How to Get a Personal Loan With Bad Credit
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Can You Get A Personal Loan With Bad Credit?
A bad credit personal loan is a loan that is either designed for applicants with poor credit or is lenient enough to accommodate them. Each lender sets their own credit score thresholds as well as income requirements and other loan qualifications that applicants must meet in order to be approved for a personal loan through that lender.
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How To Apply For How to Get a Personal Loan With Bad Credit
Fill out an easy online form to check for pre-qualified offers with no impact to your credit score
Compare terms and payment options to select the offer that’s best for you
Complete your application on your selected lender’s website
After your loan is approved, your funds should arrive within 1-2 business days2
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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Learn More About How to Get a Personal Loan With Bad Credit
Whenever possible, you should take steps to improve your credit before applying for a personal loan. However, you are not completely out of luck if you apply for a loan with bad credit.
Read more - FAQ
What is a bad credit personal loan?
How bad credit affects a personal loan application
Should you take out a personal loan if you have bad credit?
On the other hand, if you know that you have been financially irresponsible in the past, it may not be a good idea to take on any more debt. Only take on a personal loan (or any other form financing) if you are positive you will be able to meet the minimum monthly payments. If your bad credit is a result of significant financial mismanagement, you may want to consider another option for getting the funds you need – such as borrowing from friends or family. Otherwise, you could be making a bad situation worse, resulting in an even lower credit score.
Can I qualify for a personal loan with bad credit?
Depending on just how low your credit score is, you may need to find a lender who will allow you to apply for your loan using a cosigner. When you use a cosigner on your application, their credit score and financial situation is considered instead of yours, resulting in a more favorable loan decision and better interest rates than you could receive on your own.
Types of bad credit loans
Secured personal loans are a common but risky option for borrowers with poor or no credit. A personal loan may be secured with an asset belonging to the applicant such as a savings account, CD, or vehicle title. In the event that the borrower fails to repay the loan, the lender will take permanent possession of this collateral. For this reason, secured personal loans should be pursued with caution. Applicants should make sure they can expect to fully repay the loan.
Payday loans are another popular loan option for consumers with bad credit. Like secured loans and car title loans, payday loans carry a significant risk of a different kind. While payday loans are not secured by any asset that can be seized, they do run a very high risk of getting the borrower stuck in a continuous cycle of borrowing that can be difficult to get out of. In fact, approximately 80% of payday loans are rolled over or reborrowed within 30 days of the loan.
Lastly, personal loans from lenders who accept applicants with bad credit are another option, and probably the best one if you can find a lender who will approve your application.
How much can I borrow with bad credit?
For example, the online lender LightStream offers personal loans of amounts up to $100,000, but applicants are required to provide proof of an annual income of at least $50,000 and have a minimum credit score of 660 or higher. Just because you meet their credit score and minimum income requirement does not mean you will qualify for a $100,000 loan. Each applicant is evaluated on an individual basis.
On the other hand, the online lender Upgrade does not have a minimum income requirement and can approve applicants with credit scores as low as 560, but their loan amounts are capped at $50,000. Again, just because they offer loans up to $50,000 does not mean you will qualify simply because you meet their requirements.
As you can see, the amount you can expect to borrow with bad credit can vary from lender to lender, but in general you may be limited to lower loan amounts than if your credit score was higher. To determine how much you qualify for you should check offers or get pre qualified.
How to get a secured personal loan with bad credit
Examples of collateral include a savings account, CD, or vehicle title. Secured personal loans can be very risky for borrowers since your personal asset is on the line. Only consider a secured personal loan if you are very sure you can afford to repay the loan over time.
How to get an unsecured personal loan with bad credit
Many applicants still have success applying for a personal loan with a lender that is known for having lenient credit score requirements, like the online lender Upgrade who can approve applicants with credit scores as low as 560. Banks and credit unions may also have specialized loans for those with poor credit, however you can expect to pay a much higher interest rate for the privilege of borrowing funds from that lender.
In addition, most lenders will allow applicants with bad credit to apply using a cosigner who will then be on the hook in the event of a default on repayment of the loan. When a borrower applies with a cosigner, the financial information and credit score of the cosigner is used instead of the original applicant. This not only increases the chances of approval, but also gives the borrower access to the best possible interest rates they would not otherwise qualify for. Most of the time, a cosigner is a friend or family member, but it can be difficult to find someone willing to sign on the dotted line for someone else’s personal loan.
What are the risks of a bad credit loan?
One of the biggest risks you take on is overpaying in interest or falling victim to other predatory lending practices. The lower your credit score is, the higher your interest rate will be. When you are paying off a personal loan, the interest rate you receive is going to make a significant impact on the total amount you pay over the lifetime of the loan. Be sure to thoroughly review all your loan terms and shop around or get prequalified before applying for a bad credit loan. Never accept an interest rate or other terms that seem predatory or agree to pay upfront in order to access lending services.
