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Robert Henderson

Last updated: 8/2019

Find the Best Personal Loan for Your Needs

Personal loans have become a wildly popular form of loan in the United States of America. They can provide consumers with the perfect way to pay off any short-term costs or make needed purchases. And while this loan type is very well known in the United States, there are still plenty of people who don’t fully understand how to approach the application process.

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Best Personal Loan

One thing is for sure, you’ll want to make sure that you get the best possible personal loans available. You don’t want to waste time getting an inferior loan that has limited features and ends up costing you more money. For this reason, you need to know what to look for when it comes to the best personal loans.

We’ve created this guide to help our readers find the best personal loans on the market. It might sound complicated, but finding the right personal loan isn’t as hard as it sounds. You just need to know what to look for when you begin your search. If you’ve ever wondered what’s included in the top personal loans on the market, continue to read the rest of this guide.

Your Preferences

The best personal loans for you will depend on your preferences. You will need to assess which type of lending process you’re attempting to go through before you make a decision on the type of loan that you’re looking for. You don’t want to assume that the best personal loan for someone else is also the best one for you.

Personal financial circumstances and a range of other components will dictate which loan is most suited to you and your situation. The first thing that you should assess is whether or not you want a secure or unsecured personal loan. We will explore these two options in further detail below.

Secured

Secured loans are the riskiest form of loan for the borrower. They require you to secure the loan against the value of an asset that you possess – most likely your home or your car. This type of loan will result in your asset being seized if you end up defaulting on your payments. For this reason, it’s extremely important that if you get a secured loan that you know you will be able to make your payments on time. You don’t want to give your lender any reason to liquidate any of your assets.

But this doesn’t come without its benefits. You also get to have a much lower interest rate than with an unsecured loan. Lenders will make you pay less if they know that they have a way of getting their money back if you end up defaulting on the loan. They’re also easier to get for people who have poor credit histories. Lenders will be more likely to provide someone with a poor credit history a loan if they have something to secure the loan against.

Unsecured

Unsecured loans tend to be the most popular form of personal loan. They don’t require you to secure the loan against any form of asset. This is great for people who don’t want to risk putting their personal assets at risk of collection from lenders. But this will also come at a much higher interest rate, as the lender is taking on a bigger risk themselves. You will also need to have a fairly decent credit score for many lenders. People don’t want to risk lending money to someone who has a bad history of making payments on time.

Features of Best Personal Loans

Once you’ve decided on the type of loan that you want, it’s time to look for a variety of features that you might be interested in. Have a look at the different features that we discuss below and try to determine which ones are best suited to you. Focus on the features that are most important to your personal lending experience!

Low-Interest
The best personal loans will have low interest rates. You don’t want to be paying high interest rates on a personal loan, it defeats the entire purpose. Nonetheless, there will still be lenders who try and charge you high rates for personal loans. As a rule of thumb, you should never be paying more than you would for a credit card. Personal loans that are unsecured will obviously have higher rates, but they should still be very affordable. Those that are secured should have rates that are well below 10%. You should not be paying a lot of interest on a secured loan!

Low Origination Fee
Many lenders will charge you an origination fee to start your loan off. You should be aiming to have as small of an origination fee as possible – sometimes you can even get them to waive it. Don’t get tricked into having a low interest rate because you have a super high origination fee. Lenders might try and do this if you’re getting a small personal loan – make sure to be aware of this.

Online Portal
Often the best lenders for small personal loans will have online portals that can help you keep track of your loan balance and what you owe. This is a great feature that helps you better understand if you’re making the correct payments on time. You don’t want to end up missing a payment by mistake because you have limited access to the information that you need. This is a quick way to damage your credit score. Check if the lender that you’re considering has a way for you to constantly stay updated on your loan.

Low Late Fees
If you think you’re someone who will end up missing a payment, you should make sure to look at the cost of a late fee. You don’t want to end up having to make large payments because you pay your bill late. This is the easiest way to end up with more debt. We don’t suggest that you make any payments late, this will negatively impact your credit score, but if you think it might happen, look for low late fees.

