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Upgrade Personal Loans for Home Improvement

Your home may just be the single most expensive investment you might make in your lifetime. That’s why it only makes sense to maintain it, right? After all, maintaining and/or improving your home is essential to keep its value from depreciating. Thankfully for homeowners, there are a plethora of financing options out there offered by both public and private entities.

There are many different types of home improvement loans: See some of the home improvement financing options that you have with Upgrade:

But let’s take a step back and go back to the basics. What exactly is a home improvement loan?

What Is a Home Improvement Loan?

Not to be confused with home equity loans – a home improvement loan is a type of unsecured personal loan that provides you with the necessary financial assistance needed to maintain or improve your home. Home improvement loans are easier to obtain as opposed to other types of loans as it doesn’t usually involve a large amount of money. But, much like other loans, a home improvement loan is dependent on the status of your finances and your overall credit standing.

So if you’re trying to apply for home improvement financing through Upgrade, but don’t know where to start… Well, you clicked the right article!

Let’s talk about Upgrade.

What is Upgrade?

According to its official website, Upgrade offers an online and mobile banking experience that delivers exceptional value to customers by eliminating fees on everyday transactions. This allows Upgrade customers to make responsible financial decisions so they can have a financially stable future. Upgrade can also assist customers through affordable personal loans, credit monitoring, credit score alerts, mobile banking, and credit building information.

Are Upgrade Personal Loans Legit?

Of course! Established in 2017, Upgrade now caters to over 10 million customers that have applied for an Upgrade card or loan. Depending on your credit standing, Upgrade can offer low interest rates and origination fees. In addition, reviews on Upgrade loans – from people that want to fund their home improvement plans or consolidate their debt – have been generally positive. If you’re wondering about what customers say about Upgrade’s lending practices, you can always visit Upgrade reviews online.

Who Are Upgrade Loans Best For?

Loans from Upgrade are best for people that want to renovate and improve their homes but are currently building their credit. What’s great about Upgrade is that it understands that not everyone can have a stellar credit score. Consumers with fair to good credit, who can’t qualify for a personal loan without a hefty origination fee, would do well in applying for an Upgrade loan. However, that doesn’t mean Upgrade lends to just about anyone.

Upgrade Personal Loan Application Process

For your loan application to be approved, Upgrade considers your whole application. This means that Upgrade will look into your monthly cash flow, credit standing, and debt-to-income ratio together with other Upgrade loan requirements.

Can You Pay Off an Upgrade Home Improvement Loan Early?

Another thing that sets Upgrade loans apart is that qualified applicants can avail of a loan without prepayment penalties. A prepayment penalty is a fee that lenders charge if you pay off your loans early.

Odd, right?

Well… not really.

Basically, lenders profit from loan interest. This means that when you pay off your loan early, your lender might be losing out on interest payments. Upgrade will not charge you a fee for paying off your loan early.

See Upgrade personal loan offers today

Upgrade Loans Review

How To Apply For an Upgrade Personal Loan

One of the most common pain points when it comes to loans is the absurd amount of red tape. However, with Upgrade loans, things are a little bit different. Upgrade personal loans offer low fixed rates, affordable monthly payments, and no prepayment fees. Loans of up to $35,000 can be used to refinance credit cards, consolidate debt, fund home improvements, and assist in major purchases.

So how does the process work? Upgrade’s typical loan process usually looks like this:

Step #1: Rate Check

Prospective borrowers can determine their rate and how much they could qualify for within minutes with no obligation and no credit score impact.

Step #2: Choose an Offer

After checking the rates, borrowers can review multiple loan options and decide which offer is best for them.

Step #3: Get Fast Funding

Just how long does it take to get money from Upgrade? Upgrade’s fast funding feature sends the money directly to your account within a day of clearing the necessary verifications. This means that you wouldn’t have to wait for lengthy home appraisals that come with refinancing your home or home equity loans.

Step #4: Other Upgrade Loan Requirements

During the Upgrade loan review process, borrowers may be asked to submit additional documents for information verification. These documents may come in the form of financial documents and identification.

Upgrade personal loans usually take about 2-5 business days depending on the completeness of your application. Once approved, funds will be sent to the borrower’s account within four business days. Note that this would depend on how fast your bank processes these types of transactions.

Are There Any Fees with Upgrade Loans for Home Improvement?

As mentioned above, Upgrade borrowers are subject to an origination fee. All Upgrade personal loans have a 2.9% to 8% origination fee, which is deducted from the loan proceeds. Qualified applicants also have the freedom to pay their loans early as Upgrade personal loans do not have prepayment fees. Like other lenders, Upgrade also reserves the right to charge subsequent penalties and fees for late payments.

How Does Upgrade Compare to Other Lenders?

