Low-Interest Personal Loans

Written by Robert Ferry on March 8, 2022
Low-Interest Personal Loans

People are interested in getting low-interest personal loans as there are various reasons like paying medical bills, vacation expenses, house improvement, and unexpected emergencies. All these are valid reasons that require an influx of funds. With a low-interest rate, people can get personal loans from different creditors to pay for their liabilities which do not push them back in a financial hurdle.

Personal loan rates differ from one loan provider to another. The lowest interest rates are given to borrowers with a good or excellent credit history as per their FICO credit score.

There are various ways through which people can apply for a low-interest loan. These may include applying through a traditional bank, credit union, etc. Some people choose to file an application online and get a low-interest personal loan from an online creditor.

Financial experts advise people to do their homework and check out the personal loan rate before finalizing a particular lender. Moreover, people should choose a creditor that fits their preferences and needs. Choosing the right loan provider is essential from a financial perspective.

The popularity of personal loans has risen in recent years due to fintech and other lending companies that have made it convenient for people to get loans at a cheaper rate. Since personal loans are a form of instalment credit, borrowers need to pay it back to the creditor at regular intervals.

People consider low-interest personal loans an alternative to credit cards due to their nature. For instance, with personal loans, not only will a person get a low-interest rate, but they can use it for multiple purposes, unlike credit cards.

The guide will cover the basics of low-interest personal loans and elicit the tips a person should follow when comparing them. We will discuss the different elements a person should consider before getting a low-interest personal loan. The article will include the factors that impact an individual's loan rate for a low-interest personal loan. We will also list the advantages and drawbacks of personal loans. The guide will include the best low-interest personal loans in the industry. A FAQs section will add to answer general questions about low-interest personal loans.

Let's take a look at the fundamentals of low-interest personal loans.

What Is Personal Loan with Low-Interest-Rate?

Low-interest personal loans are short-term loans that banks, credit unions, and online creditors offer to people looking for such a loan. These loans have an APR of less than 12%. Different creditors have requirements where the borrowed funds can be used. Some borrowers use the funds to consolidate credit card bills and other debts like mortgage payments, large purchases, etc.

The terms required for applying for a Loan are dependent on the lender. But there is a good option of arranging a period for predetermined payment, and the time for this option is somehow between three to five years. The predetermined payment means installment loans and the money you'll pay every month.

The terms you should consider important before applying for a loan include calculating your debt and income ratio, or you can call the DTI ratio. DTI ratio is the monthly payments of your debt which are calculated by the division of your monthly gross income. For Lenders, the applicants with low DTI ratios are preferable because they are good at borrowing and returning.

What is the Method used by Lenders for determining Interest Rates?

The method or algorithm for determining interest rates is different for every lender according to his own choice. The lenders evaluate the interest rate on the basis of the three most important factors. These essential factors are:

  • Credit Score
  • Annual Income
  • Debt-to-income ratio

If you have a lower DTI, whereas your income and credit score are high, you'll be a preferable applicant for any lender, and you'll have low-interest rates and large amounts for the loan.

Other than the factors mentioned above, your period spent with the last employer, your education, your interest and knowledge grounds, and your job history are a few numerous things for some lenders. So it's intelligent to compare the offers given by multiple lenders and shop around different places.

Low-interest Personal Loans –How to Compare

Remember the following tips, so you can compare Low-interest Personal Loans and make a beneficial decision.

  • Autopay Discounts: Not all lenders, but some with top ranks provide interest rate discounts if you set up an automatic payment method. Keep the high and low discount offers of providers for low-interest personal loans into consideration and choose the one with an additional discount so that you can have the lowest interest rate.
  • Prequalifying with a Provider: For a low-interest personal loan, some lenders provide the offer of prequalifying for a loan. To Prequalify is the submission of information such as your housing situation, use of the loan, your income, and the details to have an overview of your loan rates, limits, and repayment methods. For this purpose of prequalifying, you only need to have a soft credit check which will not affect your credit score and can provide you best possible lower rates.
  • Fee Structure: The fee structure for a low-interest personal loan also varies from lender to lender. Some offer all fees, including late fees, origination fees, and penalty fees. But some offer no fees or a few of these fees. You have to compare the low-interest personal loans on the basis of the fee structure provided by the lender so that you can choose the one with the lowest interest rates.
  • Customer Support resources of lenders: Another important thing for choosing a low-interest personal loan provider is his customer support service or reviews. This is a good option for clearing all doubts about his reputation in payment dealing and creating a good image with other customers. After making everything clear, you can settle for a good lender.