Trustworthy Lender
One of the most underrated components that determines the best personal loans on the market is how trustworthy your lender is. You don’t want to work with a lender that has a bad reputation. If you do, you could end up having a truly awful experience. The last thing you want to do is enter into a long-term loan agreement with a company that tries to charge you hidden fees and prevent you from using your loan to your full capacity. It might sound like overkill, but having a bad lender can truly be a hassle.

The best way to make sure that you’re working with a lender that has a good reputation is to check the various consumer watchdog groups available to you on the internet. Consumer Affairs and the Better Business Bureau are both really good companies to use for research. They provide a non-biased platform for people to review companies they have worked with in the past. It’s the perfect way to make sure that the company you’re trying to work with has an up-to-date record of success. Don’t work with a company that has a bad track record – even if they have low interest rates.

Quick Cash
You should be looking for a lender that is able to get you the money that you’re approved for quickly. Some lenders can take days or weeks to get you the money that you’ve borrowed, while others can do it in just a few hours. Talk to the prospective lenders that you’re considering working with and ask them how quickly they can get you the money after you’ve been approved.

You’ll want to work with a lender that can provide electronic transfers, this is the best way to make sure that you get the money quickly. Don’t work with someone who will take more than 24 hours to get you the money you need. The best personal loans are ones that you can get in under a day.

Other Lending Products
Another thing that can often dictate what the best personal loan for you is will depend on the other type of lending products the lender is able to offer you. Many borrowers like to have a range of financial products available to them via the same lender. This can make your entire borrowing process much simpler. If you can get a personal loan through your normal bank this might make your lending process much simpler. This bank will also have much better access to your personal financial situation which can help you better apply for loans.

On the other hand, if you have a bad track record with your bank, you might not want to apply for a loan through them. If they don’t think they will be able to lend money to you, they won’t. This can also hurt your ability to get additional finance in the future.

Requirements
Some lenders will have lower requirements when it comes to borrowing, this might be suitable for certain people who don’t have good credit histories. In this case, the best personal loans will be ones that you are able to obtain. You don’t want to apply for a loan that you won’t be able to get, this will only further damage your credit score. Over-applying for loans is one of the easiest ways to end up having long-term problems finding finance.

Apply Once

Remember, you need to make a decision on which personal loan is best for you before you apply. Many people don’t understand how the application process works – they end up applying for a variety of loans at the same time and hope that one works. This is a horrible idea as it will result in you most likely being rejected for loans. Lenders can see if you’ve made a quick succession of borrowing enquiries. That’s why you need to avoid this at all costs.

The more you attempt to borrow quickly, the more desperate lenders will consider you to be. This is the last thing you want to do if you need to get a loan in the near future. Remember – research extensively and apply once!

Aim to Apply Online

You should try and apply online if you have the option to. The best personal loans in the modern era tend to be from online lenders. You also have a lot more choice when it comes to online lenders. Recent developments in the industry have resulted in the emergence of hundreds of different lenders online. You don’t want to use a traditional lender if you can avoid it – the process tends to be significantly longer and will require you to submit extensive documentation for limited reward.

Many traditional lenders will also charge you much higher interest rates as they have larger overheads. You can apply online in a matter of minutes, they will also give you an instant lending decision. This means you won’t have to wait around for weeks to see if you have been approved for financing.

Verdict

The best personal loans on the market will depend on what you’re looking for from your personal loan. Have a long look at the various features that have been mentioned in this article and determine which ones you value the most. You need to make sure to understand what you prioritize when it comes to borrowing, you don’t want to end up with the wrong type of loan.

We have researched some of the best personal loan providers in the nation. You can find a list of them on our homepage. If you want to get a head start in finding the right lender to work with, this can often be good way to do so. You don’t want work with a company that has a bad reputation.

Remember, personal loans are a great way to move forward financially if you use them in the right way. Make sure to check out some of the other articles on our site if you have any more questions.

FAQ

General Personal Loan FAQ

In this section, you will find frequently asked answers to questions pertaining to general personal loans.

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What is the best place to get a personal loan?

There are plenty of places that you can get a personal loan. Some of the best places to get a personal loan with the lowest rates today are:

  • Lending Tree
  • Citizens Bank
  • SoFi
  • Earnest
  • Payoff
  • Upstate
What is the best way to get a personal loan?
The best way to get a personal loan is to first find lenders with the best interest rates. Then you will have to apply with the lender of your choice. Keep in mind, to get a personal loan, make sure to show current proof of income.
How to find the best personal loan?

