Best Unsecured Personal Loans for Bad Credit 2021

ElitePersonalFinance
Last Update: April 22, 2021 Credit Report Loan Reviews Loans

Many reputable lenders offer unsecured personal loans to those with bad credit, ranging between APR of $5.99% to 35.99%. Better than payday loans with an APR of 400%! From 0 credit score to those requiring a 500 – 580 range, we compiled a list of reliable lending options that can provide the cash you need without having to risk your collateral in the process.

But before we show them to you, watch our video that shows how people with bad credit can get a personal loan:



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Are You looking for:

Loan Company: Min Credit Score: APR: Amount:
ZippyLoan 0 Vary $15,000
LendJetFunds 0 Vary $10,000
BadCreditLoans 0 5.99% – 35.99% $10,000
CashUSA 0 3.99% – 35.99%. $10,000
PersonalLoans 580 5.99% – 35.99% $35,000
OppLoans 0 99% – 199% $5,000
Avant 580 9.99% – 35.99% $35,000

BadCreditLoans

Loan amounts $500 – $10,000
Typical APR 5.99% – 35.99%
Min Credit Score 0
Time to funding 1 Day
Loan terms 3 – 36 months
Origination fee N/A
Debt-to-income ratio N/A
Check rates

BadCreditLoans.com offers unsecured personal loans for very bad credit.

And like their motto states – they can help when others can’t.

While loan amounts can reach up to $10,000, those with really bad credit shouldn’t expect that much. Usually, BadCreditLoans.com will provide up to $3,000 if your credit is extremely poor, while those with higher credit scores can get the full $10,000.

Pros:

  • Easy and fast approval.
  • Those with really bad credit still get approved.
  • APRs in the personal loan range, which means less than 35.99%.

Cons:

  • Those with really bad credit should expect high APRs ranging from 15% to 35.99%.
  • Not all loans get approved.

LendingTree

Loan amounts $1,000 – $50,000
Typical APR 3.99% – 35.99%
Min Credit Score 500
Time to funding 1 Day
Loan terms 1 – 5 years
Origination fee 0 – 3%
Debt-to-income ratio N/A
Check rates

As another great option for those with really bad credit, LendingTree has both the scale and reputation of a market online leader. With over 10 billion in loans provided, LendingTree is one of the largest personal loan lenders in the marketplace today.

What separates LendingTree from the other is that the company offers unsecured loans for really bad credit. LendingTree provides loan options to people with credit scores as low as 500. Conversely, some of its 10 largest competitors often require minimum credit scores in the 600-700 range, making it much more difficult to obtain a loan.

With APRs ranging from 3.99% to 35.99%, LendingTree offers unsecured loans up to $50,000.

But will you really receive that much?

In all honesty, it’s unlikely.

If you have really bad credit, the amount you can get will be much lower, and your APR will most likely fall near the 35.99% mark … high but again better than %400 APR of payday loans. However, considering loans are unsecured – like BadCreditloans – you never have to worry about losing any collateral. You can also discuss your situation directly with them and see what terms are appropriate for you.

Pros:

  • As one of the largest online loan companies, LendingTree is a name you can trust.
  • APRs range from 3.99% to 35.99%.
  • Low credit score requirements (500 minimum).
  • 1-day approval process.

Cons:

  • Some people with extremely bad credit won’t be approved.
  • A loan origination fee of 0-3% can apply.

OppLoans

Loan amounts $500 – $5,000
Typical APR 59% – 199%
Min Credit Score 0
Time to funding 1 Day
Loan terms 9 – 36 months
Origination fee N/A
Debt-to-income ratio N/A
CHECK RATES

As a relatively new player in the lending space, we categorize OppLoans as an alternative lender.

For more detail on what separates them from the other options above, check out our detailed guide on the best payday loan alternatives for bad credit 2021.

To break it down in brief, the main thing you should know is OppLoans does not provide personal loans. The reason is their APRs exceed 35.99%. However, even with the higher APR, its products are still cheaper than traditional payday or car title loans.

Pros:

  • Very easy approval.
  • Those with very bad credit can still get approved.
  • They don’t check your credit but will access your financial transaction history.
  • A much cheaper alternative compared to traditional payday and auto title loans.

Cons:

  • Very expensive, with APRs ranging from 99% to 199%.
  • High APRs put you at risk of falling into a debt cycle.

PersonalLoans

Loan amounts $1,000 – $35,000
Typical APR 5.99% – 35.99%
Min Credit Score 580
Time to funding 1 Day
Loan terms 90 days – 72 months
Origination fee 1 – 5%
Debt-to-income ratio N/A
Check rates

Fitting the bill as another alternative lender, PersonalLoans offers unsecured loans ranging from $1,000 to $35,000. Its vast network of lenders can offer APRs ranging from 5.99% to 35.99%. With installment and bank personal loans typically requiring a minimum credit score of 580, PersonalLoans can offer great lending solutions to those with bad credit.

