The Best Home Improvement Loans of 2021


Home improvement loans help you finance renovations, updates repairs that can add value enjoyment to your home. If you’re looking for a way to pay, you’ll first need to understhow home improvement loans work compare financing options. This guide covers home improvement loan types, costs, qualification requirements steps to choose the best home improvement loans.

What Are the Best Home Improvement Loans of 2021?

Best online bank for customer service

Ally Bank is a Detroit-based online bank. Ally offers traditional banking products services, such as conventional mortgages, as well as refinance loans jumbo home loans.

Before You Apply

  • Mortgage types: fixed rate, ARM, home equity loans, refinancing, HomeReady for first-time homebuyers
  • Minimum FICO credit score: 620
  • Maximum loan amount: $4 million
  • Better Business Bureau rating: A+

Best Features

  • A program is available for first-time homebuyers.

  • Existing Ally customers can get a closing cost discount.

See full profile

Best for large loan amounts

Bank of America serves roughly 66 million customers in all 50 states. The lender offers conventional, Federal Housing Administration, Department of Veterans Affairs jumbo loans, as well as home equity lines of credit mortgage refinancing.

Before You Apply

  • Mortgage types: fixed rate, Affordable Loan Solution, FHA, VA, ARM, home equity line of credit, fixed-rate refinancing, FHA refinancing, VA refinancing, cash-out refinancing, adjustable-rate refinancing, jumbo
  • Minimum FICO credit score: Not disclosed
  • Maximum loan amount: $2.5 million
  • Better Business Bureau rating: A+

Best Features

  • Bank of America has a wide variety of mortgage products.

  • The lender offers origination fee discounts for qualifying Bank of America Merrill Lynch clients.

  • Home equity lines of credit have no annual, application or cash advance fees or closing costs.

  • Bank of America offers a first-time homebuyer program.

See full profile

Best for low down payment

PNC Bank is one of the largest U.S. banks, serving more than 8 million customers in all 50 states. PNC offers most types of mortgages.

Before You Apply

  • Mortgage types: fixed rate, FHA, VA, USDA, ARM, home equity line of credit, refinancing, medical professional mortgage program, jumbo, PNC Community
  • Minimum FICO credit score: Not disclosed
  • Maximum loan amount: $5 million
  • Better Business Bureau rating: A+

Best Features

  • Multiple types of mortgages are available.

  • Some mortgage options require no or low down payments.

  • PNC supplies an online home ownership cost tool.

See full profile

Best for no down payment

Alliant Credit Union is a nonprofit financial cooperative. The credit union serves customers in all 50 states. Mortgage products include conventional, jumbo refinancing loans, home equity lines of credit.

Before You Apply

  • Mortgage types: Traditional, ARM, refinancing, home equity line of credit, Alliant Advantage Mortgage
  • Minimum FICO credit score: 620
  • Maximum loan amount: $2.5 million
  • Better Business Bureau rating: A+

Best Features

  • No-down-payment mortgages are available for first-time homebuyers with excellent credit.

  • Mortgages are available to borrowers with FICO credit scores as low as 620.

See full profile

Best for fair credit

Flagstar offers banking lending products in every state. Borrowers can select from conventional or government-backed mortgages, such as FHA, VA U.S. Department of Agriculture loans, opt for adjustable-rate mortgages. Other choices include home equity loans lines of credit.

Before You Apply

  • Mortgage types: conventional, VA, ARM, FHA, USDA, jumbo, refinance, home equity
  • Minimum FICO credit score: Not disclosed
  • Maximum loan amount: $3 million
  • Better Business Bureau rating: A+

Best Features

  • Flagstar Bank provides a broad selection of mortgages home equity loans.

  • Some mortgages require no or a low down payment.

  • Borrowers can apply for loans online.

See full profile

Best for conventional mortgage

Citizens Bank is a regional bank based in Providence, Rhode Island. It offers traditional banking services products, including home loans mortgage refinance loans.

Before You Apply

  • Mortgage types: conventional, ARM, refinance, HELOC, jumbo, fixed rate
  • Minimum FICO credit score: undisclosed
  • Maximum loan amount: undisclosed
  • Better Business Bureau rating: A+

Best Features

  • Citizens Bank provides a homebuying service with rewards for borrowers in select states.

