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Comparison of the Best Personal Loans

A common mistake people commit when comparing personal loan options is they let their emotions get the best of them. You have to be neutral when assessing the loan terms.

We understand that remaining calm and objective when applying for a personal loan is not easy. Many are quick to jump the gun when lenders approve their application. After all, a loan application often entails a strong financial need. The loan applicant could be anyone from a fresh graduate having trouble with their student loans to a salaryman burdened with unpaid credit card debt.

Applicants may ignore the loan interest rate, late payment fee, term length, and annual percentage rate as long as they get their desired term loan amount at seemingly low monthly payments. This is very wrong.

You need to be extra careful as most lenders are very strict with unsecured loan clients. Missing even one monthly payment would trigger nonstop calls from the collection team. Continue to miss more months of payment and your credit profile will be negatively affected.

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LightStream
Offers comprehensive financial assistance for home improvement
Allows for term lengths to be extended up to 12 years
Grants improved monthly payments if repayment terms are extended
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SoFi
Offers unemployment protection
Allows debtors to halt payments in three-month increments
Promises to keep your good credit score unaffected
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Lending Club
Works best for small and medium-sized loans
Processes loans as small as $1,000
Accepts applicants with credit scores as low as 600
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Earnin
Forgoes credit checks
Accepts only employed applicants
Offers loan amoounts of up to $100 per day with 0% interest
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Avant
Offers personal loan options for those with bad credit
oes soft credit checks to ensure your credit score remains the same
Approves loans for next-business-day funding

Are you on the fence about whether a personal loan is what you need right now? We regularly post in-depth guides and articles on the best credit and loan options to explore best on one's individual needs and lifestyle. Check out AnyCredit today!

5 Best Personal Loan Companies for Different Types of Borrowers and Debtors

There is no one-size-fits-all loan solution. Rather than claiming that this specific loan is the ideal option for all debtors, we've categorized the different brands based on their pros and cons. See which ones offer the best loan terms.

1. Ideal for Home Improvement: LightStream

  • Loan Amount: $5,000 - $100,000
  • APR: 4.49% - 20.49%
  • Min Credit Score: 660+

Dream homes aren't bought, they're built. Unfortunately, hiring contractors to create a unique, elegant, and customized living space for your family is not cheap. For financial and credit assistance with your home improvement plans, check out LightStream. LightStream has unique, special offers to clients who wish to use a personal loan to finance their home remodeling project. First, the loan term is flexible. For applicants with an excellent credit score, term lengths can be extended up to 12 years. Second, personal loan rates are amazing. Unlike with other lenders, your monthly payments actually get better as the repayment terms are extended—granted, you're funding an expensive project. Perhaps the biggest downside to LightStream is that it has an intense credit check process. Yes, they have amazing loan interest rates. However, you won't be able to qualify for their plans if you don't have a good to excellent credit score that's no less than 660.

2. Comes With Unemployment Protection: SoFi

  • Loan Amount: $5,000 - $100,000
  • APR: 5.99% to 25.05%
  • Min Credit Score: 680+

What sets SoFi apart from other lenders is their unemployment protection. If the debtor—who must be initially employed—loses their primary source of income, they can temporarily postpone making payments and extend repayment terms in the meantime. Debtors can halt payments in three-month increments for no longer than 12 months. While the loan amounts will continue to accrue interest during those three-month periods, having unemployment protection loan terms gives debtors a chance to gather needed funds and get back on their feet. And the best part is your good credit score won't be affected. The only downside to SoFi's personal loans is that the funds take longer to be credited. There are plenty of other lenders that offer a faster funding process—of course, they might also charge higher interest rates and origination fees.

3. Best for Small to Medium-Sized Loans: Lending Club

  • Loan Amount: $1,000 to $4,000
  • APR: 10.68% to 35.89%
  • Min Credit Score: 600+

If you need a small or medium-sized loan and don't necessarily have a good credit score for banks to check, try Lending Club. They accept applicants with scores as low as 600 and process $1,000 personal loans. You can use these for anything from debt consolidation fees to car repairs. The only issue with Lending Club is they have a high APR and interest rate. Although, while there are other lenders that offer better APR, not many can process loan amounts as small as $1,000. It's also worth noting that fund processing might take a few days.

4. Best for Quick Processing of Small Loans: Earnin

  • Loan Amount: Up to $100 per day
  • APR: 0%
  • Min Credit Score: N/A

If you're short on funds and need some cash to help you survive until the next payday, try Earnin. They offer loan amounts of up to $100 per day, charge a 0% interest rate, and best of all, they don't perform any type of credit check. The only catch here is Earnin only accepts employed applicants. While they won't ask for your credit score, they'll keep in close touch with your HR and go as far as to track how many hours you've worked per week. Your salary will also go to direct deposit payments.

5. Ideal Loan Option for Applicants with Low Credit Scores: Avant

  • Loan Amount: $2,000 - $35,000
  • APR: 9.95% - 35.99%
  • Min Credit Score: 550+

Avant offers great personal loan options for bad credit applicants. In fact, debtors with a minimum credit score of 550 can get approved for loan amounts of up to $35,000—which are available for next-business-day funding. Note that most financial institutions consider 550 terrible; even the FHA requires applicants to have a credit score of at least 580. Another thing about Avant is they do soft credit checks. Unlike hard pulls, soft checks have no impact on one's credit history, so even if you don't meet the loan requirements, your score will remain the same. This is ideal for those who aren't updated on the status of their credit history. Perhaps the biggest downside to Avant's personal loans is they have an origination fee. Although, these types of fees are quite fair considering you can have the institution pull your score absolutely risk-free. Also, bear in mind that direct payment is not available to debtors with existing debt consolidation loans.

Final Thoughts

Overall, what's important when applying for any personal loans—or even credit cards—is to understand your purpose. Know what your priority is. If you're simply taking out personal loans or applying for multiple credit cards just for the sake of having extra cash to burn, you might find yourself in trouble. A poor credit history would be the least of your concerns when you have tens of thousands of dollars' worth of unpaid personal loans. Always practice mindful spending.

Additional Resources

Most important factors when getting a personal loan Debtors primarily consider interest rates, APR, and total loan amount payable when choosing where to take out a personal loan. Still not sure where to get a personal loan? Check out AnyCredit! We have multiple in-depth guides and articles comparing the best personal loan on the market. See which ones best suit your credit needs as a borrower.

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Here at AnyCredit, we aim to make the most complex financial issues and topics easy to understand. In our articles, we will be making analysis, smart finance judgments, and honest conversations to help you make sense of your financial capacities and options.
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