How to Get a Low-Interest Personal Loan – Process

The process and steps for getting a Low-Interest Personal loan vary from lender to lender. But the general process with detailed steps is as follows and applied for all personal loans:

  • Check your credit score: The very first step in getting a personal loan with low interest is to check your credit score. You can check your credit score without any charges from your credit card issuer or by using any website that provides access to free credit scores. Through your credit score, you can know whether you can qualify for a low-interest personal loan and have knowledge about your creditworthiness. If you have a credit score of 650, there are more chances of not getting a good low-interest rate. But if you have a low credit score of 720, you'll have more chances to qualify and get a personal loan with the lowest interest rates.
  • Improve your Credit score: If you find out that your credit score is below 650, it's good to take steps to raise your credit score. The steps you can take the improvement of your score are paying off your unpaid debts and lowering your usage of credit. It can raise your credit score from the below limit, or even with a good score, you can boost your score.
  • Evaluate the need for your loan amount: After calculating your credit score and increasing it, you have to calculate your loan limits. It is essential to give importance to the amount you don't have for your financial usage. Keep in mind that you can have extra charges and interest rates to pay on your loan limit, so only borrow the amount you can manage to pay off within the selected time.
  • Look for different lenders with the best terms and interest rates: The interest rates and the terms vary from lender to lender. It's essential to consider the beneficial lender that will provide you with the best lowest interest rates and reasonable terms.
  • Submit an application and wait for the process to complete: After finding a lender, now you have to fill out and submit the application. The time for a process to start and complete is dependent on the lender or provider.

Factors That Affect the Rate of Personal Loan

Personal loan interest rates are determined by a variety of factors, including the borrower's credit history and annual earnings, as well as the loan amount and payback length. Personal loan interest rates are influenced by a number of factors, including:

  • Credit score: Borrowers with a higher credit score of at least 720 are more likely to qualify for the personal loan with the lowest interest rates than applicants with low credit scores.
  • Debt-to-income ratio: The debt-to-income (DTI) ratio of a borrower is the percentage of their monthly income toward their debt commitments. The greater a borrower's DTI, the risk to the lenders, and the higher the interest rate they will almost certainly give. A DTI of a maximum of 36 per cent or less is a good choice for lenders.
  • Employment: Individuals who freelance, have a new small company or are otherwise self-employed often qualify for cheaper credit rates than those who are self-employed. This is because conventional work is considered more stable in terms of income and repayment by lenders.
  • Income: Lenders also consider if an individual's income is sufficient. The required minimum income is often low—around $20,000 per year—but the lowest rates are reserved for individuals with higher incomes.
  • Loan amount: The amount of a loan has a great impact on interest rates. Because the loan amount is huge, the lender will offer low interest and will have risks. As a result, high-principal-amount loans frequently have higher interest rates than lesser loans.
  • Loan term: The interest rate on a personal loan is also affected by the length of the repayment period. If the interest rate is tremendous, it will be a longer duration for loan repayment. Long-term loans also have higher expenses since interest is paid over a more extended period of time.

Pros and Cons of Personal Loans

Pros

Here are the pros of personal loans:

  • Fixed interest rate
  • Lower rates than credit cards
  • Unsecured – no collateral required
  • Consolidate high-interest debt
  • It can be used for any expense

Cons

Here are the cons of personal loans:

  • Need a high credit score for a low rate
  • Challenging to get with poor credit
  • Higher monthly payments than credit card
  • Loan origination fees
  • Easy to overspend

Best Low-Interest Personal Loans

In this section, we will discuss the best low-interest personal loans:

LightStream

LightStream is a division of SunTrust Bank and BB&T for personal lending loans to customers with low interests. LightStream offers low-interest personal loans from the minimum amount of $5000 to $100,000. This amount fixation is different from other available offers because there are some lenders who offer a smaller amount than the minimum amount provided by LightStream. But there is also the availability of high loan amounts than the maximum limit of LightStream, so to have low interest, LightStream is an excellent option to consider for a Personal loan.

Another good thing about LightStream is that its repayment period is from two to seven years which will enable customers to pay for their significant expenses within its time period. LightStream, with its flexible and excellent options, offers no fees for repayment, penalty or late payment, and Origination. LightStream provider considers the education and background knowledge of customers with autopay an important factor for utilizing the lowest interest rate of 2.49%, which is comparatively lower than other providers.

Other options for customer satisfaction provided by LightStream are the availability of assistance for Covid-19 or other difficulties of its sort, a 30-day guarantee for loan experience, and a program called rate-beat. Rate-beat program is basically a rate beating compatibility of LightStream in which it beats the interest rate of a competitor by 0.01% only for some selected customers.

LightStream provides its coverage in all 50 states of the U.S. LightStream customer service team is available 24/7, but with Covid restrictions and other difficulties, the service is available for six days, excluding Sunday. As LightStream is not having its own mobile application for online usage and contact, customers can contact and have information on its website, which is LightStream.com.

Advantages of LightStream:

  • It takes no charges for Origination, penalty, or repayment fees.
  • It offers competitively low-interest rates.
  • It has a fast approval method.

