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USAA personal loans review

Small personal loans — but only for current and former members of the military.

finder.com’s rating: 3.8 / 5.0

★★★★★

Bottom line: USAA offers a range of personal loan options to members — and you can become a member as part of your application. But the loan term length you can receive depends on how much you borrow.

Details

Min. Loan Amount$2,500
Max. Loan Amount$100,000
APR8.29% to 18.51%
Interest Rate TypeFixed
Min. Credit ScoreVaries
Origination FeeStarting from 0%
Loan Term1 to 3 years
Turnaround Time24 to 48 hours to a USAA account (or longer if sending a bank check by FedEx)

Pros

  • Autopay APR discount of 0.25%
  • No origination fee
  • USAA Debt Protection program

Cons

  • Must be a USAA member
  • Strong credit required
  • Must be active or former military to qualify

Our take on USAA personal loans

USAA personal loans are best for active or former members of the military and their families. Eligible borrowers can take out a minimum of $2,500 up to $100,000 with repayment terms from one to seven years, depending on the amount of the loan. To get the longest term of seven years, you must borrow at least $20,000.

Unlike some lenders, USAA personal loans have no origination fee, an autopay discount and allow you add a coborrower. But even with USAA's autopay discount, its lowest rate is still slightly higher than other lenders like Sofi or Marcus. But its turnaround is quick: apply online and hear back about approval within one to two business days.

But you'll need strong credit to qualify for a personal loan with USAA, and only military members and their families are eligible. If you're not a military member or have a fair credit, we suggest comparing more lenders to find one that works with your situation and credit score.

USAA personal loans rates, fees and terms

USAA offers personal loans from $2,500 to $100,000 with rates from the low 7% APR range and topping out at a maximum of 18.51% APR. Terms range from one to seven years, depending on how much you borrow. The more you borrow, the longer the term you're eligible for.

Here's how it works:

  • 12- to 36-year term. Borrow $2,500 or more.
  • 48-month term. Borrow $5,000 or more
  • 60-month term. Borrow $10,000 or more.
  • 72-month term. Borrow $15,000 or more.
  • 84-month term. Borrow $20,000 or more.

Use the calculator below to estimate your potential monthly payment with a small personal loan from USAA.

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How USAA personal loans compare to other lenders

Here’s how USAA stacks up to the competition, in terms of cost, loan amounts and eligibility.

USAA personal loans

PenFed Credit Union personal loans

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Finder rating 3.6 / 5

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APR

8.29% to 18.51%

APR

5.49% to 17.99%

Loan Term

1 to 3 years

Loan Term

1 to 5 years

Loan Amount

$2,500 to $100,000

Loan Amount

$600 to $25,000

Min. Credit Score

Varies

Min. Credit Score

650

How to qualify

To apply for a personal loan with USAA, you must meet a few requirements:

  • Be USAA member
  • Be an active or former military member, spouse or child
  • Have good to excellent credit
  • Be a US citizen or permanent resident
  • Be at least 18 years old

Am I eligible for USAA membership?

Membership with USAA is limited to a select few groups of people:

  • Active and former members of the military
  • Family members of those in the US armed forces
  • Military cadets
  • Midshipmen

See other personal loan options

1 – 5 of 5
Name Product Filter Values APR Min. Credit Score Loan Amount
Best Egg personal loans
7.99% to 35.99%
640
$2,000 to $50,000
A prime online lending platform with multiple repayment methods.
Credible personal loans
3.99% to 35.99%
Fair to excellent credit
$600 to $100,000
Get personalized rates in minutes and then choose an offer from a selection of top online lenders.
Upstart personal loans
5.6% to 35.99%
300
$1,000 to $50,000
This service looks beyond your credit score to get you a competitive-rate personal loan.
SoFi personal loans
7.99% to 23.43%
680
$5,000 to $100,000
A highly-rated lender with competitive rates, high loan amounts and no fees.
LendingClub personal loans
6.34% to 35.89%
600
$1,000 to $40,000
A peer-to-peer lender offering fair rates based on your credit score.
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Compare up to 4 providers

USAA personal loan reviews and complaints

BBB accredited No
BBB rating A-
BBB customer reviews 1.2 out of 5 stars, based on 834 customer reviews
Trustpilot Score 1.3 out of 5 stars, based on 1,467 customer reviews
Customer reviews verified as of 12 July 2022

USAA gets mostly negative reviews on sites like Trustpilot and the BBB website, with only a small percentage of reviewers reporting good experiences.

