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Personal loans can be a great way to access funds you need without paying too much in interest or fees. Each lender offers different interest rates and origination fees. Knowing what options you have and how to qualify will help you get the best deal.
Here are the best personal loans for everyone, including those with good credit, bad credit, or even no credit.
Upgrade offers a fast personal loan process for borrowers with good credit. You can get funds in as little as one day in some cases. Upgrade offers personal loan tools to help you improve your credit score once you pay off your high-interest debt or take care of other financial issues.
They have flexible underwriting guidelines, allowing borrowers with debt-to-income ratios as high as 75% to qualify. But, beware, there is an origination fee which decreases the amount of money you receive from the proceeds. The origination fee is deducted from your loan amount before disbursement.
Payoff isn’t a direct lender – they are a middleman between you and potential lenders to help you find the perfect loan. They do charge an origination fee to cover the cost of their services, and their lenders only lend money for one purpose – paying off other debts. The loan is for good credit borrowers, and they help you manage your finances and get on a better track, so you don’t have unsecured credit card debt hanging over your head.
To qualify, you’ll need a 3-year credit history, max 50% debt-to-income ratio, at least $1,000 in disposable income, and no recent delinquencies.
Upstart is a great option for those with little to no credit but a bright financial future. They look at your education and job history to determine your ability to afford the loan. Your credit score plays a role, but even if you have a low credit score or no credit, you may still get approved. If you qualify, Upstart can fund your loan fast (within one day) and even pay your creditors directly if you’re using the money for debt consolidation.
The requirements to qualify are simple. You must make at least $12,000 per year, be at least 18 years old, have a part-time or full-time job, and own a personal bank account.
If you have great credit and solid employment, SoFi can be a good option. Its rates are low, especially if you set up autopay, and they have flexible payment dates so you can fit the loan in your budget. SoFi doesn’t charge origination fees, which means you get the entire loan amount versus the net amount minus an origination fee.
You do need good credit and solid employment history to qualify, but co-applicants are allowed. If you have a short credit history, you may still qualify if your history has all on-time payments.
LightStream offers more flexible options for borrowers with good credit. You can lower your rate by 0.5% if you set up autopay, and if you use the funds for home improvement, a pool, or installing solar panels, you can take a term of up to 12 years in some cases.
LightStream also has a ‘low-rate guarantee.’ If you find a rate lower than they offer you and can prove the offer with the same terms offered to you by LightStream, they’ll beat it by 0.1%. LightStream also charges no fees, including origination, late fees, or prepayment penalties.
To qualify, you must demonstrate a strong credit score, the ability to save money, and enough income to cover all your debts, including the new loan.
With no origination fees, it’s more affordable to secure a loan with Marcus by Goldman Sachs, but you’ll need good credit to qualify. In addition, they offer an on-time payments reward that may come in handy. If you have at least 12 on-time payments, you can defer one payment but without accruing more interest on the unpaid balance. This can help if you experience unexpected expenses or miss income for a short period.
The process is entirely online and goes fast, so you can get the money you need quickly. If you have good credit, an open checking account, and can prove your employment and affordable debt-to-income ratio, you may be able to take advantage of Marcus’s low rates.
Rocket Loans offers personal loans through Cross River Bank. They have low credit score requirements making it easier for low credit applicants to get approved. They fund personal loans fast, and they offer a user-friendly dashboard to manage your loan.
Like Rocket Mortgage, Rocket Loans has an exemplary reputation for great customer service, and the process itself is simple. We also like the fact that you can secure a loan for as little as $2,000. Most personal loan lenders require much higher loan amounts.
If you already work with Discover with a credit card or banking, it makes sense to get a personal loan through them too. They don’t charge an origination fee, so you keep all the funds that you borrow, which is a nice feature.
They do require good or even great credit, and you’ll pay a late fee if you miss a payment, but their customer service is outstanding, and they make it easy to manage all of your Discover accounts in one place.
To qualify, in addition to good credit, you’ll need a household income of at least $40,000.
Avant personal loans are good for borrowers with bad credit. They offer the option to consolidate your debt or take care of financial emergencies without having great credit. While you’ll pay an administrative fee, it’s better than paying late fees or having a collection for bills you cannot pay.
They offer fast access to your funds and loan terms for as long as 5 years. The interest rates may be higher, but that’s to make up for the lower credit scores they allow.
LendingClub is a peer-to-peer lender, which means you have more options to get financed. LendingClub rates your qualifications based on their criteria, and then individual investors decide whether or not they’ll invest in you.
While the interest rates are higher, you have a better chance of securing a loan through LendingClub because of its unique setup versus going to a lender directly if you have bad credit. It’s easy to apply for the loan online, and you’ll typically get an answer quickly too.
We also like how easy it is to secure even a low loan amount, as most lenders have a $5,000 minimum.
Best Egg is for high-income borrowers with great credit. While you could get a loan with a lower credit score or less income, it will be at a much higher rate than you could elsewhere. Meet their requirements, though, and you’ll have attractive terms and fast funds.
You can borrow up to $50,000 with Best Egg which means you’ll have access to funds you need for your personal finance needs. Best Egg does a soft credit check to prequalify you for a loan, and you’ll do best if you have a credit score of at least 700.
OneMain Financial may work with borrowers with low credit scores if you can demonstrate the ability to repay their loan on time. You can have a joint applicant to make it easier to qualify, and you also get to choose your payment date.
If you’re doing debt consolidation, OneMain will pay your creditors directly, taking the burden off you. Most borrowers get their funds the same day, and you can borrow as little as $1,500, but the upper limits are lower than most at $20,000.