BEST OF

Unsecured Personal Loans: Borrow With No Collateral

Unsecured loans don’t require collateral and can be used for just about any purpose. Compare loans from multiple lenders that offer unsecured personal loans.

Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This may influence which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own. Here is a list of our partners and here's how we make money.

An unsecured loan is a loan that doesn’t require you to pledge an asset, such as a house or car, as collateral. Instead, approval is based primarily on your credit score and finances.

Unsecured loans can be used for almost any purpose. If you’re considering an unsecured personal loan, compare potentially cheaper options, and make sure the monthly payments don’t stress your budget.

Why trust NerdWallet? The personal loans editorial team at NerdWallet has objectively reviewed and compared more than 35 financial institutions to find the best unsecured personal loans. Our picks feature a variety of loan purposes, loan amounts and credit requirements. See our full methodology at the bottom of this page.

Unsecured Personal Loans: Borrow With No Collateral

Our pick for

Debt consolidation loans

These lenders offer consumer-friendly features for those looking to combine debts.

Happy Money
Get rate

on Happy Money (Formerly Payoff)'s website

Happy Money (Formerly Payoff)

4.5

NerdWallet rating 
Happy Money

Est. APR

5.99-24.99%

Loan amount

$5,000-$40,000

Min. credit score

600
Get rate

on Happy Money (Formerly Payoff)'s website


Min. credit score

600

Key facts

Happy Money offers loans and ongoing support to help fair- and good-credit borrowers consolidate credit card debt.

Pros

  • Competitive rates among online lenders.

  • Offers direct payment to creditors.

  • Reports payments to all three major credit bureaus.

  • No prepayment or late fees.


Cons

  • Charges origination fee.

  • No rate discount for autopay.

  • Requires several years of credit history.


Qualifications

  • Minimum credit score: 600.

  • Minimum credit history: Three years.

  • At least two open accounts on credit report.

  • Maximum debt-to-income ratio: 50% (excluding mortgage).

  • Free cash flow: At least $1,000.

  • Zero credit delinquencies.

  • Must be able to provide income verification.

  • No bankruptcies filed within the past two years.

  • Must provide Social Security number.

Available Term Lengths

2 to 5 years

Fees

  • Origination fee: 0%-5%.

Disclaimer

This does not constitute an actual commitment to lend or an offer to extend credit. Upon submitting a loan application, you may be asked to provide additional documents to enable us to verify your income, assets, and financial condition. Your interest rate and terms for which you are approved will be shown to you as part of the online application process. Most applicants will receive a variety of loan offerings to choose from, with varying loan amounts and interest rates. Borrower subject to a loan origination fee, which is deducted from the loan proceeds. Refer to full borrower agreement for all terms, conditions and requirements.

Read Full Review
Marcus by Goldman Sachs
Get rate

on Goldman Sachs' website

Marcus by Goldman Sachs

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
Marcus by Goldman Sachs

Est. APR

6.99-24.99%

Loan amount

$3,500-$40,000

Min. credit score

730
Get rate

on Goldman Sachs' website


Min. credit score

730

Key facts

With zero fees and customizable repayment terms, Marcus offers one of the best personal loans for borrowers with good credit.

Pros

  • No fees.

  • Wide variety of repayment term options.

  • Offers 0.25 percentage point rate discount for setting up autopay.

  • Offers direct payment to creditors for debt consolidation loans.


Cons

  • No co-sign, joint or secured loan option.

Qualifications

  • Minimum credit score: 720 FICO.

  • May need to provide proof of income, including recent pay stubs or bank statements.

  • May need to provide Social Security number, Individual Tax ID number or a photo ID.

Available Term Lengths

3 to 6 years

Fees

  • Origination fee: None.

  • Late fee: None.

Disclaimer

Your loan terms are not guaranteed and are subject to our verification of your identity and credit information. Rates range from 6.99% to 24.99% APR, and loan terms range from 36 to 72 months. For NY residents, rates range from 6.99%-24.74%. Only the most creditworthy applicants qualify for the lowest rates and longest loan terms. Rates will generally be higher for longer-term loans. To obtain a loan, you must submit additional documentation including an application that may affect your credit score. The availability of a loan offer and the terms of your actual offer will vary due to a number of factors, including your loan purpose and our evaluation of your creditworthiness. Rates will vary based on many factors, such as your creditworthiness (for example, credit score and credit history) and the length of your loan (for example, rates for 36 month loans are generally lower than rates for 72 month loans). Your maximum loan amount may vary depending on your loan purpose, income and creditworthiness. Your verifiable income must support your ability to repay your loan. Marcus by Goldman Sachs is a brand of Goldman Sachs Bank USA and all loans are issued by Goldman Sachs Bank USA, Salt Lake City Branch. Applications are subject to additional terms and conditions. Receive a 0.25% APR reduction when you enroll in AutoPay. This reduction will not be applied if AutoPay is not in effect. When enrolled, a larger portion of your monthly payment will be applied to your principal loan amount and less interest will accrue on your loan, which may result in a smaller final payment. See loan agreement for details.