Choosing the best home improvement lender depends on a myriad of different factors. Don’t just rely on Upgrade personal loan reviews when trying to make an informed decision. During these uncertain times, it’s always best to have enough know-how when it comes to making important financial decisions. Here are some things to consider when choosing the best home improvement lenders:

Competitive Rates

This should be the first thing you look for as rates vary from one financial institution to another. It’s worth mentioning that loans from Upgrade have competitive rates compared to other home improvement loan lenders. However, note that your actual rate will still depend on your credit score, credit usage history, loan term, and other factors.

Quick Processing

Usually, loan application processing takes about three to five business days of review time. When it comes to Upgrade loans, expect to receive funds within four business days once your loan application has been approved.

Fewest Fees

When applying for loans, it’s important to factor in the number of fees you would have to pay. Upgrade charges a one-time origination fee which is deducted from your total loan funds. It’s also best to pay attention to your payment schedule as Upgrade charges late fees. With Upgrade personal loans, borrowers may incur a late fee of up to $10 if your payment is not received in full within 15 calendar days of your payment due date.

Repayment Terms That Suit Your Needs

What’s great about Upgrade is that you have the freedom to choose from the loans that you qualify for and pay it back over 36 or 60 months with a fixed rate. Yes, you read that right. Upgrade’s rate will never increase.

Consider Getting Pre-Approved

Upgrade allows you to check your rate to see which offers you may qualify for. This involves a soft inquiry that is only seen by you and won’t impact your credit score. After going through the pre-approval process, you will then receive a pre-approval letter. A pre-approval letter means that you have met the minimum borrowing requirements based on information obtained from your credit report. However, receiving a pre-approval letter DOES NOT guarantee the approval of your loan application as the pre-approval process does not take into account other factors that Upgrade collects from your official online application.

Pros and Cons of Upgrade Personal Loans

Here’s a quick breakdown of the pros and cons of Upgrade personal loans for home improvement.


Fast processing and straightforward application procedure

You don’t need equity to apply for an Upgrade personal loan

Fixed rates and no prepayment fees

Prospective Upgrade borrowers can prequalify


Be careful of high origination fees and interest rates based on your creditworthiness

Max loan amount of $35,000

Shorter repayment periods – Upgrade offers personal loan terms from 36 to 60 months.

Late fees

Closing Thoughts: Are Upgrade Loans Right for You?

Upgrade may be a good option for people building their credit score and need a quick injection of funds. However, if your credit score is good to exceptional, you may want to take a look at other options on the market.

Consider Acorn Finance.

Acorn Finance offers rates lower than the industry average. With Acorn Finance, applicants can submit an application that would not affect their credit standing. Within a few minutes of submitting your application, expect to receive multiple personalized offers from lenders. It’s now up to you to pick and choose which offers best meets your needs.

The way Acorn Finance works is that it partners with reputable and top-rated lenders in order to increase the competitiveness of rates and help borrowers secure rates within their means. While most personal loans offer repayment terms of two to seven years, you can find terms of up to twelve years offered through Acorn Finance.

With Acorn Finance, your personal loan will always be on your terms. Visit Acorn Finance to learn more or apply directly below!

Are You A Contractor? Stop Thinking & Start Doing with Acorn Finance.

Offer customers the ability to finance their dreams with zero dealer fees.

Upgrade Personal Loan FAQs

Learn more about how Upgrade personal loans might work for your home improvement needs.

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What credit score do you need for Upgrade?

Every financial institution has their own lending requirements such as the desired credit rating. In order to receive funds from Upgrade, the lender likes to see a minimum of a 560 score. This is a very generous credit score threshold that should make funds accessible to most borrowers despite their lower credit score. Of course, the interest rate that you receive will be affected by your credit score at the time of your application, so it always pays to improve your score as much as possible before pursuing financing.

At Upgrade, the estimated APR ranges from 6.94% to 35.97% with loan amounts from $1,000 to 50,000.

How easy is it to get an Upgrade loan?

Upgrade’s mission is to make access to financial tools such as credit cards and loans more accessible to the majority of people. One of the ways they accomplish this is by making their personal loans very easy to qualify for and maintain.

The minimum credit score in order to apply for and receive financing from Upgrade is 560. This is a very low credit score threshold and makes Upgrade a great option for those who cannot receive financing somewhere else. In addition, funds can be received as quickly as within 1 business day, and co-borrowers can be used to help you qualify for the loan you need. This makes getting an Upgrade loan very quick and easy.

In addition, Upgrade is rated 5 stars by NerdWallet and is our pick for their credit-building tools.

Does an Upgrade loan affect credit score?