The best way to find the best personal loan is to do your research first. Find some of the best personal loan lenders by conducting a simple search on Google or another search engine. Prosper personal loans are known to have some of the best reviews of online lenders.

What is the best reason for a personal loan?

There are many reasons to get a personal loan today. Some of the best reasons to get a personal loan today include:

  • Consolidate your debt.
  • Pay off existing credit cards.
  • Refinancing your home.
  • Have extra money for moving expenses.
  • Pay off your medical bills.
  • Buying a new car.
When is the best time to get a personal loan?
The best time to get a personal loan will depend on your personal financial circumstances and what you plan to use the loan for. You will need to take into account existing debt and your ability to pay off the loan.
What is the best way to go about getting a personal loan?

The best way to go about getting a personal loan will be to visit a personal loan lender directly and talk to a representative face-to-face. It is a great way for you to ask questions and fill out the application all in one go. You may want to check out TD Bank personal loan requirements because they’re sometimes easy to get approved for.

What is the best option for a personal loan?

The best option for a personal loan will depend on your financial circumstances. Some of the factors you will have to take into consideration include if you have well established credit, have poor credit, have a full-time job or have no job. Take a look at Avant personal loans which is a very reputable service.

What is the best type of personal loan to get?
The best type of personal loan to get is an unsecured loan with fixed payments if you can. However, this kind of personal loan will depend on what your credit score is and how soon you can repay the loan.
Which personal loan is best for me?
The best type of personal loan for you will depend on your financial history. If you need to consolidate your debt, the best type of personal loan is a debt consolidation loan. If you have good credit, the best type of personal loans are unsecured personal loans or secured personal loans. If you are considered about interest rates, the best type of personal loan is a fixed rate or variable rate personal loan.
What time of the year if the best to take out a personal loan?
There is no perfect time of the year to take out a personal loan. There are many factors that you will have to consider when thinking about taking out a personal loan such as your credit history and the type of personal loan you want.
What is the best way to legally insure that a personal loan is repaid?
The best way to legally insure that a personal loan is repaid in a certain amount of time is to sign a contract with the lending company. This will insure that the loan is paid off by a certain date.
What are the best personal loans for college students?
The best type of personal loans for college students are fixed rate loans so students don’t need to worry about their interest rates rising as time goes on. It is also best to look for lenders that offer a deferment option.
What is the best way to get approved for a personal loan?
The best way to get approved for a personal loan is to ensure that your credit is in good standing, it is best to have a full-time job, pay all of your bills on time and submit a personal loan application with a credit worthy co-signer.
How to best get a personal loan lender to work with you?

The best way to get a personal loan lender to work with you is to make sure you pay your loan payment on time every month and to maintain decent credit score. There are also online cash advance lenders who may accept a lower score.

What is the best personal loan available?
The best personal loan available today is a fixed rate loan. With the help of this loan, the interest rate for the loan will stay the same, no matter how long it takes for you to repay it.

Personal Loan Interest Rate

In this frequently asked question section, you will find common questions regarding personal loan interest rates.

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Who has the best personal loan rates?
The personal loan lender with the best personal loan rates on the market today is Lending Point. Lending Point offers loans that have a fixed rate. It is only for people who have between fair to good credit.
Who has the best interest rates for personal loans?
The personal loan lender with the best personal loan interest rates is a lender called Backed. They have an average interest rate between 2.90% to 15.99%. This amount depends on the amount of the loan.
Which bank has the best personal loan interest rate?
The bank with the best personal loan interest rate is Citizens Bank. They have personal loan interest rates between 6.79% to 20.39%, depending on the amount of the loan that is taken out.
What is the best APR I can get on a small personal loan as a student?

The best APR you can get on a small personal loan as a student is between 5% to 6%, depending on the amount of your loan. While credit union and banks will offer competitive interest rates for loans, the best options with the lowest APR is with an online lender. Sometimes personal micro loans can be a good option too.