So what else is required?

Well, you need to have some form of recurring income: full-time employment, self-employment, regular disability, or Social Security benefits.

Pros:

  • You can get loans up to $35,000.
  • Fair APRs ranging from 5.99% to 35.99%.
  • Repayment periods that range from 90 days to 72 months.

Cons:

  • You’re required to have some form of recurring income.
  • Loan origination fees apply in most cases.
  • Not all loans get approved.

Credible

Loan amounts $1,000 – $100,000
Typical APR 5.34% – 35.99%
Min Credit Score 500
Time to funding 1 Day
Loan terms 90 days – 72 months
Origination fee 0% – 8%
Debt-to-income ratio N/A
Check rates

Promising a $200 credit if you find a better rate from another competitor, Credible offers unsecured personal loans ranging from $1,000 to $100,000. Keep in mind that the finalized amounts depend largely on your debt-to-income ratio, and you’re also required to have a steady income.

And what about your APR?

While each lender within Credible’s network uses its own proprietary method to determine rates, typical APRs range from 5.34% to 35.99%. Also, loans come with repayment periods ranging from 61 days to 120 months.

Pros:

  • Free to use and no hidden fees.
  • Fair APRs ranging from 5.34% to 35.99%.
  • Receive rates in as little as 2 minutes.

Cons:

  • Loan origination fees range from 0% to 8%.
  • Loan amounts on your debt-to-income ratio.

LendingPoint

Loan amounts $2,000 – $25,000
Typical APR 9.99% – 35.99%
Min Credit Score 585
Time to funding 1 – 3 Days
Loan terms 36 – 60 months
Origination fee 0 – 6%
Debt-to-income ratio 35%
Check rates

As another unsecured loan option for those with bad credit, LendingPoint offers APRs that range from 9.99% to 35.99%. As well, you have access to funds ranging from $2,000 to $25,000.

To get a loan, you must have an annual income of at least $20,000 and a minimum FICO score of 585. A loan origination fee of 0% to 6% is applied to each borrower.

And what else should you know?

Well, LendingPoint loans are only available in 34 states, and if you have bad credit, your APR will most likely fall at the high-end of the range. As well, the company does not offer a co-signer option.

Pros:

  • Low credit score requirement (585 minimum).
  • Instant approval or within one business day.
  • No penalty for early repayment.
  • No restrictions on what the loan can be used for.

Cons:

  • Must have an annual income of at least $20,000.
  • Must have a debt-to-income ratio of 35% or less.
  • Only available in 34 states.
  • No co-signer option.

NetCredit

Loan amounts $1,000 – $10,000
Typical APR 34% – 155%
Min Credit Score 0
Time to funding 1 – 3 Days
Loan terms 12 – 36 months
Origination fee 1 – 5%
Debt-to-income ratio N/A
Check rates

NetCredit offers bad credit lending options to borrowers in select states with no minimum credit score requirement. The company also has no debt-to-income requirement or minimum credit history. Its only requirement is to earn a steady income from traditional employment, self-employment, or retirement benefits.

And what about the drawbacks?

Like many things in life, there are two sides to every coin.

Unsecured loans range from $1,000 to $10,000, but their APRs can be extremely high. For loans in California, APRs range from 34% to 155%, with a typical APR coming in at 84%. As well, there is no co-signer option to lower your interest rate.

Pros:

  • No minimum credit score requirement.
  • No debt-to-income ratio requirement.
  • No early repayment penalty.
  • No annual income requirement.

Cons:

  • High APRs that can reach up to 155%.
  • Loans are only available in Alabama, California, Delaware, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Missouri, North Dakota, New Mexico, South Carolina, South Dakota, Utah, Virginia, and Wisconsin.
  • No co-signer option.
  • Not all loans get approved.

Avant

Loan amounts $2,000 – $35,000
Typical APR 9.99% – 35.99%
Min Credit Score 580
Time to funding 1 Day
Loan terms 24 – 60 months
Origination fee 1% – 4.75%
Debt-to-income ratio N/A
Check rates

With loan amounts ranging from $2,000 to $35,000, Avant is another online lender offering unsecured solutions to those with bad credit. While the company has a minimum FICO score requirement of 580, APRs fall in the healthy range of 9.99% to 35.99%. Again though, if you have poor credit, you’ll most likely fall near the high-end of the range.

Avant personal loans are available in all states, except Colorado, Iowa, Vermont, or West Virginia.

You pay a loan origination fee of 4.75% at initiation, but the company doesn’t charge any early repayment penalties.

Pros:

  • Low credit score requirements (minimum 580).
  • Flexible loans amounts ranging from $2,000 to $35,000.
  • Reasonable APRs ranging from 9.99% to 35.99%.
  • No early repayment penalties.