Disadvantages of LightStream:

  • It offers no prequalification process.
  • It is strict in its deadlines. It offers no flexibility for extending the payment time.
  • Although it's a good option for low-interest personal loans, it will provide you with limits on spending the loan.

SoFi

SoFi is a good provider of large loan amounts. It is an online loan provider with a fixed interest rate. SoFi coverage is available in all states of the U.S, excluding Mississippi. SoFi has been offering its service since 2011, and since then, it has provided more than $50 Billion in personal loans with low interest. Its position among other competitive low-interest personal loan providers is high because it offers large amounts of loans and extends its loan terms over time.

SoFi offers a number of loans ranging from $5000 to $100,000. This high loan offer is a great option for those who are in need of a great loan. It also offers a repayment time period from two to seven years so that the loan can be spent on large expenses within time. But the criteria to be its applicant is having a minimum FICO score of 680 and an annual income of $45,000. Prospective borrowers can easily submit joint applications to SoFi, but it doesn't permit you to be a co-signer of a loan.

Moreover, approved borrowers with autopay can get APR rewards from SoFi between the percentage of 5.99% to 25.05%, which is a comparatively low percentage rate. Other than that, there are no charges for sign-up fees, prepayment, or late payment penalties.

Alongside many good options, some other offers and discounts provided by SoFi include the availability of changing the payment deadline date once a year and protection for employees.

Advantages of SoFi:

  • It offers the option of your prequalification.
  • It offers the shortest time period of one to two days for funding.
  • Its terms are lengthy and have large loan amounts.

Disadvantages of SoFi:

  • It does not provide the option of paying directly to third party creditors.
  • According to customer reviews, Its qualification standard is high.
  • It does not offer its service to co-signers.

Marcus

Marcus under Goldman Sachs offers low-interest personal loans with a minimum amount of $35,00 to a larger amount of $40,00. Marcus does not offer large amounts of loans, so many can find it unsuitable for them, but it does offer personal loans with low interest for three to six years. So for people who don't need large loans, Marcus is a good option for a low-interest personal loan.

Marcus offers a 0.25% discount to autopay customers with APR ranging from 6.74% to 19.74%. Marcus does not charge any fee for sign up, repayment, or late payment. It also offers a reward for a one-time payment and provides flexible payment dates.

With Marcus, customers can prequalify for their personal loans with low interest with a soft credit pull so that without affecting the credit score, all provided offers and options can be seen and understood.

Marcus provides its best customer service, which is available 24 hours on all days of the week with a fixed time of 9 am to 7 pm. It does not have an online mobile application for contact, so you can use the online resources for applying and taking information from the website.

Advantages of Marcus:

  • It does not take any origination fee, prepayment, or fees for insufficient funding.
  • It enables its applicants to contact third party lenders for consolidation payments directly.
  • It enables its customers to change the date of the loan agreement three times from the total time period of the loan

Disadvantages of Marcus:

  • It does not offer the option of co-applicants or co-signers
  • It does not allow its service for extending and making changes to the student loans.
  • Its loan approval speed is a little low. It takes almost four days to approve your personal loan with low interest.

PenFed

The purpose of forming PenFed was to offer personal loans with low interests to military members and their families, veterans, employees belonging to federal administration, and retired members, but other civilians can also avail PenFed low-interest Personal loans.

PenFed offers its fixed interest rates and loan amount ranging from $500 to $20,000. So if you are seeking a Personal loan provider with low interest and high loan limits, you should check out any good option other PenFed.

PenFed provides loans with APR of 5.99% to 17.99%, along with detailed information about your credit and application. It means that customers with a high credit score are more likely to have the lowest interest personal loans. Moreover, it does not charge any origination, penalty, late payment fees, or any type of fee. PenFed offers online access to customers residing near its situated place, which is on the East Coast.

PenFed provides its coverage service for all people, but if you are an approved borrower and applied to move forward with your loan, you must have become a member of the credit union. It is not difficult to become a credit union member, and you just have to follow a few processing steps and spend some minutes on it. Its membership is free, but you should have at least $5 in your PenFed saving account for more flexible options.

Advantages of PenFed:

  • Penfed does not charge any fees such as Origination, repayment, or penalty fees.
  • It offers the option of funding or funds, which you can avail of the next day after applying for the loan.
  • It offers a simple qualification method that does not require any effort or difficulty.

Disadvantages of PenFed:

  • Its maximum limit for a loan amount is $20,000, so for people with a need for large amounts, PenFed is not a good option.
  • Its branch services are only available on the Easter Coast, creating difficulty for people living other than the coastal area.
  • To become its member, you have to open a PenFed saving account

U.S. Bank

U.S Bank offers personal loans with low interest and is a great option for those who want to have one time funds for their financial needs, such as large expenses or consolidation of the debt amount. U.S. Bank provides its loan return period of time of one to five years with a minimum amount of $1,000 to $25,000. Its service is only available to the people who have accounts in U.S banks.

