Citibank Personal Loans: 2023 Review

Citibank offers a rate discount and helps you avoid certain fees, but it lacks features that some lenders offer.
By Annie Millerbernd and  Jackie Veling 

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.

Our Take

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

The bottom line:

Citibank personal loans can be a good choice for current Citibank customers, but you may find more flexible options elsewhere if you have strong credit.

Citibank
Est. APR
6.99-23.99%
Loan amount
$2,000-$30,000
Min. credit score
None
See my rates

on NerdWallet's secure website

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • No origination fee.
  • Rate discount for some customers.
  • Can fund loans within one week.

Cons

  • Must be an existing bank customer.
  • No option to pre-qualify with a soft credit check.
  • No co-sign or joint loan option.

Compare to Other Lenders

Lending Club
SoFi
NerdWallet rating 
NerdWallet rating 
Est. APR

8.30-36.00%

Est. APR

8.99-23.43%

Loan term

3 to 5 years

Loan term

2 to 7 years

Loan amount

$1,000-$40,000

Loan amount

$5,000-$100,000

Min. credit score

600

Min. credit score

None

Compare estimated rates from multiple lenders

Compare Rates

Get more smart money moves — straight to your inbox

Become a NerdWallet member, and we’ll send you tailored articles we think you’ll love.

Full Review of Citibank

Citibank provides personal loans to existing customers with an eligible Citi account open for at least 12 months. The loans come with some consumer-friendly features, like a wide range of repayment terms and a rate discount.

However, borrowers can’t pre-qualify to see potential rates and loan amounts. You won't know if you're approved, or the rate you would be offered, until you apply and undergo a hard credit check, which could temporarily lower your credit score.

Table of Contents

Citibank personal loans at a glance

Minimum credit score

Not disclosed.

APR

6.99% - 23.99%.

Fees

  • Late fee: $25.

  • Returned-check fee: $25.

Loan amount

$2,000 to $30,000.

Repayment terms

1 to 5 years.

Time to fund after approval

Funds can be sent within 1 to 5 business days.

Loan availability

Loans available in 50 states and Washington, D.C.

Where Citibank personal loans stand out

Rate discount: The lender offers an automatic rate discount of 0.25 percentage point to Citibank Gold and Priority Package customers, as long as the primary account holder applies for the loan. A rate discount means you’ll pay less interest on the loan. Customers who have a checking account enrolled in the bank’s rewards program can earn points through their personal loan account, too.

No origination fee: Citibank doesn’t charge origination fees, which are more common among online lenders. As long as you make payments on time and avoid the lender’s $25 late or returned-check fee, you won’t pay any fees.

Wide range of repayment terms: Citibank borrowers can choose from repayment terms of one to five years, while other lenders may have more limited term offerings. A short repayment term can help you save on interest, but a longer term can lower your monthly payments.

Mobile app to manage your loan: Citibank customers have access to the company’s mobile app. You can use it to make payments on your loan or contact customer service.

Where Citibank personal loans fall short

Exclusive to existing customers: Borrowers must have an eligible Citi deposit account or Citi credit card account open for at least 12 months before applying for a personal loan, according to the company.

No option to pre-qualify: Citibank doesn’t offer pre-qualification, which can show borrowers potential rates and loan amounts without affecting their credit scores. Pre-qualification is more common among online lenders.

No option to choose or change your payment date: Borrowers are given a payment date when they accept a loan, and that date can't be changed. The option to change your payment date, which is offered by some other lenders, is useful if you get a new payday or want to balance the loan with other monthly obligations.

Regulatory action against Citibank

In October 2020, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency assessed a $400 million penalty against Citibank. According to the OCC, this was due to the bank’s failure to establish satisfactory risk management and data governance programs. The OCC also required Citi to take corrective action to address these issues.

How to qualify for a Citibank personal loan

To apply for a personal loan from Citibank, you must meet the following requirements:

  • Must be at least 18 years old.

  • Minimum annual income: $10,500.

  • Must have an eligible Citi deposit account or eligible Citi credit card account open for at least 12 months.

  • Cannot have more than one open Citibank personal loan, which must be at least six months old.

Before you apply

  • Check your credit. You can get your free credit report on NerdWallet or at AnnualCreditReport.com. Doing so will help you spot and fix any errors before you apply.

  • Calculate your monthly payments. Use a personal loan calculator to determine what APR and repayment term you’d need to get a loan with affordable monthly payments.

  • Make a plan to repay the loan. Review your budget to see how the loan’s monthly payments impact your cash flow. If you have to cut other expenses in order to repay the loan, it’s better to know that before you borrow.

  • Gather your documents. Citibank may request proof of income, which can be a W-2 or pay stub, as well as photo identification, like a driver’s license or passport. Having these documents handy can speed the application process.

How to apply for a Citibank personal loan

  • Apply on Citibank’s website or at a branch. Since Citibank doesn’t let you pre-qualify, your first step is to submit a formal personal loan application. This could require documentation, like W-2s, pay stubs and bank statements to confirm your information. Citibank will also do a hard credit check when you apply, so your credit score could temporarily dip.

  • Make a plan to repay the loan. Citibank reports payments to the three main credit bureaus, so on-time payments will help build your credit score, but missed payments will hurt it. Setting up automatic payments and keeping an eye on your budget are two ways to manage your loan payments.

Compare Citibank to other lenders

Personal loan lenders offer different rates, loan amounts and special features, so it pays to weigh your options. The best personal loan is usually the one with the lowest APR.

Best Egg also accepts borrowers with good credit (690 credit score or higher) and can fund loans the same day or the next day after approval.

Citibank vs. Best Egg

Best Egg personal loans are available to borrowers with a minimum credit score of 600. Unlike Citibank, this lender charges an origination fee, but you can pre-qualify to see what kind of rate you’ll get before committing to the loan.

How we rate Citibank personal loans

NerdWallet writers rate lenders against a rubric that changes each year based on how personal loan products evolve. Here’s what we prioritized this year:

Category

Star rating

Affordability

Transparency

Loan flexibility

Customer experience

Overall

Affordability

An affordable loan has low rates and fees compared to other similar loans and may offer rate discounts.

Transparency

A transparent lender makes information about the loan easy to find on its website, including rates, terms and loan amounts. Transparency also means allowing users to pre-qualify online to preview potential loan offers and reporting payment information with the major credit bureaus.

Loan flexibility

A flexible loan is one that lets users customize terms and payments. That means offering a wide range of repayment term options, allowing the borrower to change their payment date, offering loans in most states and funding it quickly.

Customer experience

A good customer experience can include a fully online application process, financial education on the lender’s website and a customer service team that’s available most of the time and can be reached multiple ways.

Ready to apply? Select "See my rates" below to compare rates for different lenders on NerdWallet.

See my rates

on NerdWallet's secure website

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.