Taking out a loan with Upgrade (or any lender) can affect your credit score. However, this effect on your credit can be either good or bad. Your credit score can be negatively impacted if you default on your loan, or if you frequently miss or submit late payments. On the other hand, your credit score can increase if you always make sure to pay your monthly payments on time and maintain your account in good standing.

If you are planning any other major purchases, such as taking out a mortgage or financing a vehicle, you may need to wait a short period of time after initiating a home improvement loan with Upgrade, as there can sometimes be an initial hit to your credit from opening a new account. Likewise, you may want to avoid applying for multiple types of financing at once to avoid the ding to your score from many hard inquiries.

Does Upgrade require proof of income?

Upgrade personal loans can come with low fixed rates, affordable monthly payments, and no prepayment fees. Like any lender, Upgrade may require you to submit documentation proving your income and identity. If you do not have sufficient or adequate income to qualify, you can apply for your personal loan with a co-borrower who does. Income verification typically works through the request of documents like pay stubs, bank statements, tax returns, or W-2 forms.

How does Upgrade verify my income?

In the FAQ section of Upgrade’s help desk, the lender states that they may request “the name of your employer, the telephone number, and your date of hire”. Additionally, they may also request “income documents in relation to your employment”. Income verification typically works through the request of documents like pay stubs, bank statements, tax returns, or W-2 forms.

This income verification process should take just a few business days to complete, and you can receive your funds as soon as 1 business day after loan approval.

What can you use a home improvement loan for?

A home improvement loan can be used for any remodeling or renovation project you would like, especially if it is structured as a personal loan. Some loans such as the FHA 203(k) do slap borrowers with a list of complicated restrictions, but personal loans through online lenders like Upgrade eliminate this problem.
Home improvement loans allow you to complete various projects that may increase the property value of your home, improve energy efficiency and reduce utility costs, tackle home repairs, or simply improve the look and feel of your home.

Upgrade home improvement loans can be used for any type of cosmetic upgrade, home renovation, or structural repair. They can even be used for purchasing energy efficient appliances or painting your home. They can be used to rehab a new property, renovate an existing one, or restore your home after a natural disaster. If you can get a personal loan for home improvements, you have plenty of options when it comes to how you spend it. Everything from a new roof to a new kitchen can be bought and paid for with the services of home improvement loans like Upgrade personal loans.

How big of a home improvement loan should I get?

The costs of remodeling projects can vary widely depending on the types of materials used, the size of your home, the contractor you select, and the area that you live in. In addition, even the amount that you are quoted can change rapidly once the project is underway. For this reason, it is always a good idea to add a little bit of cushion into any home improvement or remodeling project. This can help ensure that you are covered in the event of any unexpected expenses or increased material costs.

For example, if you have been quoted $17,900 for a flooring project, you may want to take out a loan for $20,000 to give yourself some extra room to work with. Get quotes from a few different providers in your area, or thoroughly research material costs if you will be working on your home as a DIY project, before committing to an exact loan amount. This is one disadvantage of using a personal loan for home remodeling projects as opposed to the flexible terms and open access to funds of a HELOC.

Is an Upgrade loan the best way to finance a home improvement project?

Personal loans, such as the kind offered through online lenders like Upgrade, are an extremely popular way to finance a home improvement project. Unlike other types of financing, personal loans are easily accessible and offer hassle-free access to funds. You will not find the same strict requirements and restrictions of other types of loans such as the FHA 203(K) home improvement loan. In addition, personal loans often have much lower rates than credit cards and lines of credit. Upgrade personal loans allow you to borrow up to $50,000 and benefit from rates as low as 5.94%, depending on credit score.

However, some personal loans can have higher interest rates and lower borrowing limits than other types of loans. And many homeowners prefer to use a HELOC (or Home Equity Line of Credit) in order to finance their home improvement projects because of the flexibility offered through having open access to credit. The use of a credit card or line of credit allows borrowers access to funds that can be used again and again, a very convenient and even necessary means of financing if you have multiple projects to work on.

In short, if you are planning a minor or major remodeling project, you may want to research all of the different kinds of home improvement loans that are out there in order to ensure you find the best one for you and your project. The best type of financing for your home improvement project will be the one that best fits your own unique personal needs.

How can I increase my chances of getting approved for a loan?

Since lenders look at your entire financial situation to evaluate your creditworthiness, having a solid income and employment history is one of the best ways to ensure your loan approval.

To increase your chances of getting approved for a loan, you can also focus on increasing your credit score. This can be done by: paying off your debts, removing any inaccurate information from your credit reports, asking your creditors for late payments and other negative marks to be removed early, and requesting credit line increases to improve your credit utilization ratio.

