How To Get A Personal Loan (Up To $100k)

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A personal loan can really help improve your financial situation, whether you use it to pay off your high-interest credit card debt or to pay for something like an emergency home or car repair. In the past, if you wanted a personal loan, you had to turn to a bank, but that’s no longer the case. We’ll show you how to get a personal loan the fast, easy way.

What is a Personal Loan?

A personal loan is money you borrow from a lender. A personal loan typically doesn’t require collateral; it’s an unsecured loan. Personal loans are unsecured because they’re for a relatively low amount, usually under $10,000 although some lenders allow for loans much higher than that.

Banks don’t lend money for nothing, of course, the cost to borrow money is the interest rate. The better your credit score, the lower interest rates lenders will offer you because you’re seen as less of a risk.

This is why a good credit score (anything above 760 will qualify you for the best interest rates) is so important. If your credit score isn’t at or over 760, there are things you can do to improve it before applying for the loan. The lower the interest rate, the cheaper the loan will be for you.

A personal loan usually has a term of two to five years; the amount of time you have to pay the loan back in full. Every month your payment amount will be the same, the principal (amount of the loan) and the interest.

Getting a personal loan can be done right from your computer in just a few minutes. Several legitimate online lenders offer online quotes instantly. Check your rate now with no impact on your credit score.

  • Credible: This site allows borrowers to window shop for the best rates on a personal loan from as many as 11 lenders. You can get a personal loan for as little as $1,000 or as much as $100,000. Check your rates in just two minutes. Credible will give you $200 if you find a better rate elsewhere (terms apply).
  • Upstart: This might be the best option if your a recent college graduate with a job. The company looks at factors other than your credit score including things like your work history, and level of education when deciding to approve a loan application.

What You Can Use a Personal Loan For

Really, you can use a personal loan for anything at all. Some lenders don’t even ask what you intend to use the money for when you’re filling out the application online. That said, you should only use a personal loan for things like debt consolidation, emergency expenses, medical or dental expenses, etc.

A personal loan should not be used for needs, not wants. It’s financially irresponsible to take on debt for things like a vacation, a new wardrobe, or a new smartphone to replace your still perfectly good phone.

How to Get a Personal Loan in the Old Days

It’s easier and faster than ever to get a personal loan, and more people will be approved. Why? Because potential borrowers no longer have to rely on traditional banks to borrow money. Before the advent of online lenders, if you wanted a personal loan, you had to go through a bank. That made things more difficult for borrowers for a few reasons.

Borrowers were limited to banks local to them which significantly reduced their options. Not only as far as shopping for the best rates goes but also for getting a loan at all. If you did choose to apply, you had to physically go the bank armed with reams of paperwork, bank statement, paystubs, tax returns, identification.

The process of applying for, being approved, and getting the money could take weeks. Someone had to sort through all of that paperwork and determine if a would-be borrower would be a good financial risk or not. If someone needed a personal loan for an emergency situation, this lengthy process was far from ideal.

How to Get a Personal Loan Today

The internet has changed the way we do a lot of things, and it has had a tremendous impact on how we get a personal loan. Thanks to today’s online lenders, you could get a personal loan in less time than it will take you to read this article.

Online lenders have done away with much of the red tape traditional banks require to get a personal loan and have opened up lending to people that banks may turn down. If you need a personal loan, there are just a few simple steps involved.

Check Your Credit Score: Because all lenders will require a minimum credit score a potential borrower must have to be approved and you want to be offered the best interest rate possible, it’s good to know your credit score before applying for a personal loan. You can check your credit score for free here.

Gather Your Information: A potential lender will want to know things like your Social Security number, annual income, name of your employer and how long you’ve been employed there, monthly housing costs, and perhaps debt-to-income ratio. Having this information at hand before you start the application process will speed things up.

Shop Around: Simply checking your rates and terms with various online lenders will not affect your credit score. The first step of applying for a personal loan only triggers what is called a “soft” credit check. Based on this soft check, lenders willing to extend a personal loan to you will show you at what interest rate and terms. Look for the best offer before making a decision.

Apply: If your soft check looks good and a lender makes you an offer that you accept, the next step will be to provide additional information and go through a “hard” credit check. At this point, you may need to provide the documentation we mentioned above. If so, you can scan and email the documents, making the process fast and easy.

The hard credit check will impact your credit score but only by a few points and the dip will be temporary. If you’re using a personal loan to pay off credit card debt, doing so will increase your score much more so than this hard check will decrease it.

Approval: If you pass the hard credit check, the lender will finalize the loan offer. You may need to print, sign, scan, and email back the loan documents but not all lenders require this. During the application process, you’ll have provided the lender your bank account information. The money will be deposited into your account usually within just a few business days.

Where to Get a Personal Loan


You can get offers from up to 11 lenders by answering a few basic questions. The process takes just two minutes, and you’re under no obligation to accept any offer.

Credible is so sure that borrowers will find the best rates with one of their lending partners that they offer a Best Rate Guarantee. If you are offered a better rate elsewhere, Credible will give you $200 (terms apply, see the Credible website for details).


For recent college graduates without a long credit history or a less than perfect score, Upstart may be the best choice for a personal loan. Upstart uses more than credit history and score to make loan determinations.

It’s fast and easy to check your rates through Upstart, and you can borrow from $1,000 to $50,000. You can have the funds as fast as one day,  and you will not be charged a fee for early repayment.

Take Advantage of a Personal Loan

A personal loan can really improve your financial situation and your life. A loan can help you get out of high-interest debt, pay for medical care, and bail you out of an emergency. Applying for and getting a personal loan is such a fast, painless process thanks to online lenders. If you’ve been considering a personal loan, now is the time.