  • Homebuyers can get an interest rate discount for qualifying automatic payments.

  • Borrowers can apply online.

See full profile

Best for low APR

New American Funding is a national mortgage lender with a variety of home loan options. The lender has processed more than $27 billion in mortgages.

Before You Apply

  • Mortgage types: ARM, cash-out refinance, conventional, FHA, HELOCs, jumbo, reverse, USDA VA
  • Minimum FICO credit score: 620
  • Maximum loan amount: $3 million
  • Better Business Bureau rating: A+

Best Features

  • Provides multiple mortgage options, including low no down-payment loans

  • Offers fixed- or adjustable-rate mortgages

See full profile

Best for low down payment

Spring EQ is a Philadelphia-based home equity lender. Home equity loans are available in more than 30 states the District of Columbia, Spring EQ has plans to expinto more.

Highlights

  • Mortgage types offered: Home Equity
  • Minimum FICO score: N/A
  • Max LTV: 100%
  • Max DTI: N/A
  • Closing costs: N/A
  • Equity required: N/A
  • J.D. Power satisfaction rating: N/A

Best Features

  • Loan limits ranging from $20,000 to $250,000.

  • Reduced fees for loans more than $80,000.

  • Loan funding in as little 14 days.

See full profile

Best for fair credit

Guaranteed Rate has served millions of Americans since 2000 with more than $150 billion in loan volume. This lender has no minimum loan amount.

Highlights:

  • Minimum FICO score: 580 (FHA)
  • Maximum debt-to-income ratio: N/A
  • Loan amounts: No minimum
  • Total closing costs: Varies
  • J.D. Power overall satisfaction rating: Two out of five

Best Features

  • Provides qualifying borrowers with a 10-minute closing process.

See full profile

The Best Personal Loans for Home Improvement

LightStream

2.49% to 19.99% APR
$100,000 Max. Loan Amount
660 Min. Credit Score

Upstart

8.69% to 35.99% APR
$50,000 Max. Loan Amount
620 Min. Credit Score

Payoff

5.99% to 24.99% APR
$40,000 Max. Loan Amount
640 Min. Credit Score

Rocket Loans

7.16% to 29.99% APR
$45,000 Max. Loan Amount
Not disclosed Min. Credit Score

Avant

9.95% to 35.95% APR
$35,000 Max. Loan Amount
550 Min. Credit Score

SoFi

5.99% to 18.28% APR
$100,000 Max. Loan Amount
680 Min. Credit Score

Best Egg

4.99% to 29.99% APR
$50,000 Max. Loan Amount
640 Min. Credit Score

LendingClub

10.68% to 35.89% APR
$40,000 Max. Loan Amount
600 Min. Credit Score

Peerform

5.99% to 29.99% APR
$25,000 Max. Loan Amount
600 Min. Credit Score

Upgrade

7.99% to 35.97% APR
$50,000 Max. Loan Amount
Not disclosed Min. Credit Score

Discover

6.99% to 24.99% APR
$35,000 Max. Loan Amount
660 Min. Credit Score

Axos Bank

6.49% to 29.99% APR
$35,000 Max. Loan Amount
720 Min. Credit Score

FreedomPlus

7.99% to 29.99% APR
$40,000 Max. Loan Amount
620 Min. Credit Score

Prosper

7.95% to 35.99% APR
$40,000 Max. Loan Amount
640 Min. Credit Score

U.S. Bank

6.49% to 16.99% APR
$25,000 Max. Loan Amount
680 Min. Credit Score

Lender

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2.49% to 19.99% APR
$100,000 Max. Loan Amount
660 Min. Credit Score

Lender

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8.69% to 35.99% APR
$50,000 Max. Loan Amount
620 Min. Credit Score

Lender

Learn More
5.99% to 24.99% APR
$40,000 Max. Loan Amount
640 Min. Credit Score

Lender

Learn More
7.16% to 29.99% APR
$45,000 Max. Loan Amount
Not disclosed Min. Credit Score