Cons:

  • Lending options are not available to residents in Colorado, Iowa, Vermont, or West Virginia.
  • The company applies a loan origination fee of 4.75%.
  • No co-signer option.

Can You Get an Unsecured Loan with Bad Credit and What Rates Should You Expect?

You can absolutely get an unsecured loan, even with bad credit.

Our options above provide clear proof that lenders are more willing to provide unsecured financing in today’s market than in year’s past.

The reason?

Well, it all comes down to competition. The online lending market is an extremely competitive space. With plenty of companies fighting for your business, many online lenders are willing to offer unsecured financing options as a means to increase profitability.

A second reason is the modernization of credit analysis.

Instead of focusing on your credit score alone, lenders now take a holistic approach to credit analysis and examine your entire financial situation. Variables like your work history, education, spending activity, and savings balance can all be used to cover up a bad credit score.

So with that in mind, how much can you expect to receive?

Well, in most cases, a low credit score means less cash you’ll receive up-front. With many unsecured loans starting at roughly $1,000 and up, you’ll most likely get loans at the low-end of the range.

And what about your APR?

Here, you’ll most likely fall near the top-end of the range. Most of the unsecured bad credit loans we recommend have APRs capped at 35.99%. With bad credit, your sweet spot is right here.

However, before you get too discouraged, there is a bright side.

Even at 35.99%, your out-of-pocket costs are still much less than what you’d receive from a payday or a car title loan.

What Loans Should You Avoid?

Without question, it’s payday and car title loans.

Predatory in nature, payday loans come with absurdly high APRs that average 400%; as well, borrowing amounts typically peak at $1,000.

  • Payday loans also have significant rollover fees

If you find yourself in the unenviable position of defaulting on the loan, payday lenders usually allow you to ‘roll over’ the loan and extend its due date. You’re required to pay both the original loan fee and a penalty fee for the late payment by rolling over the loan. On top of that, you still owe the principal balance as well.

  • Another overlooked risk is bank overdraft fees

When a payment is charged to your checking account by the payday lender and your account doesn’t have the funds to fulfill the entire transaction – banks can charge overdraft fees that increase your costs that much more. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) found that 20,000 bank account holders who made payments to online payday lenders incurred an average of $97 in overdraft and non-sufficient funds fees. The figure is nearly three times more than the $34 incurred by the average American.

  • Now for car title loans

As a type of secured loan, car title loans require you to put up your car as collateral. If you fail to make the payments, your car can be seized in the process. Because of a questionable reputation, car title loans are actually illegal in many states.

When marketing the product, lenders often lure customers by promising fast approval and not checking your credit. Lenders know your credit score is low and use this information to profit off those in financial trouble. They specifically target borrowers in desperate financial situations or those with really bad credit.

  • How else do car title loans cause financial harm?
  • According to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), auto title loans have an average APR of 300%.
  • About 20% of car title loan borrowers end up losing their car.
  • Many auto title loans have hidden fees and rollover charges.
  • People often fall behind on their payments and get stuck paying interest-only; this increases your risk of falling into a vicious debt cycle.

In 2021 – there are many unsecured lending options available to those with bad credit.

Cosigner Loan Options

If bad credit is holding you back from obtaining a loan, a co-signer can greatly achieve fast approval and more favorable terms. Acting as a guarantor of the loan, a co-signer promises to pay back the debt proceeds if you default on the loan.

For you and the lender, the arrangement benefits both parties.

You benefit by receiving a lower APR and more favorable loan terms. The lender benefits because a co-signer decreases the risk of default.

So what options are out there?

While many companies in our list above don’t allow co-signers, several reputable lenders support the practice. OneMain Financial, LendingClub, and Wells Fargo offer co-signer loans with amounts ranging from $1,000 to $100,000 and have APRs that range from 6.95% to 35.99%.

So if you have a trusted friend who’s willing to act as a co-signer, it can be a great way to avoid more expensive loan alternatives.

How to Spot Bad Credit Loan Scam?

Citing a recurring problem across the United States, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) issued a report stating that consumers lost more than 905 million to loan scams in 2017 – an increase of 63 million from 2016.

To avoid becoming the next victim, we have some tips to help you spot the red flags:

  • A lender asking for upfront fees

Lenders must always disclose their fees beforehand; usually, these costs are rolled into the loan’s total cost. If a lender asks for an upfront payment, something scammy is going on.

  • A lender offering a loan over the phone

All loans must be finalized in writing, and it’s illegal to make offers over the phone. If a lender tries to finalize the agreement over the phone, think twice before accepting.

  • A lender that is not registered with a state regulator

Lenders are required to register their company within the state they operate officially. If a lender is unlicensed, there’s likely a good reason for it.

  • A lender with no interest in your credit history

Legitimate lenders are always concerned about default risk. Thus, analyzing your credit history is the bare minimum when deciding whether or not to approve a loan. If a lender is eager to finalize the deal without any such check, it’s most likely a scam.

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