OneMain Financial Personal Loans: 2023 Review
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The bottom line:
OneMain prioritizes a borrower’s ability to repay on a loan application. Rates are high, but this lender accepts low credit scores.
Pros & Cons
- Option to choose and change your payment date.
- Joint and secured loans.
- Fast funding.
- Direct payment to creditors on debt consolidation loans.
- Rates are high compared with other lenders.
- Charges origination fee.
- No rate discounts.
- Pre-qualification doesn't allow borrowers to preview potential rates.
Compare to Other Lenders
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2 to 5 years
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Full Review of OneMain Financial
OneMain Financial’s personal loans are expensive compared with other online loans. However, they have some consumer-friendly features that make them an option for borrowers who may struggle to qualify elsewhere.
» COMPARE: See your bad-credit loan options
Table of Contents
OneMain Financial personal loans at a glance
Minimum credit score
18.00% - 35.99%.
$1,500 to $20,000.
2 to 5 years.
Time to fund after approval
1 to 2 business days.
Loans not available in AK, AR, CT, MA, RI, VT or Washington, D.C.
Where OneMain Financial personal loans stand out
Secured and joint loan options: OneMain lets borrowers use a vehicle such as a car, truck, motorcycle, boat or RV to secure a loan. Borrowers may also add a co-applicant to get a joint personal loan. Either option can help improve your chance of qualifying and getting a lower rate. The vehicle must be under 10 years old and requires an appraisal before approval.
There are potential consequences with both of these options. If you stop repaying a secured loan, the lender can take your collateral. If you stop making payments on a joint loan, your co-borrower must repay it.
» MORE: Secured personal loans
Choose and change your payment date: OneMain Financial borrowers can pick their payment date when they sign a loan agreement and change the due date twice during the life of the loan. This feature is helpful if your income and expenses change due to a new job, for example, or a different payday.
Fast funding: OneMain Financial says it may instantly approve a loan application. The lender says it takes about one to two business days for funds to be available to most borrowers. Some lenders boast same-day funding, but a day or two is standard for most personal loans.
Direct payment with debt consolidation loans: Borrowers who use a OneMain Financial loan to consolidate other high-interest debts can have the loan funds sent directly to other creditors. This feature eliminates that step for the borrower, but it’s still important to monitor your accounts until they’re paid off. OneMain says it can take up to 15 days for funds to reach some creditors.
A debt consolidation loan is only a good idea if your new loan will have a lower rate than your other debts, which may be hard to achieve with OneMain’s high rates.
» MORE: Compare debt consolidation loans
Branch access: OneMain operates branches in each of the 44 states where it offers personal loans. Though a borrower can get a loan without visiting a branch, those who are more comfortable interacting with a loan officer in person can do so at a OneMain branch.
Seven-day cancellation policy: Borrowers have seven days to change their mind and cancel the loan without having to make payments. Few lenders offer this feature.
» MORE: Personal loans for fair credit
Where OneMain Financial personal loans fall short
High rates: OneMain Financial’s annual percentage rates are higher than its competitors due to its minimum APR of 18%. Many other lenders offer personal loans with single-digit APRs, even if fair- and bad-credit borrowers (with credit scores below 690) may not qualify for them. Because OneMain rates are so high, even borrowers with strong credit may get a high APR on a personal loan.
Pre-qualification doesn't include APR: Like most other online lenders, OneMain Financial allows borrowers to check their potential personal loan offer through pre-qualification. But unlike most lenders, OneMain only shows borrowers their potential loan amount and whether they qualify for a secured loan, an unsecured loan or both. The lender requires a formal application with a hard credit pull to show your rate and repayment terms.
No rate discounts: Unlike many other lenders, OneMain Financial doesn’t offer any rate discounts. The most common discount with personal loans is for setting up automatic payments, and it’s usually an APR reduction of 0.5 percentage points or less. Some lenders offer discounts for using the direct payment feature on debt consolidation loans.
Origination fee: OneMain loans come with origination fees, which aren’t uncommon for online lenders. In some states, OneMain charges a flat fee of $25 to $500; in other states, the fee is 1% to 10% of the loan amount. These fees are slightly high compared with other lenders’ origination fees.
Credit insurance: OneMain may offer optional credit insurance with secured or unsecured loans. This insurance adds to the loan costs and may not be necessary if borrowers already have life insurance, so it's worthwhile to learn about the pros and cons of credit insurance before buying it.
» MORE: Best emergency loans
Regulatory action against OneMain Financial
In May 2023, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau ordered OneMain to pay $20 million for deceptive sales practices. According to the bureau, OneMain led loan customers to believe they could not get a loan without signing up for an add-on product like roadside assistance or identity theft protection. The bureau says OneMain also failed to refund interest charges to customers who canceled the products in accordance with the lender's refund policies.
