Personal loans are a great way to receive financing if you need a bit of extra help at some stage in your life. Whether you want to purchase an item, or consolidate your credit card debt, personal loans can be a hassle-free answer to your problem. In the past, you would need to head to a bank or credit union if you wanted a personal loan. But times have recently changed – there are now online lenders that offer fast access to personal loans. You won’t have to deal with long, confusing paper applications to receive financing from these sources.
One of the companies that has made a name for itself during this time is SoFi – there one of the largest online lenders available in the United States. In this review, we’ll be taking a deeper look at SoFi personal loans to help you understand if it’s the right company to work with if you need a personal loan. Choosing the right loan company to work with is vital in ensuring that you have a positive experience when you next choose to finance something. Make sure to take in all the information provided in this review – it’s the best way to make an educated decision.
SoFi: The Company
First, we’ll give you a bit of information on SoFi so you can better understand the company that you’re working with. The company actually began as a startup by a group of young Stanford graduates looking to improve the online lending industry. SoFi is a completely online lender – they don’t offer any brick-and-mortar services for their customers. This allows them to streamline the processes and reduce the costs of their financing.
SoFi has been around since 2011 – the company also offers mortgages and student debt refinancing. In fact, the original mission statement of the company was to offer student financing at lower rates than government lenders. The company headquarters is in San Francisco, California.
SoFi Personal Loan Features
In this section, we’ll take a deeper look at some of the features included in a SoFi personal loan. This will give you a true understanding of the type of financing you’ll be receiving when you work with SoFi.
SoFi Personal Loan APR: 6.325% to 15.615%
Minimum Loan Amount: $5,000
Maximum Loan Amount: $100,000
All SoFi personal loans are unsecured personal loans.
One of the best features that SoFi personal loans offers is no fees. A lot of lenders increase their revenue via sneaky or hidden fees that increase the cost of financing substantially. With SoFi, you get to avoid this issue entirely. The company charges no origination fees, no pre-payment fees, and no late fees – there are absolutely zero fees you have to worry about paying. This increases the value of the loan substantially.
SoFi can perform a soft credit check on your account to see if you pre-qualify for their financing prior to your full application. While this doesn’t guarantee approval, it does give you a much better idea of what type of interest rate you’ll be offered. This is a good way to avoid a hard credit check on your account if you’re not sure you’ll be approved. Keep in mind, a hard credit check will occur once you decide to proceed with the application.
If you decide to enroll in Autopay, you will receive a discount on the interest rate that you pay to SoFi. In fact, the Autopay discount is .25% of the interest rate that you pay – a considerable amount when you extend it over the full term of the loan, especially if you borrow a lot.
Because SoFi uses online loan applications and processes, you get your money much quicker than with traditional lenders. Once you verify your information and sign for your loan through a digital signature, you’ll get your money within a few days of your application.
What Are Personal Loans?
If you’re reading this review, there’s a high chance you already have a decent idea about what a personal loan is. Regardless, you might not truly understand this form of finance. If you’re looking to obtain a personal loan, you should make sure it’s the best financing option for you. Personal loans have experienced a resurgence with borrowers – they’re now seen as an effective way to borrow money for a variety of causes or refinancing issues.
Personal loans are either secured or unsecured. If they’re secured, they’re tied to the value of an asset that you’ve put forward for as collateral. If they’re not secured, they don’t have an asset tied to them. Unsecured loans are typically more expensive in terms of interest rates. All SoFi personal loans are unsecured.
In the past, people have found it hard to obtain financing for certain types of purchases, such as boats or small businesses. Using unsecured personal loans has become a convenient way to borrow the money – the lender doesn’t care what you use the money for, they just care that you can pay it back. Below we will explore some of the reasons that people use personal loans.
Reasons for Use
Credit Card Refinancing
If you owe a lot of money in credit card debt, you can use a personal loan to refinance the debt or consolidate the debt. Personal loans typically have interest rates that are much lower than traditional credit card interest rates. This means that if you obtain a personal loan, you can pay off your current credit card balances and pay the money back at a lower rate.