Lender

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9.95% to 35.95% APR
$35,000 Max. Loan Amount
550 Min. Credit Score

Lender

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5.99% to 18.28% APR
$100,000 Max. Loan Amount
680 Min. Credit Score

Lender

Learn More
4.99% to 29.99% APR
$50,000 Max. Loan Amount
640 Min. Credit Score

Lender

Learn More
10.68% to 35.89% APR
$40,000 Max. Loan Amount
600 Min. Credit Score

Lender

Learn More
5.99% to 29.99% APR
$25,000 Max. Loan Amount
600 Min. Credit Score

Lender

Learn More
7.99% to 35.97% APR
$50,000 Max. Loan Amount
Not disclosed Min. Credit Score

Lender

Learn More
6.99% to 24.99% APR
$35,000 Max. Loan Amount
660 Min. Credit Score

Lender

Learn More
6.49% to 29.99% APR
$35,000 Max. Loan Amount
720 Min. Credit Score

Lender

Learn More
7.99% to 29.99% APR
$40,000 Max. Loan Amount
620 Min. Credit Score

Lender

Learn More
7.95% to 35.99% APR
$40,000 Max. Loan Amount
640 Min. Credit Score

Lender

Learn More
6.49% to 16.99% APR
$25,000 Max. Loan Amount
680 Min. Credit Score

Lender

Learn More

APR

Max. Loan Amount

Min. Credit Score

2.49% to 19.99% $100,000 660

6.49% to 17.99% $20,000 Not disclosed

8.69% to 35.99% $50,000 620

5.99% to 24.99% $40,000 640

7.16% to 29.99% $45,000 Not disclosed

9.95% to 35.95% $35,000 550

6.99% to 19.99% $40,000 660

5.99% to 18.28% $100,000 680

4.99% to 29.99% $50,000 640

10.68% to 35.89% $40,000 600

5.99% to 29.99% $25,000 600

7.99% to 35.97% $50,000 Not disclosed

9.99% to 35.99% $25,000 600

6.99% to 24.99% $35,000 660

6.49% to 29.99% $35,000 720

7.99% to 29.99% $40,000 620

7.95% to 35.99% $40,000 640

6.49% to 16.99% $25,000 680

Best for low interest

LightStream is the national online consumer lending division of SunTrust Bank, which in 2019 became Truist after merging with BB&T. The key feature of LightStream’s online personal loans is that they can be up to $100,000 used for nearly any reason, outside of refinancing existing LightStream loans. Personal loans are available to borrowers with good to excellent credit in all 50 states.

Before You Apply

  • Minimum FICO credit score: 660
  • Loan amounts: $5,000 to $100,000
  • Repayment terms: 24 to 144 months
  • Better Business Bureau rating: A+

Best Features

  • A variety of loan uses are available.

  • Loans of up to $100,000 are available.

See full profile

Best for low minimum loan amounts

PenFed Credit Union serves members of the Armed Forces, Department of Defense, Department of HomelSecurity, military associations, eligible veterans retirees, their families. However, military association is not required to apply for a loan or become a credit union member. The credit union offers personal loans for eligible members eligible co-borrowers in all 50 states.

Before You Apply

  • Minimum FICO credit score: undisclosed
  • Loan amounts: $500 to $20,000
  • Repayment terms: up to 60 months
  • Better Business Bureau rating: A+

Best Features

  • Terms of up to 60 months.

  • There are no origination fees.

  • Borrowers can get access to funds as early as the day after approval.

See full profile

Best for borrowers with no credit or poor credit

Upstart is an online marketplace lender that connects borrowers investors to originate personal loans. It offers loans of up to $50,000 to borrowers with fair to excellent credit nationwide, with the exception of Iowa West Virginia residents. Since it was established in 2012, more than $7 billion in loans have been originated. Many loan decisions made through the platform are automated use artificial intelligence.

Before You Apply

  • Minimum FICO credit score: 620
  • Loan amounts: $1,000 to $50,000
  • Repayment terms: 36 to 60 months
  • Better Business Bureau rating: A+

Best Features

  • Upstart may accept applicants with fair credit or even those with no credit history, using artificial intelligence to quantify risk.