Read Full Review
Discover
Get rate

on Discover's website

Discover® Personal Loans

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
Discover

Est. APR

5.99-24.99%

Loan amount

$2,500-$35,000

Min. credit score

720
Get rate

on Discover's website


Min. credit score

720

Key facts

Discover personal loans can be a smart way to consolidate or refinance debt for borrowers with excellent credit.

Pros

  • No origination fee.

  • Offers direct payment to creditors with debt consolidation loans.

  • Offers mobile app to manage loan.

  • Able to fund loans within one business day.

  • Wide variety of repayment term options.

Cons

  • Charges late fee.

  • No co-signed, joint or secured loan options.

  • No rate discount for autopay.

Qualifications

  • Minimum credit score: 720; borrower average is 750.


  • Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.

  • Must be at least 18 years old.

  • Must have a minimum household income of $40,000.

Available Term Lengths

3 to 7 years

Fees

  • Origination fee: None.

  • Late fee: $39.

Disclaimer

This is not a commitment to lend from Discover Personal Loans. Your approval for a loan is determined once you apply and is based on your application information and credit history. Your APR will be between 5.99%-24.99% based upon creditworthiness at time of application for loan terms of 36-84 months. For example, if you get approved for a $15,000 loan at 10.99% APR for a term of 72 months, you'll pay just $285 per month. Our lowest rates are available to consumers with the best credit. Many factors are used to determine your rate, such as your credit history, application information and the term you select. Not all applications will be approved.

Read Full Review

Our pick for

Medical loans

An unsecured loan from these lenders can be used for dental, cosmetic and medical procedures.

BestEgg
Get rate

on Best Egg's website

Best Egg

4.5

NerdWallet rating 
BestEgg

Est. APR

7.99-35.99%

Loan amount

$2,000-$50,000

Min. credit score

600
Get rate

on Best Egg's website


Min. credit score

600

Key facts

Best Egg offers personal loans for borrowers who want to consolidate debt and need cash fast.

Pros

  • Offers wide range of loan amounts.

  • Provides secured loan option for homeowners.

  • Offers direct payment to creditors with debt consolidation loans.

Cons

  • Origination fee.

  • No rate discounts.

  • No option to choose initial payment date.

Qualifications

  • Minimum credit score: 600; borrower average is 700.

  • Minimum credit history: 3 years and 3 accounts.

  • Minimum income requirement is $3,500; borrower average is $80,000. Borrower must have enough cash flow to cover current financial obligations.

  • Maximum debt-to-income ratio: 40% or 65% including a mortgage; borrower average is 40%.

  • Employment: Must provide proof of income; part-time employees are eligible.

  • Must provide valid U.S. address and Social Security number.

Available Term Lengths

3 to 5 years

Fees

  • Origination fee: 0.99% - 8.99%.

  • Return fee: $15 if payments are not processed.