What kind of credit score will get me the best personal loan rate?
The best kind of credit score that will get you the best personal loan rate is a credit score above 620. However, the higher your credit score, the best rates you can get on your loan.
How to shop for the best personal loan rates?
The best way to shop around for the best personal loan rates is to conduct research prior to submitting an application for a loan. The best way to conduct research is to search Google. Look for reviews of popular lenders and look at the interest rates of each to find the best lender with the best loan rates.
What FICO score gets the best personal loan rates?

The FICO score that gets the best personal rates is anything about 620. The higher the FICO score or as close to a FICO score of 850, the better the rates will be when you apply for a personal loan. However there are unsecured loans for poor credit.

When cosigning on a personal loan, is it better for the best credit to be first?
It does not matter whose credit goes first on a personal loan. The lender or bank will take both credit scores into consideration when figuring out the interest rate for a loan.

Personal Loan Company

In this section, you will find common answers to questions regarding personal loan companies.

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What is the best personal loan company?

The best personal loan company should have the following characteristics:

  • Good customer service.
  • Offers lower interest rates regardless of loan amount.
  • Has excellent reviews from other customers.
  • Has a good rating with the Better Business Bureau’s.

But as an example a Sofi personal loan seems to consistently rank high in reviews.

Which bank is best for a personal loan?
The best bank for getting a personal loan is Citibank. Citibank offers approval for personal loans in minutes and offers a flexible term loan that can be customized to cater to your specific financial needs.
Which credit union is best for personal loan?
The credit union that is best for a personal loan is Alliant Credit Union. They offer a fixed APR of 5.99% to 9.99%, have a loan duration of 1 to 5 years for a loan amount of $1,000 to $5,000 and with no collateral required. Upon acceptance of the personal loan, they offer a same day deposit option.
Where is the best place to get a personal loan with good credit?

The best place to get a personal loan with a good credit standing is LightStream. They off a low APR of 3.99% to 16.99%, loan terms between 24 to 144 months and only require a credit scor of 660 and above. Other than that there are plenty of other loan places that offer competitive terms.

What are the best online personal loan lenders?

The best online personal loan lenders are:

  • Prosper Lending
  • Lending Club
  • Upstart Lending
  • Upgrade Lending
  • Best Egg Lending
  • One Main Financial
  • Earnest Lending
  • Freedom Lending
  • Avant Lending
  • SoFi Lending
  • Wells Fargo

Also check out personalloans.com reviews.

Who has the best approval rates for personal loans?

Most approval rates for personal loans will be dependent on your credit score. The higher the credit score, the higher the approval rate. The lenders who have the best approval rates for personal loans are:

  • Lending Tree
  • Light Stream
  • Lending Club
  • Marcus by Goldman Sachs
  • Best Egg
What is the best credit union to take out a personal loan with a credit score of 600?
The best credit union to take out a personal loan with a credit score of 600 is Navy Federal Credit Union. While Navy Federal caters to primarily members of the armed forces, they are willing to work with members who have less than fair credit and will work with them based on other factors such as employment status, income and educational background.
What is best to get a personal loan: a bank or a credit union?
The best way to get a personal loan is through a credit union. A credit union is less likely to deny you for a personal loan based on credit and will consider other factors for a loan such as your education or employment status.
What are the best banks to get a personal loan with when I have a poor credit score?
The best banks to get a personal loan with when you have poor credit is Chase Bank and Money Mutual Bank. Both offer short-term personal loans, varying interest rates based on the amount of the loan and are willing to work with those who have poor credit and are interest in rebuilding it.
What is the best reason for a personal loan from Cash USA?
The best reason for a personal loan from Cash USA is credit consolidation or home refinancing. There are many acceptable reasons to get a personal loan from Cash USA that will be accepted. A personal loan acceptance will be dependent upon credit score and ability to repay.
Which bank has the best approval odds for a personal loan?
The bank with the best approval odds for a personal loan is Citibank. Citibank offers a flexible term loan based upon your needs, offers approval within minutes and will offer multiple loan amounts based on credit score.
What companies have the best personal loan with bad credit?

The companies that have the best personal loans for people who have bad credit are:

  • Avant Lending-offers the best installment personal loan.
  • Earnin Lending-offers the best payday loans.
  • Marcus by Goldman Sachs-offers the best debt consolidation personal loans.
  • New American Funding-offers the best personal loans for mortgages.
  • Lending Club-offers the best personal loans online.
What are the best online personal loan lenders for 2019?

