The bottom line: First Tech’s personal loans are a sound option for members who want a customizable debt consolidation loan with fast funding.
First Tech Credit Union Personal Loan
Min. Credit Score
6.70 - 18.00%
$500 - $50,000
Pros & Cons
- 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 option to pre-qualify.
- No rate discount for autopay.
- No option to change your payment date.
- Exclusive to credit union members.
Compare to Other Lenders
Compare estimated rates from multiple lenders
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.
To review First Tech, NerdWallet collected more than 40 data points from the lender, confirmed details with customer service representatives and compared the lender with others that seek the same customer or offer a similar personal loan product. Loan terms and fees may vary by state.
First Tech is the largest federal credit union by assets and serves tech companies and their employees.
Its loans range from $500 to $50,000 with repayment terms between two and seven years, leaving room for you to customize the loan to your budget. Borrowers can’t pre-qualify to see their potential rates, though, and you have to meet membership criteria to be eligible for a loan.
One of the following is required for First Tech membership:
Work for a qualifying tech or telecom company.
Work for the state of Oregon.
Work or live in Lane County, Oregon.
Be an immediate family member of a First Tech member.
Be a member of the Computer History Museum or the Financial Fitness Association.
First Tech is best for borrowers who:
Are credit union members.
Want to consolidate high-interest debt.
Want to choose from a variety of repayment terms and loan amounts.
Want to add a co-signer, co-borrower or collateral.
First Tech at a glance
Where First Tech stands out
Joint, co-signed and secured loans: First Tech lets borrowers add a co-signer or co-borrower to their loan application. Borrowers can also secure a loan with a CD, savings account or certain investment accounts. Any of these options can help increase your chances of qualifying for a loan or getting a lower rate.
Customizable loans: The lender’s loan amounts and repayment terms are more flexible than the average personal loan. The minimum loan amount is $500, which is common among credit unions but rare for banks and online lenders. Borrowers can also choose from six repayment terms. The rates and available loan amounts vary by term. A longer repayment term can make monthly payments more manageable, while a shorter term reduces overall interest.
Direct payment to creditors: For debt consolidation loans, this lender will directly pay off any credit cards or other unsecured debt you have, leaving you with just one monthly payment. This feature isn’t uncommon, but it’s a perk you won’t find with all lenders.
Fast funding: First Tech says borrowers may be approved immediately, though in some cases it takes up to two days. From there, the lender can fund the loan the day you’re approved or take up to two business days.
Where First Tech falls short
No option to pre-qualify: You can’t pre-qualify for a First Tech loan. Pre-qualifying lets you see potential loan offers without affecting your credit score. Though a chart on First Tech’s website offers transparency about how loan amounts and terms affect rates, pre-qualification is a personalized feature you’ll find with online lenders and some banks.
» MORE: Best bank loans
No rate discount for automatic payments: Like many banks and credit unions, First Tech doesn’t offer a rate discount for setting up automatic payments. This rate discount is usually between 0.25% and 0.5% and encourages on-time payments.
No option to change your payment date: Borrowers can choose their payment date when they sign a loan agreement, but it’s set in stone after that. Other lenders let you change your payment date one or more times while you repay the loan, which can help accommodate job and income changes.
How to qualify for a First Tech loan
First Tech doesn’t make many of its borrower requirements public. Credit unions tend to base at least part of a loan decision on your whole financial situation, including any history you have with the credit union. Having bank and credit accounts in good standing may help you qualify.
Loan example: A four-year, $13,000 loan with a 17.4% APR would cost $378 in monthly payments. You’d pay $5,144 in total interest on that loan.
How to get a First Tech loan
Apply on First Tech
To apply for a First Tech personal loan, you need to be a member. Members can apply online by logging in. The company says it takes about 15 minutes to fill out an application.
Pre-qualify on NerdWallet
NerdWallet recommends comparing loans to find the best rate for you. Pre-qualifying may get you personalized rates from multiple lenders that partner with us. Pre-qualifying will not impact your credit.
Personal Loans Rating Methodology
NerdWallet’s review process evaluates and rates personal loan products from more than 30 lenders. 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 our editorial guidelines.