U.S. Bank Simple Loan: 2023 Review
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Pros & Cons
- Charges fixed fee.
- Offers small loans up to $1,000.
- Fast approval and funding.
- Must be an existing bank customer.
- Only one repayment term available.
Compare to Other Lenders
Full Review of US Bank Simple Loan
U.S. Bank lets customers borrow up to $1,000 in $100 increments with its Simple Loan. The lender charges a $6 fee for every $100 borrowed, and the loan is paid back in three monthly payments. A Simple Loan may be a smart alternative to online or storefront payday loans, which come in similar amounts but often charge triple-digit interest rates.
You must have a U.S. Bank checking account to be eligible for a Simple Loan. You can apply online or in the mobile app, and if approved, you will receive the money within minutes.
U.S. Bank’s Simple Loan can be a convenient and fast way to handle an emergency expense, but it’s probably not a good option for repeat borrowing because the interest rate is relatively high.
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U.S. Bank Simple Loan at a glance
Minimum credit score
$6 fee per $100 borrowed.
$100 to $1,000.
Time to fund after approval
Must be a U.S. Bank checking account customer.
U.S. Bank Simple Loan requirements
To apply for a Simple Loan, you must have a U.S. Bank personal checking account that’s at least 6 months old and has at least three months’ history of recurring direct deposits. You’ll also need to supply your Social Security number as part of the application.
The bank does not list a minimum credit score requirement, but it likely reviews your transactions, banking history and credit information to qualify you.
You can take one Simple Loan at a time. Once your first loan is paid off, you must wait 30 days before applying for another. With payday loans, there's usually no "cooling off" period between loans. A break between high-interest loans can help borrowers avoid overextending themselves and slipping into a cycle of debt.
U.S. Bank may perform a hard credit pull when evaluating your Simple Loan application, which is common when applying for credit. According to the lender, applicants typically know whether they’ve been approved in less than a minute. Funds will be available in your U.S. Bank checking account soon after approval.
U.S. Bank Simple Loan costs
The Simple Loan costs $6 for every $100 borrowed and has a term of three months. That translates to an annual percentage rate of just under 36%.
That’s much cheaper than typical payday loans, where the average rate is almost 400%. The Simple Loan is also repaid over three months, not the two-week cycle that's common for payday loans. There are no other fees, including no fee for late or missed payments and no fee for paying off the loan early.
Loan example: A $500 loan with an APR of 35.65% repaid over three months would carry:
Monthly payments: $176.67.
Total interest: $30.
Total amount due: $530.
How U.S. Bank Simple Loan compares
Consumer advocates consider 36% to be the maximum APR for a loan to be affordable. The Simple Loan meets this threshold. Other small-dollar bank loans, like Bank of America’s Balance Assist, may offer a cheaper small-dollar loan based on the amount borrowed.
Some credit unions also offer loans under $1,000. Though you’ll need to become a member before applying, credit unions tend to look more favorably on fair- or bad-credit applicants (those with a 689 credit score or lower) and offer lower interest rates compared with other lenders.
Online loans are available to borrowers in all states, and some online lenders accept applicants with bad credit or a thin credit history. These lenders also fund loans quickly — often the same or next day — but may charge higher interest rates. Loan amounts tend to start at $1,000 or higher.
» COMPARE: Best bad-credit online loans
U.S. Bank Simple Loan isn't a good idea if:
You regularly overdraw your account: Though the Simple Loan can provide quick cash, you’ll need to pay it back with almost 36% interest. Review your budget before choosing to borrow, and make sure you’ll have enough money in your checking account to cover the three monthly repayments.
You can get interest-free cash elsewhere: NerdWallet recommends exhausting cheaper alternatives first, even in an emergency.
Alternatives to U.S. Bank Simple Loan
Here are alternatives that may be cheaper than a Simple Loan:
If you need to cover an expense like rent, food, utilities, clothing or transportation costs, seek assistance from local nonprofits, charities and religious organizations.
Apply for a payday alternative loan, a type of small personal loan, from a credit union. You have to be a member to use this option, but it’s one of the most affordable ways to pay for an emergency.
Ask your employer for a paycheck advance or use a cash advance app to borrow against your next paycheck.
If you need to cover an essential purchase, consider a buy now, pay later option that offers a zero-interest payment plan.
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