  • Upstart loans as low as $1,000 are available in most states.

  • The lender’s credit dashboard allows borrowers to see the impact of loan repayments to modify payment dates.

See full profile

Best for debt consolidation

Payoff offers personal loans designed to consolidate credit card other high-interest debt. It operates in most states provides loans of up to $40,000.

Payoff is not a bank; instead, it works with lending partners that originate loans. The company, which considers itself a financial wellness firm, is based in California.

In 2017, Payoff launched a sister company called Happy Money, which takes a psychological approach to money matters. Today, Payoff is a service under the Happy Money umbrella.

Before You Apply

  • Minimum FICO credit score: 640
  • Loan amounts: $5,000 to $40,000
  • Repayment terms: 24 to 60 months
  • Better Business Bureau rating: A+

Best Features

  • Borrowers don’t face prepayment or late fees.

  • Borrowers can get preapproved with no hard credit check.

  • Some borrowers with fair credit may be eligible.

See full profile

Best for digital customer care

Rocket Loans offers personal loans to qualified borrowers in all U.S. states except Iowa, West Virginia Nevada. These loans are designed for people with fair to excellent credit who need to borrow up to $45,000 for debt consolidation, home improvements, medical expenses business or other expenses.

Before You Apply

  • Minimum FICO credit score: undisclosed
  • Loan amounts: $2,000 to $45,000
  • Repayment terms: 36 to 60 months
  • Better Business Bureau rating: A+

Best Features

  • Same-day loan funding is available in some cases.

  • No prepayment penalties apply.

  • An online application process is available.

See full profile

Best for risky borrowers

Since 2012, Avant has provided access to personal loans to more than 800,000 borrowers nationwide. Borrowers may qualify with fair to excellent credit can borrow from $2,000 to $35,000.

Before You Apply

  • Minimum FICO credit score: 550
  • Loan amounts: $2,000 to $35,000
  • Repayment terms: 24 to 60 months
  • Better Business Bureau rating: A

Best Features

  • Loans as low as $2,000 are available.

  • Funding can happen as early as the next business day after approval.

See full profile

Best for no origination fee

Marcus is the consumer bank lending arm of investment bank Goldman Sachs. Established in 2016, the lender offers personal loans of up to $40,000.

Before You Apply

  • Minimum FICO credit score: 660
  • Loan amounts: $3,500 to $40,000
  • Repayment terms: 36 to 72 months
  • Better Business Bureau rating: A+

Best Features

  • Marcus does not charge any fees on its personal loans.

  • Borrowers can adjust their payment due date.

See full profile

Best for loans of up to $100,000 with no fees

SoFi, short for Social Finance, offers personal loans of up to $100,000 to borrowers with very good to excellent credit. The lender operates nationwide, but does not offer personal loans in Mississippi, is known for offering loans with no fees. In addition to personal loans, SoFi offers student loans, student loan refinancing, home loans small business financing.

Before You Apply

  • Minimum FICO credit score: 680
  • Loan amounts: $5,000 to $100,000
  • Repayment terms: 24 to 84 months
  • Better Business Bureau rating: A

Best Features

  • SoFi offers no-fee loans, including no late fees.

  • Loans of up to $100,000 are available.

  • Co-borrowers are accepted.

See full profile

Best for bad credit

Best Egg is a national online lender offering personal loans starting at $2,000 for a variety of purposes. Loans can be funded in as little as one business day.

Before You Apply

  • Minimum FICO credit score: 640
  • Loan amounts: $2,000 to $50,000
  • Repayment terms: 36 to 60 months
  • Better Business Bureau rating: A+

Best Features

  • Loan funding typically takes one to three business days upon approval.

  • The minimum loan amount is $2,000 in most states.

  • Borrowers incur no prepayment penalty.

See full profile

Best for fair credit

LendingClub is an online marketplace that connects borrowers investors through its network of lending partners. LendingClub initially launched on Facebook has evolved into an extensive peer-to-peer lender. Borrowers in all U.S. states except Iowa U.S. territories who have fair to excellent credit can get $1,000 to $40,000 loans with LendingClub.

