8 Best Personal Loans of February 2024

Loans

Personal loans can be used to finance home improvement projects, wedding expenses, vacations, and much more.

Debt consolidation is also one of the most popular uses because many consumers with credit card debt can find a better interest rate with a personal loan.

Personal loans are typically reserved for expensive items that are difficult, if not impossible, to pay for all at once even if you have a beefed-up savings account.

They can make it easy to finance big-ticket items without draining your savings all at once. And while banks and credit unions have historically been the place to go for personal loans, online lenders now offer easy access to financing, often with lower interest rates.

8 Best Personal Loans

Without further ado, we present the best personal loans of 2024. We’ve included lenders focusing on different types of borrowers, so we encourage you to read through the list to find the best fit for you.

1. Prosper

Crediful’s rating
Visit Site

If you’re interested in a peer-to-peer loan, check out Prosper. Rather than submitting a loan application and getting an answer right away, your personal loan needs to get funded by investors.

Prosper will review key components of your request along with a snapshot of your credit profile. While the process is a bit slower because of this extra step, it opens the door for a wider range of borrowers.

The minimum credit score is 640, but the company says that the average borrower boasts a 710. There’s no exact minimum for income requirements, but again the average for a Prosper borrower is over $88,000 per year.

How much can you borrow with a Prosper loan?

Amounts start at $2,000 and are capped at $40,000. Since more credit types are accepted, there’s a broader range of APRs, moving anywhere between 6.95% and 35.99%.

You can also choose between loan terms, which last either three years or five years. You’re likely to save money on interest with the shorter term, but you can potentially lower your monthly payment amount if you spread it out over the longer period.

Expect to pay an origination fee with your Prosper loan, which can cost anywhere between 2.4% and 5% of your loan amount. The fee comes directly out of your personal loan before it’s deposited into your bank account.

Read our full review of Prosper

2. SoFi

Crediful’s rating
Visit Site

SoFi is an online lender that works with various borrowers to provide personal loans. The lender offers various loans, but personal loans are one of its specialties.

The best part about SoFi is its transparency. The company offers its borrowers a quick and easy process that is clear the whole way.

The personal loans offered through SoFi have no origination fees or pre-payment penalties, so you can more easily understand the loan terms.

SoFi offers unemployment protection. If you lost your job, then you would be able to put your loans into a temporary forbearance with little to no hassle.

Borrowers with a solid credit history and high income will have attractive rate offers made through a transparent lending process.

Many of SoFi’s borrowers have high incomes and credit scores. The minimum credit score allowable is 680. The median income of borrowers is $106,000.

Fixed-rate loans through SoFi have a range between 5.99% APR and 16.740% APR. If you sign up for autopay, you may be able to save money through a 0.25% discount on your interest rate.

The company offers personal loans with a minimum of $5,000 and a maximum of $100,000. However, it is possible to receive a higher loan amount with a strong application.

If you have a high income and good credit score, then SoFi is a great place to find your personal loan.

Read our full review of SoFi

3. First Tech Federal Credit Union

Crediful’s rating
Visit Site

First Tech Credit Union offers personal loans for debt consolidation across all 50 states, with terms ranging from 24 to 84 months. Loan amounts range from $500 to $50,000, and joint applications and co-signers are allowed.

The credit union has a low maximum APR of 18% and offers same-day funding. However, you must be a credit union member to apply, and the lowest rates are only available for a 24-month term. The credit score requirement is not disclosed.

To apply, it only takes a few minutes to complete an online application. If approved, you can receive loan funds in as little as one business day. There are no origination fees. Additionally, you have the option to defer your first payment for 45 days, although interest may accrue during that time.

4. Upstart

Crediful’s rating
Visit Site

Upstart offers personal loans particularly for younger individuals who may not have an extensive credit history. Most borrowers are actually in their early 20s to mid-30s, and many of whom have recently graduated from college.

Rather than focusing solely on credit, they consider other factors as well when considering each loan application.

