Best of

Lenders That Accept Personal Loan Co-Signers

Amrita JayakumarJuly 18, 2019

At NerdWallet, we strive to help you make financial decisions with confidence. To do this, many or all of the products featured here are from our partners. However, this doesn’t influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own.

With a co-sign personal loan, you add a second borrower with stronger credit. You're both responsible for paying back the loan.

Our picks for

Online lenders that allow co-signers

Online lenders are a convenient — and often the fastest — option for personal loans, and many allow borrowers to add a co-signer.

FreedomPlus

on FreedomPlus's website

on FreedomPlus's website

Min. Credit Score

640

Est. APR

5.99-29.99%

Loan Amount

$7,500-$40,000

Pros

  • Low starting rates.
  • Co-sign option.
  • Directly pays creditors for debt consolidation loans.

Cons

  • May charge origination fee.
  • Minimum loan amount of $7,500.
Read full review

Qualifications

  • Minimum credit score of 640.
  • At least $40,000 in annual income.
  • Debt-to-income ratio of less than 40%. Average borrowers have a DTI of 20%.

Available Term Lengths

  • 2 to 5 years

Fees

  • Origination fee: 0.0% - 5.0%.
  • Late fee: $15 or 5% of amount due, whichever is greater.
  • Unsuccessful payment fee: $15.

Disclaimer: All loans available through FreedomPlus.com are made by Cross River Bank, a New Jersey State Chartered Commercial Bank, Member FDIC, Equal Housing Lender. All loan and rate terms are subject to eligibility restrictions, application review, credit score, loan amount, loan term, lender approval, and credit usage and history. Eligibility for a loan is not guaranteed. Loans are not available to residents of all states – please call a FreedomPlus representative for further details. The following limitations, in addition to others, shall apply: FreedomPlus does not arrange loans in: (i) Arizona under $10,500; (ii) Massachusetts under $6,500, (iii) Ohio under $5,500, and (iv) Georgia under $3,500. Repayment periods range from 24 to 60 months. The range of APRs on loans made available through FreedomPlus is 5.99% to a maximum of 29.99%. APR. The APR calculation includes all applicable fees, including the loan origination fee. For Example, a four year $20,000 loan with an interest rate of 15.49% and corresponding APR of 18.34% would have an estimated monthly payment of $561.60 and a total cost payable of $7,948.13. To qualify for a 5.99% APR loan, a borrower will need excellent credit on a loan for an amount less than $12,000.00, and with a term equal to 24 months. Adding a co-borrower with sufficient income; using at least eighty-five percent (85%) of the loan proceeds to directly pay off qualifying existing debt; or showing proof of sufficient retirement savings, could help you also qualify for the lowest rate available.

Laurel Road Personal Loan

on Laurel Road's website

Min. Credit Score

700

Est. APR

8.01-16.30%

Loan Amount

$1,000-$45,000

Pros

  • No origination or prepayment fees.
  • Co-sign option.
  • Autopay discounts.

Cons

  • Charges late fees.
  • Lacks flexible payment options.
Read full review

Qualifications

  • Minimum credit score: 700.
  • Minimum income: None specified.
  • Debt-to-income ratio: Not disclosed.

Available Term Lengths

  • 3 to 5 years

Fees

  • Origination fee: None.
  • Prepayment fees: None.
  • Late fees: 5% or $28, whichever is less.
Lending Club

on Lending Club's website

on Lending Club's website

Min. Credit Score

600

Est. APR

6.95-35.89%

Loan Amount

$1,000-$40,000

Pros

  • Offers a loan option with direct payment to creditors.
  • Co-sign option.
  • Offers hardship plan.

Cons

  • Charges origination and late fees.
  • No rate discount for autopayments.
Read full review

Qualifications

  • Minimum credit score of 600.
  • Minimum credit history of 3 years.
  • Debt-to-income ratio of less than 40% for single applications, 35% for joint applicants.

Available Term Lengths

  • 3 to 5 years

Fees

  • Origination fee: 1% - 6%.
  • Late fee: Greater of $15 or 5% of payment after 15-day grace period.
  • Check processing fee: $7.

Disclaimer: *All loans made by WebBank, Member FDIC. Your actual rate depends upon credit score, loan amount, loan term, and credit usage & history. The APR ranges from 6.95% to 35.89%. The origination fee ranges from 1% to 6% of the original principal balance and is deducted from your loan proceeds. For example, you could receive a loan of $6,000 with an interest rate of 7.99% and a 5.00% origination fee of $300 for an APR of 11.51%. In this example, you will receive $5,700 and will make 36 monthly payments of $187.99. The total amount repayable will be $6,767.64. Your APR will be determined based on your credit at the time of application. The average origination fee is 5.49% as of Q1 2017. In Georgia, the minimum loan amount is $3,025. In Massachusetts, the minimum loan amount is $6,025 if your APR is greater than 12%. There is no down payment and there is never a prepayment penalty. Closing of your loan is contingent upon your agreement of all the required agreements and disclosures on the www.lendingclub.com website. All loans via LendingClub have a minimum repayment term of 36 months. Borrower must be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident or be in the United States on a valid long term visa and at least 18 years old. Valid bank account and Social Security number are required. Equal Housing Lender. All loans are subject to credit approval. LendingClub’s physical address is: 595 Market St suite 200 San Francisco Ca 94105. **Based on approximately 60% of borrowers who received offers through LendingClub’s marketing partners between January 1, 2018 to July 20, 2018. The time it will take to fund your loan may vary.

