Marcus by Goldman Sachs Personal Loans: 2021 Review

Marcus personal loans stand out with consumer-friendly features like direct payment to creditors, a rate discount for autopay and a deferral option.
Jackie VelingSep 17, 2021

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Our Take

5.0

NerdWallet rating 

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

Marcus by Goldman Sachs

on Goldman Sachs's website

on Goldman Sachs's website

Min. Credit Score

660

Est. APR

6.99-19.99%

Loan Amount

$3,500-$40,000

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • No fees.
  • Wide variety of repayment term options.
  • Rate discount for autopay.
  • Offers direct payment to creditors for debt consolidation loans.

Cons

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

Compare to Other Lenders

Marcus by Goldman Sachs
Lightstream
Payoff
NerdWallet rating 
NerdWallet rating 
NerdWallet rating 
Est. APR

6.99-19.99%

Est. APR

4.49-20.49%

Est. APR

5.99-24.99%

Loan Term

3 to 6 years

Loan Term

2 to 7 years

Loan Term

2 to 5 years

Loan Amount

$3,500-$40,000

Loan Amount

$5,000-$100,000

Loan Amount

$5,000-$40,000

Min. Credit Score

660

Min. Credit Score

660

Min. Credit Score

600

Compare estimated rates from multiple lenders

Compare Rates

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Full Review

Marcus is the online-only consumer banking and lending arm of investment bank Goldman Sachs. It offers unsecured personal loans with zero fees for borrowers with good credit.

Marcus stands out for its unique features like nine repayment plans to choose from, so you can better customize your loan and monthly payment amount, and the option to defer a payment without paying interest.

Marcus is best for borrowers who:

  • Have a FICO credit score of 660 or higher.

  • Want highly customizable terms.

  • Want to consolidate debt.

Marcus at a glance

Affordability

  • APRs are consistent among lenders targeting similar borrowers.

  • No fees.

  • Rate discount for autopayments.

Loan flexibility

  • Offers only unsecured loans.

  • Funds loans within one week.

  • Offers direct payment to creditors for debt consolidation loans.

  • Available in all 50 states.

Transparency

  • Soft credit check to pre-qualify.

  • Discloses rates and terms on website.

  • Offers comprehensive FAQ that answers key borrower questions.

Customer experience

  • Offers seven-day customer service support.

  • Offers mobile app to manage loan.

  • Provides financial education.

Your loan terms are not guaranteed and are subject to our verification of your identity and credit information. 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.

Key terms to know about personal loans

Annual percentage rate is the interest rate on your loan plus all fees, calculated on an annual basis and expressed as a percentage. Use the APR to compare loan costs from multiple lenders.

An origination fee is a one-time, upfront fee that some lenders charge for processing a loan. The fee can range from 1% to 10% of the loan amount, and lenders typically deduct it from your loan proceeds.

The debt-to-income ratio divides your total monthly debt payments by your gross monthly income, giving you a percentage. Lenders use DTI — along with credit history and other factors — to evaluate a borrower's financial ability to repay a loan.

Lenders that offer pre-qualification typically do so using a soft credit check, which allows you to see rates and terms you qualify for without affecting your credit score. If you accept the loan offer, the lender will perform a hard check to confirm your information. Hard checks knock a few points off your credit score.

» COMPARE: Best bank loans

Where Marcus stands out

No fees: Marcus doesn't charge fees on its personal loans, including origination, prepayment or even late fees. However, if you miss a payment, you must still pay the interest that accumulates during this period, and late or partial payments may be reflected on your credit report.

Direct payment to creditors: The lender will pay your creditors directly if you get a loan for debt consolidation. This direct pay feature is free and can apply to credit cards and retail cards (for a maximum of 10 cards total) and other personal loans.

Wide variety of loan terms: Marcus offers highly customizable repayment terms. Though terms range from three to six years, there are nine options: 36, 39, 42, 45, 48, 54, 60, 66 or 72 months. Your term is determined by the amount you wish to borrow and your desired monthly payment.

Payment deferral option: After making 12 consecutive monthly payments, you can defer one payment as long as you've made all your prior payments in full and on time. Deferring a payment extends the loan term by one month. You won't be required to pay interest while your payment is being deferred.

Where Marcus falls short

No co-signed, joint or secured loan options: Marcus offers only unsecured personal loans, meaning there’s no option to add a co-borrower or secure the loan with collateral in order to get a more competitive rate or be approved for a larger amount.

Limited customer service channels: Marcus encourages customers to get in contact via phone, and loan specialists are available seven days a week with extended business hours. Unlike some lenders, however, Marcus doesn't offer a chat tool for borrowers (there is one for savings account customers) or a social media account dedicated solely to customer service.

How to qualify for a Marcus loan

Marcus doesn’t disclose many borrower requirements, but here are a few must-haves to qualify:

  • Minimum credit score: 660 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.

Loan example: A four-year, $13,000 loan with an 11.2% APR would cost $337 in monthly payments. You’d pay $3,176 in total interest on that loan.

Pre-qualify on NerdWallet

NerdWallet recommends comparing loans to find the best rate for you. Click the button below to pre-qualify on NerdWallet. You may receive personalized rates from multiple lenders that partner with us, including Marcus. Pre-qualifying won't impact your credit.

Apply on Marcus

You can fill out an application on the Marcus website and choose the loan term and monthly payment amount that you prefer. Marcus conducts a soft credit check, and your loan offer is based on the information you provided. You can browse other loan options with different monthly payments or total loan amounts before accepting an offer and submitting a more detailed application.

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.