Upstart’s personal loan interest rates start at 7.46% and go up to 29.99% — quite a competitive range. Loan amounts range from $1,000 and $50,000. Loan terms are up to five years.

You’ll need a credit score of at least 620 (with the average coming in at 692). If you hit financial troubles, they also offer flexible repayment terms.

If you have a solid work or education history that shows you’re a reliable person, you could find the online personal loan you need with Upstart. Each underwriting process is tailored specifically to the individual giving you the best chance for success.

Read our full review of Upstart

5. LendingClub

Crediful’s rating
Visit Site

One of the country’s oldest peer-to-peer lenders, LendingClub offers unsecured personal loans to a wide range of borrowers. While most borrowers have excellent credit, it’s still possible to get your personal loan funded with a lower credit score.

The maximum loan is higher than most lenders at $40,000. The minimum loan amount is just $1,000. Your fixed interest rate can range anywhere between 5.32% and 30.99%.

On top of your monthly payments, you’ll be charged an origination loan when you get your cash. Again depending on your credit, you’ll pay anywhere between 1% and 6% of your loan amount.

For the maximum $40,000 loan, that can cost as low as $400 or as much as $2,400. You don’t need the money upfront; the fee will be taken out of your personal loan before receiving it.

Wondering about LendingClub’s credit requirements?

At a minimum, you’ll need a 600, but most successful applicants are closer to a 700 credit score. There isn’t a salary requirement, but the average is just shy of $80,000.

Once you apply, you can choose from various loan terms to best suit your budget and desired repayment term. As a P2P lender, investors will need to fund your personal loan request. During that process, you’ll need to start submitting financial documentation to support your application.

Read our full review of LendingClub

6. Best Egg

Crediful’s rating
Visit Site

For borrowers with good to excellent credit seeking competitive interest rates, Best Egg is a strong option to consider. They’ve funded more than $2 billion since their opening in 2014 and have assisted over 200,000 clients.

For those with the strongest credit scores and an annual income of at least $100,000, APRs are as low as 5.99%. Otherwise, they range up to 29.99%.

Loan amounts are as low as $2,000 and as high as $50,000 if you meet special qualifications. Origination fees range between 0.99% and 5.99% and are taken out of your funds.

Once you’ve had a personal loan for at least six months, you can actually apply for a second loan if necessary. Your combined balances can’t exceed $50,000. However, it gives you more flexibility in your financing, where many lenders prohibit more than one outstanding loan.

Most of their borrowers use their funds to consolidate debt, but you can use the money for just about anything. Whether it’s for medical expenses, a new kitchen, or your upcoming wedding, they allow for a large variety of loan purposes.

If you have strong credit and are in a relatively high-income bracket, you can take advantage of some of their competitive rates and terms.

It’s quick and easy to get an offer and won’t hurt your credit. In fact, you won’t have any hard pull at all until you’re ready to sign your loan agreement.

Read our full review of Best Egg

7. Avant

Crediful’s rating
Visit Site

Avant has served close to half a million borrowers since opening its doors online in 2012. It’s a great middle-of-the-road option because most Avant borrowers have either average or above-average credit. The average credit score range is actually between 600 and 700.

If you have strong credit, you can get an APR as low as 9.95%. The loan amount ranges from $1,000 to $35,000. With such a low minimum, you can get a low-rate personal loan for a short-term need, whereas many other lenders require a minimum of $5,000.

Many Avant borrowers use their personal loan for debt consolidation. Avant states that six months into the loan, those borrowers see an average 12 point increase in their credit scores.

Funds can be directly deposited into your account as soon as the next business day. You also get to track your VantageScore for free each month.

Another unique feature offered is their late fee forgiveness program. If you’re late making your payment, you’ll be charged a late fee. If, however, you pay your next three consecutive bills on time, your fee will be refunded in full.

You can access your loan dashboard online or through a smartphone app, making this lender user-friendly and competitive.

Read our full review of Avant

8. OneMain

Crediful’s rating
Visit Site

Having bad credit doesn’t mean you can’t work with an established lender like OneMain. APRs are above average, ranging from 25.10% to 36%, but the minimum credit score is only 550.