Student Debt Refinancing
If you borrowed money to go to college or study, you might owe a lot of money at a high interest rate. This can be a pain if you’re looking to pay back the money quickly. If you use a personal loan to refinance the debt, you can pay off your current loan balances and accrue lower interest payment over time. SoFi student loan refinance allows you to do this.
Cash Flow Issues
If you’re having temporary cash flow issues, a personal loan can be a great way to get some quick cash. Because many modern personal loan companies have online capabilities, you can have the money transferred to your account quickly. Personal loans also have much lower rates than payday loans and other forms of quick cash loans.
If you need to purchase an item like a car or furniture, you can use a personal loan if you’re not able to obtain other types of finance. It’s a good option for those who haven’t been successful with traditional forms of auto-finance and other types of financing.
Advantages and Disadvantages of SoFi Personal Loans
If you’re going to obtain a SoFi personal loan, it’s important to know what the advantages and disadvantages of the company are. In this section, we’ll help you better understand the benefits and cons of each company – some of these have been mentioned before. This section is a synopsis of the major talking points about SoFi. Check it out below:
SoFi Personal Loan Pros
- No Fees – You don’t pay any fees, including late fees and origination fees
- Low Interest Rates – Interest rates for SoFi loans can be very low, much lower than credit card rates or other forms of debt
- Quick Application – The entire process is managed quickly and efficiently, you can get money into your wallet fast using SoFi
- Flexible Amounts – You can borrow as little as $5,000 and as much as $10,000
- Other Forms of Finance – If you don’t think a personal loan is right for you, SoFi also offers other forms of finance that you might find appealing.
SoFi Personal Loan Cons
- No Locations – Because there are no brick-and-mortar locations, you won’t be able to speak to a lending official face-to-face.
- High Credit Requirements – Those who borrow from SoFi tend to be people with decent credit scores. If you want to obtain a loan with a low credit score, this might not be the best option for you.
Preparing for Your Application with SoFi
As with any financing application, it’s important to prepare your application with SoFi as soon as possible. As SoFi typically uses borrowers that have decent credit scores, you’ll want to be certain you have as high of a credit score as possible before you make any application decisions. In this section, we’ll take at a few quick ways you can prepare yourself for a SoFi application. Make sure to take all of this into consideration:
Check Credit Report
Plenty of people have items on their credit that can be removed very easily. If you’re someone who never checks the details of your credit report, you probably don’t realize that there could be issues on your report. If you get these items removed, you’ll be able to see a drastic increase in your credit score in as little as four weeks. This is one of the quickest ways to prepare yourself for a financing application. There are even credit repair companies that can help assist you with the process for a small fee.
Pay Down Debt
Another way to quickly improve your score is to pay down the current amount of debt that you have on credit cards or lines of credit. This might not be possible for some people, especially if you’re getting the loan to consolidate your credit card debt, but it’s a viable option if you can afford it. Around a third of your credit score is determined by your current credit utilization, so pay down as much as possible if you can afford to do so.
SoFi Personal Loan Reputation
One of the best ways to gauge the reputation of a company is to look at how previous customers rated their services. If most of a company’s previous customers hated working with the company, there’s a very high chance you will end up feeling the same. In this section of our review, we take a look at what a few of the top consumer watchdog groups say about SoFi personal loans. Check it out below:
Better Business Bureau (BBB)
The Better Business Bureau is one of the leading consumer watchdog groups in the country. They allow customers to review companies and make complaints about services. They also act as an intermediary for companies and customers. In some cases, the BBB does their own research on companies as well – to make sure that they’re operating ethically.
The BBB gives SoFi an A+ rating – this is the highest achievable rating for a company at BBB. While SoFi does have some consumer complaints on BBB, it appears many of them are to do with people who have been turned down for financing after being pre-approved. Overall, the BBB believes SoFi is a great company to work with. You can check out SoFi loans reviews on their website.