Disclaimer

Trustpilot TrustScore as of June 2020. Best Egg personal loans, including the Best Egg Secured Loan, are made by Cross River Bank, a New Jersey State Chartered Commercial Bank, Member FDIC, Equal Housing Lender or Blue Ridge Bank, a Nationally Chartered Bank, Member FDIC, Equal Housing Lender. “Best Egg” is a trademark of Marlette Holdings, Inc., a Delaware corporation. All uses of “Best Egg” refer to “the Best Egg personal loan”, “the Best Egg Secured Loan”, and/or “Best Egg on behalf of Cross River Bank or Blue Ridge Bank, as originator of the Best Egg personal loan,” as applicable. The term, amount, and APR of any loan we offer to you will depend on your credit score, income, debt payment obligations, loan amount, credit history and other factors. Your loan agreement will contain specific terms and conditions. About half of our customers get their money the next day. After successful verification, your money can be deposited in your bank account within 1-3 business days. The timing of available funds upon loan approval may vary depending upon your bank’s policies. Loan amounts range from $2,000– $50,000. Residents of Massachusetts have a minimum loan amount of $6,500 ; New Mexico and Ohio, $5,000; and Georgia, $3,000. For a second Best Egg loan, your total existing Best Egg loan balances cannot exceed $50,000. Annual Percentage Rates (APRs) range from 7.99%–35.99%. The APR is the cost of credit as a yearly rate and reflects both your interest rate and an origination fee of 0.99%–8.99% of your loan amount, which will be deducted from any loan proceeds you receive. The origination fee on a loan term 4-years or longer will be at least 4.99%. Your loan term will impact your APR, which may be higher than our lowest advertised rate.  You need a minimum 700 FICO® score and a minimum individual annual income of $100,000 to qualify for our lowest APR. To help the government fight the funding of terrorism and money laundering activities, Federal law requires all financial institutions to obtain, verify, and record information that identifies each person who opens an account. What this means for you: When you open an account, we will ask for your name, address, date of birth, and other information that will allow us to identify you. We may also ask to see your driver’s license or other identifying documents. Best Egg products are not available if you live in Iowa, Vermont, West Virginia, the District of Columbia, or U.S. Territories.

Read Full Review
Upstart
Get rate

on Upstart's website

Upstart

4.5

NerdWallet rating 
Upstart

Est. APR

5.42-35.99%

Loan amount

$1,000-$50,000

Min. credit score

None
Get rate

on Upstart's website


Min. credit score

None

Key facts

Upstart is a good option for those who have short credit histories and promising financial futures.

Pros

  • Accepts borrowers new to credit.

  • Able to fund loans within one business day.

  • Offers direct payment to creditors with some debt consolidation loans.

  • Allows borrowers to choose and change payment date.

Cons

  • Borrowers can choose from only two repayment term options.

  • Charges origination fee.

  • No mobile app to manage the loan.

Qualifications

  • Minimum credit score: None.

  • Minimum credit history: None, this lending platform accepts borrowers with credit history too limited to produce a FICO score.

  • Minimum gross income: $12,000.

  • Employment: Full-time job, full-time job offer starting in 6 months, a regular part-time job, or another source of regular income.

  • Must have U.S. residential street address where borrower resides (unless military personnel on active duty).

  • Must be at least 18 years old.

  • Valid email account required.

  • Personal bank account with U.S. routing number required.

Available Term Lengths

3 to 5 years

Fees

  • Origination fee: 0% - 8%.

  • Late fee: 5% of past due amount or $15, whichever is greater.

Disclaimer

Your loan amount will be determined based on your credit, income, and certain other information provided in your loan application. Not all applicants will qualify for the full amount. Minimum loan amounts vary by state: GA ($3,100), HI ($2,100), MA ($7,000), NM ($5,100), OH ($6,000).This offer is conditioned on final approval based on our consideration and verification of financial and non-financial information. Rate and loan amount are subject to change based upon information received in your full application. This offer may be accepted only by the person identified in this offer, who is old enough to legally enter into contract for the extension of credit, a US citizen or permanent resident, and a current resident of the US. Duplicate offers are void. Closing your loan is contingent on your meeting our eligibility requirements, our verification of your information, and your agreement to the terms and conditions on the www.upstart.com website.The full range of available rates varies by state. The average 5-year loan offered across all lenders using the Upstart platform will have an APR of 21.4% and 60 monthly payments of $24.62 per $1,000 borrowed. For example, the total cost of a $10,000 loan would be $14,775 including a $582 origination fee. APR is calculated based on 5-year rates offered in the last 1 month. There is no down payment and no prepayment penalty. Your APR will be determined based on your credit, income, and certain other information provided in your loan application. Not all applicants will be approved. If you accept your loan by 5pm EST (not including weekends or holidays), you will receive your funds the next business day. Loans used to fund education related expenses are subject to a 3 business day wait period between loan acceptance and funding in accordance with federal law.

Read Full Review

Our pick for

Home improvement loans

These lenders offer low rates for borrowers looking to make home renovations.

SoFi
Get rate

on SoFi's website

SoFi

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
SoFi

Est. APR

7.99-22.73%

Loan amount

$5,000-$100,000

Min. credit score

680
Get rate

on SoFi's website


Min. credit score

680

Key facts

SoFi offers online personal loans with consumer-friendly features for good- and excellent-credit borrowers.

Pros

  • No fees.

  • Offers co-sign loan options.

  • Offers 0.25 percentage point rate discount for setting up autopay.

  • Offers unemployment protection.

  • Provides mobile app to manage your loan.