Lightstream

on LightStream's website

on LightStream's website

Min. Credit Score

660

Est. APR

3.99-16.99%

Loan Amount

$5,000-$100,000

Pros

  • No fees.
  • Co-sign option.
  • Low starting rates.

Cons

  • Does not offer pre-qualification on its website.
  • Requires several years of credit history.
Read full review

Qualifications

  • Minimum credit score of 660.
  • No minimum income specified.
  • Maximum debt-to-income ratio varies depending on loan purpose.

Available Term Lengths

  • 2 to 7 years

Fees

  • Origination fee: None.
  • Late fee: None.

Disclaimer: Your loan terms are not guaranteed and may vary based loan purpose, length of loan, loan amount, credit history and payment method (AutoPay or Invoice). Rate quote includes AutoPay discount. AutoPay discount is only available when selected prior to loan funding. To obtain a loan, you must complete an application on LightStream.com which may affect your credit score. You may be required to verify income, identity and other stated application information. Payment example: Monthly payments for a $5,000 loan at 12.8% APR with a term of 3 years would result in 36 monthly payments of $168. Some additional conditions and limitations apply. Advertised rates and terms are subject to change without notice. SunTrust Bank is an Equal Housing Lender. ©2019 SunTrust Banks, Inc. All rights reserved. SUNTRUST, LIGHTSTREAM and the LightStream logo are trademarks of SunTrust Banks, Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. Lending services provided by SunTrust Bank.

OneMain

on OneMain Financial's website

on OneMain Financial's website

Min. Credit Score

None

Est. APR

18.00-35.99%

Loan Amount

$1,500-$20,000

Pros

  • Fast funding.
  • Co-sign option.
  • Free credit score access.

Cons

  • May charge origination fee.
  • High rates.
Read full review

Qualifications

  • Minimum credit score: None, average is 600 to 650.
  • Minimum credit history: Not provided.
  • Minimum annual income: None; average is $49,000.

Available Term Lengths

  • 2 to 5 years

Fees

  • Origination fee: Varies by state.

Disclaimer: Not all applicants will qualify for larger loan amounts or most favorable loan terms. Loan approval and actual loan terms depend on your ability to meet our credit standards (including a responsible credit history, sufficient income after monthly expenses, and availability of collateral). Larger loan amounts require a first lien on a motor vehicle no more than ten years old, that meets our value requirements, titled in your name with valid insurance. Maximum annual percentage rate (APR) is 35.99%, subject to state restrictions. APRs are generally higher on loans not secured by a vehicle. The lowest APR shown represents the 10% of loans with the most favorable APR. Monthly payment amounts shown are calculated using the APR for the 10% of loans with the most favorable APR. Active duty military, their spouse or dependents covered under the Military Lending Act may not pledge any vehicle as collateral for a loan. OneMain loan proceeds cannot be used for postsecondary educational expenses as defined by the CFPB’s Regulation Z, such as college, university or vocational expenses; for any business or commercial purpose; to purchase securities; or for gambling or illegal purposes. Borrowers in these states are subject to these minimum loan sizes: Alabama: $2,100. California: $3,000. Georgia: Unless you are a present customer, $3,100 minimum loan amount. Ohio: $2,000. Virginia: $2,600. Borrowers (other than present customers) in these states are subject to these maximum unsecured loan sizes: Florida: $8,000. Iowa: $8,500. Maine: $7,000. Mississippi: $7,500. North Carolina: $7,500. New York: $20,000. Texas: $8,000. West Virginia: $7,500. An unsecured loan is a loan which does not require you to provide collateral (such as a motor vehicle) to the lender.

Upgrade

on Upgrade's website

on Upgrade's website

Min. Credit Score

620

Est. APR

7.99-35.89%

Loan Amount

$1,000-$50,000

Pros

  • Credit health tools.
  • Hardship plans.
  • Fast funding.

Cons

  • Origination and late fees.
  • Does not offer direct payment to creditors for debt consolidation loans.
Read full review

Qualifications

  • Minimum credit score: 620.
  • Minimum annual income: None, but most applicants have more than $30,000.
  • Minimum monthly free cash flow: $800.
  • Maximum debt-to-income ratio: 60%.
  • Unavailable to borrowers in: Colorado, Connecticut, Iowa, Maryland, Vermont or West Virginia.

Available Term Lengths

  • 3 to 5 years

Fees

  • Origination fee: 1.5% - 6%.

Disclaimer: Your loan terms are not guaranteed and are subject to our verification and review process. You may be asked to provide additional documents to enable us to verify your income and your identity. This rate includes an Autopay APR reduction of 0.5%. By enrolling in Autopay your payments will be automatically deducted from your bank account. Selecting Autopay is optional. Annual Percentage Rate is inclusive of a loan origination fee, which is deducted from the loan proceeds. Late payments or subsequent charges and fees may increase the cost of your fixed rate loan. All loans made by WebBank, member FDIC. Please refer to Upgrade's Terms of Use and Borrower Agreement for all terms, conditions and requirements.