Before You Apply

  • Minimum FICO credit score: 600
  • Loan amounts: $1,000 to $40,000
  • Repayment terms: 36 to 60 months
  • Better Business Bureau rating: not rated

Best Features

  • Loans of $1,000 or more are available.

  • Joint applications are accepted.

  • Borrowers can qualify with fair to excellent credit.

See full profile

What Is a Home Improvement Loan?

A home improvement loan is financing you use to pay for home remodeling or repairs. When you get a home improvement loan, you use the loan funds to pay your contractor or buy supplies to complete the work, then pay the loan off over time. A home improvement loan is helpful if you don’t have cash to pay upfront for home improvement expenses.

Home equity loans personal loans are the most common types of home improvement loans, but there are other options, such as cash-out refinancing. Banks, credit unions online lenders may offer home improvement loans.

What Are the Different Types of Home Improvement Loans?

The type of loan you choose will depend in large part on the scale of your home improvement project. For minor projects like painting, using a credit card might work best. For larger projects, consider one of these options:

  1. Home equity loan: A home equity loan is a second mortgage offered by banks, credit unions other lenders that is secured by the equity in your home. With a home equity loan, you repay the balance with equal monthly payments over a fixed term, in addition to your original mortgage. Lenders usually limit total loans to 85% of the value of your home. Learn more about the best home equity loans.
  2. Cash-out refinance: Instead of taking out a second mortgage as you would with a home equity loan, a cash-out refinance replaces your original mortgage. You’ll access your equity to get cash at closing, which you can use to make home improvements. Your refinanced home loan will have a new balance, payment, interest rate repayment terms. In a cash-out refinance, lenders typically limit total loans to 80% of the value of your home. Most cash-out refinances have fixed interest rates. Learn more about the best mortgage refinance lenders.
  3. Home equity line of credit: A HELOC works similar to a credit card, allowing you to borrow against your home equity (up to a certain limit) during the draw period repay it over time. Unlike a home equity loan, where you receive a lump-sum upfront, a HELOC lets you tap only the money you need. HELOCs are typically limited to 85% of the equity of your home, though some go higher. HELOCs have variable interest rates. Learn more about how home equity loans HELOCs compare.
  4. Personal loan: Using a personal loan for home improvement is like getting any unsecured loan. It’s not secured by your home your home improvement loan rate depends on your creditworthiness. Personal loans usually have a fixed interest rate generally have loan amounts between $1,000 $100,000. Because a personal loan is unsecured, it will have a higher interest rate than a loan secured by your home. Learn more about the best personal loans.

What type of loan is best for home improvements?

Each loan option has positives negatives to consider before you make a final decision.

  • Pro: A large lump-sum payment gives you the ability to tackle major projects, plus interest rates are low.
  • Con: Qualification is more involved includes an appraisal.
  • Best for: People with a clear home improvement plan budget.

  • Pro: You have the opportunity to lower your interest rate while also tapping your home’s equity.
  • Con: With a new mortgage, you’re taking on a lot of risk.
  • Best for: People who have built up a lot of equity plan to stay in their home for a while.

Home equity line of credit:

  • Pro: Only borrow the money you need.
  • Con: With variable interest rates, your loan costs could go up.
  • Best for: People with an undefined to-do list or budget, who aren’t sure what the final construction bill will be.

  • Pro: You can qualify even if you don’t have significant equity in your home.
  • Con: Interest rates are higher.
  • Best for: People with smaller projects who need less cash don’t want to spend the time going through the more elaborate qualification process of a home equity loan.

How Can You Get a Home Improvement Loan?