Cons

  • No secured or joint loan option.

  • High minimum loan amount.

Qualifications

  • Must legally be an adult in your state.

  • Must be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident or visa holder.

  • Must be employed, have sufficient income or have an offer of employment to start within the next 90 days.

Available Term Lengths

2 to 7 years

Fees

  • Origination fee: None.

  • Late fee: None.

Disclaimer

Fixed rates from 7.99% APR to 22.73% APR APR reflect the 0.25% autopay discount and a 0.25% direct deposit discount. SoFi rate ranges are current as of 8/1/22 and are subject to change without notice. Not all rates and amounts available in all states. See Personal Loan eligibility details. Not all applicants qualify for the lowest rate. Lowest rates reserved for the most creditworthy borrowers. Your actual rate will be within the range of rates listed above and will depend on a variety of factors, including evaluation of your credit worthiness, income, and other factors. See APR examples and terms. The SoFi 0.25% AutoPay interest rate reduction requires you to agree to make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic monthly deduction from a savings or checking account. The benefit will discontinue and be lost for periods in which you do not pay by automatic deduction from a savings or checking account.

Read Full Review
Lightstream
Get rate

on LightStream's website

LightStream

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
Lightstream

Est. APR

4.99-19.99%

Loan amount

$5,000-$100,000

Min. credit score

660
Get rate

on LightStream's website


Min. credit score

660

Key facts

LightStream targets strong-credit borrowers with no fees and low rates that vary based on loan purpose.

Pros

  • No fees.

  • Rate discount for autopay.

  • Long repayment terms on home improvement loans.

  • Rate Beat program and Experience Guarantee.

Cons

  • No option to pre-qualify on its website.

  • Requires several years of credit history.

  • No direct payment to creditors with debt consolidation loans.

Qualifications

  • Minimum credit score: 660.

  • Several years of credit history.

  • Multiple account types within your credit history, like credit cards, a car loan or other installment loan and a mortgage.

  • Strong payment history with few or no delinquencies.

  • Investments, retirement savings or other evidence of an ability to save money.

  • Enough income to pay existing debts and a new LightStream loan.

Available Term Lengths

2 to 7 years

Fees

  • Origination fee: None.

  • Late fee: None.

Disclaimer

Rates quoted are with AutoPay. Your loan terms are not guaranteed and may vary based on loan purpose, length of loan, loan amount, credit history and payment method (AutoPay or Invoice). AutoPay discount is only available when selected prior to loan funding. Rates without AutoPay are 0.50% points higher. 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 $25,000 loan at 4.98% APR with a term of 20 years would result in 240 monthly payments of $164.71. Some additional conditions and limitations apply. Advertised rates and terms are subject to change without notice. Truist Bank is an Equal Housing Lender. © 2022 Truist Financial Corporation. Truist, LightStream, and the LightStream logo are service marks of Truist Financial Corporation. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. Lending services provided by Truist Bank.

Read Full Review
RocketLoans
See my rates

on NerdWallet's secure website

Rocket Loans

4.0

NerdWallet rating 
RocketLoans

Est. APR

5.97-29.69%

Loan amount

$2,000-$45,000

Min. credit score

640
See my rates

on NerdWallet's secure website


Min. credit score

640

Key facts

Rocket Loans offers online personal loans to borrowers with fair credit and over two years of credit history.

Pros

  • Soft credit check with pre-qualification.

  • Competitive rates among fair-credit lenders.

  • Offers a 0.3 percentage point rate discount for setting up autopay.

  • Able to fund loans the same day.

  • Offers small loans of $2,000.

Cons

  • Charges origination fee.

  • Does not offer direct payment to creditors with debt consolidation loans.

  • No option to choose or change your payment date.

  • Borrowers can choose from only two repayment term options.

  • No co-sign, joint or secured loan option.

Qualifications

  • Minimum credit score: 640; borrower average is 710.

  • Minimum credit history: Over two years.

  • Minimum annual income: $24,000; borrower average is $85,000.

  • Maximum debt-to-income ratio: 40% or 70% including mortgage; borrower average is 14%.

  • Must be at least 18 years old (19 in Alabama and Nebraska).

  • Must provide Social Security number.

Available Term Lengths

3 to 5 years

Fees

  • Origination fee: 1% to 6%.

  • Late fee: $15 after 10-day grace period.

  • Unsuccessful payment fee: $15.