The bureau ordered OneMain to pay $10 million in refunds and a $10 million penalty. It also required OneMain to make it easier to cancel add-on products.
The lender said in a press release that it disagrees with the CFPB's conclusions but will bring more consistency to its refund policies.
How to qualify for a OneMain Financial personal loan
Most lenders have basic requirements to apply and some have financial requirements or recommendations to qualify.
To apply for a OneMain Financial personal loan, you must:
Have a Social Security number or individual taxpayer identification number.
Be at least 18 in most states.
OneMain Financial says it uses an algorithm that accounts for many different criteria in underwriting, but it has few hard requirements for borrowers. Here’s what to know about OneMain’s qualification requirements.
Minimum credit score: None; the lender doesn’t state a minimum credit score, but it says applicants with no credit history may not qualify.
Minimum income: None; OneMain requires borrowers to have enough income to support their own expenses, plus the new loan’s monthly payment. This lender accepts income from employment, a partner, alimony, retirement, child support, Social Security payments, investments and public assistance.
Here are details about OneMain Financial’s average borrower, according to the lender.
Average credit score: 620 to 640.
Average income: $45,000 per year.
Average loan APR: 25%.
Average loan amount: $10,000.
Average repayment term: 53 months.
Most common loan purpose: Debt consolidation, unexpected expenses, home or car repairs and medical procedures.
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. OneMain Financial requires proof of income, which can be a W-2 or paystub, as well as proof of address and a Social Security or individual taxpayer identification number. Having these documents handy can speed the application process.
How to apply for a OneMain Financial personal loan
Here are the steps to apply for a OneMain Financial loan, based on information from the lender and our experience completing the pre-qualification process.
Pre-qualify on OneMain Financial’s website. Choose the “Check for offers” button on OneMain’s website and enter your requested loan amount. Then, you’ll enter your name, address, email and income. You’ll answer questions about your employer and whether you have a vehicle that’s paid off. Finally, you’ll enter your birth date and SSN or ITIN. There is no hard credit pull at this stage.
Preview loan offers and accept the one that fits your budget. OneMain will show you what types of loans you qualify for. At this stage, you won’t see repayment terms or your potential APR. Instead, qualified applicants may see a secured loan offer, unsecured loan offer or both. The lender requires a formal application to show you a full loan offer, which will cause your credit score to temporarily dip.
Submit an application. OneMain Financial says it instantly tells most applicants whether they’ve been conditionally approved after they apply. Final approval requires more verification. Upon final approval, the lender says it funds most loans in one to two days.
Make a plan to repay the loan. OneMain Financial reports payments to all three major 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 OneMain Financial to other lenders
Personal loan lenders offer different rates, loan amounts and special features, so it pays to weigh other options. The best personal loan is usually the one with the lowest APR.
LendingPoint and Avant both offer personal loans with lower rates than OneMain Financial, and they offer slightly larger loans.
OneMain Financial vs. LendingPoint
Unlike OneMain, which doesn’t have a minimum credit score, LendingPoint provides loans to borrowers with a score of 600 or higher. LendingPoint doesn’t offer joint or secured loans like OneMain does, but the lender says it can approve an application instantly and fund a loan within a day, which may be faster than OneMain.
LendingPoint only reports loan payments to two of the three major credit bureaus, while OneMain reports to all three. LendingPoint may be the better choice for urgent or midsize expenses.
OneMain Financial vs. Avant
Avant offers fast personal loans to borrowers with credit scores of 550 or higher. This lender doesn’t offer joint or secured loans like OneMain does, but it does allow borrowers to check their personal loan rate before submitting a formal application, which OneMain’s pre-qualification doesn’t include.
Avant offers one-day approval and one-day funding, which may be slightly faster than OneMain. The lender also has a much lower origination fee than OneMain, making it a potentially more affordable loan overall.
» MORE: Avant personal loan review
How we rate OneMain Financial 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:
Ready to apply? Select the button below and head to OneMain's website.
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.
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Frequently asked questions
On average, it takes about one day to apply and be approved for a OneMain Financial loan, the company says. Funds can be deposited into your account within one or two business days after approval.
OneMain doesn't disclose many of its borrower requirements but says it focuses on applicants' ability to make their monthly payments toward regular bills and debts and still afford the loan. To be considered, applicants must have a credit bureau file. Those with a very thin file may not qualify.
To apply for a OneMain loan, borrowers need a government-issued ID and and proof of income.
OneMain offers unsecured loans, which aren't backed by collateral and have only one applicant. Applicants can get a secured loan by adding a vehicle as collateral. Joint loans are available through OneMain, but co-signed loans are not.