  1. Consider your eligibility: Home improvement lenders typically have minimum credit score requirements to be approved for a home improvement loan. Generally, you’ll need at least a 620 FICO credit score to be approved for a home improvement loan. Review your credit report to check for errors work on paying down debt, especially on any delinquent accounts, before you apply for a home improvement loan.
  2. Determine how much you need: Consider your home improvement project amount leave room for error. Don’t take out a property improvement loan that strains your finances to make cosmetic improvements.
  3. Determine your preferred loan term: Consider your budget how quickly you can pay off the loan. A long-term home equity loan could make sense if you’re financing a room addition or new roof. But you shouldn’t get a 30-year loan for minor home renovations that will be replaced before you’re done paying for them, such as flooring.
  4. Get prequalified: Get prequalified with lenders to compare home improvement loan rates terms. You can get prequalified with multiple lenders by sharing your Social Security number other basic information, but you should verify the lender is only performing a soft credit check, as multiple hard inquiries can ding your credit rating.
  5. Make your selection: Run the numbers on the loan options you are considering, weighing convenience against cost. Choose a loan finalize details, like the loan amount. With personal loans you can get funds as fast as the next business day after you accept the loan terms. With other home improvement loans the timeline is much longer – a cash-out refinance can take up to 45 days.

What to Consider When Comparing the Best Home Improvement Lenders

Focus on these four key areas when choosing a home improvement lender: eligibility requirements, loan amounts, APR customer service.

  1. Eligibility Requirements: Don’t waste time money applying for a loan you won’t be approved for. Find out a lender’s minimum qualifications get prequalified with the lenders most likely to grant you the loan.
  2. Loan Amounts: All home equity loans have maximum loan-to-value amounts. Some have minimum maximum loan amounts as well, regardless of your needs or your home’s equity.
  3. APR: Compare home improvement rates by getting prequalified rate quotes. Be sure you’re comparing apples to apples when you consider a loan’s APR fees. A lender may have no closing costs a higher APR that could cost you more in the long run than a lender with some closing costs that offers lower interest.
  4. Customer Service: Generally, you can expect the best service from companies with good customer satisfaction ratings. Read lender reviews, search the Better Business Bureau Consumer Financial Protection Bureau consumer complaint database to learn about the customer service you can expect from a home improvement lender.

Are Home Improvement Loans Tax Deductible?

Personal loans aren’t tax deductible, but loans that use home equity – cash-out refinances, home equity loans, HELOCs – are. You must use those funds to make capital improvements to your home, the home that’s serving as collateral must be the property that’s getting the upgrades. A capital improvement is something that increases your home’s value or prolongs its useful life. Fortunately, most home construction projects – from upgrading a kitchen to replacing a roof to adding a pool – are capital improvements.

There’s a cap on how much total mortgage debt you can deduct: For loans before 2018, the cap is $1 million for married taxpayers. For loans after 2018, the cap is $750,000. If you have an outstanding mortgage of $500,000 then get a home equity loan of $300,000, you won’t be able to deduct $50,000 of the loan if you bought your home recently.

Are There Alternatives For Getting Home Improvement Financing?

Yes, there are a number of alternatives beyond personal loans home equity loans.

  • 203(k) loan: Backed by the Federal Housing Administration, a 203(k) loan can help you rehabilitate modernize your home.
  • Title I loan: A Housing Urban Development-backed loan, this is capped at $25,000 for single-family homes is for financing property improvements renovations.
  • Home construction loan: A home construction loan covers the cost of building a home or a major renovation is paid to the contractor. Home construction loans come in two flavors: construction-only loans, which typically last for a year only cover the construction period, construction-to-permanent loans, which convert into a traditional mortgage after construction has ended.
  • Renovation loan: Some lenders give loans based on the future value of your home, after you make the improvements. These loans are best for homeowners who haven’t built up much equity in their home yet.

Can You Get a Home Improvement Loan With Bad Credit?

Getting a home improvement loan with bad credit is challenging, since most lenders have a minimum credit score requirement of 620. (Scores below 580 are considered poor by the credit bureaus.) Federally backed loans like the 203(k) loan have a minimum score requirement of 500, so there are some bad credit home improvement loans available.

View More Best Personal Loans for Home Improvement

Best for peer-to-peer loans of up to $25,000

Peerform is a marketplace lending platform that connects borrowers nationwide with investors. Borrowers with a credit score of 600 or higher may qualify for loans of up to $25,000.

Before You Apply

  • Minimum FICO credit score: 600
  • Loan amounts: $4,000 to $25,000
  • Repayment terms: undisclosed
  • Better Business Bureau rating: A

Best Features

  • Some borrowers with fair credit may qualify.