Disclaimer

All personal loans are made by Cross River Bank, a New Jersey state chartered commercial bank, Member FDIC, Equal Housing Lender. All loans are unsecured, fully amortizing personal loans. Eligibility for a loan is not guaranteed. Please refer to our Disclosures and Licenses page for state required disclosures, licenses, and lending restrictions. Borrower must be a U.S. citizen or permanent U.S. resident alien at least 18 years of age (in Nebraska and Alabama a borrower must be at least 19 years of age). All loan applications are subject to credit review and approval. Offered loan terms depend upon your credit profile, requested amount, requested loan term, credit usage, credit history and other factors. Not all borrowers receive the lowest interest rate. To qualify for the lowest rate, you must have excellent credit, meet certain conditions, and select autopay. Rates and Terms are subject to change at any time without notice. Please refer to RocketLoans.com and our Terms of Use for additional terms and conditions.

Read Full Review

Our pick for

Wedding loans

An unsecured loan from one of these lenders can help cover the cost of a wedding.

Lending Club
Get rate

on LendingClub's website

LendingClub

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
Lending Club

Est. APR

6.34-35.89%

Loan amount

$1,000-$40,000

Min. credit score

600
Get rate

on LendingClub's website


Min. credit score

600

Key facts

LendingClub is a pioneer of peer-to-peer lending and a good option if you want to consolidate your debt.

Pros

  • Offers joint loan options.

  • Offers direct payment to creditors with debt consolidation loans.

  • Soft credit check with pre-qualification.

  • Option to change the payment date.

Cons

  • Borrowers can choose from two repayment term options only.

  • Charges an origination fee.

Qualifications

  • Minimum credit score: 600.

  • Maximum DTI: 60%; 40% for joint applicants.

  • Minimum credit history: More than 18 months.

  • Minimum number of accounts on credit report: Two revolving accounts.

  • Monthly income after paying other debts and living expenses should be enough to cover the new personal loan payments.

Available Term Lengths

3 to 5 years

Fees

  • Origination fee: 2% to 6%.

  • Late fee: Greater of $15 or 5% of payment after 15-day grace period.

Disclaimer

A representative example of loan payment terms is as follows: you receive a loan of $13,411 for a term of 36 months, with an interest rate of 12.16% and a 5.30% origination fee of $711, for an APR of 15.99%. In this example, you will receive $12,700 and will make 36 monthly payments of $446.46. Loan amounts range from $1,000 to $40,000 and loan term lengths are 36 months or 60 months. Some amounts and term lengths may be unavailable in certain states. APR ranges from 7.04% to 35.89% and is determined at the time of application. Origination fee ranges from 3% to 6% of the loan amount. Lowest APR is available to borrowers with excellent credit. Advertised rates and fees are valid as of 7/1/21 and are subject to change without notice. Loans are made by LendingClub Bank, N.A., Member FDIC (“LendingClub Bank”), a wholly-owned subsidiary of LendingClub Corporation, NMLS ID 167439. Loans are subject to credit approval and sufficient investor commitment before they can be funded or issued. Certain information that we subsequently obtain as part of the application process (including but not limited to information in your consumer report, your income, the loan amount that your request, the purpose of your loan, and qualifying debt) will be considered and could affect your ability to obtain a loan from us. Loan closing is contingent on accepting all required agreements and disclosures at Lendingclub.com. “LendingClub” is a trademark of LendingClub Bank.

Read Full Review
Laurel Road Personal Loan
See my rates

on NerdWallet's secure website

Laurel Road Personal Loan

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
Laurel Road Personal Loan

Est. APR

7.00-24.75%

Loan amount

$5,000-$45,000

Min. credit score

700
See my rates

on NerdWallet's secure website


Min. credit score

700

Key facts

Laurel Road offers medium to large online loans with an autopay discount, minimal fees and special terms for healthcare professionals.

Pros

  • Option to include a co-signer.

  • No origination fee.

  • Offers a .25 percentage point rate discount for setting up autopay.

  • Offers direct payment to creditors.

  • Able to fund loans within 24 hours.

Cons

  • High minimum loan amount.

  • Charges late fee.

  • Requires several years of credit history.

Qualifications

  • Minimum credit score: 700 or 660 with a qualified co-signer.

  • Minimum credit history: Four years and two open accounts.

  • No more than three credit inquiries in the past six months.

  • Maximum debt-to-income ratio: 43% (including mortgage).

  • No delinquencies.

  • Have not filed for bankruptcy.

  • Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.

  • Employed for more than two years.

Available Term Lengths

3 to 5 years

Fees

  • No origination.

  • No prepayment.