In other cases, loans for bad credit are funded as secured loans like car title loans that are risky because you are using collateral to back up your loan. In the event of defaulting on a secured loan, the lender can take permanent possession of your asset. Use caution when applying for this type of personal loan in order to avoid negative consequences.
If your poor credit is due to mismanaged finances in the past, taking on another loan can result in the failure to repay your debts and lead to an even worse credit score. Make sure that you can truly afford to pay off your loan and that you will be able to make your minimum payments.
What can you do if you’re denied a personal loan due to bad credit?
You can try applying through a different lender who has different credit requirements and may be more likely to approve your application. Each lender has their own set of qualifications and where one lender may deny you for financing, another may be happy to give you the funds.
Alternatively, consider using a cosigner to apply again. When you use a cosigner on your application you are relying on the credit score and other qualifications of the cosigner instead of your own. Not every lender offers applicants the ability to use a cosigner, but if you can find one that does it can be a great way to receive a personal loan despite your bad credit.
If you have credit challenges or are denied a loan due to bad credit you should work on improving your credit score.
Where to get a loan with bad credit
How to choose the best bad credit loan company
Always make sure that your lender is a legitimate financial institution, especially when applying online where scams can be common, and your personal information may be at risk.
At Acorn Finance you can check offers from top national lenders that can help a wide variety of individuals with varying credit scores. While you may have less options than a borrower with good credit, it’s still important to shop and compare offers. If time allows you should improve your credit score before applying for a loan.
Calculate bad-credit loan payments
The best bad credit loan lenders
Steps to apply for a bad credit personal loan
#1. Check your credit score
Before applying for a loan you should examine your credit report and check your credit score. This can help you determine what you might qualify for. It can also help you identify any potential ways to improve your credit score.
#2. Check offers
Whether you choose to use your local bank or credit union or an online lender, you should check offers. You may be asked to submit documentation such as proof of income, identification, and more to move forward with the offer. It can help the process go smoother by gathering these documents before checking offers. You will also want to make sure the information you submit is accurate. Reviewing documents such as proof of income beforehand can help ensure the information you submit is accurate and can be proven.
#3. Apply for a loan
You will need to apply either online or in person and be prepared to submit supporting documentation of everything from your identity to your income and current employment. The underwriting process can take anywhere from minutes to a few business days, and you can expect for loan origination and funding to take anywhere from 1 to 10 business days depending on your lender.
If you have bad credit you may need to do a little bit of additional research first in order to find a lender who is more likely to approve your application despite your poor credit score. Many lenders publish their lending requirements online, making it easy to know where you should apply and where you shouldn’t waste your time. Assuming that you know your credit score, it should be very clear which lenders are viable options for you and which are not.
Online personal loans for bad credit
There are a number of sources for online personal loans for those with bad credit. Some of our favorite online lenders with lenient credit score requirements include Upgrade, Prosper, BestEgg, OneMain Financial, and LendingPoint. These lenders can offer fast funding, competitive interest rates, and trustworthy loan funding to applicants with less-than-perfect credit scores. Upgrade in particular allows applicants with credit scores as low as 560 to be considered for loan approval, and also allows borrowers to apply with a cosigner.
In person lenders for bad credit personal loans
In a pinch, borrowers with extremely poor credit can also pursue a secured loan like a car title loan which uses your vehicle as collateral, or a payday loan which does not require a credit check for approval. Either of these options carry their own risks but are viable options for those in need of funds who are having trouble getting approved elsewhere.
Where to get a small person loan with bad credit
Both online lenders and credit unions are more likely to offer access to loans of smaller amounts than traditional banks. For example, Upgrade originates loans for amounts as little as $1,000 while Prosper loan amounts start at just $2,000.
Applying for a loan through your local credit union allows you to take advantage of low rates, personalized service, beneficial loan terms, and flexible underwriting. Credit unions are not operated in the same way as banks are. Instead of being focused on profits, they are focused on their members who are also part-owners of a not-for-profit organization.
Many online lenders also offer lenient loan requirements and flexible loan terms to meet a variety of needs and accommodate for a variety of financial situations. Those with poor credit and/or low income will have better luck with these sources of lending than with a traditional bank. Applicants who have failed to get loan approval with a bank should try an online lender.
While some lenders can offer personal loans if you have bad credit you should seriously consider improving your credit score before applying for a loan. Bad credit loans can be expensive. If you fall behind on payments you risk worsening your credit score. It may be hard to recover or get a second chance if your credit score gets too low.
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