  • Borrowers can complete the entire loan process online.

See full profile

Best for loan amounts of up to $50,000

Upgrade is an online lender that offers personal loans lines of credits nationwide. Borrowers can qualify for up to $50,000 in financing.

Lender Highlights

  • Minimum FICO credit score: Not disclosed
  • Loan amounts: $1,000 to $50,000
  • Repayment terms: 36 to 60 months
  • Better Business Bureau rating: A+

Best Features

  • Loans lines of credit are available up to $50,000.

  • Borrowers can complete the entire loan process online.

See full profile

Best for FICO scores between 580 669

LendingPoint, which specializes in loans for borrowers with fair credit, has offered online personal loans since 2014. The lender, operating in 49 states the District of Columbia, provides loans as large as $25,000.

Before You Apply

  • Minimum FICO credit score: 600
  • Loan amounts: $2,000 to $25,000
  • Repayment terms: 24 to 48 months
  • Better Business Bureau rating: A+

Best Features

  • Loan funds are available as soon as one day after approval.

  • Borrowers with fair credit may qualify.

See full profile

Best for low costs

Discover is a digital bank payment services company known for its credit cards. But Discover also offers other products including fixed-rate personal loans of up to $35,000 to borrowers in all 50 states Washington, D.C. The lender boasts no fees as long as you pay on time.

Before You Apply

  • Minimum FICO credit score: 660
  • Loan amounts: $2,500 to $35,000
  • Repayment terms: 36 to 84 months
  • Better Business Bureau rating: A+

Best Features

  • Discover has no fees other than a late fee.

  • Customizable loan terms from 36 to 84 months.

  • Borrowers get free access to their FICO credit score.

See full profile

Best for flexible loan terms

Axos Bank launched in 2000 is owned by San Diego-based Axos Financial. You won’t find any brick-and-mortar branches, but the bank has offices throughout the country. Aside from personal loans, Axos Bank offers CDs, plus checking, savings, money market retirement accounts.

Before You Apply

  • Minimum FICO credit score: 720
  • Loan amounts: $5,000 to $35,000
  • Repayment terms: 12 to 60 months
  • Better Business Bureau rating: A+

Best Features

  • The loan application process is completely digital because Axos Bank is online only.

  • Flexible loan terms are one to five years.

  • You can borrow between $5,000 $35,000.

See full profile

Best for below-average credit

FreedomPlus is an online lender offering personal loans ranging from $7,500 to $40,000. Loans are available to qualified borrowers with a minimum FICO credit score of 620.

Before You Apply

  • Minimum FICO credit score: 620
  • Loan amounts: $7,500 to $40,000
  • Repayment terms: 24 to 60 months
  • Better Business Bureau rating: A+

Best Features

  • Borrowers with fair credit may qualify for a loan.

  • Loans of up to $40,000 are available.

  • Same-day approval is available, with loans funded in as little as 48 hours.

See full profile

Best for post-sales support

Prosper is a peer-to-peer lending marketplace that allows borrowers to apply online for fixed-rate, fixed-term loans. Prosper matches borrowers with partner investors including Sequoia Capital, Francisco Partners, Institutional Venture Partners Credit Suisse Fund. Since its founding in 2005, Prosper has expedited more than $18 billion in loans. Prosper lends to borrowers with fair to excellent credit with a minimum 640 FICO score.

Lender Highlights

  • Minimum FICO credit score: 640
  • Loan amounts: $2,000 to $40,000
  • Repayment terms: 36 to 60 months
  • Better Business Bureau rating: A+

Best Features

  • Prosper offers preapproval with a soft credit check.

  • Small-dollar loans of $2,000 or more are available.

  • Joint personal loans are available.

See full profile

Best for short-term loans

U.S. Bank offers both short- long-term personal loans with fixed interest rates.

Before You Apply

  • Minimum FICO credit score: 680
  • Loan amounts: $1,000 to $25,000
  • Repayment terms: three to 60 months
  • Better Business Bureau rating: A+

Best Features

  • Loan funds are paid out relatively quickly.

  • U.S. Bank doesn’t charge an origination fee.

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