents.
  6. Review your information and submit your application.

If approved, read over your offer before signing your loan documents. Sallie Mae will then transfer your funds to your bank account — as soon as the next business day in some cases.

I got a Sallie Mae personal loan. Now what?

It’s time to start paying back your loan. Since Sallie Mae personal loans come with such long terms, you might want to consider making additional repayments to save on interest. After all, you might not need three years to pay back $3,000.

Sallie Mae also recommends signing up for automatic repayments. That way, you don’t have to take time each month to make a payment online. Reach out to customer service if you have any questions by calling 844-559-1332.

Bottom line

The main perk of Sallie Mae’s invitation-only personal loans is the convenience. You’ve already prequalified if you received an offer, and the application takes little effort — even for an online loan. However, it’s not great for large expenses, and you aren’t guaranteed approval just because you received an invitation.

Want to see how Sallie Mae stacks up to the competition? Compare more lenders with our guide to personal loans.

Frequently asked questions

Ask an expert

You are about to post a question on finder.com:

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • finder.com is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

Finder only provides general advice and factual information, so consider your own circumstances, or seek advice before you decide to act on our content. By submitting a question, you're accepting our Terms of Use and Privacy and Cookies Policy.


  1. Default Gravatar
    June 11, 2019

    How do I get an offer code

    • AvatarStaff
      June 12, 2019

      Hi Me,

      Thanks for your inquiry.

      Sallie Mae personal loan will send you an email invitation with offer code if they see that you meet their requirements for borrowers. They states that borrowers who get invited to apply for a personal loan are selected based on their credit report.

      I hope this helps.

      Kind regards,

  2. Default Gravatar
    March 13, 2019

    Once I receive money from loan, do I just go ahead and pay the full balance of my credit card or is it more complicated than that? Will my credit card company accept the payment without any additional fees, cost or penalties for paying off early?

    • AvatarStaff
      March 13, 2019

      Hi Guillermo,

      Thank you for getting in touch with Finder.

      Once your loan application is approved and you already got your money, the lender/bank is not checking on how or where you used the money. If you consider getting a loan to pay off your credit card debt, it is best to discuss with your credit card provider on fees/cost of your account. Basically, paying off your credit card debt earlier than the due date doesn’t cost you any charge/fees.

      I hope this helps.

      Thank you and have a wonderful day!


Go to site