Summary of Lenders That Accept Personal Loan Co-Signers

LenderBest ForEst. APRMin. Credit ScoreLearn More
FreedomPlus

FreedomPlus

on FreedomPlus's website

Online lenders that allow co-signers

5.99-29.99%

640

on FreedomPlus's website

Laurel Road Personal Loan

Laurel Road Personal Loan

on Laurel Road's website

Online lenders that allow co-signers

8.01-16.30%

700

on Laurel Road's website

Lending Club

LendingClub

on Lending Club's website

Online lenders that allow co-signers

6.95-35.89%

600

on Lending Club's website

Lightstream

LightStream

on LightStream's website

Online lenders that allow co-signers

3.99-16.99%

660

on LightStream's website

OneMain

OneMain Financial

on OneMain Financial's website

Online lenders that allow co-signers

18.00-35.99%

None

on OneMain Financial's website

Upgrade

Upgrade

on Upgrade's website

Online lenders that allow co-signers

7.99-35.89%

620

on Upgrade's website

LenderBest ForEst. APRMin. Credit ScoreLearn More
FreedomPlus

FreedomPlus

on FreedomPlus's website

Online lenders that allow co-signers

5.99-29.99%

640

on FreedomPlus's website

Laurel Road Personal Loan

Laurel Road Personal Loan

on Laurel Road's website

Online lenders that allow co-signers

8.01-16.30%

700

on Laurel Road's website

Lending Club

LendingClub

on Lending Club's website

Online lenders that allow co-signers

6.95-35.89%

600

on Lending Club's website

Lightstream

LightStream

on LightStream's website

Online lenders that allow co-signers

3.99-16.99%

660

on LightStream's website

OneMain

OneMain Financial

on OneMain Financial's website

Online lenders that allow co-signers

18.00-35.99%

None

on OneMain Financial's website

Upgrade

Upgrade

on Upgrade's website

Online lenders that allow co-signers

7.99-35.89%

620

on Upgrade's website

» MORE: Personal loans for bad credit

Credit unions and banks that allow co-signers

Credit unions are a good first stop for any type of personal loan, because they have low interest rates and often work with borrowers to make a loan affordable, even if the borrower has bad credit. Most credit unions allow co-signers on unsecured loans (also called signature loans) and accept online applications. The maximum APR that federal credit unions can charge is 18%.

Many major banks no longer offer personal loans, but Wells Fargo and Citibank still do and both have the option of adding a co-signer. You need to be an existing customer to apply, and you must visit a Wells Fargo or Citibank branch to complete the paperwork for the loan.

» MORE: NerdWallet's picks for best credit unions

How a co-signer can help

For those with bad credit, the benefits of a co-signer can be significant. You may qualify for a loan you wouldn’t get on your own, and your interest rate and origination fee can be lower.

How much your rate falls depends on factors such as:

  • The co-signer’s credit score.
  • Both your credit histories.
  • Your combined debt-to-income ratio.
  • The lender’s underwriting criteria.

In an example of a real loan provided by FreedomPlus, a borrower with a FICO score of 630 and annual income of $30,000 was approved for a three-year, $10,000 loan with an interest rate of 18.49%. After adding a co-signer with a 720 credit score and annual income of $70,000, the interest rate dropped 10 percentage points.

The borrower saved more than $1,700 over the life of the loan with the addition of a co-signer. (This pricing example doesn't include fees.)

Is a co-signer the right option?

There are benefits and risks to co-signing a loan. Whether you’re the borrower or co-signer, understand co-signer responsibilities before you consider a joint personal loan.

You can check your interest rate without affecting either your credit or the co-signer’s credit during pre-qualification, but all lenders conduct a hard inquiry on both applicants before they issue the loan. A hard credit check can temporarily lower your credit score a few points.

Lenders report positive and negative payment information to the credit bureaus, which has an impact on both your credit and the co-signer’s.

As with all loans, the credit of both parties will improve with timely payments or suffer because of missed payments. Lenders aren’t required to keep co-signers in the loop, so it’s usually up to the co-signer to ensure that the borrower is making regular payments.

Next steps: Check rates on loans

First, pre-qualify with multiple lenders to see if you're approved for a loan on your own and, if so, at what rate. If you don’t qualify, or if your rate is high, consider a co-signer loan.

Last updated on July 18, 2019

Methodology

NerdWallet's ratings for personal loans award points to lenders that offer consumer-friendly features, including soft credit checks, no fees, transparency of loan rates and terms, flexible payment options, accessible customer service, reporting of payments to credit bureaus and financial education. We also consider the number of complaints filed with agencies like the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. This methodology applies only to lenders that cap interest rates at 36%, the maximum rate financial experts and consumer advocates agree is the acceptable limit for a loan to be affordable. NerdWallet does not receive compensation of any sort for our reviews.

To recap our selections...

NerdWallet's Lenders That Accept Personal Loan Co-Signers