Consumer Affairs is another leading consumer watchdog group in the United States. They operate the same way that the BBB operates – by providing a platform for past customers to review businesses. SoFi is not accredited with Consumer Affairs, so they don’t have an official rating. There are still plenty of reviews on the site, which leaves SoFi with just under 2/5. While this rating may seem low, you need to consider that this forum is not moderated because the company is not accredited. It is likely that only negative experiences have been posted on the site, without any rebuttal. You can find plenty of SoFi loan reviews and SoFi student finance reviews on their website.
As you can tell, SoFi is a lending company that provides modern borrowers with a lot of options. A SoFi personal loan is a solid option – as you can probably tell from reading our SoFi loan review. They have high credit score and income requirements, but if you match these requirements you’ll be fine when it comes to obtaining a loan. The company offers decent interest rates and quick access to cash. They also have a good reputation in most parts of the internet – especially on the Better Business Bureau. If you’re looking for other forms of finance, you can also find SoFi home loans and SoFi student loan rates on their site.
If you don’t think this is the right lender for you, make sure to check out some of the other lender reviews that we have on our site. We have plenty of information available for those who need it!
General Information on SoFi
Get to know SoFi better through the information provided for you below.
What is SoFi?
Most known for their loan products, SoFi is a onling finance company that offers a variety of financial services in the United States.
Where is SoFi located?
SoFi currently maintains six offices all over the United States, but it is headquartered in San Francisco, California.
Is SoFi a public company?
No. While their going public has been on the news for years, SoFi is yet to issue an initial public offering.
Is SoFi legit?
Yes. SoFi is a legitimate company that has helped people make it past through financial troubles by providing loans.
How does SoFi work?
Just like any other lending company: borrowers specify the amount they need which are, of course, subject to approval. Then, when approved, SoFi provides the loan amount.
When was SoFi founded?
SoFi was founded in August 2011 by Mike Cagney, Dan Macklin, James Finnigan, and Ian Brandy.
Is SoFi a reputable lender?
Yes. In less than ten years, SoFi has grown into one of the most trusted online lending companies out there because of the quality of services they provide.
Is SoFi safe?
Yes. As the loan application is done online, SoFi makes it a point to invest in cyber security in order to protect all your personal information.
Who owns SoFi?
The four founders have retained ownership of the company and are currently serving high-level positions.
What does SoFi do?
SoFi provides a series of loan products as well as refinancing for student loans and mortgage.
What credit agency does SoFi use?
SoFi uses all three credit agencies. And to obtain your credit score, both VantageScores and FICO are used.
Is SoFi worth it?
Definitely. Assuming a similar profile, the rates you’ll get with SoFi are much better than what you’ll get with a traditional bank.
Is SoFi reliable?
Yes. SoFi has also been highly rated by different finance websites as well as the customers themselves.
Does SoFi charge origination fees?
No. In fact, SoFi is one of the few online lenders that does not charge an origination fee.
How does SoFi make money?
SoFi earns from interest payments and from selling some of the existing loan accounts to investors.
Below, you will find important details on SoFi loans.
Are SoFi rates the best?
SoFi offers one of the best rates for all their loan products. However, it is always advised for you to get a quote from different lenders to know what’s best for you.
Are SoFi loans simple interest?
They can be. With SoFi, you have the choice between a fixed rate and a variable rate loan. Simple interest only applies to the former.
Are SoFi loans secured?
It depends on the type of loan you’ll get. For example, a personal loan is normally unsecured, but a mortgage is not.
Does a SoFi loan hurt your credit?
A SoFi loan is no different from what others offer of the similar type. How it will affect you will depend on various factors such as debt-to-income ratio and loan diversity.
Are loans like SoFi worth it to consolidate debt?
Yes. As their rates are low, you will save more on interest payments by consolidating your debt with them.
SoFi Loan Products
There are a lot of loan products and financing options offered by SoFi. Find out more about them below.
What are SoFi personal loans?
Personal loans from SoFi are unsecured and may be used for whichever purpose the borrower may want to use it for.
Does SoFi offer student loans?
No, it doesn’t. What SoFi offers is student loan refinancing on qualified schools and programs.
How does SoFi mortgage work?
Without a lot of physical space driving operating expenses up, SoFi is able to offer much better rates on your mortgage. You can borrow as much as $2 million with only 10% down payment.