  • Late fee: $28 after 15 days.

Read Full Review

Our pick for

Boat loans

These lenders offer a wide range of loan amounts and terms to help finance a boat purchase.

First Tech Credit Union Personal Loan
See my rates

on NerdWallet's secure website

First Tech Credit Union Personal Loan

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
First Tech Credit Union Personal Loan

Est. APR

6.70-18.00%

Loan amount

$500-$50,000

Min. credit score

660
See my rates

on NerdWallet's secure website


Min. credit score

660

Key facts

First Tech’s personal loans are a sound option for members who want a customizable debt consolidation loan with fast funding.

Pros

  • Offers co-sign, joint and secure loan options.

  • Able to fund loans within one business day.

  • Offers direct payment to creditors with debt consolidation loans.

  • Offers wide range of loan amounts and repayment terms.

  • No origination or prepayment fees.

Cons

  • Exclusive to credit union members.

  • Reports payments to only one of the three major credit bureaus.

  • No rate discount for autopay.

Qualifications

  • Minimum credit score: 660.

Available Term Lengths

2 to 7 years

Fees

  • Origination fee: None.

  • Prepayment fee: None.

Read Full Review
Wells Fargo Personal Loan
See my rates

on NerdWallet's secure website

Wells Fargo Personal Loan

4.5

NerdWallet rating 
Wells Fargo Personal Loan

Est. APR

5.74-19.99%

Loan amount

$3,000-$100,000

Min. credit score

None
See my rates

on NerdWallet's secure website


Min. credit score

None

Key facts

Wells Fargo personal loans stand out thanks to a wide range of loan amounts and flexible terms, but borrowers can't pre-qualify.

Pros

  • No origination or prepayment fee.

  • Joint loan option.

  • Offers wide range of loan amounts and repayment terms.

  • Rate discount for autopay.

  • Able to fund loans on same or next business day.

Cons

  • No option to pre-qualify.

  • Some features only available to existing customers.

Qualifications

  • Must provide personal and contact information.

  • Must provide employment and income information; documentation may be required to verify this information.

  • Must provide desired term and amount to borrow.

Available Term Lengths

1 to 7 years

Fees

  • Origination fee: None.

  • Late fee: $39.

Read Full Review

Our pick for

Bad credit loans

These lenders offer unsecured personal loans to borrowers with low credit scores.

Upgrade
Get rate

on Upgrade's website

Upgrade

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
Upgrade

Est. APR

6.95-35.97%

Loan amount

$1,000-$50,000

Min. credit score

560
Get rate

on Upgrade's website


Min. credit score

560

Key facts

Upgrade offers personal loans plus credit-building tools; you'll need strong cash flow to qualify.

Pros

  • Secured and joint loans.

  • Multiple rate discounts.

  • Mobile app to manage loan payments.

  • Direct payment to creditors with debt consolidation loans.

  • Long repayment terms on home improvement loans.

Cons

  • Origination fee.

  • No option to choose your payment date.

Qualifications

  • Minimum credit score: 560.

  • Minimum number of accounts on credit history: 1 account.

  • Maximum debt-to-income ratio: 75%, including the loan you're applying for.

  • Minimum length of credit history: 2 years.

  • Minimum income requirement: None. Lender accepts income from alimony, retirement, child support, Social Security and other sources.

Available Term Lengths

2 to 7 years

Fees

  • Origination fee: 1.85% to 8%.

  • Late Fee: $10.

  • Failed payment fee: $10.

Disclaimer

Personal loans made through Upgrade feature Annual Percentage Rates (APRs) of 6.95%-35.97%. All personal loans have a 1.85% to 8% origination fee, which is deducted from the loan proceeds. Lowest rates require Autopay and paying off a portion of existing debt directly. Loans feature repayment terms of 24 to 84 months. For example, if you receive a $10,000 loan with a 36-month term and a 17.59% APR (which includes a 13.94% yearly interest rate and a 5% one-time origination fee), you would receive $9,500 in your account and would have a required monthly payment of $341.48. Over the life of the loan, your payments would total $12,293.46. The APR on your loan may be higher or lower and your loan offers may not have multiple term lengths available. Actual rate depends on credit score, credit usage history, loan term, and other factors. Late payments or subsequent charges and fees may increase the cost of your fixed rate loan. There is no fee or penalty for repaying a loan early.