Some types of financial institutions are also known for being more lenient than others. If you have any concerns about your chances of loan approval, consider using an alternative lender like an online lender or local credit union for your financing needs. You can also consider using a cosigner or coborrower (who has better credit than yours) to help you qualify for your loan.

Lastly, having documentation that clearly supports your financial information and making sure that this paperwork is ready to be submitted will help your loan application process go much smoother.

What is best way to compare loans?

In order to get a better idea of which loan will be right for you, it often pays to get prequalified – a quick and easy process that doesn’t affect your credit score. Borrowers can receive loan offers within minutes with online prequalification. You can also read reviews of different lenders and loan companies to compare the details of each type of loan program.

What should buyers look at when comparing loans?

It is very important when applying for a loan to compare the different loan programs available in order to make sure you are getting the best possible deal. When comparing loans, buyers should look at a few different factors including the loan terms, repayment period, any late fees and other penalties, origination fees, interest rate, and more.

What factors do lenders generally use in their loan-making decision?

To make a loan decision, lenders look at a variety of factors beyond just the applicant’s credit score. Often, the applicant’s entire credit report is reviewed, as is their employment history, current income, and debt-to-income ratio. Financial institutions review all of these things in order to determine whether or not a particular applicant is considered a credit risk. Some lenders are more lenient than others, with credit unions and online lenders known for their less stringent application requirements. Applicants who are having trouble qualifying for a loan can also consider applying with the help of a cosigner or coborrower with better credit and income.

How long does Upgrade take to approve a loan?

Most online lenders are capable of approving and even funding your loan within just a few short business days, and Upgrade is no exception. In contrast to loan applications through traditional banks, online lenders like Upgrade often have a faster and easier underwriting process, resulting in quicker access to your much-needed funds.

Generally, you can expect your Upgrade loan to be approved within 1-4 business days depending on the circumstances. The more straightforward your application is, the faster you can expect your loan to be approved. Submitting complete and thorough documentation can help as well.

According to Upgrade’s website, funds will be sent to your bank account within 1 business day after approval. When your funds are made available to spend will depend on your own personal bank and how quickly they process the transaction. If you are using your Upgrade loan for debt consolidation, you can expect the process to take up to 2 weeks to pay off your creditors.

Does Upgrade do a hard pull?

Like most lenders, Upgrade will run a “hard inquiry” on your credit as a part of the loan application process. On the other hand, getting prequalified and checking what rate you may qualify for will result in a soft inquiry only, which doesn’t impact your credit score.

What documents does Upgrade require?

Upgrade requires borrowers to submit documentation supporting their financial information.

When applying for a loan with Upgrade, you should be ready to submit the following documents: Personal identification, proof of employment, and proof of income such as a paystub, bank statement, or W2. Upgrade may request additional documents at any time.

Upgrade will keep you updated throughout the application process, or you can check your account To-Do List to view any document requests.

Can I pay my Upgrade loan off early?

Most types of loans can be paid off early without prepayment penalties. Some lenders do charge fees for paying off the balance in full before the end of the loan term. Upgrade does not charge any prepayment fees or penalties. This means you can pay off your loan in full at any time. You can also schedule extra payments including principal-only payments. By paying off your loan early, you may be able to save money in interest, making it a wise financial choice.

What are the advantages of getting a loan from Upgrade?

Personal loans typically have flexible loan terms, are available in amounts of up to $100,000, come with little to no restrictions, and can give you access to the funds you need in as little as 1-7 business days.

Getting a loan from Upgrade has all of these advantages as well as lenient application requirements when compared to other lenders. Upgrade offers applicants loans in amounts ranging from $1,000 to $50,000 with competitive interest rates, loan terms ranging from 3-7 years, and low origination fees. Best of all, Upgrade considers applicants with credit scores as low as 560 and no minimum income is required. All of these factors make Upgrade a great choice for your personal loan and other financial needs.

Is getting a loan from Upgrade worth it?

Taking out a personal loan, especially from a reputable online lender like Upgrade, can be well worth it. Personal loans can be used for a variety of personal financial needs and goals with several perks when compared to using credit cards, such as lower interest rates. Consumers often use personal loans for debt consolidation which is an even smarter financial choice.

Whether you need a personal loan to pay for a wedding, vacation, child’s education, or unexpected medical bill – using an online lender like Upgrade can be a great way to get access to the funds you need with little to no hassle.

Apply online today and see what kind of loan offer you can get pre-qualified for!

“The process couldn’t have been any easier. I filled out a short form that took me less than 2 minutes and within seconds I got multiple offers from lenders.”


– Mike T. (TN)

“It was important to me that I could review my offers without any impact to my credit score, before deciding on the best loan option.”


– Carol R (FL)

“I like the easy online and 100% paperless experience of Acorn Finance. I received my money two days after completing my application.”


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