While most of their personal loans are secured with collateral such as a vehicle, you might qualify for an unsecured loan if you pay a higher APR.

You can potentially borrow as little as $1,500 or as much as $25,000, depending on what you qualify for.

They certainly have a strong track record, serving over 10 million customers in total. With over 1,700 physical branches across the country, it’s easy to get in-person support whenever you need it.

You can apply online, but if there’s a branch nearby, you’ll need to go in for a meeting to verify your information before finalizing your loan agreement. This final step can be performed over the phone if you don’t live near a physical location.

Once you’ve received a personal loan from OneMain, you get to choose from several flexible payment options. You can pay online or through the lender’s smartphone app.

There are also traditional payment options, such as at a branch or through the mail. Finally, you can even stop at a Walmart to pay there. It’s a straightforward and transparent process, particularly if you need access to bad credit financing.

Read our full review of OneMain

woman sitting in chair

Compare the Best Personal Loan Lenders

Compare offers from multiple lenders to make sure you’re getting the best personal loan rates. Look at the interest rate and origination fees (plus any other applicable fees) because that will tell you how much your total loan will cost.

Each lender’s annual percentage rate (APR) helps you compare these numbers as a single percentage. Furthermore, make sure you can afford the monthly payments and that you’re comfortable with the length of the repayment period.

Types of Personal Loans

Unsecured Personal Loans – Borrowing Without Collateral

Unsecured personal loans do not require collateral, such as a car or house, to secure the loan. This means that the lender is taking on more risk. As a result, unsecured loans are generally reserved for those with higher credit scores.

People with lower credit scores may have higher interest rates and stricter eligibility requirements. However, they can be a viable option for those who do not have assets to use as collateral or who do not want to put their assets at risk.

Secured Personal Loans – Borrowing With Collateral

Secured personal loans require collateral to secure the loan. This means that the lender can seize the collateral if the borrower fails to make their loan payments.

Because the lender is taking on less risk, secured loans may have lower interest rates and more flexible eligibility requirements. However, the potential consequences of using collateral means you could lose the asset if you default on the loan.

Peer-to-Peer Loans – Borrowing From Individuals

Peer-to-peer (P2P) loans are personal loans that are funded by individual investors rather than traditional financial institutions. P2P lending platforms match borrowers with investors who are willing to fund their loans.

P2P loans may have competitive interest rates and flexible repayment terms. However, they may also be harder to qualify for and have more fees than other types of personal loans.

Cosign loans – Borrowing With a Cosigner

Cosign loans, also known as cosigned loans, require a co-signer to guarantee the loan in addition to the borrower. A cosigner is responsible for the loan if the borrower is unable to make the payments.

Cosign loans can help individuals who have a low credit score or limited credit history qualify for a personal loan. However, they come with the risk of damaging the cosigner’s credit if the loan is not repaid. The borrower and co-signer should fully understand their responsibilities before entering into a cosigned loan agreement.

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Personal Loan

When considering a personal loan, you should carefully evaluate a variety of factors to ensure that you are choosing the best loan for your needs. Some key factors to consider include the interest rate, repayment terms, fees and charges, credit score requirements, and lender reputation.

  • Annual percentage rates: The annual percentage rate (APR) on a personal loan is the cost of borrowing money, expressed as a percentage of the loan amount. Choosing a loan with a competitive APR can help minimize the overall cost of the loan.
  • Repayment terms: Personal loan repayment terms refer to the length of time that you have to pay back the loan, as well as the frequency and number of payments. Consider whether the repayment terms of a loan are manageable and fit your financial situation.
  • Fees and charges: Personal loans may come with various fees and charges, such as origination fees, prepayment penalties, and late fees. Carefully review the fees associated with a loan and factor them into the overall cost of borrowing.
  • Credit score requirements: Personal loan companies often have credit score requirements that borrowers must meet to qualify for a loan. Understand the credit score requirements of a lender and working on improving your credit score if necessary.
  • Lender reputation: Choosing a personal loan lender that is reputable and known for offering fair and transparent loans is advisable. Research the lender’s reputation by reading customer reviews, checking their ratings with the Better Business Bureau.