Read Full Review
Universal Credit
Get rate

on Universal Credit's website

Universal Credit

4.5

NerdWallet rating 
Universal Credit

Est. APR

11.69-35.93%

Loan amount

$1,000-$50,000

Min. credit score

560
Get rate

on Universal Credit's website


Min. credit score

560

Key facts

A Universal Credit loan is an option for bad-credit borrowers with high debt-to-income ratios, but rates are high compared to similar lenders.

Pros

  • Offers direct payment to creditors with debt consolidation loans.

  • Fast funding.

  • Offers multiple rate discounts.

  • Offers free credit score access.

Cons

  • Charges origination fee.

  • Borrowers can choose from only two repayment term options.

Qualifications

  • Minimum credit score: 560.

  • Minimum number of accounts on credit history: 1 account.

  • Maximum debt-to-income ratio: 75%, including mortgage and the loan you’re applying for.

  • Minimum length of credit history: 2 years.

  • Minimum income requirement: None. Lender accepts income from alimony, retirement, child support, Social Security and other sources.

Available Term Lengths

3 to 5 years

Fees

  • Origination fee: 5.25% to 8%.

  • Late fee: Up to $10.

Disclaimer

Personal loans made through Universal Credit feature Annual Percentage Rates (APRs) of 11.69%-35.93%. All personal loans have a 5.25% to 8% origination fee, which is deducted from the loan proceeds. Lowest rates require Autopay and paying off a portion of existing debt directly. Loans feature repayment terms of 36 to 60 months. For example, if you receive a $10,000 loan with a 36-month term and a 28.47% APR (which includes a 22.99% yearly interest rate and a 7% one-time origination fee), you would receive $9,300 in your account and would have a required monthly payment of $387.05. Over the life of the loan, your payments would total $13,933.62. The APR on your loan may be higher or lower and your loan offers may not have multiple term lengths available. Actual rate depends on credit score, credit usage history, loan term, and other factors. Late payments or subsequent charges and fees may increase the cost of your fixed rate loan. There is no fee or penalty for repaying a loan early .

Read Full Review

What is an unsecured personal loan?

An unsecured personal loan is a loan from an online lender, bank or credit union that doesn’t require collateral to guarantee the loan. Loan amounts range from $1,000 to $100,000 and are paid back monthly in terms ranging from two to seven years.

The best use of an unsecured loan is one that improves your finances. This could mean getting a loan for debt consolidation, which can reduce your debt and help you pay it off faster, or for a home improvement project, which can increase the value of your home.

What is the difference between secured and unsecured loans?

A secured loan requires you to offer collateral as part of the loan agreement. Examples of collateral include your car, house, or a savings or retirement account.

Since secured loans are backed by an asset, borrowers who have lower credit scores may qualify for a better interest rate or higher loan amount compared with an unsecured loan. But there’s a catch — if you fail to repay a secured loan, the lender can seize your collateral.

With an unsecured loan, you don’t risk collateral, but it may be harder to qualify. Lenders look at credit score, credit history, income and existing debt when deciding whether to approve you.

Pros and cons of secured and unsecured loans

Pros

Cons

Secured loans

  • If you have a low credit score, you may have an easier time qualifying compared to an unsecured loan.

  • If you fail to repay the loan, the lender can seize the collateral.

Unsecured loans

  • No collateral is required, so you won’t risk losing an asset.

  • You’ll need a strong credit score and solid finances to get the best offer.

How do unsecured loans work?

To get an unsecured loan, you’ll need to apply with a bank, credit union or online lender that offers personal loans.

If you’re approved, you’ll receive the money in a lump sum in your account. You’ll then repay the loan in monthly installments spread out over a set repayment term.

Monthly payments are typically fixed, meaning they won’t change over the life of the loan.

What is the interest rate on an unsecured personal loan?

The interest rate on an unsecured personal loan typically ranges from 6% to 36%. It’s expressed as an annual percentage rate, or APR, and includes interest and any fees associated with the loan.

For example, if you apply for a $7,000 unsecured personal loan at 15.5% APR and choose a two-year repayment term, you’ll make monthly payments of $341. The loan will cost $1,186 in total interest.

Here’s a look at average personal loan interest rates, based on your credit bracket.

How's your credit?

Score range

Estimated APR

Excellent

720-850.

10.6%.

Good

690-719.

15.5%.

Fair

630-689.

19.6%.

Bad

300-629.

25.6%.

Source: Average rates are based on aggregate, anonymized offer data from users who pre-qualified in NerdWallet’s lender marketplace from Jan. 1, 2022, to July 31, 2022. Rates are estimates only and not specific to any lender. The lowest credit scores — usually below 500 FICO — are unlikely to qualify. Information in this table applies only to lenders with APRs below 36%.