Are SoFi mortgage rates competitive?
Definitely. SoFi is beating the competition in this area, and a lot of borrowers are saying that they wouldn’t have been a homeowner without SoFi.
Does SoFi refinance parent plus loans?
Yes. However, refinancing this loan will disqualify it from federal student loan benefits like income-based repayment.
Does SoFi refinance private loans?
Yes. Refinancing private loans is actually one of the most common refinancing service offered by lenders.
Can I refinance my SoFi loan?
Yes. This option is available for some of their loan products, but not for all.
Can SoFi refinance Sallie Mae loans?
Yes. As SoFi works in refinancing federal loans as well, Sallie Mae loans may be refinanced.
How does SoFi student loan refinancing work?
In refinancing student loans, your school or program must first be eligible for refinancing with SoFi. If it is, you will get a lower interest rate when refinanced once approved and enjoy flexible payment terms as well.
Should I refinance my student loans with SoFi?
If you are sure that you’d actually be able to pay off everything, then you should go for it and save thousands of dollars. Else, you shouldn’t so you wouldn’t lose federal student loan benefits.
Dealing with your SoFi Loan
Determine the best way to deal with your SoFi loan through the following questions:
Can you pay SoFi loan early?
Yes. And as SoFi does not have a prepayment penalty, you can do so without any consequences.
Does SoFi have an early payoff fee?
No. SoFi is completely fee-free so you can repay the entire amount of the loan early if you can. Try to inquire if you can get a discount for doing so.
Can you combine two SoFi loans?
Yes, if one of the loans is not a personal loan. However, while you technically can do it, assess first if it’s in your best interest. You might end up paying more if you don’t play your cards right.
Does SoFi accept credit card payments?
No. It would not make sense anyway as credit cards carry higher interest than your average SoFi loan.
Does SoFi offer income-based repayment?
No. However, it offers the next best thing. If your income is not low enough to qualify for an income-based repayment, refinancing is the best alternative.
Getting a SoFi Loan
The how-to’s and your concerns on getting a SoFi loan are addressed in this section.
How do I get a SoFi loan?
You may go to their home page and select the loan product of your choice. From there, you can click Get Started and proceed with the application.
What credit score do you need for a SoFi loan?
You need a minimum credit score of 680 to qualify for their personal loan. However, they consider other factors aside from your credit score for their other loan products.
How hard is it to get a SoFi loan?
It depends on your credit score, your income, and other factors. People with lower credit scores may find it hard to get approved for unsecured loan products.
How does SoFi verify income?
As part of the application process, you would be required to submit certain documents, including an income statement or a pay stub.
Does SoFi drug test?
If you plan to work for SoFi, you may be subjected to a drug test. However, borrowers do not have to do a drug test to apply.
How long does it take to fund a SoFi loan?
After you sign the final loan agreement, you can expect the fund from your SoFi loan within a week.
Does SoFi do a hard pull?
Yes. While they claim they’ll only do a soft pull, there have been multiple complaints from customers for allegedly performing a hard pull without the consent of the customer.
How long does SoFi take to review an application?
It can take up to 30 days for your SoFi to review your application, definitely longer compared to other online lenders.
How long does SoFi take to approve?
Like the application, it takes a long time for SoFi to approve your application so this may not be a great option if you’re looking for quick funds.
Other Questions about SoFi
The questions below may not be directly related to SoFi personal loans and cannot be categorized with the previous sections.
How do I invest in SoFi?
You can invest in SoFi by clicking Invest Now on this page. You may choose between active and automated investing, both of which will not cost you any transaction and management fees.
How many employees does SoFi have?
SoFi currently has 1362 employees across its different locations across the United States.
SoFi’s main selling point is its low rates. This is a great option if you have an excellent credit and low debt-to-income ratio.
Am I even eligible to refinance on SoFi?
At the very least, you must be a U.S. citizen or a permanent resident and must reside in one of their eligible states. There are other requirements which you may view here.
How do I delete my SoFi account?
Before they can deactivate your account, you must not have any unpaid loans with them. To proceed with the deactivation, you can send them an email or a direct message on Twitter about it.
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.