Today is the day we demystify personal loans and the mystery that surrounds them. (Don’t worry, it’s not that complicated and we’re not going to dive too deep into what personal loans are and how they work.)
Personal loans are actually pretty straight forward. You borrow money. You spend it on what you want to spend it on (or at least need to spend it on). You make installment payments each month to pay back the money you borrow.
Typically, personal loans come from financial institutions—either online—or through traditional banks and credit unions. Often times, consumers like you turn to personal loans to make a purchase that doesn’t have its own loan—like an auto loan or a home loan—but to avoid high interest rates like credit cards can carry.
Oh yeah, I almost forgot, the better your credit score is, the better the interest rate on a personal loan tends to be. Since personal loans are unsecured loans, the lender is basing the loan on your credit score.
Now that that is out of the way, let’s jump right into eight personal loan companies that can get the cash you need in your hot little hands today.
1. Blue Trust Loans
If you need up to $1,250 in cash, Blue Trust Loans can help. You can log onto their website, apply for your loan and if approve, have it deposit into your bank account by the next business day. If applying online doesn’t give you the warm fuzzies, you can also give them a call and they can help you by phone.
The term of the loan—how long you have to repay the loan—tends to be up to six months. Blue Trust Loans do not have a prepayment penalty so you can pay off the loan in full at any time.
2. Cash Advance
Cash Advance is not a lender, but acts as a liaison between you and lenders. Liaison might not even be the right term. Cash Advance acts more like a matchmaker. You submit your personal loan request and Cash Advance matches you with lenders that fit your needs.
The term of the loan, the interest rate, and the APR all hinge on the lending institution you decide to use, so you won’t find any specific information on the Cash Advance site. All of this information is disclosed to you directly from the lender.
3. Lending Club
Lending Club puts a twist on the traditional personal loan lender. Lending Club is a peer-to-peer lender. It, too, acts as a more of a matchmaker than a lender because once you submit your info, Lending Club matches you with people who are willing to lend you their own money. While other personal loans run from $100 to about $2,500, Lending Club personal loans run from $1,000 to $40,000.
Again, the terms, conditions, interest rate, etc., all depend on the arrangement made between you and the person who is lending you their money. Generally, though, the interest rates are lower than traditional personal loan lenders (like banks). Another interesting thing is that you can check the interest rate for the loan amount you want without it affecting your credit score.
NetCredit also allows you to check out your eligibility for a personal loan of up to $10,000 without it affecting your credit score.it looks like the minimum amount you can apply for $1,200. Once you’re approved, you typically receive the funds by the next business day.
Something else that is interesting about NetCredit is that once you find out you are eligible for a personal loan, they offer you their My RightFit Tool™ so you can customize repayment terms that fit your needs and your budget.
NetCredit deposits your loan right into your bank account. As you repay your loan, NetCredit reports to the credit bureaus so it helps you build your credit.
With PersonalLoans, you can borrow between $500 and $35,000. PersonalLoans is not the lender either, but works more along the lines that some of the other companies do, where they act as a matchmaker.
Once you are matched with one of the lenders in the PersonalLoans’ network, you can receive your money usually within one business day. Loans have repayment terms anywhere from six months to 72 months. APRs range from 5.99% to 35.99%.
Upstart not only bases your interest rate for your personal loan on your credit score, but they also consider your education level and your experience. When was the last time you heard a lender looking beyond your credit score?
(Uh, never, that’s when. At least, until now.)
You can take out a personal loan for various reasons in amounts ranging from $1,000 to $50,000 (so probably one of the highest maximum we’ve seen thus far in the world of personal loans).Once you provide Upstart with some information about you online, then you can see the interest rate you can expect to pay on your loan. Since Upstart asks for your credit score range, they don’t check your credit score for this part of the process, so it does not affect your credit.
7. Best Egg
Best Egg is another company that offers personal loans from $2,000 to $50,000. APRs seems to range from 5.99% to 29.99%. This company also offers a “soft Check” of your credit so it doesn’t negatively affect your credit score to find out if you qualify.
It’s not to say that some of the other companies don’t, but Best Egg (as its name implies) tends to target borrowers with high credit scores and with good income.
8. Lending Tree
Lending Tree also offers personal loans ranging from $1,000 to $35,000. The APR starts as low at 5.99%. Lending Tree is another site that allows you to enter your information and then provides you with information on direct lenders that can provide you with the terms and conditions you want and need for your personal loan.
When you need money fast, you can turn to one of these companies to get the money you need the fast and easy way. Just like any financial decision, it’s always wise to weigh your options, pros, and cons, and shop around before making a final decision. Fortunately, most of this information is right at your fingertips online.