The best online personal loan lenders for 2019 are:

  • Lending Club
  • Wells Fargo
  • Prosper Lending
  • LightStream Lending
  • SoFi Lending
  • Earnest Lending
  • Freedom Plus Lending
  • Personal Loans
  • Peerform Lending
  • Avant Lending
  • One Main Lending

There are many other small online loans sites you could use if you don’t qualify on these.

Where is the best place to get a low interest personal loan with bad credit?

The best place to get a low interest personal loan with bad credit is going to be a credit union. Most credit unions will work with members that have bad credit by using other factors to approve a personal loan such as employment status. Also take a look at online loans bad credit options with alternative lenders.

What is the best place to get a personal loan for $2,500 with a 628 credit score?
The best place to get a personal loan for $2,500 with a fair credit score is either a bank such as Chase or Citi Bank or a credit union. Most banks and credit unions will approve personal loans for people who have a credit score above 600.
What are the best and trusted sites to get personal loans with bad credit?

The best and trusted sites to get personal loans with bad credit are:

  • Marcus by Goldman Sachs
  • Upgrade Lending
  • Prosper Lending
  • One Main Financial
  • Tally Lending
  • Upstart Lending
  • Lending Club
What institution has best terms on personal loans?
The institution with the best terms for personal loans is Wells Fargo. Wells Fargo offers personal loans with an APR between 7.24% to 20.24%, offers loans with a term between 12 to 60 months and offers a max loan amount of $100,000.
What are the best banks to get a personal loan with a co-signer?

The best banks to get a personal loan with a co-sign are:

  • Wells Fargo-offers the best terms for personal loans.
  • Citibank-has the highest approval ratings for personal loans.
  • PNC bank-offers the best service for personal loan holders.
  • TD Bank-offers a variety of APR terms and repayment options.
Who has the best interest rates for personal loans with a fair credit score?

The best interest rates for personal loans with far credit are going to be between 5% to 36% interest. The institutions that offer these low interest rates are:

  • Wells Fargo
  • Best Egg Lending
  • SoFi Lending
  • Marcus by Goldman Sachs
What are the companies that offer the best personal loans for people who have bad credit?

The companies that offer the best personal loans for people who have bad credit are:

  • Lending Club
  • Payoff Loans
  • Light Stream loans
  • Best Egg loans
  • Freedom Plus loans
  • Lending Point loans
  • Upstart loans
  • Upgrade loans
What are the best personal loans for bad credit?

The best personal loans for bad credit are installment loans. The way installment loans work is by supply you with a bit of cash whenever you are in a tight spot, but that don’t let you increase the balance in the future. Try to find bad credit signature loans direct lenders.

Personal Loan Uses

In this frequently asked question section, you will find common questions pertaining to personal loan uses.

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Which best describes a way people can use personal loans?

People can use personal loans for a variety of reasons such as:

  • Consolidating their debt.
  • Paying off extra bills.
  • Paying off medical bills.
  • Refinancing the mortgage.
  • Pay off college tuition.
Which is the best personal loan for consolidating credit card debt?
The best type of personal loan for consolidating credit card debt are debt consolidation loans. With the help of these loans, people who apply for them can improve their credit scores while lowering their interest rates at the same time.
What are the best sources of personal loans for paying off high interest credit cards?
The best type of personal loan for paying off high interest credit cards are debt consolidation loans. Debt consolidation loans are made specifically to help pay off any debt, including high interest credit cards.
What personal loans are best for consolidating but not closing accounts?
The best type of personal loans that are best for consolidating accounts without closing them are debt consolidation loans. You will have to do research beforehand to ensure that the debt consolidation you have does not require you to close your existing accounts.
Person loan Vs. Balance transfers: which is best for consolidating your debt?
This will depend on your financial situation. Personal loans are recommended for consolidating debt while balance transfers are recommended if you want to save on interest payments towards your debt.

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Robert is our in-house expert on personal loans and finance. He got an MBA, specializing in Finance, before joining the workforce. After working for multiple Fortune 500 companies in the past decade, he brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the table.