Common uses for unsecured personal loans

Though an unsecured personal loan can be used for almost any purpose, NerdWallet recommends using one when it can improve your finances. Debt consolidation and home improvement are two common examples.

Unsecured personal loans for debt consolidation

Debt consolidation involves combining debt from multiple sources into a single monthly payment, ideally at a lower interest rate. Using an unsecured personal loan to consolidate can save money on interest and give you an end date to work toward.

Unsecured personal loans for home improvement

Using an unsecured personal loan for home improvement is an option if you don’t have a lot of equity in your home or want to avoid using your home to secure the loan. By financing important repairs or updates, you can potentially increase the value of your home.

Other ways to use unsecured personal loans

You can use an unsecured personal to pay for medical expenses that aren’t covered by insurance or savings. However, it can be an expensive way to finance health-related expenses, and you may have cheaper options, so shop around before you apply.

You can also use an unsecured loan to fund a one-time, big expense like a move, wedding or vacation, though we recommend paying with savings whenever possible to avoid finance charges. Unsecured loans can also finance large purchases, such as a boat, motorcycle or RV, though these loans are often secured by the vehicle you’re buying.

How to qualify for an unsecured personal loan

Lenders may have different qualification requirements, but there are some general factors that help you qualify for low rates.

Good credit. Good- and excellent-credit borrowers (above 689 FICO) typically get the lowest APR on a personal loan. Some lenders cater to fair- and bad-credit borrowers (300-689 FICO), but the best terms and rates are reserved for those with high credit scores.

Low debt-to-income ratio. Many lenders check if your debt-to-income ratio is low enough to support monthly repayments. Some say borrowers need a 40% DTI or lower to qualify, but others have higher limits.

Stable credit history. Lenders favor borrowers who can show that they’ve consistently made on-time payments across multiple accounts — which can be credit cards, auto loans or other installment loans — over a number of years. Aim for at least two or three years of credit history across two or three accounts.

Steady income. Having a steady income can signal to a lender that you'll have the funds available to repay your loan.

How to apply for an unsecured personal loan

Pre-qualify: Make sure to shop around for the best unsecured personal loan. An easy way to do this is by pre-qualifying with multiple lenders, which allows you to see your potential loan amount and rate without affecting your credit score. Though not all lenders offer pre-qualification, most online lenders do.

Apply: Once you’ve chosen a lender, it’s time to apply for the loan. Many applications are completely online and require you to submit personal details, such as your name, address, contact details and Social Security number.

You’ll also need to submit documentation — usually proof of identity, employment and income.

Get funded: Once you’re approved, funding time can vary by lender. But in some cases, your loan can be funded the same or next business day after you’re approved.

Unsecured personal loan alternatives

You may want to consider alternatives along with a personal loan, depending on what you're financing.

0% APR credit card: These cards work well if you need to finance a wedding, repay medical bills or consolidate debt. You need good or excellent credit to qualify and debt small enough to be repaid in the card's interest-free promotional period, which can last up to 21 months.

Home equity loans and HELOCs: These are good options for home renovations if you're comfortable using your home as collateral and have enough equity to qualify. A home equity loan can give you a longer repayment term and typically a lower rate than a personal loan. A home equity line of credit lets you use funds as needed, and you only pay interest on what you use.

Last updated on June 10, 2022

Methodology

NerdWallet’s review process evaluates and rates personal loan products from more than 35 financial institutions. We collect over 45 data points from each lender, interview company representatives and compare the lender with others that seek the same customer or offer a similar personal loan product. NerdWallet writers and editors conduct a full fact check and update annually, but also make updates throughout the year as necessary.

Our star ratings award points to lenders that offer consumer-friendly features, including: soft credit checks to pre-qualify, competitive interest rates and no fees, transparency of rates and terms, flexible payment options, fast funding times, accessible customer service, reporting of payments to credit bureaus and financial education. We also consider regulatory actions filed by agencies like the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. We weigh these factors based on our assessment of which are the most important to consumers and how meaningfully they impact consumers’ experiences.

This methodology applies only to lenders that cap interest rates at 36%, the maximum rate most financial experts and consumer advocates agree is the acceptable limit for a loan to be affordable. NerdWallet does not receive compensation for our star ratings. Read more about our ratings methodologies for personal loans and our editorial guidelines.

To recap our selections...

NerdWallet's Unsecured Personal Loans: Borrow With No Collateral

Frequently asked questions