While the most recent reviews don’t focus on USAA’s personal loans, many customers complain that USAA's customer service has degraded over the years and that the company doesn't offer any significant benefits to veterans compared to providers like State Farm. Several complaints on the BBB website mention disagreements over insurance claims and billing errors on accounts.

More positive reviews mention good customer service experiences and low rates on insurance, with a few customers recommending USAA's banking products.

Government actions against USAA

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) sued USAA for continuing to charge customers after they’d submitted a stop payment request on electronic funds transfers. It also charged the bank with failing to sufficiently investigate the solution. USAA paid out $12 million to customers and a $3.5 million fine after it reached a settlement with the CFPB in 2019.

USAA also entered a Consent Order with the Office of Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) in 2019, after the OCC found that the bank did not have adequate risk management systems in place to protect customers. USAA neither admitted to or denied the OCC’s assessment. But it agreed to create a committee to monitor its compliance with the OCC and submit a written action plan to correct the problems.

How the application works

You can apply for a USAA personal loan online. If you aren’t a member, you’ll have to join first. Otherwise you can get started by logging on to your USAA account.

Once you’ve submitted your info, a specialist considers your loan request. You’re usually notified of the loan decision within one to two business days. If approved, you may have your loan funded within 24 hours.

Browse more loans offered by USAA. And if you can’t open an account, compare other personal loan options to find a good fit for you.

How USAA debt consolidation works

Unlike lenders like Discover, USAA doesn’t directly send your loan proceeds to your creditors. Instead, you'll need to contact your creditors and ask for a pay off amount on the date you expect to send the funds. This can also take longer than if you use a lender that directly pays creditors for you, because you have to wait for two transfers:

  • One to receive your loan funds after approval (about 24 to 48 hours to a USAA account, and longer if by bank check via FedEx)
  • One for your creditors to receive the payment

If you'd rather your lender pay your creditors for you, you'll need to choose another lender. And as always, be sure to shop around to find the best rate and terms for your debt consolidation needs.

Frequently asked questions

Does USAA allow cosigners?

No, but it does allow you to file a joint application.

Are USAA personal loans available to nonmilitary families?

No. USAA personal loans are reserved for USAA members who meet the eligibility criteria. You can, however, use some of USAA’s other services, including investment guidance, life insurance and shopping discounts.

How much does USAA Debt Protection cost?

The cost depends on your loan amount and the level of protection you choose. Basic, Standard and Premium plans are available, and fees are included in your monthly loan payment.

Personal loan ratings

★★★★★ Excellent
★★★★★ Good
★★★★★ Average
★★★★★ Subpar
★★★★★ Poor

We analyze top personal loan providers and rate them one to five stars based on factors that are most important to you. These factors include: rates and fees, customer reviews, loan amounts, loan processing and borrower experience.

Read the full methodology of how we rate personal loan providers.

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Review by


Aliyyah Camp was the personal loans publisher for Finder. Aliyyah earned a BA in communication from the University of Pennsylvania.

Expert review

USAA personal loans are ideal if you’re an active or former member of the military. Its loans come with no origination fee, an autopay discount and the option to sign up for debt protection. And its turnaround is quick. You can apply online and hear back about approval within one to two business days.

But its rates start relatively high compared to other lenders, so you may be able to find a better deal if you have good to excellent credit. Its loans are also extremely limited: You can only borrow between $2,500 to $5,000. This narrow range may mean you aren’t able to get a personal loan that may suit you.

Can’t qualify for membership? Need more funds? You can use our table and compare your other options.

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2 Comments

  1. Default Gravatar
    Alokoa
    May 4, 2018

    Do I need a savings or checking account with USAA to get a personal loan?

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      Jhez
      May 4, 2018

      Hello Alokoa,

      Thank you for your comment.

      USAA personal loans are reserved for USAA members who meet the eligibility criteria. So you must be a member first and yes, you need a USAA checking account since you will use that for repayments.

      Regards,
      Jhezelyn

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