How We Picked the Best Personal Loans

We reviewed countless personal loan lenders to come up with the best places to find a personal loan online.

To make it to our list, each lender had to meet the following five criteria:

  1. Diversity in loan options
  2. Wide borrower approval rate
  3. Dependability & Customer Service (or strong reputation and reviews from borrowers)
  4. Competitive loan rates — because regardless of what you’re using the personal loan for, you want it to cost as little as possible
  5. Special features, since many online lenders provide convenient benefits and services for borrowers.

Note: Geographic availability was also an important factor we considered.

Because each state has different regulations, many lenders only focus on a few select locations when they first open. Then, as they gain traction, they move into more and more states. We know our readers live all over the country, so we focused on lenders with a large geographic footprint.

Personal Loans FAQs

What is a personal loan?

A personal loan is a type of loan that is typically used for personal expenses, such as consolidating debt, paying for a wedding, or financing a home improvement project. Personal loans are typically unsecured, which means they do not require collateral.

How do personal loans work?

Personal loans work by lending you a specific amount of money that you agree to pay back over a set period of time, with interest. You typically make fixed monthly payments until the loan is fully paid off.

How do I qualify for a personal loan?

To qualify for a personal loan, you will typically need to have good to excellent credit, a stable income, and a low debt-to-income ratio. Some lenders may also require a co-signer or collateral.

Where can I get a personal loan?

Personal loans can be obtained from banks, credit unions, online lenders, and peer-to-peer lending platforms. It’s wise to shop around and compare rates and terms from multiple lenders before choosing a loan.

What is a good credit score for a personal loan?

A good credit score for a personal loan is typically above 680. The higher your credit score, the more likely you are to qualify for a loan and get a lower interest rate. However, some lenders specialize in bad credit loans.

What is the average interest rate on a personal loan?

The average interest rate on a personal loan varies depending on your credit score, income, and other factors. At the time of this writing, the average interest rate is 10-11%.

Can I get a personal loan with bad credit?

It may be possible to get a personal loan with bad credit, but it will likely come with a higher interest rate and stricter eligibility requirements. You may also need to provide collateral or a co-signer.

How long does it take to get a personal loan?

The amount of time it takes to get a personal loan can vary. However, it typically takes a few days to a week. The process may be faster if you apply online and have all of your documentation ready.

Is it better to get a personal loan or a credit card?

Whether a personal loan or a credit card is better for you depends on your financial situation and goals. Personal loans typically have fixed interest rates and repayment terms, which can make them a suitable option for larger expenses or consolidating debt. Credit cards may have higher interest rates and more flexibility, but they also have the potential to lead to more debt if not used responsibly.

Can I use a personal loan to buy a car?

Yes, you can use a personal loan to buy a car. However, it may be a better option to get an auto loan, which is specifically designed for financing car purchases and may have lower interest rates.

Can I use a personal loan for home improvement?

Yes, you can use a personal loan for home improvement projects. Personal loans can be a viable option for financing smaller home improvement projects or for those who do not have equity in their home to use for a home equity loan.

Can I use a personal loan to pay off debt?

Yes, you can use a personal loan to pay off debt, such as credit card debt or student loans. This is called debt consolidation. By consolidating your debt into a single personal loan, you may be able to secure a lower interest rate and make payments more manageable.

Can I get a personal loan with no credit?

It may be possible to get a personal loan with no credit. However, it may be more difficult and come with higher interest rates. Some lenders may require a co-signer or collateral in this case.

Learn More about Personal Loans

Crediful
Meet the author

Crediful is your go-to destination for all things related to personal finance. We're dedicated to helping you achieve financial freedom and make informed financial decisions. Our team of financial experts and enthusiasts brings you articles and resources on topics like budgeting, credit, saving, investing, and more.