U.S. Bank provides its discount offer of 0.50% for autopay customers and allows loans with APR of 5.99% to 16.49%. So, people who want low-interest rates and have a good and high credit score are more likely to qualify on the terms of U.S. Bank.

Like other low-interest personal loan providers, U.S. Bank offers you to pay loan payments within its time frame because it does not charge any fees for sign-up, repayment, and penalty or late payment.

The method for applying for U.S. Bank personal loan with low interest is easy and flexible, but you must be a bank customer and have a U.S bank account. For confirmation and other related information, it can also call you out to visit a U.S Bank branch.

  • Advantages of U.S. Bank:
  • It takes only one business day for approval and funding.
  • It offers a 0.50% discount for autopay customers.
  • It does not offer any charges for origination fees, penalties, or repayment fees.

Disadvantages of U.S. Bank:

  • Its service is not available in all states and offers service in 26 U.S states.
  • It can call you out for visiting a bank branch for confirmation and other extra information.
  • Its maximum loan limit is $25,000, so borrowers with the need for large loan amounts cannot take U.S. Bank as its loan provider.

So, these are the best low-interest personal loans out there, and it is good to weigh the pros and cons before opting for one of them.

FAQS

What is a personal loan with a good low-interest rate?

The interest rate on a personal loan is dependent on two things: the lender and your credit history. Based on where you receive your loan, you may see interest rates as low as 2.49 per cent if you have a good rate of credit. If you have a low credit score, though, you may only be eligible for loans at interest rates of 20% or higher. You have to increase the rating as much as possible before applying to maximize your chances of getting the greatest interest rate.

How to get a personal loan with low interest?

There are important things/steps before getting a low-interest personal loan. They are:

  • Ensure to check your score before applying for a low-interest personal loan.
  • If the credit score is low, first, you have to adopt ways to improve it.
  • If you have been offered the option of prequalifying with a soft credit check by the lender. It's a good choice to consider because you can see which type of loan and how long you can apply for a personal loan with low interest with your current score.
  • Contact the provider and apply to find a good personal loan with favorable terms and offers a low-interest rate.
  • If you qualify, have autopay for good discount offers and a low risk of late payment fees.

What is an origination fee?

An origination fee is the percentage of the total loan amount you'll pay for one-time at the start of processing. For example, if you are applying for an amount of $10,000 with a 5% origination fee, you'll have to pay a total of $10,500 repayment.

What is a debt-to-income ratio?

DTI ratio is the monthly payments of your debt calculated by dividing your monthly gross income. For Lenders, the applicants with low DTI ratios are preferable because they are good at borrowing and returning.

What is the difference between co-signers and joint applicants?

Co-signers are guarantors who will pay loan payments if you can't. So, if you don't have a long credit history or have a low credit score, you need someone with a high credit score so they can co-sign your loan. Because loan repayment history greatly impacts your credit score.

Whereas a joint applicant is the one who has a great credit score and history and who will be an equal partner in the loan amount and he will be equally responsible for paying the loan back. If we compare both, a joint applicant is an equal holder of a loan, so that he will have more rights and responsibilities than a co-signer.

How does the loan repayment work?

The monthly repayment plan affects your day-to-day financial needs and expenses. It is dependent on the amount of your loan, interest rate, and loan term. It has a fixed interest rate, so you can manage it without worrying about missing a payment. Keep in mind the start and due date for loan repayment. Moreover, it's good to ask your lender about the early payment penalties, if there are any. Many low-interest personal loan lenders don't charge penalties for early or late repayments.

What is the term of the loan?

The loan term is the time you want to take the loan. The loan term is important for getting a low-interest personal loan because the lender will see its duration. If it is a long term loan, he will not qualify you because he will be at risk of getting low interest than usual. Its good to pay a larger monthly payment and keep a shorter timeline, so firstly, you will qualify for the loan, and secondly, you will not suffer from huge interest costs for a long time.

Conclusion

The guide has provided you with the basics of low-interest personal loans and the tips a person should follow when comparing them and choosing the best low-interest personal loans. There are various ways to apply for a low-interest loan, including applying through a traditional bank, or credit union, filing an online application, and getting a low-interest personal loan from an online creditor.

Also, various factors impact the interest rate, so we have discussed the different elements and factors that impact the interest rate a person should consider before getting a low-interest personal loan. We have also listed the advantages or benefits and drawbacks of personal loans.

The guide has included the best low-interest personal loans in the industry, which you can consider before choosing a provider for your loan with low interest. A FAQs section is also added to answer general questions about low-interest personal loans.

Article written by Robert Ferry
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